View on the Paracas National Reserve, Peru from the water


Committee members



Committee Role

Graziella Caprarelli

University of Southern Queensland

Committee Chair

Alan Aitken

University of Western Australia


Emily Chin

Scripps Institution of Oceanography


Taras Gerya

ETH Zurich Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich


Michael Perfit

University of Florida


David A Williams

Arizona State University


Committee charge

The committee is charged with selecting the recipient of the Harry H. Hess Medal. Committee members will abide by AGU’s Honors Conflict of Interest Policy, program policies, procedures and guidelines set by AGU. In partnership with the Honors and Recognition Committee and staff, the committee works to ensure that the program is superior in all respects, recognizes all constituents, and fosters a global network of individuals in the Earth and space sciences who epitomize excellence and cooperation in research, education, and outreach. The members of the Hess Medal Committee will promote excellence and transparency, allowing broad input and recognition beyond disciplinary awards, promoting diversity and equity so that the Hess Medal is sufficiently representative of underrepresented groups.

Key duties

The Hess Medal Committee supports the following initiatives and duties. Their work is completed primarily through the online submission and review system, and by teleconference and email.
  • 1
    Review data from Hess Medal selection processes for the past years to determine if the program is achieving AGU’s relevant goals.
  • 2
    Examine and report on program data to determine whether the number and quality of AGU Hess Medal nominations are competitive.
  • 3
    Select the Hess medalists.
  • 4
    Recommend, implement, and evaluate strategies used to increase diversity of nominations.
  • 5
    Participate in training, orientations, and workshops on associated Honors and Recognition policies and processes.
  • 6
    Understand and commit to AGU’s Conflict of Interest policy and process.
  • 7
    Provide input and recommendations to the Honors and Recognition Committee on program improvements.
  • 8
    Partner with AGU leaders and staff, as well as other societies to resolve common issues among scientific communities’ recognition programs.