The Ocean Sciences Section of AGU recognizes Wayne V. Burt's 36 years of participation, leadership, and service in the oceanographic community. He earned his B.S. degree in Mathematics at Pacific College in 1939, and after serving in the former Naval Weather Service (including study at the Naval Postgraduate School while it was still in Annapolis), he obtained his MS and Ph.D. degrees from the UCLA-Scripps Institution of Oceanography program in 1948 and 1952, respectively.
After serving on the faculty at the Chesapeake Bay Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, and on the research staff of the Department of Oceanography at the Univeristy of Washington, Wayne returned in 1954 to Oregon, where he had been raised, determined that the state needed a program in oceanography, regardless of whether or not it recognized this fact. The University of Oregon displayed little interest in his vision, but President Strand of Oregon State University (OSU) provided him with a niche; that is, a closet, where he could pursue his Office of Naval Research (ONR) sponsored research. This base allowed him to develop a proposal that led to funding under ONR's TENOC program (which supported the development of most of the “second generation” oceanographic institutions in the United States), and to formation of a Department of Oceanography in 1959.