American Sociological Association

Jessie Bernard Award


This award was established in 1977 by the ASA Council to honor Jessie Bernard’s enormous influence on the study of gender.  Initially presented every other year, in January 1994 Council voted to approve conferring the Jessie Bernard Award annually. In 1994 Council also directed that the award be given for exceptional work or several pieces of work in odd-numbered years and for a cumulative career of scholarship in even numbered years.  This limitation was later removed, allowing the selection committee to select someone whose work has enlarged the horizons of the discipline of sociology to encompass fully the role of women in society.  

When guidelines for this award were first published in 1978, they indicated that this award was not designed solely for women sociologists nor was it limited to the substantive area of sex roles.  Jessie Bernard remarked that this award “can perform its remedial function of overcoming our discipline’s current deficiencies if it encourages men as well as women to scrutinize the shortcomings of our theories, paradigms, conceptualizations, and methodologies which neglect, exclude, or distort the female part of the social structure.  The rewards will be to improve our discipline both humanistically and scientifically.”

Selection Criteria

The Jessie Bernard Award is given in recognition of scholarly work inclusive of research, teaching, mentoring, and service, that has enlarged the horizons of sociology to encompass fully the role of women in society. The contribution may be in empirical research, theory, or methodology. It is presented for significant cumulative work done throughout a professional career. The award is open to scholars of all genders and academic disciplines.

Nomination Procedures

A new timeline for reviewing nominations and selecting winners will be implemented beginning in 2021. To transition to the new timeline, no nominations will be accepted in 2020.

Selection Committee Members

The selection committee is composed of nine members, each serving a staggered three-year term. Members are appointed from among the Association membership by the Council based on the recommendation of the Committee on Committees.

Name Begin End Position
Katie Linette Acosta 1/1/2018 12/31/2020 Member
Sara L. Crawley 1/1/2019 12/31/2020 Member
Gloria Gonzalez-Lopez 1/1/2018 12/31/2020 Member
Lyndi N. Hewitt 1/1/2018 12/31/2020 Member
Ivy Ken 1/1/2019 12/31/2021 Member
Carla A. Pfeffer 1/1/2019 12/31/2021 Member
Kristen Barber 1/1/2020 12/31/2022 Member
Tey Meadow 1/1/2020 12/31/2022 Member
Tracy E. Ore 1/1/2020 12/31/2022 Member


(originally a biennial award for career and/or publication; now annual)

2019 Rhacel Salazar Parreñas

2019 - Bandana Purkayastha

2017Raewyn Connell, career

2016 - Ronnie J. Steinberg, career

2015 - Nancy A. Naples, career

2014 - Esther Ngan-ling Chow, career

2014 - Christine L. Williams, career

2013 - Kathleen Gerson, career

2012 - Michael A. Messner, career

2011 - Verta Taylor, career

2010 - Harriet Presser, career

2009 - Cecilia Ridgeway, career

2008 - Arlie Hochschild, career

2007 - Patricia Yancey Martin, career

2006 - Margaret Andersen, career

2005 - Evelyn Nakano Glenn, career

2004 - Myra Marx Ferree, career

2003 - Cynthia Fuchs Epstein, career

2002 - Barrie Thorne, career

2001 - Barbara Laslett, career

2000 - Maxine Baca Zinn, career

1999 - Paula England, career

1998 - Ruth A. Wallace, career

1997 - Nona Glazer, career; Robbie Pfeufer Kahn, Bearing Meaning: The Language of Birth (University of Illinois Press, 1995); Honorable Mention: Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo, Gendered Transitions: Mexican Experiences of Immigration (University of California Press, 1994)

1996 - Judith Lorber, career; Diane L. Wolf, Factory Daughters (University of California Press, 1992)

1995 - Arlene Kaplan Daniels, career; Ruth Frankenberg, White Women, Race Matters: The Social Construction of Whiteness (Minnesota); and Elizabeth Lapovsky Kennedy and Madeline D. Davis, Boots of Leather, Slippers of Gold: The History of A Lesbian Community (Routledge)

1993 - Dorothy E. Smith, career; Memphis State University Center for Research on Women (Bonnie Thornton Dill, Elizabeth Higginbotham, Lynn Weber) for significant collective work; and Patricia Hill Collins, Black Feminist Thought: Knowledge, Consciousness, and the Politics of Empowerment

1991 - Barbara Katz Rothman, Recreating Motherhood: Ideology and Technology in a Patriarchical Society (W.W. Norton & Co., 1989)

1989 - Joan Acker, career; Samuel R. Cohn, The Process of Occupational Sex Typing: The Feminization of Clerical Labor in Great Britain (Temple University Press, 1985); and Honorable Mention to Karen Brodkin Sacks, Caring by the Hour (University of Illinois Press)

1987 - Sandra Harding, The Science Question in Feminism (Cornell University Press, 1986); and Judith Rollins, Between Women: Domestics and Their Employers (Temple University Press, 1986)

1985 - Joan Huber, career; and Judith G. Stacey, Patriarchy and the Socialist Revolution in China

1983 - Alice S. Rossi, career

1981 - Elise Boulding, career

1979 - Valerie Kincaid Oppenheimer, The Female Labor Force in the United States: Demographic and Economic Factors Governing Its Growth and Changing Composition (University of California and Greenwood Press); Nancy Chodorow, The Reproduction of Mothering: Psychoanalysis and the Sociology of Gender (University of California Press); and Honorable Mention to Kristin Luker, Taking Chances: Abortion and the Decision Not to Contracept (University of California Press)

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