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General Awards

We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2020 AAAS General Awards.

Graduate Student Travel Award

Najwa Mayer
PhD Candidate in American Studies, Yale University

This award supports a graduate student’s travel to attend the annual conference. 

Best Graduate Student Paper Award

Stephanie Chang
Graduate student, University of California at Los Angeles

This award recognizes the best paper given by a graduate student at the national conference. 


Early Career Achievement Award

Valerie Francisco-Menchavez
Assistant Professor of Sociology, San Francisco State University 

This award recognizes a junior scholar who has made valuable contributions to the field in the early stage of their career(nomore than seven years post Ph.D. award date). Nominees should show outstanding and innovative research in Asian American Studies.

Excellence in Mentorship Award

Cathy Schlund-Vials
Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of English & Asian/Asian American Studies and Associate Dean for Humanities & Undergraduate Affairs, University of Connecticut at Storrs

This award is given to an AAAS member who has demonstrated outstanding mentorship of undergraduates, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and/or colleagues.


Engaged Scholar Award

Candace Fujikane
Associate Professor of English, University of Hawai`i at Mānoa

This award recognizes scholars who have applied their scholarship for the public good by addressing inequalities in our society and by improving the AAPI community.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Robert G. Lee
Associate Professor of American Studies, Brown University

This award honors an individual who has made an outstanding and lifelong contribution to the advancement of the field of Asian American and/or Pacific Islander Studies.


AURA-AAAS Endowment Fund Registration Award

  • Jai Dulani (writer)
  • Abby Manzella (freelancewriter)
  • Bianca Nozaki-Nasser (design and production strategist, 18 Million Rising; core organizer, amwa)

This award allows the association to facilitate community participation by waiving registration fees for individuals from one of the following categories: paid staff members of a non-governmental or community organization; artists, writers, journalists, or filmmakers not employed in a full-time capacity by an educational institution; contingent faculty; unaffiliated persons; or undergraduate students.

Community Organization Award

Asian American Youth Leadership, Empowerment, and Development (AALEAD)

This award is given to a local community organization which has shown exemplary leadership and service to specific ethnic or Asian American and Pacific Islander community(s). It may include non-governmental organizations, community-based organizations, or other nonprofits.


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