Officers and Committees

(Last updated 9/25/2017)

Executive Committee

elected by general membership for two-year terms; term commences on January 1 following the Annual Meeting at which the Officer is elected; terms for President and Treasurer to begin in even years, terms for Secretary and Editor to begin in odd years

Board of Directors  

ten members elected by general membership for five-year terms; term commences on January 1 following the Annual Meeting at which the Director is elected; existing vacancies on the board shall be filled each year

AES Elected Board Member - Job Description and Responsibilities

As stated in the AES Constitution (Article V, Section 1), "The Board will be composed of 10 members, elected from among the standard membership who will serve five-year terms"

This five-year term runs from January 1 following the year elected and ends December 31 of the final year.

The primary responsibility of all elected Board members is to attend the annual meeting five years in a row (at their own expense). In fact, they must arrive one day earlier than everyone else so that they can attend the meeting of the AES Board of Directors. This is a significant contribution of time and money to AES, and this expectation should not be taken lightly. At the annual Board of Directors meeting, you and other Board members will discuss, debate and propose action for all Society business. All decisions, recommendations and suggestions made by the Board will then be presented to the membership at the subsequent Business Meeting.

In addition, as an elected Board member, you may be called upon (via email or phone) to discuss, debate or conduct Society business. Typically, this occurs only once or twice each year.

Board of Directors:​

  • Misty Paig-Tran 2014-2017
  • Brad Wetherbee, 2013-2017
  • Joe Bizzarro, 2014-2018
  • Bob Hueter, 2014-2018
  • Carl Luer, 2015-2019
  • Lisa Whitenack, 2015-2019
  • Toby Daly-Engel, 2016-2020
  • Nick Dulvy, 2016-2020
  • Jim Gelsleichter, 2017-2021
  • Sonja Fordham, 2017-2021

Includes Executive Committee members:

  • Dean Grubbs - President
  • Cathy Walsh - Treasurer 
  • Jennifer Wyffels - Secretary
  • David Shiffman - Editor
  • Chris Lowe - Immediate Past President

Includes 2 Past-Presidents serving a maximum of 6 years immediately following completion of their term in office:

  • Chris Lowe, 2016-2019
  • Lara Ferry, 2014-2017

Nominating Committee  

elected by general membership, one-year term served from Annual Meeting to Annual Meeting, chair appointed by President

  • Kady Lyons (Chair)
  • Mathew Kolmann
  • Jenny Kemper
  • Melissa Giresi
  • Bianka Prohaska

AES Nominating Committee - Job Description and Responsibilities

As stated in the AES By-Laws (Article VII, Section 1):
"The nominating committee shall be elected from the standard membership in the annual election and shall consist of five members. The chair of the committee shall be one of the members of the committee and shall be appointed by the President."

The members of the Nominating Committee shall serve for one year, from one annual meeting until the next. It is desirable for a Chair to be appointed at the annual meeting (by the President) so that she/he can get the committee working as soon as possible.

As stated in the AES Constitution (Article IV, Section 2):
"The slate of nominees shall be finalized by the nominating committee by the end of the calendar year prior to the annual meeting and furnished to the Secretary by January 20. Ballots will be mailed February 15 to all standard members in good standing of the Society, and will include spaces for write-in candidates. The slate of nominees will be published in the Winter Edition of the AES Newsletter. Ballots must be returned to the Nominating Committee Chair by a deadline to be announced for each election. The election results will be announced at the annual business meeting."

Hence, the recommended chronology of Nominating Committee activities is as follows (amended from Minutes of the AES Executive Committee meeting on 24 June 1999, Penn State):

  1. Chair of Nominating Committee appointed by President at annual meeting (or soon thereafter).
  2. Determine list of "openings" to fill for upcoming year via Secretary.
  3. Obtain "job descriptions" for each opening from Secretary.
  4. Slate of Nominees completed by end of year.
  5. Check with Secretary/Treasurer to ensure that all nominees are AES Members!
  6. Slate of Nominees supplied to Editor by 20 January for inclusion in Winter Newsletter and to Secretary by 20 January for development of Official AES Ballot.
    (Ballots, including stated deadline of on or about 21 March and spaces for write-in candidates, mailed by 15 February by Secretary to all standard members in good standing of the Society by December 31 of the preceding year.)
  7. Ballots returned to Chair of Nominating Committee by published deadline. Chair must wait 2-3 weeks after published deadline for international ballots to arrive.
  8. Ballots counted by Chair on or about April 10
  9. After counting is complete, Chair mails all ballots to a Past-President within one working week so that count can be verified independently by Past-President
  10. Results are immediately communicated to the Secretary (who shall immediately inform the current and incoming Executive Committee members to facilitate their attendance at the coming annual meeting.)
  11. Chair of Nominating Committee (or her/his designate) attends annual meeting to announce results of the election during the Business Meeting.

Grant Fund Committee  

elected by general membership for three-year term beginning after the Annual Meeting at which the member is elected; Chair appointed by president

AES Grant Committee - Job Description and Responsibilities

As stated in the AES By-Laws (Article VII, Section 8), "The Grant Committee shall consist of five members elected from the standard membership in the annual election and shall serve for three years. The Committee shall review grant proposals and designate the awards to be made. The Chair of the Committee shall be one of the elected members, selected by the President."

The members of the Grant Committee shall serve their three-year term from annual meeting to annual meeting. The Committee currently makes decisions regarding awarding Student Travel Funds, the Student Research Awards (Donald R Nelson award, Henry and Anne Mollet Award, and the AES Student Research Award), and Symposia selection and funding for the annual meeting each year.

Hence, your responsibilities will be to:

  • advertise all Grant opportunities to our members via our website, outreach mechanisms, and our Secretary (who distributes information to our membership via email)
  • remind all members of eligibility (member in good standing by January 1, this includes new members) and selection criteria.
  • publish Grant application forms
  • review all proposals (the Spring of each year)
  • designate Grant recipients
  • attend annual meeting to announce Grant recipients (only one member of the Committee need attend the annual meeting)
  • The Chair of the committee will provide a report to the AES President listing the number of travel and research award applications received by the committee and the total amount requested, and funded, for each award

This is a THREE-year term. The committee chair is nominated each year by the AES President from the committee members.

The Guidelines for the review process are as follows (Letter from Ken Goldman to President Luer in 2001):

Following the general guidelines used in the 1999 review process, and the additional timeline constraints imposed after the 2000 meetings in La Pas, Mexico, the committee first evaluates travel and then research award applications using the following criteria:

  1. Submission of a completed application (including required copies) by the defined deadline
  2. Annual dues paid on a timely basis (member in good standing)
  3. Quality of the research abstract submitted for oral or poster AES presentation (In case of research award applications, a clear definition and justification of the proposed research and research methods)
  4. Participation (or potential for participation) in AES activities
  5. Amount of money requested relative to proposed expenses
  6. Effort to obtain supplemental funding
  7. Whether travel is from a foreign country.

The criteria listed here are not all-inclusive, but serve to indicate how the committee is striving to provide at least some degree of funding for all deserving travel applicants. We believe the criteria also reflect AES's commitment to quality and support of student researchers

  • Michelle Heupel
  • Aaron Carlisle
  • Joe Bizzarro (Chair)
  • Kristine Stump
  • Heather Marshall

Student Award Committee

appointed annually by President, to serve from Annual Meeting to Annual Meeting

  • Carl Luer, Chair
  • Gruber Award - Nick Wegner
  • Carrier Award - Kara Yopak

Student Affairs Committee

appointed by SAC chair, subject to approval by president, to serve from Annual Meeting to Annual Meeting

Johanna Imhoff, Chair

  • Matt Jew, Meeting T-shirts
  • Matt Scanlon, Auction
  • Kady Lyons, AES Store
  • Allison Enchelmaier, AES Store
  • Jonathan Davis, Calendar
  • Kyle Newton, Calendar
  • Rachel Skubel, Webmaster
  • Bryan Keller, Workshop Coordinator
  • Dovi Kacev, Postdoc Representative

Conference Planning Committee

appointed annually by President; Chair appointed 12 months prior to annual meeting

  • Chip Cotton, ASIH Liaison 2017-present
  • Dean Grubbs, President 2016-2017

  • Cathy Walsh, Treasurer 2014-2017

  • Jennifer Wyffels - Secretary, 2013-2017

  • David Shiffman - Editor, 2013-2016

  • Chris Lowe, Immediate Past President

Publication Fund Committee

one-year term, Publications Librarian appointed by President

  • Steve Holman (Publications Librarian and Chair)
  • Dean Grubbs, President 2016-2017

  • Cathy Walsh, Treasurer 2014-2017

  • Jennifer Wyffels - Secretary, 2013-2017

ElasMollet Banquet Endowment Fund Committee

  • Carl Luer, Chair

Shark Attack File Committee

chair appointed annually by President

  • George Burgess, Chair and Curator
  • Bob Lea (California)
  • Vic Springer (NMNH contact)
  • Geremy Cliff (South Africa)
  • Randy Honebrink (Hawaii)
  • John West (Australia)
  • Otto Gadig (Brazil)

Conservation Committee

chair appointed annually by President

  • Sonja Fordham: Chair
  • Jack Musick
  • Bob Hueter
  • Greg Skomal
  • Nick Dulvy
  • Ken Goldman
  • John O'Sulivan
  • Greg Cailliet
  • George Burgess


Captive Elasmobranch Census Committee

Ad hoc; appointed annually by President

  • Paula Carlson (Chair), Dallas World Aquarium
  • Alan Henningsen, National Aquarium