2016 AGU elections logo

Members of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) have elected polar scientist Robin Elizabeth Bell as the organization’s next president-elect, as well as 54 other Union officers, Board members, section and focus group officers, and student and early-career representatives to the AGU Council for the 2017–2018 leadership term.

In voting that ended on 27 September, Bell, a professor at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in Palisades, N.Y., was chosen to serve a 2-year term as president-elect starting in 2017, after which she will become AGU president in 2019, the centennial year of the organization. A renowned geophysicist, Bell leads research programs on ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland, as well as spearheading development of improved technology for imaging beneath the ice from aircraft.

An accompanying Eos.org article on “2016 AGU Election Statistics” by the AGU Governance Committee discusses the participation, timing, communications, and other details of this year’s election process.

AGU Leadership Transition Begins

New members of the Council Leadership Team will be elected after the first of the year.

Bell and other newly elected leaders will take office on 1 January 2017, and about half of the current AGU Board and Council members will rotate off. New members of the Council Leadership Team will be elected after the first of the year, and committees and task forces will continue their work in support of AGU’s mission and the Board and Council work plan.

Planning for 2017–2018 Term

AGU Board and Council members will participate in an evaluation of the 2015–2016 term before the end of this year. This evaluation will provide valuable input to the Governance Committee and staff moving forward and will help shape the orientation of new volunteers in the first quarter of 2017. Current Board, Council, committee, and task force members will be asked to help identify potential volunteers for committees and task forces in the next term.

There are many levels of volunteer opportunities for member participation: sections, focus groups, and Union-level committees and task forces. Time commitment depends on specific roles and responsibilities. Best of all, volunteering for AGU offers you a chance to work with other leaders, develop new skills, and make a real difference.

New Officers

The Governance Committee is pleased to announce the newly elected members of the AGU Board and Council. Please join us in congratulating these incoming leaders, who will begin their 2-year terms on 1 January 2017.

AGU Board of Directors

President-elect: Robin Elizabeth Bell
Director, Position 1: Susan K. Avery
Director, Position 2: Chris Ballentine
Director, Position 3: Kerstin Lehnert

Council: Student and Early Career

Student: Tim H. M. van Emmerik
Early Career: Catalina M. Oaida

AGU Sections and Focus Groups

Atmospheric and Space Electricity Focus Group

President-elect: Maribeth Stolzenburg
Secretary: Morris Cohen

Atmospheric Sciences Section

President-elect: James W. Hurrell
Secretary, Composition, Chemistry, Aerosols and Clouds: V. Faye McNeill

Biogeosciences Section

President-elect: Elise Pendall
Secretary: Laura Wasylenki

Cryosphere Focus Group

President-elect: Lora Koenig
Secretary: Sinéad Louise Farrell

Earth and Planetary Surface Processes Focus Group

President-elect: Dorothy Merritts
Secretary: Gregory Hancock

Earth and Space Science Informatics Focus Group

President-elect: Denise J. Hills
Secretary: Anne Wilson

Geodesy Section

President-elect: M. Meghan Miller
Secretary: Brendan Crowell

Geomagnetism, Paleomagnetism and Electromagnetism Section

President-elect: Catherine Johnson
Secretary: France Lagroix

Global Environmental Change Focus Group

President-elect: Philip Mote
Secretary: Ali H. Omar

Hydrology Section

President-elect: Scott W. Tyler
Secretary: Charles H. Luce

Mineral and Rock Physics Focus Group

President-elect: Wenlu Zhu
Secretary: Susannah Dorfman

Natural Hazards Focus Group

President-elect: Seth Stein
Secretary: Daniel Wright

Near-Surface Geophysics Focus Group

President-elect: Xavier Comas
Secretary: Chi Zhang

Nonlinear Geophysics Focus Group

President-elect: Sarah F. Tebbens
Secretary: Jörn Davidsen

Ocean Sciences Section

President-elect: Robert F Anderson
Secretary, Marine Geochemistry: Claudia Benitez-Nelson
Secretary, Marine Geology and Geophysics: Chuck Nittrouer

Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology Focus Group

President-elect: Petra Dekens
Secretary: Matthew E. Kirby

Planetary Sciences Section

President-elect: Rosaly M. C. Lopes
Secretary: Michael Mischna

Seismology Section

President-elect: Anne Sheehan
Secretary: Eliza Richardson

Societal Impacts and Policy Sciences Focus Group

President-elect: Maggie Walser
Secretary: Rebecca A. French

Space Physics and Aeronomy Section

President-elect: Christina Cohen
Secretary, Aeronomy: Anthony J. Mannucci
Secretary, Magnetospheric Physics: Elizabeth MacDonald

Study of the Earth’s Deep Interior Focus Group

President-elect: Scott D. King
Secretary: Kanani K. M. Lee

Tectonophysics Section

President-elect: Julia K. Morgan
Secretary: Jolante W. van Wijk

Volcanology, Geochemistry, and Petrology Section

President-elect: Michael Manga
Secretary, Geochemistry: Anat Shahar
Secretary, Volcanology and Petrology: Marie Edmonds

Continuing Board

As many new leaders join AGU’s governance structure on 1 January, others will continue in their current offices for 2017–2018 or assume new roles according to the succession rules specified in the AGU bylaws.

Four additional Board members will be selected by early next year: chair of the Development Board, vice chair of the Council, and two at-large members.

Current president-elect Eric Davidson will become AGU president and will chair the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee. Now AGU president Margaret Leinen will become past president and serve as chair of the Governance Committee.

AGU established a Board rotation strategy to ensure leadership continuity from term to term. The goal is to carry over about half of the elected positions. Those continuing for 2017–2018 will be President Davidson and Past President Leinen; General Secretary Louise Pellerin; International Secretary Sue Webb; Board members Kelly Klima, Cathy Manduca, and Soroosh Sorooshian; and Executive Director/CEO Chris McEntee. Four additional Board members will be selected by early next year: chair of the Development Board, vice chair of the Council, and two at-large members.

Continuing Council

As incoming president-elect, Robin Bell will chair the AGU Council. A new Council Leadership Team will be elected by Council members after the first of the year to assist her in leading the Council. Davidson and McEntee will remain as Council members to help ensure a smooth leadership transition.

Also continuing on the AGU Council will be early-career representatives Jasmine Crumsey and Aisling Dolan and student representatives Kristie Llera and Annie Tamalavage, together with current section/focus group presidents-elect who move up to serve as presidents:

Timothy J. Lang, Atmospheric and Space Electricity
Joyce Penner, Atmospheric Sciences
Ariel D. Anbar, Biogeosciences
Tavi Murray, Cryosphere Sciences
William E. Dietrich, Earth and Planetary Surface Processes
Ruth Duerr, Earth and Space Science Informatics
Susan E. Owen, Geodesy
Laurie L. Brown, Geomagnetism, Paleomagnetism and Electromagnetism
Ellen Mosley-Thompson, Global Environmental Change
Jeffrey McDonnell, Hydrology
Andrew Campbell, Mineral and Rock Physics
Ramesh P. Singh, Natural Hazards
Sarah Kruse, Near-Surface Geophysics
Annick Pouquet, Nonlinear Geophysics
Eileen Hofmann, Ocean Sciences
Figen Mekik, Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology
Sarah T. Stewart, Planetary Sciences
Douglas Wiens, Seismology
Linda R. Rowen, Societal Impacts and Policy Sciences
Larry J. Paxton, Space Physics and Aeronomy
Allen K. McNamara, Study of the Earth’s Deep Interior
Ross Stein, Tectonophysics
William F. McDonough, Volcanology, Geochemistry, and Petrology

This is a great time to be involved in AGU.

This is a great time to be involved in AGU. Topics continuing on the Board and Council work plan include preparing for AGU’s centennial celebration, designing new ways for members and other stakeholders to engage with each other and AGU, implementing the meetings strategic plan, leading discussions on sexual harassment, making progress toward AGU’s talent pool goal, furthering AGU leadership in data science, and advancing scholarly publishing.

Members who volunteer can make a real difference. It is rewarding work to advance AGU’s mission and vision in collaboration with colleagues from around the world.

—Carol Finn, AGU Past President and Governance Committee Chair; email: AGU_Governance@agu.org


Finn, C. (2016), Bell to be AGU president-elect/leadership transition begins, Eos, 97, https://doi.org/10.1029/2016EO062025. Published on 26 October 2016.

Text © 2016. The authors. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0
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