Skip Palenik presented the “Ernst Abbe Memorial Award”
Skip Palenik presented the 2012 “Ernst Abbe Memorial Award” by the New York Microscopical Society (2012) . .
Presented on: 10/1/2012
Advanced Forensic applications of microscopy to unprecedented levels of evidence analysis
Research Microscopist and educator Skip Palenik’s lifelong fascination with the microscope started when he received his first instrument at the age of eight. Since then he has devoted himself to increasing his knowledge of analytical microscopy and microchemistry and applying it to the solution of real world problems, especially those of forensic interest. Skip is fortunate in having worked closely with his mentor, Dr. Walter McCrone, for over thirty years and to have studied forensic microscopy with Dr. Max Frei-Sulzer of Zurich, a disciple of Dr. Edmond Locard of Lyon. His special research interests are the identification of single small particles, or of small amounts of complete unknowns, and tracing dust and soil back to their origins.
Skip Palenik has been teaching analytical microscopy to forensic scientists for more than thirty years and has published numerous scientific articles and book chapters on the applications of chemical and forensic microscopy. His most recent contribution is a chapter on the use of heavy minerals in forensic science published by Elsevier.
Skip Palenik established Microtrace in 1992 to provide a resource for organizations and individuals in need of scientific services involving the analysis of microscopic trace evidence. He has played a significant role in numerous criminal investigations including the Atlanta Child Murders, the Air India Bombing, the Jon Benet Ramsey case, the Narita Airport bombing (Tokyo), the Hillside Strangler (Los Angeles) cases, the Oklahoma City bombing, Ivan the Terrible (Jerusalem), the Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King (reinvestigation by U.S. House Select Committee on Assassinations), the Unabomber, the disappearance of Helen Brach, The “Kiki” Camarena Murder Case and the Green River Serial Murders.
Skip Palenik is the 2009 recipient of the Paul L. Kirk Award, the highest award given by the criminalistics section of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, the 2003 Distinguished Scientist Award from the Midwestern Association of Forensic Sciences and is listed in American Men and Women of Science. In 2010 he was awarded the Chamot Medal in chemical microscopy by the State Microscopical Society of Illinois.