By Brecken Branstrator
brecken.branstrator@nationaljeweler.com
A tourmaline species recently discovered in Italy has been named dutrowite for professor, tourmaline expert and GIA governor Barbara Dutrow. Pictured here is a sample of dutrowite (brown) and dravite (blue) tourmalines in meta-rhyolite rock. (Photo courtesy of GIA)
Carlsbad, Calif.—A recently discovered mineral species in the tourmaline group has been named for researcher, professor and GIA governor Barbara Dutrow.

Discovered in the Apuan Alps of Italy’s Tuscany region, dutrowite—now recognized by the International Mineralogical Association—is formed from the compression and heating of a volcanic rock called rhyolite, the Gemological Institute of America said.

The researchers from Austria, Italy and Sweden who discovered dutrowite named the mineral after Dutrow in recognition of her “many contributions to mineral sciences and crystal chemistry, and particularly for her well-known and comprehensive research into tourmaline and its embedded geologic information,” GIA said.

20200304 Barbara DutrowBarbara DutrowDutrow is the Gerald Cire and Lena Grand Williams alumni professor in the Department of Geology and Geophysics at Louisiana State University.

Her teaching and research have focused on mineralogy, petrology, geochemistry, and computational modeling and visualization for more than 25 years.

She also has authored and co-authored many publications, including her textbook “Manual of Mineral Science,” a global standard and reference for the study of minerals now in its 23rd edition.

Dutrow earned her master’s degree and Ph.D. in geological sciences from Southern Methodist University in Texas.

She joined the GIA Board of Governors in 2016.


“Gems, and especially minerals, have been my life’s passion. It is tremendously gratifying to receive this honor,” Dutrow said.

“Discoveries such as this show us that there is still much to learn about our Earth and its many minerals and the geologic information they contain.”

According to GIA, dutrowite is the first of the 34 known tourmaline species named after a woman.

And this is the sixth time a GIA contributor has been honored for her or his work by having minerals named in their honor.

The first was former GIA President Richard T. Liddicoat, who was honored with another species of tourmaline, liddicoatite, four decades ago.

Rossmanite, another tourmaline species, was named after former GIA Governor George R. Rossman.

The magnetic mineral known as valleyite was named after GIA Governor Dr. John Valley, while crowningshieldite was named for pioneering researcher G. Robert Crowningshield and, most recently, johnkoivulaite was named after GIA researcher John Koivula last year.


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