Call for Nomination for Awards and Recognition

The Awards and Recognition Committee is soliciting nominations for awards given by ASP. These awards recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions in primatology. The committee encourages the membership to make nominations of deserving individuals.  Completed nomination applications are due by March 31 of the year in which the nominee is to be considered for an award. Please note: nomination procedures and deadlines for the 2023 Kyes Award for Excellence in Outreach are different than for other recognition awards, please see that section at the bottom of the page.

ASP Award Descriptions, Nomination Procedures, and Past Award Winners

Distinguished Primatologist Award

The Distinguished Primatologist Award honors a primatologist who has had an outstanding career and made significant contributions to the field. Nominations must be in writing and must include a vitae and a narrative that describes the nature and extent of the nominee’s contribution to primatology. Nominations must also include at least two letters of support submitted on behalf of the nominee. The recipient is presented a plaque, a $500 honorarium, $1500 toward travel expenses to the following ASP meeting, and an invitation to deliver the Distinguished Primatologist Address (Featured Speaker) at the following year’s meeting of the Society.

  • Dr. Suzette Tardiff, Southwest National Primate Research Center, TX — 2023
  • Dr. Toni Ziegler, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI — 2022
  • Dr. Júlio César Bicca-Marques, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS), Brazil — 2021
  • Dr. Susan Alberts, Duke University, Durham, NC — 2019
  • Dr. Dorothy Fragaszy, University of Georgia, Athens, GA — 2018
  • Dr. Paul Garber, University of Illinois — 2017
  • Drs. Dorothy Cheney and Robert Seyfarth, University of Pennsylvania — 2016
  • Dr. Frans B. M. de Waal, Emory University, Atlanta, GA — 2015
  • Dr. Charles Snowdon, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI – 2014
  • Dr. Linda Fedigan, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada — 2013
  • Dr. John P. Capitanio, University of California, Davis, CA — 2012
  • Dr. Melinda A. Novak, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA — 2011
  • Dr. Karen Strier, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI — 2010
  • Dr. Stephen Suomi, NICHD, Poolesville, MD — 2009
  • Dr. Leanne Nash, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ — 2008
  • Dr. Patricia Wright, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY — 2007
  • Dr. Jeanne Altmann, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey — 2006
  • Dr. Duane Rumbaugh, Great Ape Trust Research Center, Des Moines, Iowa — 2005
  • Dr. Gene Sackett, University of Washington, Seattle — 2004
  • Dr. Donald G. Lindburg, San Diego Zoo — 2003
  • Dr. Andrew G. Hendrickx, University of California, Davis — 2002
  • Dr. Irwin Bernstein, University of Georgia — 2001
  • Dr. W. Richard Dukelow, Michigan State University — 1998
  • Dr. Orville Smith, University of Washington, Seattle — 1996
  • Dr. Charles Southwick, University of Colorado, Boulder — 1994
  • Dr. Philip Hershkovitz, The Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, Illinois — 1991
  • Dr. William A. Mason, University of California, Davis — 1989

Senior Research Award

This award was originally the Senior Biology and Conservation Award that was given by the Conservation Committee. It became an A&R award at the 1999 meeting and was renamed the Senior Research Award in 2001. This award honors individuals who, because of their dedication to their profession and their productivity, have made significant contributions to research activities supporting or enhancing knowledge relevant to primatology. Such contributions could take place in laboratories, the field, or in zoological gardens. The award is reserved for those who have not received the highest degree offered in their field (e.g., Ph.D., M.D., D.V.M.) but are deserving of the Society’s recognition for their achievements. Nominations must include a nominating letter and two supporting letters indicating the contributions of the individual, along with a narrative describing the impact on the field. Nominees need not be members of the ASP to be considered. The recipient receives a plaque and a $500 honorarium.

  • Susan Lambeth Pavonetti — 2015
  • John Kelley — 2012
  • Nenny Babo — 2009
  • Nancy Czekala-Gruber and Jeremy Mallinson — 1997
  • Alexander Pearl — 1996
  • Dehua Vang — 1995
  • Hilali Matame — 1994
  • Robin Kingston — 1993
  • Gerry Ruppenthal — 1991
  • Chuck Darsono — 1990

Distinguished Service Award

This award is not presented on any regular basis but is given sporadically to deserving individuals who have contributed long-term service to the Society. Nominations should include at least one letter of support in addition to the nomination letter describing the nominee’s contributions. Awardees are given a plaque.

  • Dr. John Capitanio, University of California, Davis, CA, for 34 years of dedicated service on committees and the Board of Directors of the American Society of Primatologists — 2022.
  • Dr. Steven Schapiro, University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Bastrop, TX, for extensive and substantial contributions to the American Society of Primatologists — 2012.
  • Dr. Joseph M. Erwin, Foundation for Comparative and Conservation Biology, for significant contributions to the American Society of Primatologists — 2008.
  • Edgar Davila, Chief census taker at Cayo Santiago and Noel Rowe, author of The Pictorial Guide to the Living Primates and founder of Primate Conservation, Inc. — 2007.
  • Jackie Pritchard, Director, Primate Information Center, Washington National Primate Research Center — 2003.
  • Larry Jacobsen, Librarian, Wisconsin Regional Primate Research Center, Madison, for significant contribution to the field of primatology and his pioneering efforts to disseminate information worldwide. — 1997.
  • Judith Schrier, Brown University, for longstanding committment to the publication of Laboratory Primate Newsletter — 1996.
  • Dr. Richard Harrison, Tulane Regional Primate Research Center, Covington, for service as the Historian of the American Society of Primatologists — 1994.
  • Dr. Leo A. Whitehair, Director, Comparative Medicine Program, National Center for Research Resources, NIH, Washington, for outstanding support of primate research during a lengthy career at the Animal Resources Branch/Comparative Medicine Program — 1994.

President’s Award (established in 2000)

This award was established in 2000 and is given to individuals or to organizations that have made unique and exceptional contributions to primatology. The President of ASP, during his/her term of office, may nominate an individual or organization for the award. If the Awards and Recognition Committee endorses the nomination, it is forwarded to the Board of Directors for final approval. Awardees are given a $500 honorarium and a plaque.

  • Dr. Thomas T. Struhsaker, Duke University — 2022
  • Nancy Capitanio, ASP webmaster — 2021
  • Gabriele Lubach, University of Wisconsin, Madison — 2018
  • Noel Rowe, Primate Conservation, Inc. — 2016
  • Dr. Randall Kyes, Washington National Primate Research Center and Dr. Melinda Novak, University of Massachusetts, Amherst — 2014
  • Dr. Sian Evans, DuMond Conservancy, Miami, FL — 2012
  • Primate Information Center, Seattle, WA — 2010
  • Dr. J. Dee Higley, Brigham Young University and Dr. Janette Wallis, American University of Nigeria — 2008
  • Nancy Capitanio, ASP webmaster — 2006
  • Stephen Nash, Conservation International — 2004
  • Dr. Vernon Reynolds, Oxford University, and Director, Budongo Forest Project, Uganda — 2000

Special Recognition/ Achievement Award

This award is not presented on any regular basis but is given sporadically to deserving individuals for exceptional service to the Society on a one-time or short-term basis. Nominations should include at least one letter of support in addition to the nomination letter describing the nominee’s contributions. Awardees are given a plaque.

  • Dao Van Hoang — 2017
  • Peggy O’Neill-Wagner — 2002
  • Nancy Capitanio — 2001

Early Career Achievement Award (established in 2001)

Originally begun with a grant from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund (then called the Young Investigator Award), this award acknowledges exceptional work by beginning scientists. The award is given to someone who is less than seven years past receiving the Ph.D. The work commended must have been carried out independently of the advisor, and be independent of the doctoral work. Nominations must come from outside of the lab or research unit in which the individual works and must include the nominee’s CV. The award includes a plaque and $1500 toward travel/registration expenses to the ASP meeting at which the individual is invited to present a featured talk.

  • Dr. Amanda Melin, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada — 2017
  • Dr. Bernardo Urbani, Center for Anthropology, Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research – 2016
  • Dr. Katie Hinde, Harvard University – 2014 
  • Dr. Karen Bales, University of Illinois, Chicago – 2002

Nomination Process

Please send nominations to:

Justin A McNulty, MLAS, CPIA, RLATG
Chair, Awards & Recognition Committee
American Society of Primatologists
PO Box 3010
Edwards, CO  81632-3010

Kyes Award for Excellence in Outreach (established in 2017)

The Kyes Award for Excellence in Outreach is awarded to a deserving ASP member to recognize a long history of excellence in primatology outreach. This outreach is to have been conducted using best practices, creativity, and cultural sensitivity while demonstrating meaningful impact, and may have been performed by an individual or as part of a program through a college, university, primate center, zoo, conservation organization, or other entity. The outreach may have been conducted in the U.S. or in any other country. The Education Committee eponymously gave the inaugural award in 2017 at the 40th ASP conference to Dr. Randall C. Kyes for his outreach programs in eight habitat countries and across the U.S., over a period exceeding 25 years. Dr. Kyes’ programs have been so successful that participants attending as children have returned as instructors after attending university and have become outreach ambassadors themselves.  

Who is eligible? Full members of ASP are eligible, including those from range countries who may have complimentary ASP memberships.

Nomination process:

Nominators should send the following information via email by February 15, 2023 to the Chairs of the ASP Education Committee

  1. The name, title and full mailing address of the nominee, along with a 500 word statement about the nominee’s qualifications for the award, focusing on a legacy of demonstrable excellence in outreach.
  2. The nominee’s curriculum vita. 
  3. One letter from the host organization, participants, habitat country officials or others impacted by the work of the nominee. This letter can be submitted in any language. 

Nominations for the ASP Kyes Award will be evaluated by the Education Committee with final approval of the ASP Board of Directors. This award provides recognition of the winner’s legacy of excellent outreach, a monetary award of $250, and a plaque. 

  • Rahayu (“Ayu”) Oktaviani — 2023
  • Dr. Anne Savage — 2022
  • Kathy West — 2019
  • Dr. Randy Kyes – 2017