AAG Specialty and Affinity Group Awards
Each year many AAG Specialty and Affinity Groups confer travel grants, hold paper competitions, and bestow honors and awards to their faculty and student members at the AAG Annual Meeting. Notices for these competitions may appear on the relevant specialty group’s website or listserve, or on the AAG News site.
For more information about a specific competition, please contact the chair of the relevant AAG Specialty or Affinity Group. Contact information for chairs and links to group webpages are available in the AAG Specialty and Affinity Group Directory.
Back to AAG Annual Meeting Grants
Awardees are listed by group, awardee name, affiliation, award title/description, and name of paper or project (if applicable). Accompanying photos indicate that awardees were presented their honors at the awards luncheon at the Swissotel in Chicago, Ill.
- Michael Strong, University of Maryland, Student Paper Award, "Changing Geographies of Place Attachment in Limpopo National Park"
Geography of Food and Agriculture
- Elsie Lewison, University of Toronto, Graduate Grant Award
- Lauren Van Patter, University of Guelph, Graduate Paper Award, ‘Of place’ or ‘of people’: Exploring the spatial dimensions of human-feral cat relations in southern Ontario
- William Derrenbacher, Esri, James R. Anderson Medal
- Elizabeth Chacko, George Washington University, Distinguished Service Award
- Carly Nichols, University of Arizona, Best Graduate Paper- 1st Place
- David Lukens, Best Graduate Paper - 2nd Place
- Hai Xiao, Student Travel Award (East Asia)
- Karuna Paudel, Student travel Award (South Asia)
- Savina Sirik, Student Travel Award (Southeast Asia)
- Christabel Devadoss, Travel Award (South Asia)
- Indre Balcaite, Best Graduate Award-2nd Place
- Galen Murton, AK Chakravarti Best Graduate Paper Recognition Award
- Victoria Alapo, University of Nebraska at Lincoln, Jonathan Lu Travel Award, "The Spatial Organization of Pre-Colonial African Kingdoms: A Study in Contrasts, Using the Empires of Ethiopia and Mali as Case Studies"
- Victoria Alapo, Amy Mather Scholar Award, "The Spatial Organization of Pre-Colonial African Kingdoms: A Study in Contrasts, Using the Empires of Ethiopia and Mali as Case Studies"
- Jordan Adams, Texas State University, Graduate Research Grant, "Examining Hydrodynamics of the Endangered Texas Wild-Rice to Inform Restoration"
- Stephani Michelsen-Correa, University of Washington, Phd Research Grant, "Tracing the Fate of Applied Nitrogen in Douglas-fir Forests of Oregon and Washington"
- Mahesh Somashekhar, Princeton University, 1st Place Paper Award, "Reaching Out or Reaching In? On the Location of Suppliers to Firms in Resource Deprived Business Clusters"
- Hilary Chart, Stanford University, 2nd Place Paper Award, "Open for Business: Botswanna's Entrepreneurial Imaginaries in Policy and Practice"
- Joel Radunzel, Syracuse University, Honors Student Paper—Best Paper, "Using the Right Tool: David Woodward's Suggested Framework and the Study of Military Cartography"
- Joel Radunzel, Syracuse University, Master's Thesis Grant, "Position Mapping: Cartography, Intelligence, and the Third Battle of Gaza, 1917"
- Elias Issa, San Diego State University, Finalist in Paper Competition
- Xi Zhu, Finalist in Paper Competition
- Dylan Coolbaugh, Finalist in Paper Competition
- Gabriele Richardson, Louisiana State University, Finalist in Paper Competition
- Meghan Kelly, University of Kansas, Master's Thesis Grant, "Mapping Syrian Refugee Border Crossings: A Critical, Feminist Perspective"
- Ding Fei, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Student Paper Award— Best Paper, "Comparative Labor Experiences with 'China in Africa': Evidence from Zhongxing Telecommunication Equipment and Lifan Groups in Ethiopia"
- Lucas Reyes, Humboldt State University, Student Travel Award for 3rd Place Paper, "The Dawn of the Greenhouse on Rural Tibetan Landscapes"
- Xin Yang, Peking University, China, Student Travel Award for 2nd Place Paper, "Trans-boundary Pollution in China: Do Polluting Plants Locate in the Borders of Jurisdictions?"
- Erika Wise, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, John Russell Mather Paper of the Year, "Persistence of Pressure Patterns over North America and the North Pacific since AD 1500"
- Margaret Kovach, 1st Place Paper Award
- Johnathan Sugg, 2nd Place Paper Award
- Stephanie E. Gibb Zick, 3rd Place Paper Award
- Karen Russ, Honorable Mention Paper Award
Coastal and Marine
- Brianna Hammond, Texas A&M University, Norb Psuty Paper Merit Award, "Using Foredunes to Quantify Rate of Recovery of Assateague Island, MD"
- Jessica Simms, Louisiana State University, Norb Psuty Paper Merit Award, "Resilience on Louisiana's Gulf Coast: social networks and disturbances"
- William Henry Baker, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Clifton Patrick Barrineau, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Keren Bolter, Participation in Norb Psuty Paper Merit Comp.
- Yin-Hsuen Chen, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Kathryn Kinsale Davies, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Brianna Hammond, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Krista E. Jaspers, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Melanie R Malone, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Karly Meszaros, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Lucia Ordonez-Gauger, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Donna Selch, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Jessica Simms, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Valeria Torres Lopez, Participation in Psuty Paper Merit Competition
- Allen Hai Xiao, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1st Place Paper Award
- Kuan Chi Wang, University of Oregon, 2nd Place Paper Award
- Vincent Quinton, Rutgers University, R.S. Tarr Student Poster Competition—Best Undergraduate
- Song Shu, University of Cincinnati, R.S. Tarr Student Poster Competition—Best Student Poster
- Yan Huang, East China Normal University, China, R.S. Tarr Student Poster Competition—Outstanding Student
- Weibo Liu, University of Kansas, R.S. Tarr Student Poster Competition—Outstanding Student
- Lincoln H. Pitcher, University of California Los Angeles, R.S. Tarr Student Poster Competition—Outstanding Student
Cultural and Political Ecology
- Seth Holmes, UC Berkeley, James A. Blaut Award, "Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Migrant Farmworkers in the United States" (University of California Press, 2013)
- Olivia C. Molden, University of Oregon, Field Study Award
- Sophia Borgias, University of Arizona, Field Study Award, "Conflict, Change, and the Challenges of Water Governance in Chile's Maipo River Basin"
- Emma Gaalas Mullaney, Penn State University, Student Paper Award, "Maíz, Desmadre: Social Difference, Biodiversity, and the Creolization of the Anthropocene"
- Billy Hall, Florida International University, Terry G. Jordan-Bychkov Paper Award, "Before Food Deserts: Reconstructing Overtown's Neighborhood Food Environment from Jim Crow to Urban Renewal, Miami, Florida"
- Sarah Hughes, UCLA, Denis E. Cosgrove Research Award, "Locating "Place" in Settler Consciousness: Identity Construction in Two West Bank Settlement Blocs"
- Willie Wright, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Denis E. Cosgrove Research Award, "Free the Land!: A Geography of the RNA, 1968-Present"
- Madeleine Hamlin, Syracuse University, Master's Research Grant, "Chicago's Carceral Geographies: Public Housing and the Prisoner Re-entry in the City"
- Willie Wright, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Gary Gaile Travel Award, "Research on gentrification and urban redevelopment in Houston, TX"
- Jana Maria Kleibert, University of Amsterdam, Best Student Paper Award, "Silicon Enclaves: The Rise of New Special Economic Zones in the Global South"
- Lucas Ysidro Reyes, Meridian Research & Consulting Travel Award
- Kyle Loewen, University of British Columbia, Graduate Research Award, "Logistical Production in E-Commerce Warehousing and Work"
- Kelly Kay, Clark University, Best Student Paper Award, "A Hostile Takeover of Nature? Placing Value in Conservation Finance"
- Aidan Marc Wong, National University of Singapore, Best Dissertation Award, "Value and Informal Labour: The Regional E-Waste Recycling Production Network in Malaysia and Singapore"
Energy and Environment
- Thomas A. Loder, Texas A&M University, Earl Cook award for Best Student Paper, "Spaces of Consent/Dissent and the Making of Fracking Subjects in North Dakota"
Environmental Perception and Behavioral Geography
- Andrew Myers, University of Montana, Saarinen Student Paper Award, "Remaking Nature in Montana: Topophilic Considerations of Wolves and Trapping"
- Joe T. Darden, Michigan State University, Distinguished Career Award
- Florence Margai, Binghamton University, Distinguished Career Award
- John Frazier, Binghamton University, Distinguished Scholar Award
- Shaolu Yu, University of Connecticut, Paper Competition Award, "Immobilities of Chinese Immigrants in Flushing New York"
- Kathryn Wright, University of Colorado-Boulder, Best Dissertation Proposal Award, "A Case Study of the Impact of the US Based Senegalese Migrants' Translocal Identities on their Development Efforts"
- Gruia Badescu, University of Cambridge, Graduate Paper Award, "Making Sense of Ruins: Urban Reconstruction and Collective Memories of War in Belgrade and Sarajevo"
- Forrest Bowlick, Texas A&M University, Gail Hobbs Award, "Teaching Programming in Undergraduate Geography: A Survey of Course Offerings in Geography Departments in the United States"
- Chelsie McWhorter, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Gail Hobbs Award
- Carol P. Harden, University of Tennessee, 2015 Melvin G. Marcus Distinguished Career Award
- L. Allan James, University of South Carolina, 2015 Grove Karl Gilbert Award
- Edward Park, University of Texas, M. Gordon "Reds" Wolman Doctoral Research Award
- Anna Parker Solverson, University of Colorado-Denver, M. Gordon "Reds" Wolman MA Research Award
- Gregory Pierce, University of Alabama, M. Gordon"Reds" Wolman MA Research Award
- Jessica Zinger, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Doctoral Paper Award
- Megan Hill-McCusker, University of Connecticut, Doctoral Paper Award
Geographic Information Science and Systems
- Paul Holloway, University of Texas at Austin, 1st Place Honors Competition for Student Papers in "GIS, Modeling Species Range Shift in Response to Climate Change: How Does Incorporating Migration Affect Uncertainty in Projections"
- Lauren Anderson, University of Georgia, Finalist 2015 Honors Competition for Student Papers in "GIS, Mergers and Network Effects: Understanding the Increase in Percentage of Non-Weather-Caused Flight Delays in the United States from 2004-2013"
- Su Han, San Diego State University/University of California Santa Barbara, Finalist 2015 Honors Competition for Student Papers in "GIS, Global Cities Enable Global Views? Using Social Media (Twitter) to Quantify the Level of Geographical Awareness for their Users in Different Cities"
- Caglar Koylu, University of South Carolina, Finalist 2015 Honors Competition for Student Papers in "GIS, A Spatio-Temporal Approach to Extracting and Visualizing Topics from Twitter"
- Xiran Zhou, Arizona State University, Finalist 2015 Honors Competition for Student Papers in "GIS, Semantic Query and Reasoning of Spatiotemporal Changes from the Earth Observation Data: The Case of Land Use/Land Cover Changes"
Geographic Perspectives on Women
- Christine Alic, Brock University, Glenda Laws Student Paper Award-Undergraduate, "Contested Landscapes of the Female Gaze: Self-Portraits as Resistance to Gender Oppression"
- Ana Grahovac, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Glenda Laws Student Paper Award, "Geographies of Abortion Access in the US"
- Aparna Parikh, Penn State University, Susan Hansen Dissertation Award, "Is there anything else I can help you with today?: Exploring the Nightscapes and Intimate Labors of Call Centers in Manila and Mumbai"
- Linda Peake, York University, Jan Monk Service Award
Hazards, Risks, and Disasters Specialty Group
- Christina Greene, University of Arizona, 2nd Place Research Award, "Drought and Food Insecurity among Farmworkers in California"
Human Dimensions of Global Change Specialty Group
- Nicolena von Hedemann, University of Arizona, 1st Place Research Award, "Payments for Ecosystem Services: Governance and Subjects in the Guatemalan Highlands"
- Jesse Sayles, 2015 Paper Award
- Michael Fabris, Travel Scholarship
- Lyana Marie Patrick, Travel Scholarship
- Victoria Walsey, Travel Scholarship
- Sophia Borgias, University of Arizona, Field Study Award, MA level, "Conflict, Change, and the Challenges of Water Governance in Chile's Maipo River Basin"
- Chris Courtheyn, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Best Paper Ph.D. level, "Peace does not come from them: Competing Territorialities of Neoextractivism and Autonomy in Columbia"
- Aaron Groth, University of Texas at Austin, Best Paper MA level, "Selective Logging of Big-Leaf Mahogany (Swietenis macrophylla) in Peruvian Indigenous Communities"
- Edward Park, University of Texas at Austin, Best Paper, Co-author, "The Amazon River: Modeling Suspended Sediment Distribution Patterns Using MODIS Data"
- Diego Pons, University of Denver, Field Study Award PhD level, "Climate Change and Coffee Adaption: Developing Dendroclimatological Records in the Southern Volcanic Chain of Guatemala"
Health and Medical Geography
- Elizabeth Dowling Root, University of Colorado-Boulder, Emerging Scholar Award in Health and Medical Geography
- Debarchana Ghosh, University of Connecticut, Emerging Scholar Award in Health and Medical Geography
- Sara L. McLafferty, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Melinda S. Meade Distinguished Scholarship Award in Health and Medical Geography
- Madeline Hinchliffe, University of Oklahoma, Peter Gould Undergrad Student Paper Award, "Measuring Perceptions of Collegiate Students to Assess Shampoo Purchasing Decisions"
- Mark Janko, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Melinda S. Meade Graduate Travel Award
- Yolanda McDonald, Texas A&M University, College Station, Melinda S. Meade Graduate Student Travel Award
- Xiang Chen, Arkansas Tech University, Jacques May Thesis Prize, "Bringing Time into Measure of Food Access: Place vs. People"
- Carly E. Nichols, University of Arizona, Jacques May Thesis Prize, "Hidden Hunger: Political Ecology of Food and Nutrition in Kumaon Hills"
- Caitlin Henry, University of Toronto, Peter Gould Graduate Student Paper Award, "Hospital Closures: The Sociospatial Restructuring of Labor and Health Care"
- Markus Stoffel, University of Zurick and University of Berne, Denali Recent Accomplishment Award
- Paleoenvironmental Change, Anna Agosta G'Meiner, McGill University, Masters Poster Award, "A Holocene Multiproxy Paleoecological Record from Cenote Jennifer, Cayo Coco, Cuba"
- Pete Akers, University of Georgia, PhD Research Award, "Expression of the 8.2 ka Event in Southern Indiana Preserved in Stalagmite Stable Isotopes"
- Sabrina Brown, Indiana State University, Masters Research Award, "Multi-Proxy Holocene Reconstruction of Fire within the Beartooth Mountains, Wyoming"
- Tera Del Priore, University of Colorado-Denver, Masters Paper Award, "4000 Years of Environmental Change in Central Colorado: A Paleoecological Perspective"
- Matthew Kerr, The University of Tennessee, PhD Poster Award, "Archaeological Freshwater Mussel Shells as a Paleoclimate Proxy in Middle Tennessee: Potentials and Limitations"
- Anna Klimaszewski-Patterson, University of Nevada, Reno, PhD Paper Award, "Climate or Native American Burning? Examining Causality of Forest Composition Change in the Southern Sierra Nevada, California"
- Jiaying Wu, PhD Paper Award, "A Paleolimnological Study of Holocene Climate and Environmental Change in Chirripo National Park, Costa Rica"
- Kelsey Carlson, Syracuse University, MA Student Paper Award, "Drawing Borders to Dispossess and Placing Dakota People in the Present: Alternative Territoriality"
- Emma Gaalas Mullaney, Penn State University, PhD Student Paper Award, "Geopolitical Maize: Peasant Seeds, Everyday Practices, and Food Security in Mexico"
- Katherine Sammler, University of Arizona, Paper Award—Honorable Mention, "Ocean Governance and Seabed Mineral Development in the South Pacific"
- Keegan Williams, Wilfrid Laurier University, Alexander B. Murphy Dissertation Enhancement Award, "Arriving Somewhere but not Here: Exploring and Mapping the Relationship between Border Enforcement and Migration by Boat in the Central Mediterranean Sea, 2006-2014"
- Martin Müller, University of Zurich, Richard Morrill Public Outreach Award
- , Northwest Indian College, Julian Minghi Distinguished Book Award, "Governing Transboundary Waters: Canada, the United States and Indigenous Communities" (Routledge)
- Sarah Mills, Loughborough University, Virginie Mamadouh Outstanding Research Award, "An instruction in Good Citizenship’: Scouting and the Historical Geographies of Citizenship Education"
- Simon Springer, University of Victoria, Stanley D. Brunn Young Scholar Award
Regional Development and Planning
- Dr. David Lemberg, Western Michigan University, 2015 Distinguished Service Award
- Huanyang Zhao, Kent State University, Ashok K. Dutt Award for Best Graduate Student Paper-Recognition Award, "Spatial-Temporal Analyses of Religious Establishments in China: A Case Study of Zhejiang Province examines the patterns and process of religious institutions diffused in Zhejiang province from 1949 to the present"
- Yuhong Zhou, University of Texas at Dallas, 1st Place Student Honors Competition, "Object-Level Fusion of LiDAR Pseudo-waveforms and HSR Multi-Spectral Data for Land Cover Mapping"
- Chen Shi, University at Buffalo-SUNY, 2nd Place Student Honors Competition, "Spatial Statistical Detection of Homogeneous Regions for Remotely Sensed Imagery"
- Xuecao Li, Tsinghua University, 3rd place Student Honors Competition, "A 30-Year (1984-2013) Record of Annual Impervious Surface Dynamics of Beijing City Derived from Landsat Data"
Remote Sensing, Geographic Information Science and Systems, and Cartography
- Mengyao Zhang, University of Connecticut, Illustrated Paper Award 1st Place, "An Application of Using Google Direction API to Support GIS in Transit Time Calculation: A Case Study of Food Access Analysis in Hartford, Connecticut"
- Shujie Wang, University of Cincinnati , Illustrated Paper Award 2nd Place, "Investigation of the Flow Dynamics of the Rapidly Retreating Ice Shelves, Antarctica"
- Rebecca Chapman, Clark University, Illustrated Paper Award 3rd Place, "Algorithm to Measure Differences between Maps of a Continuous Variable"
Russian, Central Eurasian, and East European
- Meagan Todd, University of Colorado, Paper Award-Runner up, "Religious Re-territorializations in Moscow, Russia: Islam and the Historical Mosque in Moscow, Russia"
- Ariel Otruba, Rutgers University, Field Research Travel Award, "The Lived Geopolitics of Georgia's South Ossetian Administrative Boundary Line"
- Vincent Artman, University of Kansas, Paper Award, "Representing Islam in Central Asia: Lessons from Kyrgyzstan"
Spatial Analysis and Modeling
- Mei-Po Kwan, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Outstanding Service
- Sergio Rey, Arizona State University, Outstanding Service
- Sinha Parmanand, University of Texas at Dallas, John Odland Award
- Xiang Ye, University at Buffalo-SUNY, John Odland Award
Sexuality and Space
- Kiran Bhairannavar, 1st Place Paper Award, "Exploring the 'More-Than-Closet' Geographies of Sex and Sexuality: A Study of Delhi's Queer Men"
- Carl Bonner-Thompson, Newcastle University, Graduate Paper Award
- Daniel Pina, Graduate Paper Award
Socialist and Critical Geography
- Cindi Katz, CUNY Graduate Center, Blaut Award
Study of the American South
- Alexandra Giancarlo, Queen’s University, Doctoral Student Paper Award, "Democracy and Public Space in Louisiana’s Creole Trail Rides"
- Karen Lucas, University of Leeds, 2015 Edward L. Ullman Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Field of Transportation Geography
- Simon Cook, Royal Holloway, University of London, Outstanding Master's Thesis, "Running as Transport"
- Astrid Wood, University College London, Outstanding Dissertation, "Peripatic Planning: Tracing the Mobility of Bus Rapid Transit through South African Cities"
- Mengyao Zhang, University of Connecticut, Travel award
- Jerl Levi McCollum, University of North Texas, Travel award
- Makyla Walerickton, Mount Allison University, "Alternative Modes of Scholarship, Filling in the Map by Erasing the Community: A Critical Look at Vancouver's Downtown East Side as a Gendered and Marginalized Space"
- Amy Lebowitz, Macalaster College, Glenda Laws Undergraduate Award, "Lawn Dissidents: Performing Privilege through Sustainability in Urban Residential Yards"
- Lorraine Stamberger, Augustana College, Glenda Laws Undergraduate Award, "Reaching the Water's Edge: Assessing Riverfront Accessibility in the Quad Cities Area"
- Heather Sparks, California State University-Long Beach, Graduate Fellowship—MA, "Mapping Conflicting and Complementary Affordable Housing Site Guidelines in Long Beach, California"
- Robert Chlala, University of Southern California, Graduate Fellowship— PhD, "Making Cannabis Work: New Spaces of Labor and Legality in Global Los Angeles"
- Shaolu Yu, University of Connecticut, Graduate Student Paper Award, "Mobilocality"
- Astrid Wood, Royal Holloway, University of London, Dissertation Award, "Peripatic Planning: Tracing the Mobility of Bus Rapid Transit through South African Cities"
- Charles Barlow, Travel Award
- Ritwika Biswas, Travel Award
- Amber J. Boll, Travel Award
- Yanjun Cai, Travel Award
- Alireza Farmahini Farahani, Travel Award
- Claire Finn, Travel Award
- Colleen Hammelman, Travel Award
- Sarah Heck, Travel Award
- Jana Maria Kleibert, Travel Award
- Son Ca Lam, Travel Award
- Brendan Lavy, Travel Award
- Andrew Longhurst, Travel Award
- Ron Mahabir, Travel Award
- Mary Neil, Travel Award
- Hogeun Park, Travel Award
- Alana Robinson, Travel Award
- Emily Rosenman, Travel Award
- Andrew Shmuely, Travel Award
- Gabriel Silvestre, Travel Award
- Heather Sparks, Travel Award
- Meagan Todd, Travel Award
- Natalie Westberg, Travel Award
- Hai Xiao, Travel Award
- Shaolu Yu, Travel Award
- Zhao Zhang, Travel Award
- Johanna Engstrom, Travel Award
- Kimberly Ogren, Travel Award
- H. Martin Koch, Travel Award
- Kimberly Ogren, Paper award
- Gary LaVanchy, Paper award
- Edward Park, Paper award
- Adam Mulling, Poster Presentation Award
Wine, Beer, and Spirits
- Megan Mills-Novoa, 1st Place Paper award
- John Nowlin, 2nd Place Paper Award
Graduate Student Affinity Group
- Sarah Halterman, UCLA, Professional Development Award 2015, "Long-Term Changes n Soil Carbon with Altered Plant Litter Inputs in a Tropical Forest"
- Eri Kitada, University of Tokyo, Professional Development Award 2015, "Consumption of Renamed Streets: The Politics of Race and Space"
- Patrick Oberle, Syracuse University, Professional Development Award 2015, "Web-Mapping Practices and Challenges in Syracuse, New York"
- Emily Spangenberg, University of Texas at Austin, Professional Development Award 2015, "Women in the 'Mother City of Industry': Gendered Dimensions of Environmental Inequality in Palpala, Argentina"
- Jie Yu, Queen's University, Professional Development Award 2015, "Place Making in Old Age in the Context of the Urban Transformation in Beijing, China"