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Fred Whipple Award and Lecture

Information on the Award

The Fred Whipple Award and Lecture are presented annually and recognize significant contributions to the field of planetary science from a mid-career or senior scientist. Established in 1989, this award, and accompanying lecture, are named in honor of Fred Whipple, an AGU Fellow and astronomer whose most notable work focused on comets.

The Whipple Award is presented at the Planetary Sciences section reception during the AGU Fall Meeting where the awardee also presents the Whipple Lecture.

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Award Benefits

AGU is proud to recognize our section honorees. Recipients of the Fred Whipple Award and Lecture will receive the following benefits with the honor:

  • 1
    Award and lecture certificates
  • 2

    Recognition in Eos

  • 3

    Recognition at the AGU Fall Meeting during the award and lecture presentation year

  • 4

    An invitation to present the Whipple Lecture at the AGU Fall Meeting during the award presentation year

  • 5

    Complimentary ticket to the Planetary Sciences section reception at the AGU Fall Meeting during the award and lecture presentation year

Eligibility

To better understand eligibility for nominators, supporters and Whipple Award Committee members, review AGU’s Honors Conflict of Interest Policy.

  • The nominee is not required to be an active AGU member.
  • The following individuals are not eligible to be candidates for the award during their terms of service:
    • AGU President;
    • AGU President-elect;
    • Council Leadership Team members;
    • Honors and Recognition Committee members;
    • Planetary Sciences section leadership
    • Whipple Award Committee members; and
    • All full-time AGU staff.

  • Nominators are not required to hold an active AGU membership.
  • The following individuals are not eligible to be nominators for the award during their terms of service:
    • AGU President;
    • AGU President-elect;
    • Council Leadership Team members;
    • Honors and Recognition Committee members;
    • Planetary Sciences section leadership;
    • Whipple Award Committee members; and
    • All full-time AGU staff.

  • Individuals who write letters of support for the nominee are not required to be active AGU members.
  • The following individuals are not eligible to be supporters for the award during their terms of service:
    • AGU President;
    • AGU President-elect;
    • Council Leadership Team members;
    • Honors and Recognition Committee members;
    • Planetary Sciences section leadership;
    • Whipple Award Committee members; and
    • All full-time AGU staff.

The following relationships need to be identified and communicated to the award committee but will not disqualify individuals from participating in the nomination or committee review process. These apply to committee members, nominators, and supporters:

  • Current dean, departmental chair, supervisor, supervisee, laboratory director, an individual with whom one has a current business or financial relationship (e.g., business partner, employer, employee);
  • Research collaborator or co-author within the last three years; and/or
  • An individual working at the same institution or having accepted a position at the same institution.

Individuals with the following relationships are disqualified from participating in the award nomination process as a nominator or supporter:

  • Family member, spouse, or partner.
  • A previous graduate (Master’s or Ph.D.) and/or postdoctoral advisor, or postdoctoral fellow may not write a nomination letter but may write a supporting letter after five years of terminating their relationship with the nominee beginning on 1 January after the year the relationship was terminated.
  • A former doctoral or graduate student, or a former postdoctoral fellow may not write a nomination letter for a former advisor but may write a supporting letter after five years of terminating their relationship with the nominee beginning on 1 January after the year the relationship was terminated.

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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. Watch our tutorial on successfully submitting a nomination package or read our guide.

  • A nomination letter that states how the nominee meets the selection criteria. It should include details about significant contributions to the field of planetary science. The nominator’s signature, name, title, institution, and contact information are required and letterhead is preferred.
  • A curriculum vitae for the nominee.
  • A selected bibliography stating the total number, the types of publications and the number published by AGU.
  • At least three, but no more than six, letters of support. The supporter’s signature, name, title, institution, and contact information are required and letterhead is preferred. We encourage letters from individuals not currently or recently associated with the candidate’s institution of graduate education or employment.

Submissions

Nominations for all AGU honors are now closed. Please check back in January 2020 for our next cycle.

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Past recipients

Name

Year of honor

Philip R. Christensen

2018

Michael C. Malin

2017

John Spencer

2016

Alfred McEwen

2015

Larry Soderblom

2014

Harry Y. McSween

2013

Steven Squyres

2012

Joseph Veverka

2011

Jean-Pierre Bibring

2009

Roger Phillips

2008

Raymond E. Arvidson

2007

John T. Wasson

2005

John A. Wood

2004

Thomas B. McCord

2002

Bruce Murray

1999

John B. Adams

1989

Gordon H. Pettengill

1995

David J. Stevenson

1994

Eugene M. Shoemaker

1993

Fred L. Whipple

1990

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]