NASW committees and liaisons

There are many ways to volunteer with NASW, including participating in one of the committees below. If you're interested in learning more about what you can do to get involved, please contact the committee chairs or liaisons listed or write


The NASW Awards Committee administers the annual Science in Society Awards competition. The Science in Society awards, which are presented at the NASW annual meeting, recognize investigative or interpretive reporting about science and its impact on society. The awards especially target the kind of critical, probing work that would not receive an award from a special-interest group. If you would like to serve as a judge, please contact the chairs.

Amber Dance
Dennis Meredith


The mission of the NASW Diversity Committee is to enhance diversity in science journalism by supporting writers from under-represented communities and bringing new members into the field. The committee will work with organizations such as the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Asian American Journalists Association, the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association and others to introduce writers to science journalism, and collaborate on events such as panels and pitch slams at various conferences. The committee will also create and manage a database of sources that includes scientific experts of all backgrounds.

Shraddha Chakradhar
Ashley Smart

Maggie Koerth-Baker
Mollie Bloudoff-Indelicato
Jennifer Bogo
Robin Lloyd
Philip Yam


The NASW Education Committee helps aspiring science writers by providing mentoring; information about internships; information about educational opportunities; and general advice about becoming a science writer. The committee also maintains a discussion group and online resources for science-writing teachers. The committee's major projects include a mentoring program for new science writers, and an internship fair for student members, both offered at the annual AAAS meeting. The committee also offers a number of resources on the NASW Web site, such as a list of science-writing workshops and fellowships; classroom aids for science-writing teachers; and, soon, a list of college science-writing programs. Throughout the year, members respond to requests for information on science writing and science-writing careers. If you are interested in joining the Education Committee, please contact the co-chairs.

Czerne Reid
Ashley Yeager

Internship fair coordinator:
Erik Vance

Jenny Cutraro
Jeff Grabmeier
Robert Irion
Erik Vance


The mission of the NASW Fairness Committee is to work toward and support fair and equitable treatment of all science writers. The committee has three approaches to achieving this mission. First, it seeks to identify existing or new mechanisms for community members needing problem-solving tools for situations involving equity, representation, and harassment. Second, it works to promote changes within the science writing community through data collection relevant to its fairness mission. Third, it seeks to partner with other interested entities pursuing similar goals; to promote and disseminate the freelance writer bill of rights; and, where tenable, to examine cases that arise to identify tools and problem-solving mechanisms that can be more generally and pre-emptively applied.

Emily Willingham

Helmuth, Laura
Jennie Dusheck
Seth Mnookin
Christie Aschwanden
Deborah Franklin
Jeanne Erdmann

Finance and audit

The NASW Finance and Audit Committee coordinates the board's financial oversight responsibilities by recommending policy to the board, interpreting it for the staff, and monitoring its implementation. The committee also provides board oversight of the organization's financial audit. The committee monitors the organization's financial records; reviews and oversees the creating of accurate, timely, and meaningful financial statements to be presented to the board; reviews the annual budget and recommends it to the full board for approval; monitors budget implementation and financial procedures; reviews internal financial controls; monitors budget assets; monitors compliance with federal, state, and other reporting requirements; reviews the organization's insurance coverage; and helps the full board understand the organization's finances. The committee also ensures that the organization has an independent audit of its financial statements annually, recommends the independent auditors for full board approval, receives the audit report and any other reports relating to the audit or to the assets and collection management practices of the National Association of Science Writers, and periodically reports the auditor's findings and recommendations to the board. The committee shall consist of not fewer than 2 board members. The members of the finance and audit committee shall be appointed by the president for 2-year terms. The board treasurer should chair this committee.

Treasurer and chair:
Rob Frederick

Richard Bogren
Siri Carpenter
Laura Helmuth, president (ex officio)
Kathryn Jepsen
Diana Kenney


The NASW Freelance Committee works to support full- or part-time freelance science writers. This committee focuses mainly on practical measures meant to help freelancers build and sustain a thriving business. The group also monitors long-term trends that affect the viability of freelancing as a career. Committee members helped develop NASW's Words' Worth rates database; manage a contract FAQ for writers and editors; assemble freelance-oriented panels for NASW's annual conference; and generate service articles for NASW's All About Freelancing website and for NASW's quarterly newsletter, ScienceWriters.™ New ideas and new members are always welcome.

Kendall Powell
Emily Anthes

Katherine Bourzac
T. Delene Beeland
Francie Diep
Doug Fox
Jennifer Frazer
Virginia Gewin
Jeff Hecht
Charlotte Huff
Lynne Lamberg
Robin Meadows
Brittany Moya del Pino
Jeffrey Perkel
Tammy Powledge
Sandeep Ravindran
Hillary Rosner — NASW Board liaison
Sarah Scoles
Rina Shaikh-Lesko
Allie Wilkinson


The NASW Governance Committee works to ensure that the organization's board and officers perform effectively and to standards of due diligence on behalf of its members. It reviews the constitution and bylaws, as well as board functioning, on a regular basis and recommends best practices for the board and officers to consider.

Nsikan Akpan
Alexandra Witze

Jill Adams
Sunny Bains
Mollie Bloudoff-Indelicato
Lina Genovesi
Mari Jensen
Gretchen Miller
Clara Moskowitz
Curt Suplee
James Urton


The Grants Committee is a clearinghouse for all program funding requests made to NASW that are designed to help science writers in their professional lives. Payments are drawn against NASW's Authors Coalition income. Proposals should serve non-members as well as members, though preference is given to NASW members. The committee consists of one designated representative each from NASW’s PIO, staff/full-time employed journalists, education, and freelance committees as well as a chair appointed from the board by the NASW president and such other member or members as the president chooses.

Melissa Blouin

Kimbra Cutlip
John Johnson Jr.
Robin Lloyd
Whitney McKnight
Amy Nordrum
Hillary Rosner

Information access

Formerly called the FOIA Committee, the Information Access Committee addresses issues surrounding access to information or scientists, institutional transparency, or manipulation of data.

Gabriel Popkin
Irene Klotz

Jill Adams Jason Davis
Liza Gross
Lee Herring
Kim Krieger
William Schulz


The International Committee helps coordinate NASW's international outreach efforts. In odd years, this includes coordinating involvement in the World Conference of Science Journalists, most recently held in Seoul, Korea in June 2015. The committee also works with other initiatives of the World Federation of Science Journalists.

Chair: Nancy Shute

Curtis Brainard
Lynne Friedmann


The NASW Internet Committee oversees the organization's Internet services, including the NASW web site. Most committee business occurs throughout the year via the committee's discussion group. If you are interested in joining, please contact the chair or

Kathryn Jepsen

Norman Bauman
Brooke Borel
Kenneth Chiacchia
Josie Garthwaite
Earle Holland
A’ndrea Elyse Messer
Irene Park
Evelyn Strauss
Michael Windelspecht
Philip Yam


The NASW Membership Committee reviews applications for membership when an applicant's qualifications or materials are not straightforward. The Committee also evaluates, researches, and proposes membership protocols, levels, benefits, discounts, etc. Members conduct business via a discussion group. Please email the chair if you are interested in helping out.


Emily Willingham

Allie Akmal
Raychelle Burks
Russ Campbell
Cynthia Graber
Bridget M. Kuehn
Alaina Levine
Kasha Patel
Judith Randal
Ed Ricciuti
Jennifer Richler
Kara Rogers
Matthew Shipman
Fabio Turone
Cori Vanchieri


The NASW Nominating Committee is convened every other year, one year in advance of elections. The current president appoints the committee. Recent past presidents typically serve on this committee. This collaborative working group determines the Executive Committee and Board slate. With consultation from the current Executive Committee and input from interested individuals, the Nominating Committee identifies and approaches members who may serve as appropriate candidates during the months preceding elections (elections occur in fall of every even year). The Nominating Committee ensures that candidates are qualified, aware of expectations, and willing to take on the role if elected. The Nominating Committee is responsible for ensuring that candidates submit biographies to the editor of ScienceWriters™ by the June 1 publication deadline. Interested in running for office in 2016? Visit the Candidate Info page for more information.

2016 Chair:
Robin Henig

Melissa Blouin
Richard Harris
Ginny Hughes
Rob Irion
Apoorva Mandavilli
Emily Sohn


Jill Sakai
Michael Newman

Chris Barncard
Michael Baum
Mary Beckman
Melissa Blouin
Richard Bogren
Justin H S Breaux
Emily Carlson
Terry Devitt
Earle Holland
Audrey Huang
Jennifer Huergo
Mari Jensen
Carl Marziali
A’ndrea Messer
Robert Nellis
Sue Nichols
Joyce Peterson
Patricia Quigley
Czerne Reid
Kelly Tyrrell


The NASW Programs Committee steers the content of our yearly workshops, part of the annual ScienceWriters™ conference. Formerly known as the Workshops Committee, this group selects from the session proposals those that represent the best professional development and discussion opportunities for our diverse membership. The chair, who is the sitting NASW vice president, leads committee discussions on the format and flow of the annual meeting and determines how proposals will be evaluated and shared. Committee members serve for two years, with the most of the workload occurring mid-March to mid-April. Committee members are expected to thoughtful, vocal, and may occasionally be invited to help with crafting special sessions. Typically, all volunteers are accepted. In the event of an overwhelming response, the chair shall select members who represent the various professions of NASW members. Committee members can attend that year's annual meeting at the student rate.

Siri Carpenter

Members 2017:

In 2017, we are hosting the 10th World Conference of Science Journalists. It will take the place of our annual ScienceWriters meeting for 2017 and will be held October 26-30 in San Francisco. Learn more and volunteer at

Liaisons to other organizations

Authors Coalition

Board member Robert Frederick represents NASW and casts NASW's vote in the discussions and decisions of the organizations constituting the coalition, which generally take place during regular monthly conference calls. As liaison, he exercises this authority in consultation with the NASW officers and board. The liaison may also serve on coalition committees, for example, the Distribution Committee, which advises on policy decisions affecting disbursement of coalition funds. Beryl Benderly was the first AC liaison, having spearheaded the development of this critical relationship for NASW.