AOS has many standing committees that conduct much of the business of the organization. These committees are composed of dedicated volunteers who contribute their time and expertise to the benefit of the Society, its individual members, and ornithology as a whole. In addition to the standing committees listed below, there are also ad hoc committees, which may become standing committees as needed through a vote of the AOS Council.

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Current AOS committees:


Chair: Doug Phillips

Members: Rebecca Kimball, John Fitzpatrick, Melinda Pruett-Jones

Directs, reviews, and presents the annual audit and tax returns to the Council. Works with the Executive Director to review the financial statements of the Society after the annual audit to approve the audit report, ensure that financial peculiarities of the Society have been appropriately treated, and alert Council to any issues raised by the auditors. NOTE: this committee is comprised of Council members and special advisors and is not open to the general Society membership.

Bird Collections

Co-chairs: John Bates and Carla Cicero

Members: Michael Andersen, Angelo Capparella, Therese Catanach, Lucas DeCicco, Erick Garcia-Trejo, Peter Hosner, Jocelyn Hudon, Oscar Johnson, Jeremy Kirchman, James Maley, Nicholas Mason, Allison Shultz, Paul Sweet, Ildiko Szabo, Kevin Winker, Serina Brady, Benjamin Winger

Monitors the status and promotes improvements of avian scientific collections and specimen-based data. Facilitates collections-based research, including providing access to collections data and information on permits, protocols, preparation techniques, and supplies. Sponsors workshops on these topics.

Resources from the Bird Collections Committee

Birds of the World Advisory

Chair: L. Scott Johnson

Members: Michael Gochfeld, Elizabeth Gow, Bob Montgomerie, Shannon Skalos, Charles Van Riper, Karen Wiebe

Reviews the Birds of the World website and provides oversight on functioning of the BOW-AOS partnership. Recommends improvements that maintain scientific value and add value and usability to the website.


Chair: Sara Morris

Members: Jim Herkert, Abby Powell, Luis Sandoval, Andy Jones

Oversees the process of changing the AOS Bylaws, which govern the operations of the society.

Classification and Nomenclature (NACC)

Co-Chairs: R. Terry Chesser and Carla Cicero

Members: Shawn M. Billerman, Kevin J. Burns, Jon L. Dunn, Blanca E. Hernández-Baños, Andrew W. Kratter, Daniel F. Lane, Nicholas A. Mason, Pamela C. Rasmussen, J. V. Remsen Jr., Kevin Winker

Early Career Systematics Group: Natalia García, Rosa Jiménez, Max Kirsch

Technical Advisors: Normand David, Daniel Gibson, Michel Gosselin, Dan Haig, Marshall J. Iliff, Michael Patten, Thomas S. Schulenberg

Evaluates and codifies the latest scientific developments in the systematics, nomenclature, and distribution of North and Middle American birds. Publishes the Check-list of North American Birds and its annual supplements.

More from the NACC committee

Access the complete checklist

Current & Prior NACC Proposals

Classification and Nomenclature (SACC)

Acting Chair: J. V. Remsen, Jr.

Members: Juan Ignazio Areta (Argentina), Elisa Bonaccorso (Ecuador), Santiago Claramunt (Uruguay and Canada), Alvaro Jaramillo (USA and Chile), Daniel F. Lane (USA), Jose Fernando Pacheco (Brazil), Mark B. Robbins (USA), F. Gary Stiles (Colombia), Kevin J. Zimmer (USA)

Technical Advisors: C. Daniel Cadena, David Donsker, Jorge Pérez-Emán, Gary R. Graves , Steven L. Hilty, Mark Pearman, Vitor de Q. Piacentini, Thomas. S. Schulenberg, Bret M. Whitney

Keeps abreast of and contributes to the systematics, nomenclature and distribution of South American birds. Produces products that provide ready access to such information, including the Checklist of South American Birds.


Co-Chairs: Pete Marra and Anna Chalfoun

Members: Jeff Brawn, Andrew Cox, Camilla Gomez, Cara Joos, Sarah Kendrick, Christopher Lepczyk, Scott Loss, Alejandra Martinez, Patty McGill, Nicole Michel, Arvind Panjabi, Ken Rosenberg, Kristen Ruegg, Angelina Ruiz Sanchez, Stan Senner, and Jeff Walters

Identifies and implements appropriate means for AOS to promote sound ornithological science for making conservation and management decisions for birds.

Diversity and Inclusion

Co-Chairs: Sharon A. Gill and Viviana Ruiz-Gutierrez

Members: Christopher Balakrishnan, Irene Liu, Joanna Wu, Kristen Covino, Scott Anthony Taylor, Scott Edwards, Susannah Lerman, Amelia-Juliette Claire Demery, Bonnie Bowen, Emily Williams, Eric Gulson, Eric Tobin, Karl Berg, Kevin Omland, Kimberly Sullivan, Marcella D. Baiz, Nancy Chen, Nandadevi Cortes-Rodriguez, Sahas Barve, Shailee Shah, Ashwin Sivakumar

Works on fostering diversity and inclusion within our society and ornithology. This committee sponsors a range of activities including travel awards focused on increasing broadening participation. (See also: AOS Diversity Statement.)

Early Professionals

Chair: Nick Mason

Members: Nancy Chen, Nanda Cortes-Rodriguez, Sean Mahoney, Leonardo Chapa, Melanie Colon, Emma Greig, Sahas Barve, Julio C. Gallardo, Phred Benham, Kristen Covino, Mike Hallworth, Daniel Hanley, Brian Trevelline, Jennifer Walsh-Emond, Emily Williams, Clark Rushing, Evan Adams, Benjamin Van Doren, Irene Liu, Alan Harrington, Elsie Shogren

Discusses the needs of early professional ornithologists (postdoctoral researchers, pre-tenure faculty members, and non-academic scientists who have received degrees within the past five years) and promotes the availability of professional development resources and opportunities for these individuals.

Early Professional Awards

Chair: Christopher Witt

Members: Elizabeth Gow, Pete Hosner, Daniel Baldassarre, Kristen Covino, Mary Caswell Stoddard 

Solicits and reviews applications for AOS’s Early Professional Awards, the James G. Cooper Early Professional Award and the Ned K. Johnson Early Investigator Award.

Executive Committee of Council

Members: Executive Director, President, President-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer

The Executive Committee of Council, composed of the four elected officers of the Society and the executive director, provides proactive and responsive business oversight of the activities and operations of the AOS as may arise between meetings of the Council; considers strategic alignment of AOS goals, activities, and outcomes; and, annually evaluates the performance of the Executive Director. Meet the current AOS Council. Contact the Executive Committee of Council at


Members: Rebecca Kimball, Jim Herkert, John Fitzpatrick, Doug Phillips, Ed Lyons, Kathy Martin, Melinda Pruett-Jones

Works with the Executive Director to establish and implement a strategic financial plan for the Society. From time to time, the Finance Committee may be called upon by the Executive Director to review the financial statements and budget or to address financial management issues or emerging needs and opportunities that affect the Society’s fiscal health and security. NOTE: this committee is comprised of Council members and special advisors and is not open to the general Society membership.


Chair: Bob Montgomerie

Members: Ted Anderson, Andy Jones, Lauren Williams, Leesia Marshall, Matthew Halley, Tammie Peters, Ginger Yowell

Collects materials of historical importance and submits them to the Smithsonian Institution archivist assigned to looking after AOS records. Provides materials to the Memorials Committee on request and decides how to handle requests for access to the AOU archives.

More from the history committee

Investing Trustees

Chair: Jennifer Owen

Members: Edwin H. Morgens, Russell Faucett, Doug Phillips, Melinda Pruett-Jones, John Fitzpatrick

Reviews market conditions and determines and regularly reviews the Society’s endowment asset allocations. Works with the Treasurer and Executive Director to review policies for investment instruments and evaluates performance of the investments and the professional investment managers. Annually presents to Council an overview of performance and activities over the past five years and the recommended amount of transfer from investments to the operating account for the next fiscal year. NOTE: this committee is comprised of Council members and special advisors and is not open to the general Society membership.

Meeting Coordination

Chair: Sushma Reddy and Adrianne Tossas

Scientific Program Chair: Ron Mumme

Members: Jenn Houtz, Nandadevi Cortes-Rodriguez, Erin Morrison, Allison Schultz, Emily Williams, Evan Adams, Sahas Barve, Matt Carling, Jennifer Walsh, Morgan Tingley

Provides strategic oversight and coordination of annual meetings and development of the scientific program, working in collaboration with the Local Arrangements committee each year.


Chair: Sara Kaiser

Members: Nick Mason, Amelia-Juliette Demery, Olivia Utley, Scott Lanyon, Dan Gibson, Jordan Giese, Mario Pesendorfer, Mike Stewart

Develops strategies for retaining, increasing, and diversifying membership of the society. Works with AOS committees to evaluate effective ways to best serve and engage our members and provide meaningful opportunities for members to contribute to their profession.


Chair: Ted Anderson

Members: Joanna Burger, Andy Jones

Obtains information and keeps records on the deaths of AOS members as well as nonmembers who are prominent in the field of ornithology. Oversees the preparation of memorials for Ornithology and Ornithological Applications.

​Nomination of Fellows and Elective Members

Chair: Lauryn Benedict

Members: Carlos Daniel Cadena, Mark Hauber, Sara Morris, Rebecca Safran, Nils Warnock

Surveys the AOS membership and prepares nominations of qualified members for the special membership class of Elective Member, and nominations of qualified Elective Members for the class of Fellow, according to the criteria established in AOS Bylaws.

Nomination of Honorary Fellows

Chair: Andre Dhondt

Members: Kate Buchanan, Colleen Downs, Cristina Miyaki

Nominates candidates for Honorary Fellows recognized for their exceptional eminence in ornithological science and, because of geography, primary disciplinary focus, and/or other professional reasons, typically have not been members of the American Ornithological Society.

Nomination of Officers and Elective Councilors

Chair: President-Elect

Members: Second-Year Elective Councilors

Ensures that a sufficient number of persons are nominated to stand for election for the AOS Council positions of President-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, and Elective Councilor, in accordance with the AOS Bylaws.

Professional Ethics

Chair: Jeanne Fair

Members: Jeffrey Brawn, Corey Tarwater, Katie Dugger, Rob Fleischer, Jennifer Walsh-Emond, Reed Bowman, Kristen Covino, Jennifer Houtz, Sean Mahoney

Works to promote a high level of ethical conduct by ornithologists through the development of educational activities for AOS members and other ornithologists.

​​Publication Awards

Chair: Michael Murphy

Members: Kevin Fraser, Jeremy Kirchman, Beth MacDougall-Shackleton, Sara Oyler-McCance, Henry Streby

Selects candidates for the Publication Awards, recognizing outstanding ornithological publications.

Rainbow Lorikeets

Chair: Chad Wilhite

Members: Alan Harrington, Carly Aulicky, Eric Tobin, Kristen Covino, Scott Anthony Taylor, and Theadora Block

An NOGLSTP affiliate caucus and AOS committee that strives to represent and serve the Queer Ornithological community. Goals are to increase visibility of LGBTIQA+ ornithologists, identify and address issues that face Queer scientists and researchers, and be allies to other underrepresented groups.

Research Awards

Chair: Brian Peer

Members: Keith Barker, Than Boves, Keith Bowers, Victor Cueto, Devin DeZwaan, Clint Francis, Melanie Guigueno, Linnea Hall, Daniel Hanley, Andrew Iwaniuk, Sarah Knutie, Steve Pruett-Jones, Scott Robinson, Doug Robinson, Scott Rush, Scott Sakaluk, Luis Sandoval, Elizabeth Schultz, Fred Sheldon, Katie Sieving, Beth Slikas, Scott Stoleson, David Swanson, Nathan Thomas, Charles Thompson, Hernan Vazquez-Miranda, Eric Walters, Yong Wang, Bethany Woodworth

Kessel Fellowships Selection Subcommittee: Sabrina Taylor, Kyle Elliott, Scott Lanyon, Sharon Gill, Viviana Ruiz-Gutierrez

Solicits and reviews applications for Student and Postdoctoral Research Awards made from AOS research grant funds. These awards support student and postdoctoral research in various areas of avian biology.

​Senior Professional Awards


Members: Keith Hobson, Brett Sandercock, Reed Bowman, Linda Whittingham

Selects candidates for the Senior Professional Awards, recognizing the outstanding contributions to ornithology of senior scientists.

Service Awards

Chair: Barbara Kus

Members: Rebecca Kimball, Bob Montgomerie, Nat Wheelwright, Terry Rich

Selects candidates for AOS’s two annual Service Awards. These awards recognize members at different career stages for their outstanding service to the Society.

Student Affairs

Co-Chairs: Jennifer Houtz, Johnathan (Jack) Peter Hruska, Jacob Drucker, and Brittany Panos

Members: Shawn Billerman, Anna Hiller, Richard Andrew Dreelin, Kristina Fialko, Virginia Abernathy, Jessica Hightower, Sarah Khalil, Claire Nemes, Amy Janik, Anand Chaudhary, Autumn Iverson, Colleen Miller, Emily Webb, Glenda Hevia, Jacob Cooper, Lee Bryant, Michael McCloy, Oona Takano, Pablo Munoz, Sarah Winnicki, Valentina Gomez, Young Ha Suh, Kyle Davis, Liam Taylor, Dustin Brewer, Fabio Tarazona-Tubens, Jose Ramirez-Garofalo

Evaluates and recommends efforts that address the needs of student members and increase student participation in AOS committees, annual meetings, and society communications. Fosters society-sponsored activities to promote interaction between students and professional ornithologists.

Student Membership Awards

Chair: Daniel Mennill

Provides one-year Student Membership Awards in AOS to undergraduate and graduate students interested in pursuing a career in ornithology.

Student & Postdoc Travel and Presentation Awards

Co-Chairs: Morgan Tingley, Jennifer Walsh

Members: Evan Adams, Kristen Ruegg, Sarah Saunders

Diversity & Inclusion Travel Awards Chair: Nancy Chen

Selects candidates for Travel Awards to help defray costs of travel to annual meetings and for Presentation Awards that recognize the best scientific papers and posters given by student members at the meeting.