May 1, 2009    #064
Contact: Laura Byerley
(816) 235-1592

UMKC renames Geosciences Museum after the late Richard L. Sutton, Jr.

Renaming ceremony takes place May 2

Thanks to Dr. Richard L. Sutton, Jr., the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) Department of Geosciences – under the guidance of then-department chair Eldon J. Parizek – was able to open the UMKC Geosciences Museum in 1973, hire student curators to maintain the museum and thus encourage more people to study science. In honor of the late Dr. Sutton’s generous contributions of time and financial support, the UMKC College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Geosciences is changing the museum’s name to the Richard L. Sutton, Jr., M.D. Museum of Geosciences. The renaming ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 2 at the UMKC Geosciences Museum, 271 Robert H. Flarsheim Hall, 5110 Rockhill Rd., Kansas City, Mo. Anyone is welcome to attend.

Dr. Sutton – a distinguished dermatologist and adjunct geology faculty member – donated more than half the museum’s fine specimens of minerals, gems and fossils and all the museum’s double-level display cases. The museum’s Richard L. Sutton, Jr., M.D. Collection includes a giant ammonite fossil shell, which measures 30 inches across and is estimated to be about 80 million years old and a spectacular fossil clam composed of precious opal from Australia. The collection’s 3,000+ specimens come from around the world with representatives from all continents. Dr. Sutton’s cephalopod collection has been called a Missouri state treasure.

In addition to donating specimens and display cases, Dr. Sutton funded the employment of student curators for more than a decade. Several of these students have become prominent geoscientists. Dr. Sutton also explored Africa, Asia and the Arctic and published several books on dermatology, renaissance physicians and the Missouri River.

“We are so thankful for Dr. Sutton’s generosity, for donating his collections and founding the museum, which is an extraordinary educational resource used by students from throughout the area,” said Raymond Coveney, professor in UMKC’s Department of Geosciences. “Dr. Sutton made this museum possible, so it only makes sense that it would be named after this extraordinarily generous benefactor.”

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 14,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience.

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This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).


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