Associate Professor of Geology – Georgia Southern University

Kelly Vance is a Kentucky native who grew up working on a family farm and attended the University of Kentucky earning a BS in geology in 1978 and an MS in geology in 1984. Vance’s research experience during his undergraduate and graduate education — and his work as a geologist with the Institute for Mining and Minerals Research (1981—1982) included Department of Education sponsored geochemical and field investigations of Devonian oil shales. His Master’s thesis and Ph.D. dissertation research focused on petrology, geochemistry and the tectonic-metallogenic evolution of Proterozoic igneous rocks in Colorado and Arizona culminating in a Ph.D. from New Mexico Tech in 1989. Vance’s college-level teaching experience includes early experience as an Instructor at the University of Kentucky (1981) a temporary position as lecturer at Appalachian State in North Carolina (1986—1988) and a summer Instructor at Mayland Community College, North Carolina (1988) before coming to Georgia Southern University where he has been employed since 1988.

Vance teaches environmental geology, mineralogy, petrology, and economic geology. He also co-teaches the sea turtle natural history and barrier island environmental geology summer field courses on St. Catherines Island with Gale Bishop and has served as co-director of the St. Catherines Island Sea Turtle Program with Bishop since 2013. Vance is actively involved in sea turtle habitat research and stratigraphic, geophysical and hydrologic investigations of St. Catherines Island. He serves on the Geology and Public Policy Committee of the Geological Society of America as Southeastern Section Representative.


Selected Publications

Barron, Lance S., Ehmann, William, Jr., Vance, R. K., Poole, Catherine and Robl, Thomas L., 1983. “Resource Assessment of the Oil Shales of Rowan, Montgomery, Bath and Powell Counties,” in The Commercial Feasibility of Mississippian and Devonian Oil Shales of Kentucky-, Thomas L. Robl, principal investigator, Technical Report prepared for U.S. Department of Energy by Institute for Mining and Minerals Research, 61-71
Vance, R. K. and Condie, Kent C., 1987. Geochemistry of the Early Proterozoic Deception Rhyolite in the Footwall Alteration Zone of the United Verde Massive Sulfide Deposit, Jerome, Arizona. Economic Geology, V. 82, 571-586.

Feiss, P. Geoffrey, Vance, R. Kelly, and Wesolowski, David, 1993. Volcanic rock-hosted gold and base-metal mineralization associated with Neoproterozoic-Early Paleozoic back-arc extension in the Carolina terrane, southern Appalachian Piedmont. Geology, V. 21, p 439-442
Vance, R. K. and Pirkle, F. J., 2007, The Concentration of Titanium in Heavy Mineral Sand Ore Deposits in F. J. Rich (ed.) Guide to Fieldtrips – 56th Annual Meeting Southeastern Section of the Geological Society of America, p.177-185

DeWitt, Ed, Langenheim, Victoria, Force, Eric, Vance, R. K., Lindberg, P. A., and Driscoll, R. L., 2008, Geologic Map of the Prescott National Forest and the Headwaters of the Verde River, Yavapai and Coconino Counties, Arizona: U.S.G.S. Scientific investigations Map 2996, Scale 1:100,000, 100-p. pamphlet

Vance, R. K., Trupe, C. H. and Rich, F. J., 2009, Integrating Ground Penetrating Radar and Traditional Stratigraphic Study in An Undergraduate Field Methods Course in Mogk, D. W., Whitmeyer, S. J. and Pyle, E. J. (eds.) Field Geology Education: Historical Perspectives and Modern Approaches. Geological Society of America Special Paper 461, p 155-161

Vance, R. K., Bishop, G. A., Rich, F. J., Meyer, B. K., and Camann, E. J., 2011, Chapter 11. Application of ground penetrating radar to investigations of the stratigraphy, structure and hydrology of St. Catherines Island in Bishop, G.A., Rollins, H. B. and Thomas, D. H. (eds.) Geoarchaeology of St. Catherines Island (Georgia), Proceedings of the Fourth Caldwell Conference St. Catherines Island, Georgia, March 27-29, 2009, Anthropological Papers of the American Museum of Natural History, No. 94, p. 209-235

Rich, F. J., Newsom, L., Meyer, B. and Vance, R. K., 2014, Radiocarbon Dates and the Genesis of Phytogenic Near-shore Sediments on St. Catherines Island, Georgia, USA, published on line in Environmental Earth Sciences DOI 0.1007/s12665-014-3203-z
Reichard, J. R., Nelson, B. R., Meyer, B. K., and Vance, R. K. 2014, Evidence of Saltwater Intrusion In the Upper Floridan Aquifer on St. Catherines Island, Georgia, Southeastern Geology, Southeastern Geology, V. 50, No. 3, May 2014, p. 109-122
Rich, F. J., Vance, R. K., and Rucker, C. R., in press 2014, The palynology of Upper Pleistocene and Holocene sediments from the eastern shoreline and Central Depression of St. Catherines Island, Georgia, U.S.A. Palynology

Meyer, B. K., Vance, R. K. and Bishop, G. A., 2014, Rising Sea – Addressing Eroding Habitats on St. Catherines Island, Georgia (U.S.A.), SWOT- The State of The World’s Sea Turtles, report Vol. 9, p. 18-19

Meyer, B. K., Vance, R. K., Bishop, G.A., and Deocampo, D. M., accepted with revision Aug. 2014, Origin and Dynamics of Nearshore Wetlands: Central Georgia Bight, USA, WETLANDS