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In memory of Professor Jan Dowgiałło (1932 – 2019)

We are sad to report the passing of Professor Jan Dowgiallo, who died on 15th May at the age of 87.

Prof. Dowgiałło was one of the greatest Polish hydrogeologists and also well-known internationally. Specialising in mineral, thermal and therapeutic waters, during his career Prof. Dowgiałło published nearly 150 scientific publications including monographies and atlases, and around 250 reports, reviews and analyses.

Born on 29 February 1932 in the town of Nowomalin (Volynh region), Prof. Dowgiałło’s scientific career began in 1949 at the Faculty of Chemistry of the Gdańsk University of Technology. Jan moved across from chemistry to geology in 1951, beginning study at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences of the University of Poznań. He continued his studies at the Faculty of Natural Sciences of the University of Wroclaw, where in 1953 he obtained a master’s degree in philosophy in the field of geology and paleontology.

In 1956 Jan was accepted at the position of an assistant at the Faculty of Geology of the University of Warsaw, where he received his PhD degree in natural sciences in 1963. Meantime, in 1957 he started working for the State Enterprise “Technical Service of Health Resorts”, supervised by the Ministry of Health, where he worked as the manager of the Geological Laboratory and later as the Deputy Chief Geologist of the Central Board of Health Resorts. After obtaining his PhD, Jan started working at the Balneoclimatic Institute as the head of the Geological Laboratory. In 1973 he obtained a postdoctoral degree in natural sciences at the Department of Geology and was appointed Associate Professor at the Balneoclimatic Institute. In January 1973, he started working at the Institute of the Geochemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences (ING PAN), as the head of the Hydrogeological Laboratory. In the years 1974-2014 he was a member and (periodically) the Chair of the Scientific Council of ING PAN. From 1957 to 2019 he was a member of the Hydrogeological Documentation Commission and since 1981 a member of the Committee of Geological Sciences of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

During his long scientific career Prof. Jan Dowgiałło participated in many international projects working for ONZ and WHO. He was also an academic teacher at the University of Bordeaux. For his merits for Poland he has been awarded many national awards including the Golden Cross of Merit (2006) and the Honoured for the Polish Hydrogeology medal (2016). In addition, between 1990-1994 he performed the function of the Polish Ambassador in Israel.

For many years Prof. Jan Dowgiałło was an active member of IAH, his efforts including being co-founder and Chair of the Commission on Thermal and Mineral Waters. For his achievements he was awarded Honorary Membership of the IAH.

Prof. Dowgiałło was active until his last days, working on scientific projects, mentoring students and planning new activities. Rest in peace.

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