Darrel Hess is professor of geography at City College of San Francisco, where he served as chair of the Earth Sciences department from 1995-2009. He regularly teaches physical geography, economic geography, and human geography. Hess received his B.A. in geography from UC Berkeley and his M.A. in geography from UCLA. Before grad school he served in the Peace Corps in Korea, and before teaching full-time he worked as a writer, photographer, and audiovisual producer.
Hess served as T.A. to Tom McKnight at UCLA, and began working with McKnight and Pearson as author of the SG starting in the 4th edition and as author for the LM starting in the 5th edition. He became a full time co-author of the 9th edition, and became sole author of the 10th edition.
Hess has contributed to the development of the geoscience animation library and has partnered with many geoscience teachers and writers in the development of the CA edition. Hess was the recipient of the 2014 AAG Gilbert Grosvenor Geographic Education Honors award.
Dennis Tasa has been a renowned illustrator of many bestselling geoscience textbooks since 1978, including Physical Geography by Darrel Hess, Laboratory Manual in Physical Geology by the American Geosciences Institute and the National Association of Geoscience Teachers, as well as the physical geology, Earth science, and meteorology franchises by Tarbuck and Lutgens. He has created illustrations and media for the Mineralogical Society of America and NSF-funded projects. In addition to numerous educational Earth science apps, he has worked on various Earth science media, including Pearson's GEODe.
In his spare time, Dennis has joined the Taos fine art community by painting under the direction of the artist in residence at one of Taos' historic museums.
Tom L. McKnight taught geography at UCLA from 1956 to 1993. He received his bachelor's degree in geology from Southern Methodist University in 1949, his master's degree in geography from the University of Colorado in 1951, and his Ph.D. in geography and meteorology from the University of Wisconsin in 1955. During his long academic career, Tom served as chair of the UCLA Department of Geography from 1978 to 1983, and was director of the University of California Education Abroad Program in Australia from 1984 to 1985. Passionate about furthering the discipline of geography, he helped establish the UCLA/Community College Geography Alliance and generously funded awards for both undergraduate and graduate geography students. His many honors include the California Geographical Society's Outstanding Educator Award in 1988, and the honorary rank of Professor Emeritus upon his retirement from UCLA. In addition to Physical Geography: A Landscape Appreciation, his other college textbooks include The Regional Geography of the United States and Canada; Oceania: The Geography of Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands; and Introduction to Geography, with Edward F. Bergman. Tom passed away in 2004.
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