The Rice Northwest Rock and Mineral Museum employs a small crew to curate and maintain the museum, and a team of hosts who lead tours and are ready in each of the exhibits to answer any questions you may have. We’d like to introduce you to a few of our treasures.
Julian C. Gray, Executive Director
Julian Gray is the former Curator of the Tellus Science Museum in Cartersville, Georgia, where he oversaw the interpretation and care of the museum’s collections including collections management, exhibit fabrication, and research library. He served as final word on the scientific and technical accuracy of all exhibits, educational materials, and public communications. As an integral participant in nearly every major decision-making process concerning museum operations and strategic planning, Gray also was involved in numerous marketing campaigns, educational programs, and human resources matters, and was frequently sought out as local expert for science outreach, providing live interviews with and presentations for local media and civic groups.
Under his leadership the Tellus collection grew significantly, including acquisition of parts of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia mineral collection related to the Southeast and the former geology collection of the Georgia Capitol Museum. He also assisted in the Museum in achieving Smithsonian Afilliation status, which facilitated loans of significant fossil material related to Georgia from the National Museum of Natural History and Apollo-era artifacts from the National Air and Space Museum. Most recently, Gray was fundamental in obtaining a Lunar sample exhibit for Tellus on permanent loan from NASA, the only such exhibit in the state.
Gray also is active in the mineralogical community locally, nationally, and internationally, currently serving on the board of the Society of Mineral Museum Professionals. He was also a past president of Friends of Mineralogy (national organization and Southeast chapter). Other leadership roles included the Atlanta Geological Society and Georgia Mineral Society. He is the co-author of chapters related to Georgia mineral localities in the widely-acclaimed book “American Mineral Treasures” and, along with Dr. Robert Cook, co-author of the 2nd edition of the revised edition of “Minerals of Georgia” (Jose Santamaria, editor), currently in press.
Leslie G. Moclock, Museum Curator
Born and raised in eastern Pennsylvania, Moclock’s first encounters with rocks were on walks through the Appalachian hills with her family. At first, she chiefly noted bare, boulder-covered knobs as the best spots to sit and observe migrating raptors, but that all changed after her introductory geology course at Amherst. Nearly every set of her vacation photos since that time features at least one shot of Moclock with her nose on an outcrop. The hand lens comes on every camping trip!
While in college, Moclock was fortunate to work at the Beneski Museum of Natural History, where she was first introduced to museum education and collections management. She left the museum and completed a master’s degree in geology at UC Davis, studying the tectonic history of the Bear Mountains Fault Zone in the Sierra Nevada Foothills of California. Moclock was fortunate to be a teaching assistant for her two years at Davis, as well. She taught mineralogy lab sections, guiding students through the process of understanding minerals from the level of atomic structure up to their macroscopic physical properties and significance in both geologic and human spheres.
Moclock moved to Portland in 2013 with her husband. She has been both a volunteer and paid staff member at OMSI. She is thrilled to be joining the Rice community and looks forward to her duties as both steward and ambassador for the magnificent Rice collection.