A senior geologist for the Stillwater Mining Co. will receive a prestigious award from the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology at Montana Tech.
Ennis Geraghty will be given the Uuno Sahinen Silver Medallion at Tech’s graduation at 11 a.m. Saturday in the Butte Civic Center. Sahinen, who is deceased, was a former bureau director widely recognized for the bureau’s growth.
Geraghty is senior project geologist on expansion projects along the J-M Reef in the Stillwater Complex.
Originally from Warrensburg, N.Y., a small town in the Adirondack Mountains, Geraghty received his A.B. in geology from Colgate University and did his graduate work in geology at Syracuse University, earning an M.S. and Ph.D. Both his master’s thesis and doctoral dissertation involved mapping in the Adirondack Mountains.
Little did he know that after working in Adirondack anorthosite minerals, he would be working in Montana anorthosite minerals in the Stillwater Complex 44 years later.
In 1980, after four years of government work, Geraghty, with his wife Sue, daughter Emily, and son Chris, moved west to Colorado where he joined the geology staff of Climax Molybdenum Co. at the Henderson molybdenum mine in the Laramide Front Range uplift.
In 1988, Geraghty was the last geologist standing from the Climax Geology Group. He was ultimately laid off and headed north to join the geology staff at the Stillwater palladium-platinum mine in Montana. Geraghty worked his way up to Production Geologist doing underground Grade Control and production planning, to Chief Geologist – Stillwater Mine, a position he held from 1994 until 2006.
As chief geologist, he was in charge of a department of some 27 geologists providing underground Grade and Dilution Control on the narrow J-M Reef palladium-platinum deposit, core-logging interpretation, and ore-reserve definition. In addition, Geraghty carried out independent structural-geology research in the Beartooth Mountains that included discovery of major geologic structures that would affect production at the Stillwater mine.
Since about 1997, Geraghty has continued independent research and outcrop mapping of the Beartooth front and the effect on the palladium-platinum, chromium, and nickel-copper ore zones within the Stillwater Complex. This work culminated in publication by the Montana Bureau Mines and Geology of a regional map titled “Geologic Map of the Stillwater Complex within the Beartooth Mountains Front Laramide Triangle Zone, South-Central Montana.”
Geraghty is a member of the Geological Society of America, Society of Economic Geologists, Society of Mining Engineers, Montana Geological Society, Tobacco Root Geological Society, Wyoming Geological Association, and Yellowstone-Bighorn Research Association.