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Stanford Professor Elected President of the American Sociological Association

WASHINGTON, DC, July 7, 2011 — Cecilia L. Ridgeway, the Lucie Stern Professor of Social Sciences in Stanford University’s sociology department, has been elected president of the American Sociological Association (ASA). She will serve as president-elect beginning on August 23, 2011, and become president on August 20, 2012. Ridgeway will succeed Erik Olin Wright of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

“It is a very great honor to be elected president of the ASA,” Ridgeway said. “I will do my best to live up to the honor the office implies and do everything I can to further our discipline and association.”

Ridgeway, who has conducted groundbreaking research on gender inequality, hopes to improve communication and cooperation among sociology’s increasingly diverse subfields.

“Over the past few decades, sociology has expanded to focus on a diversified range of social and intellectual problems,” said Ridgeway. “However, the great gains we have made in broadening our perspectives have also led to a segmentation of the discipline into multiple, specialized island worlds of sociology. The better we can coordinate across our diversity, the richer our intellectual contributions will become and the greater the impact we as a discipline will make on the society around us.”

Ridgeway has won many awards during her distinguished career, including the ASA Jesse Bernard Award for gender scholarship in 2009. That year, she was also elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 2008, she received the Sociologists for Women in Society Feminist Lecturer Award, and her career contributions to social psychology were recognized in 2005 when she received the Cooley-Mead Award, the highest honor conferred by the ASA Social Psychology Section.

“We are thrilled to have Cecilia Ridgeway on board as the future ASA president,” said Sally Hillsman, ASA Executive Officer. “She has made outstanding contributions to the sociological study of gender and to the discipline of sociology as a whole. We are confident that she will be a dynamic and influential leader of the association.”

Ridgeway received her BA from the University of Michigan in 1967, and her MA and PhD from Cornell University in 1969 and 1972, respectively. A professor of sociology at Stanford University since 1991, she has also taught sociology at the University of Iowa and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

In addition, Ridgeway has held a variety of prestigious offices and positions, both within ASA and in other organizations. She has served as chair of two ASA Sections—the Sociology of Emotions Section, from 2004-05, and the Social Psychology Section, from 1991-92, and she was editor of a premier ASA journal, Social Psychology Quarterly, from 2001-03.

Ridgeway was also president of an International Sociological Association social psychology research committee from 2006-10 and president of the Pacific Sociological Association from 1998-99.

Currently, Ridgeway serves as a Publications Committee member for both ASA and Sociologists for Women in Society.


About the American Sociological Association
The American Sociological Association (, founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.

This press release was written by Mary Griffin, ASA Office of Public Affairs and Public Information.