With the honorary presidency, the DGM recognizes exceptional scientific achievements in the service of the field of materials science and engineering in combination with particularly outstanding voluntary work for the DGM.
Günter Petzow (*1926) has gone down in the collective memory of experts as the "ceramics pope": After all, he made ceramics, which are brittle, usable for extreme mechanical and thermal loads with the help of sophisticated reinforcement mechanisms. In 1973, Petzow became director of the Stuttgart-based MPI for Metals Research, continuing a tradition that began in 1934 with his teacher Werner Köster at what was then the KWI for Metals Research. In 1964, on his initiative, the first issue of the journal "Praktische Metallographie" (PM) appears, which he edits for 13 years; in 1966, he is one of the initiators of the first metallography conference of the DGM; in 1968, he founds the DGM Expert Committee "Metallography", which he chairs. Between 1977 and 2002, Petzow took over the editorship of the "Zeitschrift für Metallkunde"; in 1989, as DGM chairman, he rendered outstanding services to the reunification of German metallography. In 2014, he became honorary chairman of the DGM - an honor previously only bestowed on Georg Masing.