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Information on the Ambassador Award

The Ambassador Award is given annually to one to five honorees in recognition of their outstanding contributions to one or more of the following areas: societal impact, service to the Earth and space community, scientific leadership, and promotion of talent/career pool. The Ambassador Award honors individuals whose achievements extend beyond those recognized by traditional scientific discipline awards.

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Award benefits

AGU is proud to recognize our honorees. Recipients of the Ambassador Award will receive an engraved award, as well as the following benefits during the award presentation year:

  • 1
    Awardee will be made an AGU Fellow (if the honoree has been an AGU member for three consecutive years and is not already a Fellow)
  • 2
    Recognition in Eos
  • 3
    Recognition at AGU’s Fall Meeting
  • 4
    Two complimentary tickets to the Honors Banquet at AGU’s Fall Meeting


To better understand eligibility for nominators, supporters and committee members, review AGU's Honors Conflict of Interest Policy.

  • 1

    Nominees: The nominee should be a senior scientist, but is not required to be an active AGU member. They should be in compliance with the Conflict of Interest Policy.

  • 2

    Nominators: Nominators must be active AGU members and in compliance with the Conflict of Interest Policy. Duplicate nominations for the same individual will not be accepted. However, one co-nominator is permitted (but not required) per nomination.

  • 3

    Supporters: Individuals who write letters of support for the nominee are not required to be active AGU members but must be in compliance with the Conflict of Interest Policy.

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Nomination package

Your nomination package must contain all of the following files, which should be no more than two pages in length per document. For detailed information on the requirements, review the Union Awards, Medals and Prizes Frequently Asked Questions.

  • A nomination letter with one-sentence citation (150 characters or less). Letterhead stationery is preferred. Nominator’s name, title, institution, and contact information are required. The citation should appear at either the beginning or end of the nomination letter.
  • A curriculum vitae for the nominee. Include the candidate’s name, address and email, history of employment, degrees, research experience, honors, memberships, and service to the community through committee work, advisory boards, etc.
  • A selected bibliography stating the total number, the types of publications and the number published by AGU.
  • Three letters of support not including the nomination letter. Letterhead is preferred. Supporter’s name, title, institution, and contact information are required.

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Nominations for the Ambassador Award are reviewed by the Ambassador Award Committee on the following criteria:

  • Scope of Impact (quantity): number and diversity of people or communities impacted
  • Duration of Impact or Effort (time)
  • Level of Impact (quality)
  • Level of engagement or involvement across Earth and Space community
  • Extent of reach in society beyond Earth and Space community (who noticed it, whom did it engage)
  • Was the effort pioneering?
  • Ethical risk taking for common good
  • Multidisciplinary impact (crossing disciplinary boundaries or encompassing many disciplines within or outside of Earth and space science)
  • Aligned with AGU strategic goals and envisioned future
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The 2020 Nominations for all AGU honors will open on Tuesday 15 October 2019. Check back soon to submit a nomination!

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Past recipients


Year of honor

Sunanda Basu 2019
Alik Ismail-Zadeh  2019
Margaret Leinen 2019
Constance Millar 2019
Lixin Wu 2019

Esteban G. Jobbágy


Rosaly M.C. Lopes


Christopher M. Reddy


Richard C.J. Somerville


Robert A. Duce


Jean M. Bahr


M. Susan Lozier


Anne S. Meltzer


Naomi Oreskes


Ashanti Johnson


Charles R. Chappell


Gordon McBean


Lucile Jones


Michael Wysession


James Overland


Scott Mandia


Paul Hsieh


Ghassem Asrar



Honors Contacts

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Robert Rader

Director, Engagement and Membership

202-777-7418 | [email protected]

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Leah Bland

Program Manager, Honors

202-777-7389 | [email protected]

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Antonio Covington

Program Specialist, Section Awards and Lectures

202-777-7484 | [email protected]