GWD History

The  idea  of  forming    a professional   society    for  geohydrologists   in  South  Africa   was  first   raised  in  1977 during  discussions   between   officials  from  the  then Department  of Water Affairs and staff   at the  Department of Geology,    University    of  the  Orange  Free State.    From the start it was thought that such a group could form part of the Geological     Society of South Africa. Consultation with the Geological   Society commenced in 1977,   and a draft constitution was   drawn   up in consultation with the    Society    with    the   view    of forming   a specialist   division   of the Society.

After the  conclusion   of a colloquium   on 29 November 1978,   organised   by the  Branch  of  Scientific   Services of  the   Department   of  Water   Affairs   to  specifically address  groundwater   issues,   a meeting   was  held to discuss  the  formation  of an association   for geohydrologists.    This  meeting,   under  the  chairmanship    of  Mr J R Vegter,   was  attended   by  56  persons   and  culminated  in the  formation  of the  third  specialist division of the Geological   Society   of South  Africa  (GSSA)   and is   referred   to  as  the   Ground   Water   Division  of  the GSSA.   At this meeting a working   Committee   comprising   of  Mr  J  R  Vegter   (Chairman).    Mr W  R  G Orpen (Secretary)    and  two   additional     members,    Prof   B T Verhagen   and  Mr  M N Sara,  was  formed.

In  February   1979   membership    stood  at  53  and  the Division   started   its  activities   with   a bank  balance  of R50,55.

Click here to more about the history of the Division as prepared by Reinie Meyer extracted from the publication: A Century of Geological Endeavour in Southern Africa, 1895-1995 C. R. Anhaeusser Geological Society of South Africa, 01 Jan 1997

GWD Executive Committee for 2010 /2011 were:

  • Dr Shafick Adams (Water Research Commission) – Chairman National Branch
  • Ms Nancy Motebe (Department Water Affairs) – Vice Chair – National Branch
  • Mr Fortress Netili (Council for Geoscience) – Treasurer – National Branch
  • Mr Matthys Dippenaar (University of Pretoria) – Co-opted Exco National Branch
  • Dr Kornelius Riemann (Umvoto Africa) – Chairman Western Cape Branch
  • Mr Gert Nel (SRK Consulting) – Chairman Eastern Cape Branch
  • Mr Gawie van Dyk (Anglo Gold Ashanti) – Chairman Central Branch

GWD Executive Committee for 2008 /2009 were:

  • Dr Rian Titus (Water Geosciences Consultants) – Chairman National Branch
  • Dr Kevin Pietersen (Water Geosciences Consultants) – Vice Chairman – National Branch
  • Mr Chris Moseki (Water Research Commission) – Honorary Secretary – National Branch
  • Mr Ryan Ellington (Knight Piesold) Treasurer and website – National Branch
  • Mr Gawie van Dyk – Central Branch Chair
  • Mr Hanco Roux – Eastern Cape Branch Chair
  • Mr Jaco Nel – Western Cape Branch Chair