The Georgia Chapter of the American Fisheries Society values its members and all those who work to improve the conservation and sustainability of our fishery resources and aquatic ecosystems. Randy Pausch once said, “showing gratitude is one of the simplest, yet most powerful thing humans can do for each other.”  One way our Chapter shows its gratitude is by presenting outstanding individuals or organizations for their achievements and excellence in support of the Chapter’s mission and objectives.

Below is a list of guidelines to assist you as you write your nomination summary for your candidate.  Recognition should be based on fisheries-related work done in the State of Georgia in 2021 but can span more than one year. All nominations need to be submitted by January 15, 2022 to Steve Sammons at sammosm@auburn.edu

Please follow the guidelines below when nominating someone for Career Contribution, Certificate of Appreciation, Unsung Hero Award, and Distinguished Service Award

  • Limit your nomination summary to 500 words
  • Include a picture(s) of the nominee (can be working in the field, with students, etc.)
  • Your summary should highlight accomplishments which meet the criteria for the award

Career Contribution

Honors individuals who have made numerous and significant contributions towards the advancement of fisheries research and/or management in Georgia over the course of their career(s).

Career Contribution accomplishments should include one or more of the following criteria

  • long-term commitment to aquatic resources and the stewardship thereof
  • developed strong working relationships with other individuals or organizations
  • implementation of important fish and aquatic management
  • significant contributions in advancing fisheries and aquatic science
  • original techniques or research methods
  • imaginative and successful programs in fish conservation, education, or management
  • promotion of the development of fisheries professionals
  • leadership (in profession/Chapter)

Certificate of Appreciation

Exhibits the Chapter’s gratitude to an individual or organization for a specific contribution or event that supports the Chapter or its mission.

The mission of the American Fisheries Society and the Georgia Chapter is to improve the conservation and sustainability of fishery resources and aquatic ecosystems by advancing fisheries and aquatic science and promoting the development of fisheries professionals.

Unsung Hero Award

This award recognizes the contributions of a person who may not be directly employed as a typical fishery professional (e.g. biologist, technician, etc.), but provides exceptional work that is essential to the mission of promoting the conservation, development, and wise use utilization of fisheries resources. This award is designed to celebrate the contributions of people often completing responsibilities “behind the scenes.” 

Unsung Hero accomplishments should include one or more of the following criteria

  • “Go-to person” that does the little things essential to the mission of promoting the conservation, development, and wise use utilization of fisheries resources
  • created a work environment that promotes teamwork
  • serves as a role model for others
  • volunteers to participate in programs to educate the public about conservation and management of our aquatic resources

Distinguished Service Award

Recognizes the outstanding contributions of time and energy for special projects or activities by Chapter members

Distinguished Service Award accomplishments should include one or more of the following criteria

  • outstanding contribution to the advancement of fisheries professionals and/or fisheries students
  • made important contributions to advance the current objectives, long-term goals or stature of the Chapter and fisheries professionals

The following awards require you to complete a nomination form to nominate someone for the award.  These are the questions the nominator and nominee will answer if your nominee is chosen as a finalist.

Fisheries Professional of the Year in Fisheries Management

This award is open to hatchery managers, fisheries technicians, PFA managers, biologists, and other fisheries professionals who have participated in outstanding or unique management or fish culture activities that contributed significantly to fisheries management and/or conservation.

  • Explain how your nominee has sought opportunities to grow as a professional, either through participation in continuing education/training programs to improve upon their skills or knowledge, and/or through assumed additional responsibilities beyond those typically assigned to someone in their position?
  • Describe an example of how your nominee has shown leadership in their position (e.g. led a team to complete a project, mentor to current/prospective fisheries students or fisheries professionals, or serving as an officer or committee chair in the American Fisheries Society or other fisheries-related professional organizations).
  • Provide examples of how/when your nominee participated in education, outreach, or marketing events to educate others about topics germane to marine or freshwater finfish or shellfish and their respective fisheries and environments.
  • Provide examples of how your nominee shared their knowledge to educate fellow co-workers or other outside professionals.
  • Explain and provide examples of how your nominee participated in the development and/or implementation of a new or improved idea (e.g. developed or enhanced sampling gear/methodologies/techniques; developed or implemented innovative management plans/strategies/practices; etc.) that increased efficiency/effectiveness and/or significantly contributed to fisheries management and/or conservation.

Fisheries Professional of the Year in Fisheries Science and Research

This award is open to biologists, professors, fisheries technicians, and other fisheries professionals whose role in a research project or program that promotes conservation and sustainability of fishery resources and aquatic systems.

  • Explain how your nominee sought opportunities to grow as a professional, either through development of innovative management programs, research activities, or the development and/or implementation of a new or improved idea that significantly affect the conservation and sustainability of fishery resources and aquatic ecosystems on a regional or statewide level.
  • Describe an example of how your nominee has shown leadership in their position either through mentoring, coordinating public outreach programs, leading a research project, coordinating with different agencies/universities, or serving as an officer or committee chair in the American Fisheries Society or other fisheries-related professional organizations. 
  • Provide examples of how your nominee’s research or program contributes to the understanding of a biological problem, solving a resource problem, or contributes significantly to fisheries education.
  • Describe your nominee’s role in a research project or program (e.g. directing the project, establishing the project or program, analyzing data, or conceiving the project or program).
  • Provide examples of when your nominee shared their knowledge of fisheries science to educate fellow co-workers or other outside professionals (e.g. publication of a peer-reviewed journal article, facilitated training workshop, professional presentation at a conference, extension publication, book, or book chapter).

Fisheries Conservationist of the Year

This award is open to an individual or group for their outstanding contributions or service to fisheries conservation in Georgia.  Their accomplishments should go beyond their regular work responsibility.

  • Provide examples of specific activities and partnerships that your nominee initiated or participated in that protects, conserves, restores, or enhances Georgia’s aquatic and fisheries resources.  These activities could have been initiated prior to 2021, but it must have still been ongoing during 2021.
  • Describe an example of how your nominee has shown leadership in their position (e.g. led a team to complete a project, coordinating with different agencies/universities, mentor to current/prospective fisheries students or fisheries professionals).
  • Explain how your nominee’s conservation efforts will benefit the future of Georgia’s aquatic and fisheries resources.
  • Describe the efforts your nominee has made to share their aquatic and fisheries conservation ethics and techniques with others.  Describe community service, leadership roles, aquatic education outreach programs, and/or outreach materials.
  • Describe how your nominee’s aquatic and fisheries conservation efforts benefits people directly or indirectly.