Dr. Norman P. Lasca is Professor Emeritus of Geology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He holds degrees from Brown University and the University of Michigan. Widely traveled, he has worked extensively in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic areas surrounding the Arctic Ocean and Antarctica for over 50 years.
He is a widely published scholar and editor whose expertise lies in Earth-surface processes, especially those related to glaciers and glaciation. His recent research has dealt with the glaciation of Russia's Siberian coastal region and with erosion problems in the US National Forests of the upper Midwest. He serves on several national and international geological commissions, as well as on non-profit boards and on technical advisory committees for various municipal and state agencies.
He is a licensed Professional Geologist and Professional Hydrologist, and is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America. In addition to his geologic work, his interests include ornithology and Arctic botany.
When did you begin working in the polar regions?
"In the Arctic in 1961, as a geologist. It was 1978 in Antarctica. I was a lecturer and geologist."
When did you join Quark's Expedition Team?
"I was one of the first as I joined in 1991."
What skills do you call on to perform your job on our ships?
"Over 45 years of geological research in glaciated terrains - especially in polar regions. I've been teaching geology and Earth surface processes at the university level all my adult life."
What keeps you coming back year after year?
"The wonders of the polar regions; sharing my knowledge of the geology and natural history of the Arctic and Antarctic with first, or multi-time, adventurers who join us."
If you could time travel, which historic expedition would you like to join, and why?
"In the Antarctic: as a geologist on Shackleton's 1907 Nimrod Expedition to make the first ascent of Mt. Erebus, to do geological mapping, and to be the first team to reach the south magnetic pole. In the Arctic: as a geologist on Rasmussen's First Thule Expedition, to supplement the expedition's biology and archaeology by mapping the geology across coastal Arctic Canada and Alaska."
Norm's Advice to Polar Travelers
"Read as much as you can about the exploration, human and natural history of the area you're going to visit, before beginning your journey."