Diversity & Inclusion at AAG

The American Association of Geographers (AAG) is committed to enhancing diversity, promoting inclusion, and broadening participation in Geography. We are open, welcoming and encouraging of differences in perspectives across the broad spectrum of backgrounds or origins within our membership. An organization where everyone feels valued and possesses a keen sense of belonging, creates a vibrant community and advances the discipline of Geography.

Here we provide a record of the past, current, and upcoming efforts to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion at the AAG. The Diversity and Inclusion Committee advises and shapes these efforts. In 2020, AAG’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee renewed this commitment by developing a three-year strategic plan for the AAG. Once approved by the Council, this plan will provide a clear action plan to enhance and measure diversity and inclusion.


Upcoming April 2021 — DI Committee to provide strategic plan progress report at April 5-6 Council Meeting

March 2021 

  • Diversity Page — Launch of updated Diversity page on aag.org
  • AAG statement — The AAG released a statement condemning targeted violence against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in response to the murders in Atlanta

February 2021 

  • Membership Forms Review — Mark Revell shares draft changes to the AAG membership form for DI Committee review and discussion
  • Accessibility Task Force — Accessibility Task Force shares draft report with DI Committee for review

November 2020 

  • DI Committee Leadership — DI Committee formally assumes full leadership for the strategic plan, supplanting the need for a separate task force

September 2020

  • Open Letter — Specialty Groups release open letter calling for change at the AAG.
  • AAG Council Response to Open Letter — the AAG Council responds to the SG Chair open letter

August 2020

  • SG Chair Meeting — AAG staff calls meeting with chairs of Specialty Groups with connection to diversity to discuss the potential involvement in Diversity Strategic Plan (review the minutes)

July 2020

  • Council meeting — The AAG Council votes to establish a Diversity Strategic Plan. This three-year plan will commit the organization to specific, funded, staffed actions
  • Call for Transformative Justice — Black Geographies Specialty Group releases call to action in response to white supremacy through policing
  • DI Committee — DI Committee elects co-chairs, Lisa Marshall and Ronald Schumann, begins work with AAG Executive Director on diversity strategic plan; committee agrees to play a major role in the task force

June 2020

  • AAG Anti-racism Letter — The AAG released a statement in response to the death of George Floyd.

May 2020 

  • AAG statement — The AAG released a statement in response to the rising anti-Asian racism related to COVID-19

Diversity & Inclusion Committee

This committee coordinates and facilitates ongoing D & I initiatives to enhance diversity and inclusion excellence. Diversity and inclusion in this sense is envisioned in its broadest demographic definition, indicating, ethnic, gender, disabilities, and other underrepresented groups and also diversity in thoughts, ideas and perspectives. The committee also considers nominations and selects awardees of the Glenda Laws Award to recognize outstanding scholarly contributions to geographic research on social issues and provides nominations to the AAG Council for the AAG Enhancing Diversity Award to honor those who have pioneered efforts toward or actively participated in efforts toward encouraging a more diverse discipline.

The D & I Committee is guiding the development of the three-year D & I strategic plan. This plan will define the improvement areas we want to address and define thoughtful strategies and proposals for D&I Initiatives in order to enhance sustainable Diversity and Inclusion excellence.  As part of the planning process, we will identify short, medium and long-term D&I specific actions that can enhance D&I Excellence for AAG.


  • Lisa Marshall — co-chair
  • Ronnie Schumann — co-chair
  • Shannon O’Lear
  • Debarchana Ghosh
  • Meghan Cope
  • Tom Crawford
  • Paul McDaniel
  • Sanober Mirza
  • Alicia Lazzarini
  • Wan Yu
  • Wei Li
  • Jack Swab

D&I Committee Minutes