Douglas Scott Dreger, a professor of geophysics at the University of California, Berkeley is the recipient of the 2024 Distinguished Service Award (DSA). at the 2024 SSA Annual Meeting. Dreger served as SSA Publications Committee chair between 2016 and 2022.
Dreger “instigated a broad range of initiatives intended to reinforce the reputation and financial performance of SSA’s publications at a time of rapid change in the publishing landscape,” said past SSA President John Townend, in his nomination of Dreger for the award.
Among Dreger’s accomplishments during his tenure was the establishment of The Seismic Record (TSR), the Society’s first fully open access journal and the appointment of Keith Koper as TSR’s inaugural editor-in-chief.
“Doug recognized the challenges and opportunities facing SSA in response to federal and other mandates for open-access publishing and authors’ and readers’ demands for short-form publications …” added Townend, who now chairs the Publications Committee. “Given the ever more rapid changes taking place in the scientific publishing arena and confirmation of federal and European mandates for open access publishing, the work Doug championed was clearly prescient.”
As chair, Dreger also oversaw the appointments of P. Martin Mai and Allison Bent as new Editors-in-Chief of the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America (BSSA) and Seismological Research Letters (SRL), respectively. During Dreger’s time as chair, he helped to guide the redesign of BSSA and SRL to improve their readability and modernize their design to keep pace with online access. Working with then-SRL Editor-in-Chief Zhigang Peng, Dreger aided the launch of SRL’s Emerging Topics column.
Dreger also oversaw the revision of publication policies for all three journals, including the author sharing policy, preprint policy and supplementary content policy, to ensure the rigor and standards necessary to maintain a healthy and navigable publishing program overall.
“I am deeply honored to have been awarded the SSA Distinguished Service Award for my efforts as Publication Committee Chair. BSSA was the first journal I read for a project as an undergraduate working for a geotechnical company. Years later I published my first scientific paper in BSSA. Subsequently, a majority of my life’s work has been published in SSA journals,” Dreger said.
“Serving on the Board of Directors and being asked to chair the Publication Committee was challenging, rewarding and one of the highlights of my career. The scientific publication landscape is rapidly changing and SSA is adjusting and innovating, while maintaining the highest level of standard in editorial review, and scientific rigor of the published works. We can all be proud of this as members, authors, reviewers and editors,” he added.