Awards & Recognition

The Society places great value on those who do great work.

Photo of Awardees for the American Fisheries Society Awards

Credit: American Fisheries Society

AFS recognizes excellence in its members and partners by supporting a number of Society-level awards, as well as awards at various Unit levels. Each year there is a call for award nominations recognizing excellence in fisheries science. These awards represent some of the highest honors AFS can give to an individual. Past recipients include many familiar names, fisheries faces which have served and been involved with AFS for a significant part of their careers. Society-level awards include:

  • Award of Excellence – The Society’s highest award for scientific achievement is presented to a living AFS member for original and/or outstanding contributions to fisheries and aquatic biology.
  • Carl R. Sullivan Fishery Conservation Award – Presented to an individual or organization for outstanding contributions to the conservation of fishery resources. Eligibility is not restricted to AFS members, and accomplishments can include political, legal, educational, scientific, and managerial successes.
  • Distinguished Service Award – Recognizes outstanding contributions of time and energy for special projects or activities by AFS members.
  • Emerging Leaders Mentorship Award – The AFS Emerging Leaders Mentorship Award Program was established to develop future leaders of the Society, and the fisheries profession as a whole, by providing selected candidates an opportunity to participate for one year in activities of the AFS Governing Board.
  • Equal Opportunities Section Travel Award– The AFS Equal Opportunities Section is leading an effort to increase participation in the Society by graduate and undergraduate students from underrepresented groups, including women and minorities.
  • Meritorious Service Award – Presented annually to an individual AFS member for loyalty, dedication, and meritorious service to the Society over a long period of time and for exceptional commitment to the programs, objectives, and long-term goals of the Society.
  • Outstanding Chapter Award and Outstanding Student Subunit Award – Recognizes outstanding professionalism, active resource protection, and enhancement programs, as well as a strong commitment to the mission of the Society. One award is given in each category (small chapters, large chapters and student subunit.
  • President’s Fishery Conservation Award – Presented in two categories: (1) an AFS individual or unit, or (2) a non-AFS individual or entity, for singular accomplishments or long-term contributions that advance aquatic resource conservation at a regional or local level. The award is administered by the Past President’s Advisory Council.
  • William E. Ricker Resource Conservation Award – Presented to any entity (individual, group, agency, or company) for accomplishment or activity that advances aquatic resource conservation that is significant at a national or international level.
  • The Emmeline Moore Prize – The American Fisheries Society (AFS) has established a career achievement award, named after the first female AFS president, Emmeline Moore (1927-1928), to recognize efforts of an individual member in the promotion of demographic diversity in the society.
  • Excellence in Public Outreach – Presented to an AFS member who goes the “extra mile” in sharing the value of fisheries science/research with the general public through the popular media and other communication channels.
  • Student Writing Contest – Presented to a graduate or undergraduate student who submits an outstanding short report about their original research that combines scientifically-sound writing with appeal to a general audience.
  • Honorary Membership – Presented to individuals who have achieved outstanding professional accomplishments or have given outstanding service to the Society.

Section and Chapter awards, informal certificates of appreciation for service, and other awards are given each year as well.

  • * Official certificates and Plaques may be ordered using this standard form *