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Background and Rules

The Rodger Doxsey Travel Prize — established through the support of his father, John Doxsey, and other friends, family, and colleagues — provides graduate students or postdocs within one year of receiving or receipt of their PhD a monetary prize to enable the oral presentation of their dissertation research at a winter meeting of the AAS. (Because nearly all dissertation talks are given at winter meetings and hardly any at summer meetings, the Doxsey Prize is awarded only for winter meetings.) The first awards were made for the 217th AAS meeting in Seattle, Washington, in January 2011.

Doxsey Prize Rules:

  1. Applicants must be planning to present their dissertation research at a winter/January AAS meeting in the form of an oral dissertation talk; poster presenters and those giving regular, special session, invited, or other types of oral presentations may not apply for this prize.
  2. Applicants' dissertation research must be in astronomy or a closely related discipline.
  3. Participants must indicate during the abstract-submission process that they want their dissertation talk abstract to be considered for the Doxsey Travel Prize.
  4. Applicants must be attending a North American university or have recently graduated from a North American university.
  5. Doxsey prize entrants must be members in good standing of the AAS.
  6. Only oral dissertation talk abstracts submitted by the on-time abstract deadline are eligible for judging. Late abstracts are ineligible.
  7. Advisors of the applicants must submit a letter indicating that the applicant is within one year of receiving or receipt of the PhD. These letters will be shared with the selection committee.
  8. Winners will be selected by a committee of volunteers based on the scientific merit of the dissertation research as judged by the dissertation abstract. (Judges will be drawn from the broad AAS membership, not just those who work in your subject area and who might normally attend your session. With that in mind, please read Tips for Writing the Abstract of an AAS Meeting Presentation.)
  9. The number of awards and size of each award will vary each year based on the amount of available funds, but the goal is to provide enough funding to cover a significant fraction of the expense for traveling to and attending a winter AAS meeting for 10% of the dissertation presenters at the meeting in question.
  10. The award will be made in the form of a check to the recipient and a waiver of the registration fee for the meeting in question. The prize money is a travel stipend and may be used only to pay for meeting-related travel expenses (e.g., transportation, lodging, and meals).
  11. In addition to naming winners, the judges may elect to name runners-up who will receive complimentary meeting registration but no travel stipend.

To Make a Donation

If you have an AAS online account, please click here to make a donation to the Rodger Doxsey Travel Prize fund.

If you are not an AAS member, please send a check and cover letter directly to the American Astronomical Society, 1667 K Street NW, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20006. All donations are tax deductible, and you will receive a donation letter recognizing your contribution by 1 February of the year following receipt of your contribution.


The deadline for entering an oral dissertation talk in the Doxsey Travel Prize competition is the same as the meeting's on-time abstract deadline, which is usually around 1 October for winter meetings (check the appropriate meeting page); late abstracts are not eligible. There is no Doxsey Travel Prize competition at summer meetings.


Applicants may apply for this prize during the dissertation talk abstract submission process. Please visit the submission site for the winter meeting at which you intend to present.


227th Meeting — 4–8 January 2016, Kissimmee, Florida

Name University or Institution
John Chisholm University of Wisconsin, Madison
Marshall Johnson University of Texas, Austin
Sean Johnson University of Chicago
Charles Kilpatrick University of Arizona
Laura Kreidberg University of Chicago
Matthew Miller University of Michigan
Heath Shipley Texas A&M University
Garrett Somers Ohio State University
Honorable Mentions
Name University or Institution
Scott Adams Ohio State University
Michael Bottom California Institute of Technology
Yi-Kuan Chiang University of Texas, Austin
Allison Kirkpatrick University of Massachusetts
Caroline Morley University of California, Santa Cruz
Kimberly Sokal University of Virginia


225th Meeting — 4–8 January 2015, Seattle, Washington

Name University or Institution
Sirio Belli California Institute of Technology
Behnam Darvish University of California, Riverside
James Davenport University of Washington
Brian Friesen University of Oklahoma
Korey Haynes George Mason University
Myoungwon Jeon University of Texas, Austin
Claude Mack Vanderbilt University
Brett McGuire California Institute of Technology
Katherine Rabidoux West Virginia University
Aomawa Shields University of Washington
Honorable Mentions
Name University or Institution
Camille Avestruz Yale University
Lauren Cleeves University of Michigan
Tyler Desjardins University of Western Ontario
Daniel Foreman-Mackey New York University
Jordan Mirocha University of Colorado


223rd Meeting — 5–9 January 2014, Washington, DC

Name University or Institution
Edmond Cheung University of California, Santa Cruz
Bart Dunlap University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Courtney Epstein Ohio State University
Chat Hull University of California, Berkeley
Jedidah Isler Yale University
John Jardel University of Texas
Jamie Lomax University of Denver & University of Oklahoma
Ferah Munshi University of Washington
Timothy Rodigas Carnegie Dept. of Terrestrial Magnetism & University of Arizona
Dan Sirbu Princeton University
Honorable Mentions
Name University or Institution
Stacey Alberts University of Massachusetts
Katherine Follette University of Arizona
Michael Pagano Arizona State University
Chalence Safranek-Shrader University of Texas, Austin


221st Meeting — 6–10 January 2013, Long Beach, California

Name University or Institution
Nicholas Stone Harvard University
Gwen Rudie California Institute of Technology
Elisabeth Mills University of California, Los Angeles
Ian Crossfield University of California, Los Angeles
Tim Weinzirl University of Texas, Austin
Brian Hayden University of Notre Dame
Jean-Claude Passy American Museum of Natural History
Megan DeCesar University of Maryland
Rebekah Dawson Harvard University
Or Graur American Museum of Natural History
Honorable Mentions
Name University or Institution
Adam Miller University of California, Berkeley
Christine Simpson Columbia University
Patrick Kelly Stanford University
Elizabeth Young Princeton University
Diana Dragomir University of British Columbia


219th Meeting — 8–12 January 2012, Austin, Texas

Name University or Institution
Sarah Ballard Harvard University
Jonathan C. Bird Ohio State University
Geoffrey Mathews University of Hawaii
Ashley Pagnotta Louisiana State University
Adric R. Riedel Georgia State University
Barbara Denisse Rojas Ayala Cornell University & American Museum of Natural History
Sumin Tang Harvard University
Gail Zasowski University of Virginia
Honorable Mentions
Name University or Institution
Antonela Monachesi University of Michigan
Mubdi Rahman University of Toronto
Izaskun San Roman University of Florida
Erik J. Tollerud University of California, Irvine