James Clarence Knox (November 29, 1941-October 6, 2012)
Jim was born to Clarence and Gretta (McPherson) Knox in Platteville, Wisconsin. He married Kathleen (McCabe) Knox on June 14, 1964. They have two daughters Lezlie Knox (John Symms) and Sara Hook (Shawn Hook). He had two grandsons Alexander Symms and Corbin Hook. Other survivors include his brothers Clayton and Douglas (Karen) Knox. Since 1968 Jim has lived in Madison.
Jim Knox taught Geography at the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 1968, retiring in 2011 as Evjue-Bascom Professor. His teaching load each semester routinely included a large introductory course of 300-400 students and an intermediate or advanced level course in his specialty area of geomorphology, along with graduate seminars. Jim supervised the completion of 30 Ph.D. dissertations and 55 M.S. theses in Geography. He also supervised several M.S. students in the UW Water Resources Management Program and was a frequent member of Ph.D. dissertation committees in external departments, especially Geology and Geophysics (Geosciences), Civil & Environmental Engineering, and Soils. His former graduate students hold many of the most prominent positions in the field of physical geography.
Professional Honors given to Jim Knox include election to Fellowship in the Geological Society of America (1988) and election to Fellowship in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (1988). He received a research Honors Award from the Association of American Geographers (1990); and from the association's geomorphology section he received the G. K. Gilbert Award for Excellence in Geomorphological (1996); and the M. G. Marcus Distinguished Career Award (2001). The Association of American Geographers awarded him their Presidential Achievement Award for Long-Standing and Distinguished Contributions to the Discipline (2007). The Geological Society of America's Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology Division presented Jim with their D. J. Easterbrook Distinguished Scientist Award for Unusual Excellence in Published Research (2006). Jim has authored or co-authored approximately 90 research publications that have appeared in a variety of outlets ranging from mainline journals such as Science and Nature to book chapters and reports. His 2006 paper on rates of natural versus anthropogenic rates of floodplain sedimentation was honored at the 2011 European Geosciences Union General Assembly in Vienna as one of the top-50 most cited articles published in Geomorphology during the past 5 years.
In addition to his active career as a teacher and scholar, Jim enjoyed Badger Football and Basketball, genealogy, and spending time on the family farm. Jim's Irish setters--Sean, Patrick, and Quinn--brought much happiness to his life. He was proud that both of his daughters followed him into education, and delighted that both his grandsons also enjoy science.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to the University of Wisconsin Department of Geography, Science Hall, 550 N. Park Street, Madison WI 53706.
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