Award Details


Gene S. Stuart Award

Nomination/Submission Deadline: 31 Dec 2023

Award Description

An award of $1,000 is made to honor outstanding efforts to enhance public understanding of archaeology, in memory of Gene S. Stuart (1930-1993), a writer and managing editor of National Geographic Society books. The award is given to the author of the most interesting and responsible original story or series about about any archaeological topic published in a newspaper, magazine, or online publication.  The award is funded by Boundary End Archaeology Research Center.

Who Is Eligible to Submit Nominations or Apply for the Award

The award honors the author or authors of a publication which brought awareness of archaeology to the general public in. Nominations can be submitted by authors themselves, by publication editors, or by readers. This award is meant to honor widely available articles, stories, or series (rather than limited distribution newsletters). The nominated work should include at least one written component. Each nominee will work with the committee chair to assemble and submit a copy of the nominated work. Awardees may be members or non-members of the SAA.

Nomination/Submission Materials Required

The committee chair will work with the nominator and, when necessary, the author, to assemble a digital copy of the article for submission, which should have been published within the calendar year of 2023. In cases where a series is nominated, the submission should include no more than five components (articles/stories). Each nomination file should include author name, publication date, and publication name, and should be submitted via email to the committee chair by the due date. If nominator wishes to submit paper copies, they must contact the committee chair in advance of the due date to ensure they arrive before deliberations begin. 

Other Special Requirements

Prior to any award recommendation being finalized and publically announced, anyone recommended for an award, scholarship, or grant will be required to certify the following:

(a)  I am not and have not ever been the subject of a discrimination or harassment lawsuit or related administrative complaint that resulted in an adverse finding; and

(b)  I do not have and have not had a current or pending disciplinary action such as suspension or termination of registration, resulting from a Register of Professional Archaeologists’ grievance investigation.

Nature of Award (e.g. monetary, medal, symposium)

The awardee receives $1,000. In addition, the awardee is recognized by the SAA through a plaque presented during the business meeting held at the Annual Meeting, a citation in The SAA Archaeological Record, and acknowledgment on the awards page of the SAA Website. 

Current Committee Charge

The committee solicits nominations and selects recipients for the Gene S. Stuart Award. The award is presented in recognition of outstanding efforts to enhance public understanding of archaeology. The award is funded by Boundary End Archaeology Research Center, and the committee will be sunset when the award is no longer funded.

Committee Composition

Committee composition is one chair and at least four members, who may be serving or recently served on the Committee for Media Outreach.

Term Length

Three years.

Award Cycle


Committee Chair and End of Term

Michelle Turner [2026]

Committee Chair Contact Information

Committee Members and Ends of Terms

Selection or Evaluation Criteria

The Gene S. Stuart Award is given to the author of the most interesting and responsible original story/series about any archaeological topic published in a newspaper or magazine. The story/series should adhere to the guidelines of the Principles of Archaeological Ethics as outlined by the Society for American Archaeology. 

Committee Deliberation Process (e.g. dates, venue)

Prior to the deadline, award requirements and deadline information are distributed via email to current SAA members by SAA staff and to archaeology professional networks by members of the Award committee as they see fit. The committee chair communicates electronically evaluation procedures and deadlines to committee members. The committee meets electronically to evaluate submissions after the deadline has passed. The committee members evaluate submissions, rank them, and explain their rationale for their rankings. Based on the recommendations of the chair and the committee members, the chair makes the decision as to who gets the award. 

2024 Bridget A. Alex (Discover Magazine)
2023   Jude Isabella (Hakai Magazine)
2022    Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson (The Washington Post Magazine)
2021    Megan I. Gannon (Sapiens)
2020    Lizzie Wade (Science Magazine)
2019    Gayle Keck (American Archaeology)
2018    Nicholas St. Fleur (New York Times)
2017    Elizabeth Svoboda (Sapiens)
2016    Tamara Stewart (American Archaeology Magazine)
2015    Andrew Lawler
2014    Ann Gibbons (Science Magazine)
2013    Julian Smith (American Archaeology)
2012    Mike Toner (American Archaeology)
2011    Dan Vergano (USA Today)
2010    Andrea Cooper (Free Lance)
2009    Andrew Lawler (Science Magazine)
2008    Tom Avril (Philadelphia Enquirer)
2007    Richard L. Hill (The Oregonian)
2006    Andrew Petkofsky
2005    Marion Lloyd
2004    Alexandra Witze
2003    None
2002    Chip Minty
2001    Mike Toner (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
2000    Frank Roylance (Baltimore Sun)
1999    William Mullen (Chicago Tribune)
1998    Diedtra Henderson (Seattle Times)
1997    None
1996    Matt Crenson (Dallas Morning News)
1995    Nathan Seppa (Wisconsin State Journal)
1994    Scott LaFee (San Diego Union-Tribune)