A tribute to an exceptional leader in geospatial science and an exemplary former TERN Advisory Board member. Prepared by Dr Beryl Morris, Director, TERN Australia
Our TERN community is saddened to hear of the unexpected death of Dr Peter Woodgate. Peter served on the TERN Advisory Board from 2010 until 2016. He is remembered by all of us as friendly, funny, dedicated and particularly, an influential advocate for TERN’s support of researchers, government and industry in their push to use innovative space and spatial information technologies in monitoring Australia’s environment. We are all indebted to Peter’s vision in helping TERN lay such strong governance foundations in continental-scale, long-term environmental monitoring.
As will be seen from tributes from NCRIS-enabled AURIN and the article in Spatial Source, Peter’s influence, generosity of time, and contribution to knowledge have spanned decades, multiple institutions and multiple countries.
TERN benefitted from Peter’s stature in research, government and other circles. An example that comes to mind is when he flew the TERN flag in February 2011 as a representative for Australia at the inaugural Australia-US Science and Technology Joint Commission Steering Committee meeting in Washington DC, USA.
At that landmark meeting, Peter was in a unique position to contribute advice for our Australian Government’s high-level discussions designed to agree on areas of science and research priority. These were to be the drivers for development of policy-level guidance for cooperative activities and helped to chart a coordinated set of research activities to aid the progression of shared commitment of the Australian and US Governments to strong bilateral ties – commitments still in place today.
Our thoughts at this sad time are with all of Peter’s family, friends and extensive international collegial network. We give special mention to Peter’s son at the University of Queensland, Dr Will Woodgate, who is a national research infrastructure leader in TERN, providing scientific direction to the internationally renowned TERN Tumbarumba Wet Eucalypt SuperSite.
Thank-you Peter. Your influence in TERN will not be forgotten.