The Circum-Pacific Council lost a dear friend and a tremendous supporter, Erick Mack, last month (July 10). Erick had a long and constructive relationship with the Council. He first became involved in Council activities in 1980 when appointed the Chairman of the Circum-Pacific Council for Energy and Mineral Resources’ Hawaiian Conference.
A graduate in geology from Stanford University, and a longtime supporter of the University, Erick was Vice President of Geothermal Energy at Union Oil Company, later Unocal, and brought resources of his company to support Council conferences and workshops. After the very successful Hawaiian conference Erick took on the role of President and in that position was adept at dealing with the fiery and dynamic Chairman of the Council, Michel T. Halbouty. He could calm the explosive Michel and guide discussions in a fashion that provided solutions to complex problems.
Erick's organizational skills made the Council into the organization it is today - successfully hosting the Crowding the Rim conference at Stanford University, sponsored by the university, the American Red Cross, U.S. Geological Survey and the CPC. Erick and his wife Marion sponsored several social events including one in their home in Palo Alto. His tireless and persistent encouragement and support of the USGS SOPAC and Pole-to-Pole marine geology investigations led to ground-breaking science and the birth of the CPC Earth Science Series publications. He was always a consummate host welcoming folks from all across the Pacific.
Erick filled the void of Chairman after Michel passed away. He always made people feel good and had a talent for making people want to work with him. After retiring from Unocal, Erick continued to work on the Council and was its Secretary until the day of his death. He unselfishly provided encouragement for Council activities and whenever needed would open up his home in Palo Alto, California for Council business meetings and social events such as the one mentioned above.
Erick will be missed by many. However, his memory will live on. The fun that many of us experienced with him in organizing and implementing conferences, workshops, and international travel on planes, trains, and buses will never be forgotten. Erick was fun to be with. He was a friend, a mentor, an accomplished scientist and manager. He was family.
H. Gary Greene & David Howell