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awardAs you scroll down the page, you can read about the awards that Gary has received over the years. Candidates for the awards are recommended by a network of writers, literary scholars, publishers, and editors, who show outstanding work.


The MacArthur Fellows Program awards unrestricted fellowships to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. There are three criteria for selection of Fellows: exceptional creativity, promise for important future advances based on a track record of significant accomplishment, and potential for the fellowship to facilitate subsequent creative work.


The Pew Scholars in Conservation and Environment accepted its original class of twelve scientists, journalists and activists in 1991, to narrow the gap between conservation theory and practice. It involved scholars in a number of collabotative projects, include the production of Gretchen Daily’s nature’s Services book from Island Press that included an essay on Pollination Services by Nabhan and Buchmann, as well as workgroups on biosphere reserves, global warming and endangered species act reauthorization. The program evolved into a narrower effort on linking scholars in marine sciences, which Nabhan continued to participate in through training of SeriIndians in marine turtle conservation.


The John Burroughs Association publicly recognizes well-written and illustrated natural history publications. Each year the Burroughs medal is awarded to the author of a distinguished book of natural history, with the presentation made during the Association’s annual meeting on the first Monday of April, each year.


Since 1971 the Southwest Book Awards have been presented in recognition of outstanding books about the Southwest published each year in any genre (e.g. fiction, nonfiction, reference) and directed toward any audience (scholarly, popular, children).


Lannan foundation gives awards and fellowships to writers of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction , Native community activists , and in the area of cultural freedom . Awards recognize individuals for extraordinary work in their fields. Fellowships provide time and support to continue with or to complete specific projects and also recognize those who show potential for future outstanding work.


The Western States Book Awards are given annually in poetry, fiction, translation and creative nonfiction for books written by authors living in the West and published the previous year by presses that have their principal offices in the region. The National Endowment supports the awards for the Arts.


The Society for Conservation Biology presents up to five awards for distinguished service in the field of conservation biology to outstanding individuals, groups, or institutions whose work has furthered the mission of the SCB. The Awards Committee is soliciting nominations from SCB members for these awards, which will be presented at the annual meeting of the SCB.


Renewing America’s Food Traditions, a national campaign facilitated by NAU’s Center for Sustainable Environments, was honored by Saveur Magazine as one of the 100 best food stories of 2005. The RAFT coalition, which includes seven nonprofits and research institutes, is also the recipient of a $745,000 three year grant from the Cedar Tree Foundation – ensuring the continuation of this national campaign to put traditional American foods back on our tables.


Quote: “ Emil Haury’s enduring contribution to the understanding of the prehistory of the Southwest derives neither from his pioneering Paleoindian research nor from his seminal definition of the Hohokam and Mogollon cultures, but rather from his clear delineation of a framework for the objective, rational, and creative study of the archaeology of an entire region. He presented a vision of archaeology and a definition of the Southwest as a whole that continue to stimulate new and exciting ways of recreating a more complete image of life in the ancient Southwest.”


The Copper Quill Award is given annually to honor a local author for a body of work. This award was first presented in 1995 and is designed to recognize the many talented authors living in our local area who have made significant contributions to literature. A variety of genres are considered and previous Copper Quill recipients serve as the selection committee.

Past recipients include Scott Thybony, Rose Houk, Shonto Begay, Richard and Sherry Mangum, Stewart Aitchison, Susan Lamb, Brad Dimock, Michael Collier, and Mary Sojourner.


The MOCA Local Genius Award honors those visionary and innovative Tucsonans whose activities have a global impact, and whose talents have been internationally recognized. The Awards are a testament to the rich intellectual diversity of Tucson and a reflection of MOCA’s commitment to honoring cutting-edge creativity in all disciplines and practices.

The Awards are inspired by the ancient Roman concept of genius loci, or “the spirit of place”, the unique sensibility that sets a place apart from others. What is Tucson’s genius loci? A radical landscape that both challenges and awes, magical light that inspires, endless vistas that remind us of the grand passage of time and a complex history and heritage that provides a rich diversity of thought and sensibility. Only in Tucson could such a diversity of genius flourish – genius characterized by innovation and creativity, a passionate commitment to one’s pursuits, and to pursuits beyond oneself. Each of the Local Geniuses are unique contributors to their respective fields and are both a product of and a contributor to Tucson’s unique genius loci.


The William L. Brown Award recognizes the outstanding contributions of an individual in the field of genetic resource conservation and use of crop plants. The Brown Medal in Plant Conservation recognizes an individual whose efforts and achievements reflect a concern for those issues that were so important to Dr. Bill Brown and his equally-gifted wife, Alice.

This most recent award was presented by the Missouri Botanical Garden to Gary Paul Nabhan at the Botany 2021 Congress, with a video of his interview on the garden grounds.