Special Events

Refer here often for more details about interesting plenaries and exciting events.

Honorary Geographer Kathy Sullivan

Friday, April 9, 12:30 - 1:25 PM (Pacific Time)

Kathy Sullivan, AAG's 2020 Honorary GeographerGeologist, astronaut, and award-winning NOAA scientist Kathryn Dwyer Sullivan is one of the most versatile of scholars, with a career that has quite literally run the gamut from space to the deep blue sea. Hear 2020's AAG Honorary Geographer speak in a special keynote at AAG 2021.
Last year, the AAG Executive Committee recognized Sullivan’s distinguished career, including being the first American woman to walk in space, as well as serving as Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, and as a NOAA Administrator. Sullivan steered priority work in the areas of weather and water services, climate science, integrated mapping services and Earth-observing capabilities. Sullivan also led NOAA's efforts with regard to satellites, space weather, water, and ocean observations and forecasts to best serve American communities and businesses. As a woman scientist and role model, Kathryn Sullivan mirrors many of the values the AAG also actively pursues in our discipline and our association.

Read here about Sullivan's amazing 2020 journey to the bottom of the ocean—the first woman ever to have done so.

Naomi Klein: A Conversation on Action for Climate Justice

Thursday, April 8, 12:30 pm - 1:25 pm (Pacific Time)

Naomi Klein by Kourosh KeshiriNaomi Klein is an award-winning, New York Times bestselling author, Senior Correspondent at The Intercept, the inaugural Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair at Rutgers University and not least of all, a climate activist for our time. She has a unique understanding of the urgency with which the next generation is fighting for change, as well as an appreciation for the complex forces interwoven in the struggle for climate justice. In her most recent book, How to Change Everything: The Young Human's Guide to Protecting the Planet and Each Other, she finds the confluence of what binds young activists together from all walks of life -- fighting for their right to a future.

Join AAG Vice President, Dr. Emily Yeh, in conversation with Ms. Klein as they address how to bridge the gap between climate related research in geography and meaningful action, how we can support the youth generation of climate activists leading the charge and holding leaders accountable, how academic culture can transform to better support the climate justice mission and advocate for marginalized communities, and many other topics.

This event is organized by the AAG Climate Action Task Force.

Rebekah Jones: A Geographer's Perspective on High-Stakes Public Science

Friday, April 9, 6:25 - 7:40 AM (Pacific Time)

Rebekah JonesAs governors were put on the frontlines of COVID-19 decision making last spring, Rebekah Jones was working for the Florida Department of Health helping to maintain geospatial data that informed the statewide emergency shutdown. Florida officials pushed to reopen as soon as possible despite rising COVID-19 infection data and uncertain conditions, and Jones was fired in a clash with supervisors on how best to keep that data fair, accurate and transparent. 

Thrust into the spotlight and called out personally by Florida's governor, Jones was undeterred and used her public platform to establish an independent Florida COVID-19 geospatial data dashboard. She has consistently spoken out on the urgency of trusting data science for the sake of public health. 

She is both a geographer and a science communicator, and has spread awareness for geography's role in this national emergency. Tune in to hear her story and perspective on how geographers can use their platforms to share research and become better science communicators to those outside the discipline, as well as outside academia.

World Geography Bowl
Thursday, April 8, 6:00- 10:00 PM

The World Geography Bowl is a quiz bowl tournament held annually at the Annual Meeting of the AAG, featuring teams of graduate and undergraduate geography students representing each of the AAG’s regional divisions. Contestants are selected by regional divisions through a competitive process, which in many divisions includes participation in a regional geography bowl held at the division’s annual meeting. If you are interested in participating, contact your regional division leadership for more information.

Join us virtually for the 2021 World Geography Bowl to root on your Regional Division team in dedicated virtual rooms The Bowl is fully staffed by volunteers, who write and edit questions and help run the proceedings as judges, scorekeepers and moderators. Please contact the World Geography Bowl executive director, Dr. Jamison Conley for volunteer opportunities or the AAG Geography Bowl coordinator, Emily Fekete for questions about the bowl or sponsorship opportunities.
Thank you to the 2021 World Geography Bowl sponsors and volunteers.

Image showing a corner of the old website home page peeling back to reveal part of the soon-to-be redesigned home pageTake a Sneak Peek at the New AAG.ORG
Wednesday, April 7, 12:30-1:25 PM (Pacific Time)

The AAG is designing a new website that will elevate our vibrant and compelling communities through stories and activities. Members will rediscover what they love about AAG, finding new ways to connect with geography and more opportunities to make the world a better place. Launching in late spring, the site will be completely accessible, innovative, and mobile friendly. Our website agency, Free Range, will reveal and guide you through some exciting changes in this first look at the new website before it launches. We’ll look forward to hearing your thoughts at this live event during an audience Q&A opportunity at the end of the session. The event will be recorded for those who are unable to attend.