Graduate Center Professors Honored by AAG for Lifetime Achievement and Public Service

December 3, 2019

The American Association of Geographers recognized professors Ruth Wilson Gilmore and William Solecki for their important scholarship and broad influence.

Professors Ruth Wilson Gilmore and William Solecki
Professors Ruth Wilson Gilmore and William Solecki

Professors Ruth Wilson Gilmore (Earth and Environmental Sciences) and William Solecki (GC/Hunter, Earth and Environmental Sciences) were honored this year by the American Association of Geographers (AAG) for their “outstanding contributions to the advancement or welfare of the profession.” The AAG recognized both for the excellence of their scholarship and their influence beyond the academy.
Citing Gilmore’s “powerful scholarship … paired with deep engagement with public facing scholarship,” the AAG honored her with the AAG Lifetime Achievement Award. The association called her the “quintessential intellectual-activist” whose contributions to her field have been “transformational.”
AAG highlighted Gilmore’s scholarship, activism, and mentorship, noting especially her focus on prison justice and her influential writing and lectures that have “pushed scholars, politicians and citizens to confront society’s highly inequitable valuation of different lives.”
Solecki received the 2020 Gilbert White Public Service Honors for his “outstanding work to improve the human condition through direct community engagement, wide-ranging public service, and salient, cutting-edge research.” AAG emphasized Solecki’s extensive research and work from the community level to the international level to broaden understanding and effectively respond to climate change. AAG said that “his work has transformed our understanding of the opportunities and obstacles of urban living in a changing natural environment.”