It is hard to think of any presentation of an award more pleasurable to give or more deserving of receipt. John Handin, this year's Walter H. Bucher Medalist, has been one of the most distinguished scientists in the Bucher tradition. John's research has been devoted to the application of mechanics to the understanding of the deformation of the earth's crust. He is the preeminent leader in experimental studies of rock deformation. Along with King Hubbert he put together the superb group of tectonophysicists at Shell's research labs in the 1950s and early 1960s. Since then, Texas A&M's outstanding Center for Tectonophysics, which originated with Handin, grew to its present excellence under his leadership.