John G. Parrish was appointed on April 1, 2005 to serve as the California State Geologist and Chief of the California Geological Survey. The State Geologist is the primary contact and spokesperson for the California Geological Survey with the Director of the Department Conservation, the Resources Agency, the Governor’s Office, the State Legislature, and the State Mining and Geology Board. Prior to his current position, he was the Executive Officer for the State Mining and Geology Board for eleven years. Before coming to state service, Dr. Parrish spent 21 years in various capacities of geological exploration for a large international petroleum company.
A native of California, he was raised in Los Angeles. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Geology from the University of Redlands in Southern California; a Master of Science Degree in Geology from the University of Houston, Houston, Texas; a Master of Business Administration from the California State University; and, a Ph. D. in Marine Geology from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, Wales, U. K.
Parrish is a California licensed Professional Geologist, a Certified Professional Geologist by the American Institute of Professional Geologists, a Certified Petroleum Geologist by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists and a Founding Member of the Energy Minerals Division, and a Member of the Society of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers.
He is the President-Elect of the Association of American State Geologists; Chair of the California Earthquake Prediction and Evaluation Council (CEPEC) which reports directly to the Director of the California Emergency Management Agency on earthquake matters; Board Chairman of the Western States Seismic Policy Council; Board Member on the Consortium of Organizations for Strong Motion Observation Systems, and Board Member of the USGS’s Scientific Earthquake Studies Advisory Committee. Dr. Parrish also serves as the Representative-at-Large for the American Geological Institute, and is Chair of the California Integrated Seismic Network.
Recently Parrish was awarded the John T. Galey, Sr. Memorial Public Service Award by the American Institute of Professional Geologists. This national award is given to an individual for outstanding public service well beyond the normal professional responsibilities.