The American Ornithological Society is deeply committed to supporting the career development of early-career ornithologists working worldwide. AOS offers two Early Professional Awards, the Ned K. Johnson Early Investigator Award and the James G. Cooper Early Professional Award, for outstanding research achievements by early-career professionals in ornithology. 

In 2019, the society introduced a new research fellowship program for early-career professionals, the Kessel Research Fellowships.

The Johnson and Cooper awards are administered by the Early Professional Awards Committee, and the Kessel Research Fellowship program is overseen by the Research Awards Committee. Both committees strive to develop a balanced slate of nominees that represents the Society and the diversity of its members. Candidates for the Cooper and Johnson awards may apply for these awards themselves or may be nominated by another member(s) of AOS, and the Early Professional Awards Committee may also make its own nominations to the slate of candidates.

We encourage early-career ornithologists to also consider competing for the Wesley Lanyon Award, which recognizes and the best review paper on any topic in ornithology, published in either AOS journal, authored by an early-career researcher, and the Florence Merriam Bailey Award, which recognizes an outstanding article published within the preceding two calendar years by an early career member in an AOS journal.

All award nominees are expected to have a high standard of ethical and social behavior that is strongly aligned with the AOS Code of Conduct & Ethics.

Questions regarding Early Professional Awards?

Contact Us

Your message will be forwarded to the appropriate committee chair.