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Award Nominations

Call for 2019 ESA Award Nominations is Open

The Awards Committee of the Ecological Society of America solicits and encourages nominations from members of ESA for each of the awards listed below. ESA especially encourages nominations of candidates from traditionally underrepresented groups, including women and minorities.

The 2019 Awards Committee Chair is Katharine Suding (ude.odarolocnull@gnidus). If you have general awards submission questions please contact gro.asenull@sdrawa. When preparing your award nomination specific questions can be answered by the specific awards subcommittee chair. The subcommittee chair’s email address are listed below in the awards description.

Award nomination deadline: Thursday, October 18, 2019 5:00 PM ET (2:00 PM PT)

Nomination process and schedule

Nominations for awards to authors for specific publications (George Mercer Award, W. S. Cooper Award, and Sustainability Science Award) should include a letter of nomination with the full citation, and a copy of the publication (electronic if possible). Nominations for awards to an individual for a body of work (Eminent Ecologist Award, Odum Education Award, Honorary Member Award, and Distinguished Service Citation) should include a curriculum vitae, a letter of nomination, and no more than three additional letters of support. Unless otherwise stated, nominees may be of any nationality or place of residence with priority given to ESA members.  To be given full consideration, nominations for awards should be completed by Thursday, October 18, 2018 and as a single PDF file. For Fellow and Early Career Fellow nominations, please submit via the online form link included in the respective section below. We welcome nominations that reflect the diversity of the Society’s membership.

Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology

The Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology Award is in recognition of long-standing contributions of an individual toward increasing the diversity of future ecologists through mentoring, teaching, or outreach. Recent recipients include Charles Nilon, Mary McKenna, Frank Day, and Gillian Bowser.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Carmen Cid, Chair, Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology Subcommittee: ude.tcnretsaenull@dic .

Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology

Distinguished Service Citation

The Distinguished Service Citation is given to recognize long and distinguished volunteer service to the ESA, to the larger scientific community, and to the larger purpose of ecology in the public welfare. Recent recipients are Alan Covich, Janet Lanza, Don Strong, Carol Brewer, and Debra Peters.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Jill Baron, Chair, Distinguished Service Citation Subcommittee: ude.etatsolocnull@norab.llij

Distinguished Service Citation .

Eminent Ecologist Award

The Eminent Ecologist Award is given to a senior ecologist in recognition of an outstanding body of ecological work or of sustained ecological contributions of extraordinary merit. Recipients receive lifetime active membership in the Society. Recent recipients include Jane Lubchenco, Eric Pianka, Jerry Franklin, and Diana Wall.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare the nomination, with further queries directed to Mark McPeak, Chair, Eminent Ecologist Award Subcommittee: ude.htuomtradnull@keepcm.kram .

Eminent Ecologist Award

Early Career Fellows

ESA designates as Early Career Fellows of the Society certain early career members (within 8 years of receiving the Ph.D. – 2009 is the cutoff for this year’s award) who have begun making and show promise of continuing to make outstanding contributions to a wide range of fields served by ESA. Such contributions include, but are not restricted to, those that advance or apply ecological knowledge in academics, government, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector.

Eligibility criteria

Any current nonstudent member of ESA who has been a member of ESA for at least two years (not necessarily consecutive and including student membership) is eligible to be nominated to be an ESA Early Career Fellow.

  • A nominee is expected to be early in their career. In most cases, this will be interpreted to mean eight years or less from Ph.D. (or other terminal degree) at the time of selection.
  • Demonstrated excellence and potential for future excellence of contributions to one or several of the following areas: (1) research and discovery, (2) communication and outreach, education, and pedagogy, (3) application of ecology to management and policy.

Nominations

The nomination of an individual to be an ESA Early Career Fellow must be made by three members of ESA excluding members of the Fellows Selection Committee.  No ESA member can nominate more than two individuals.

Nominations should consist of a SINGLE PDF file and shall be submitted electronically by October 18, 2018 and consist of the following:

  1. The names of the three nominators and statement that each is a current ESA member and is nominating no more than one other individual as an Early Career Fellow
  2. A citation of at most 50 words proposed for use if the nominee is selected to be an Early Career Fellow.
  3. One to three letters of recommendation, which may come from anyone, including the three nominators or nonmembers.
  4. A curriculum vitae of at most four pages. It is suggested that the vita include evidence of outstanding contributions as outlined under the eligibility criteria.

Incomplete nominations will not be reviewed.

Finally, please confirm that your nominee is a current member of ESA; we have had to reject some very worthy candidates because they are not current members of ESA and therefore not eligible to be ESA Fellows. If further guidance is needed for preparing your nomination, these inquiries should be directed to Deborah Goldberg, Chair, ESA Early Career Fellows Subcommittee ude.hcimunull@dloged .

Early Career Fellows

ESA Fellows Program

ESA designates as Fellows of the Society certain members who have made outstanding contributions to a wide range of fields served by ESA. Such contributions include, but are not restricted to, those that advance or apply ecological knowledge in academics, government, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector.

Eligibility criteria

  • Any current regular member of ESA who has been a regular member of ESA for at least five years (not necessarily consecutive) is eligible to be nominated to be an ESA Fellow. For these purposes, a regular member is defined as a nonstudent, dues-paying member.
  • A nominee is expected to have been a member of the profession for at least 15 years. In most cases, this will be interpreted to mean 15 years from Ph.D.
  • Demonstrated excellence of contributions to one or several of the following areas: (1) research and discovery, (2) communication and outreach, education, and pedagogy, (3) application of ecology to management and policy.

Nomination procedures

The nomination of an individual to be an ESA Fellow must be made by three members of ESA excluding members of the Fellows Selection Committee. No ESA member can nominate more than two individuals. Nomination packets will be considered for three years in a row without resubmission, although nominators are welcome to submit updated (complete) packets.

Nominations should consist of a SINGLE PDF file and shall be submitted electronically by October 18, 2018 and consist of the following:

  1. The names of the three nominators and statement that each is a current ESA member and is nominating no more than one other individual as a Fellow
  2. A citation of at most 50 words proposed for use if the nominee is selected to be a Fellow.
  3. One to three letters of recommendation, which may come from anyone, including the three nominators or nonmembers.
  4. A curriculum vitae of at most four pages. It is suggested that the vita include evidence of outstanding contributions as outlined under the eligibility criteria.

Criteria for evaluating significant contributions and impact:

Below are some possible indicators of excellence that the selection committee will consider in selecting Fellows, so nominators and letter writers should speak to these in crafting their letters; these should not be viewed as an exclusive or complete list. Of course, Early Career Fellows and ESA Fellows will be evaluated against standards that are appropriate to their respective career stage.

Indicators of excellence include but are not restricted to the following:

Research and Discovery: Exceptional intellectual contributions (e.g., as described by nominator and letter writers), high quality publications, high impact publications (e.g., high number of citations), high numbers of publications, large numbers of significant grants, evidence of exceptional leadership in research (e.g. leadership on major collaborative projects)

Communication/outreach, Education/Pedagogy: Creation of media for the public that effectively communicates science, significant engagement with stakeholder groups, organization of citizen science efforts, legislative testimony, large numbers of graduate students and postdocs mentored, placement of graduate students and postdocs in competitive positions, high quantity of undergraduate students mentored, high quality of undergraduate student mentorship (e.g., publication/professional meeting attendance with undergraduates), leadership in training/mentoring (e.g., at a programmatic level), significant grants related to communication/outreach or education/pedagogy, leadership in communication/outreach or education/pedagogy, leadership in producing national and international reports, exceptional service to the discipline (e.g., editorships, holding executive positions in societies)

Application to Management/Policy: Significant development and codification of policy or management strategies; outstanding work within agencies, NGOs, or the private sector to effect policy or management change; significant and outstanding service on advisory boards to agencies (e.g., state, federal), NGOs, or businesses; other evidence of contributions to the application of ecology to management or policy

Incomplete nominations will not be reviewed.

Finally, please confirm that your nominee is a current member of ESA; we have had to reject some very worthy candidates because they are not current members of ESA and therefore not eligible to be ESA Fellows

If further guidance is needed for preparing your nomination, inquiries should be directed to Sarah Hobbie, Chair, ESA Fellows Subcommittee:ude.nmunull@eibbohs .

ESA Fellows Program

Eugene P. Odum Award

The Eugene P. Odum Award recognizes an ecologist for outstanding work in ecology education. This award was generously endowed by, and named for, the distinguished ecologist Eugene P. Odum. Through teaching, outreach, and mentoring activities, recipients of this award have demonstrated their ability to relate basic ecological principles to human affairs. Nominations recognizing achievements in education at the university, K–12, and public levels are all encouraged. Recent recipients include Nathaniel Wheelwright, Bob Pohlad, Carolyn Thomas, and Kathleen Weathers.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Vikki Rodgers, Chair, Eugene Odum Education Award Subcommittee ude.nosbabnull@sregdorv .

Eugene P. Odum Award

Forrest Shreve Award

An award given annually of $1000-2000 is available to support research in the hot deserts of North America: Sonora, Mohave, Chihuahua, and Vizcaino. Projects should be clearly ecological and should increase our understanding of the patterns and processes of deserts and/or desert organisms. Proposals will be ranked based on the importance of the project to understanding desert ecology, feasibility, experimental design and innovation.

Applicants for the Forrest Shreve Award should send a proposal (not to exceed one page) describing the proposed research, specifying the research location and explaining how the award would further the proposed research, with a C.V. and a short proposed budget describing how the money will be spent if awarded. A letter of reference should be submitted separately by a research supervisor or an appropriate referee familiar with their work. Graduate and undergraduate students are eligible, as long as they are currently enrolled in a degree program and are members of the ESA.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Sasha Reed, Chair, Forrest Shreve Student Research Fund vog.sgsunull@deercs. The award submission deadline is October 18, 2018.

Honorary Membership

Honorary Membership in the Society is given to a distinguished ecologist who has made exceptional contributions to ecology and whose principal residence and site of ecological research are outside of North America. Up to three awards may be made in any one year until a total of 20 is reached. Nominations of women and minority candidates, as well as those from developing countries, are especially encouraged. Recent honorees include Suzanne Milton, Marilyn Ball, Richard Shine, Christian Kӧrner and Richard Hobbs. 
The Honorary Member Award is not open this year.

Innovation in Sustainable Science

The Innovation in Sustainability Science Award is given to the authors of a peer-review paper published in the past five years that exemplifies leading edge work on solution pathways to sustainability challenges. The award recognizes that the application of sustainability science is enabled by linking ecological science with advances in other biophysical disciplines, engineering, the social sciences (e.g., economics, anthropology, public policy, governance), and other fields. The award recognizes higher risk ideas that are yet to be fully tested but hold great promise for achieving a sustainable world. Recent recipients are Ariana Sutton-Grier and colleagues, and Ian Donohue and colleagues.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Kay Gross, Chair, Innovation in Sustainability Science Award Subcommittee ude.usm.sbknull@kssorg.

Mercer Award

The Mercer Award is given for an outstanding ecological research paper published by a younger researcher (the lead author must be 40 years of age or younger at the time of publication). If the award is given for a paper with multiple authors, all authors will receive a plaque, and those 40 years of age or younger at the time of publication will share the monetary prize. Nomination letters should include the birth date(s) of the eligible author(s) and explain the novelty and importance of the paper. The paper must have been published in 2017 or 2018 to be eligible for this year’s award. Recent recipients include Douglas Rasher, Marcelo Ardón, Jennifer Gremer, and Jennifer Williams

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Meghan Duffy, Chair, George Mercer Award Subcommittee ude.hcimunull@gemyffud.

Murray F. Buell Award and E. Lucy Braun Award

Murray F. Buell had a long and distinguished record of service and accomplishment in the Ecological Society of America. Among other things, he ascribed great importance to the participation of students in meetings and to excellence in the presentation of papers. To honor his selfless dedication to the younger generation of ecologists, the Murray F. Buell Award for Excellence in Ecology is given to a student for the outstanding oral paper presented at the ESA Annual Meeting. Lucy Braun, an eminent plant ecologist and one of the charter members of the Society, studied and mapped the deciduous forest regions of eastern North America and described them in her classic book, The Deciduous Forests of Eastern North America. To honor her, the E. Lucy Braun Award for Excellence in Ecology is given to a student for the outstanding poster presentation at the ESA Annual Meeting.

A candidate for these awards must be an undergraduate, a graduate student, or a recent doctorate not more than 9 months past graduation at the time of the meeting. The paper or poster must be presented as part of the program sponsored by the Ecological Society of America, but the student need not be an ESA member. To be eligible for these awards the student must be the sole or senior author of a contributed talk or poster. Papers and posters will be judged on the significance of ideas, creativity, quality of methodology, validity of conclusions drawn from results, and clarity of presentation. While all students presenting a contributed talk or poster are encouraged to participate, winning papers and posters typically describe fully completed projects. The students selected for these awards will be announced in the ESA Bulletin following the Annual Meeting. A certificate and a check for $500 will be presented to each recipient at the following ESA Annual Meeting. The student will also receive up to $700 for travel expenses to the Annual Meeting.

How To Apply – Updated February, 2017

To apply, download and complete the application form (41 KB, DOC) and email it to the address specified in the application. Award applications are due on the same date as the abstract deadline, by 5:00 PM Eastern (2:00 PM Pacific).

The application questions are provided here to help you prepare your application in advance.

What is your education level (as of the August meeting)?

Undergraduate student

Graduate student

Recent doctorate (within 9 months of graduation as of August)

Does the research being presented describe the results of a fully completed project?

Yes/No

Please describe why/ how the research you will present will advance the field of ecology. (250 words maximum)

Buell/Braun who cancel their presentation should also notify the Buell Braun coordinator at gro.asenull@nuarblleub.

Request for Judges for the Murray F. Buell Award and E. Lucy Braun Award

Judges are needed to evaluate candidates for the Murray F. Buell Award and the E. Lucy Braun Award at every Annual Meeting. Each candidate will be assigned at least four judges with expertise in the specific subject of the presentation. Each judge is asked to evaluate 3-5 papers and/or posters. Current students are not eligible to judge. This is a great way to become involved in an important ESA activity. We need your help to make sure all of the candidates are fairly evaluated! If you would be willing to judge presentations please let us know by sending an email to gro.asenull@nuarblleub.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Andy McCall, Chair, Murray F. Buell Award and E. Lucy Braun Award Subcommittee ude.nosinednull@allaccm.

Robert H. MacArthur

The Robert H. MacArthur Award is given to an established ecologist in mid-career for meritorious contributions to ecology, in the expectation of continued outstanding ecological research and who generally are within 25 year from PhD. This award is given in alternate years, and the recipient is invited to address the membership at the Annual Meeting following his/her selection. Recent recipients include Stephen W. Pacala, Anthony R. Ives, Mercedes Pascual, and Anurag Agrawal.

Selection process: Applications (one nomination letter and at most three supporting letters) are electronically submitted to staff at ESA Headquarters. ESA Headquarters distributes the nominations to the subcommittee members. Each subcommittee member reads the nomination packets and sends a confidential ranked list of nominees to the subcommittee chair. The chair does not rank the nominees at this stage to avoid possible appearance of conflicts of interest. The chair then distributes the summed ranks, and uses this to narrow the field for a second vote from among 3-5 nominees (depending on the distribution of summed ranks). For the second vote, all members (including the chair) select their top and second nominees, explaining how they made their selection and ranking. The chair does this as well, but before asking for the same information from the subcommittee. If there is no clear winner after this stage, there can be a discussion on phone or Skype. Ideally the selection is made by consensus, but if not, the selection is made by simple majority. The subcommittee chair prepares a letter to the ESA Awards Chair communicating the name of the top candidate, the selection process, and the rationale for the selection. Subcommittee members are given information about the diversity of past winners. The MacArthur Award is given to a ‘mid-career’ ecologist, and to provide context, subcommittee members are given the academic age distribution of previous winners.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare the nomination, with further queries directed to Tony Ives, Chair, Robert H. MacArthur Award Subcommittee ude.csiwnull@sevira.

Sustainability Science Award

The Sustainability Science Award is given to the authors of a scholarly work that makes the greatest contribution to the emerging science of ecosystem and regional sustainability through the integration of ecological and social sciences. One of the most pressing challenges facing humanity is the sustainability of important ecological, social, and cultural processes in the face of changes in the forces that shape ecosystems and regions. This ESA award is for a single scholarly contribution (book, book chapter, or peer-reviewed journal article) published in the last five years. Recent recipients are Pamela Matson, Fikret Berkes, Margaret Palmer and J.B. Ruhl, and Jianguo Liu and colleagues.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Matt Liebman, Chair, Sustainability Science Award Subcommittee ude.etatsainull@nambeilm.

Whittaker Awards

There are two Whittaker Awards, both recognize ecologists who are not U.S. citizens and who reside outside the U.S.

  1. The Whittaker Distinguished Ecologist award is an honorary award that recognizes an ecologist with an earned doctorate and an outstanding record of contributions in ecology. Recent recipients include Inderjit, Simoneta Negrete-Yankelevich, Ezatollah Karami, and Petr Pysek.
  2. The Whittaker Travel Award specifically recognizes an outstanding ecologist in a developing country. They can be at any career stage. The Whittaker Travel Award provides funds for travel to the United States for research or to attend the ESA meeting, covering expenses up to $1200.

Requirements: Nominations for both awards can be made directly by the nominee or by an ESA member on behalf of the nominated ecologist. Nominations for these awards should include curriculum vitae, a short description how the awardee intends to use the award (for the travel award only), a letter of nomination providing the rationale for the award, and no more than two additional letters of support.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Sasha Reed, Chair, Robert H. Whittaker Award Subcommittee vog.sgsunull@deercs. The award submission deadline is October 18, 2018.

W.S. Cooper

The W. S. Cooper Award is given to honor an outstanding contributor to the fields of geobotany and/or physiographic ecology, the fields in which W. S. Cooper worked. This award is for a single contribution in a scientific publication (single or multiple authored). Recent recipients include Scott Wing and colleagues, Carissa Brown and Mark Vellend, Etienne Laliberté and colleagues, and Andrew Trant and colleagues.

See instructions at the top of the page for how to prepare nomination, with further queries directed to Jacquelyn Gill, Chair, W.S. Cooper Award Subcommittee ude.eniamnull@llig.nyleuqcaj.