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Society Awards

Thomas Hunt Morgan Medal
Genetics Society of America Medal
George W. Beadle Award
Elizabeth W. Jones Award for Excellence in Education
The Novitski Prize
The Rosalind Franklin Young Investigator Award

Trainee Awards

Victoria Finnerty Undergraduate Travel Awards
The GSA Undergraduate Travel Awards
DeLill Nasser Award for Professional Development in Genetics
Trainee Poster Awards














Deadline: April 4, 2017

In recognition of the critical role DeLill Nasser played for the discipline and for her love of genetics, in 2001 the Genetics Society of America established The DeLill Nasser Award for Professional Development in Genetics, an award for graduate students and postdoctoral trainees, to support travel costs for young geneticists to attend national and international meetings and enroll in laboratory courses. The Award is named for long-time GSA member and National Science Foundation Program Director in Eukaryotic Genetics, DeLill Nasser.

Nasser, who died in 2000, was at NSF for more than 22 years and was considered the “patron saint” of genetics and friend of many geneticists. She was primarily interested “in the science” and because of this interest championed the funding of the genomic sequencing of Arabidopsis and research in Drosophila. Giving them time and support, Nasser enabled researchers to work on genetic problems, sometimes seemingly obscure, which resulted in significant progress in genetics research. For more about Nasser, please see the tribute published in the August 2001 issue of GENETICS.

Nasser was especially supportive of young scientists, people who were beginning their careers and those trying to open new areas of genetic inquiry.


DeLill Nasser Awards have two rounds of applications per year; one for courses and conferences occurring between January 1 and June 30, and another for courses and conferences occurring between July 1 and December 31. Monitor the GSA e-News and this webpage for updates about application windows.


View DeLill Nasser Award FAQs


Current DeLill Nasser Award Winners


Year Name Institution at Time of Award Advisor
2016 Terry Felton University College London Richard Poole
2016 Abigail Lind Vanderbilt University Antonis Rokas
2016 Albert Mondragon Boston University Kim McCall
2016 Taehyun Ryu University of Southern California Dr. Irene Chiolo
2016 Michele Sammut University College London Dr. Richard Poole
2016 Igor Iatsenko École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) Bruno Lemaitre
2016 Nikos Konstantinides New York University Claude Desplan
2016 Jyoti Misra Rutgers University Kenneth Irvine
2016 Luke Noble New York University Matt Rockman
2016 Jennifer Wisecaver Vanderbilt University Antonis Rokas


Previous DeLill Nasser Award Winners


DeLill Nasser Award Selection Committee


Orna Cohen-Fix, NIDDK, NIH, Committee Chair

David Beier, Seattle Children’s Research Institute

Judith Bender, Brown University 

Celeste Berg, University of Washington

JoAnne Engebrecht, University of California, Davis

Eric Haag, University of Maryland

Sarah Kucenas, University of Virginia

Kirsten Nielsen, University of Minnesota

Jeffrey Thomas

Deborah Yelon, University of California, San Diego

Elcin Unal, University of California, Berkeley


Review criteria for the award:


In the first round, applications are judged on:

Significance of research:

  • Research MUST be in genetics and not, for example, biophysics

  • Research with higher impact on the field would be reviewed more favorably

  • Applicant-initiated science an asset 

Productivity, based on:

  • Publication record

  • Letters of recommendation

Other considerations:

  • Demonstrated service and leadership (primarily for postdoctoral applicants)

  • Seniority of student/postdoc – applicants nearing the end of their postdoctoral training or graduate degree who have been productive are generally given higher priority over those at the start of their training.

In the second round, applications are judged also on:

  • The genetic content of proposed course/conference and fit between course/conference and applicant; eg conferences/courses focusing on neuroscience or developmental biology would be given lower priority than conferences/courses with high genetic content unless a compelling case can be made

  • Diversity:

    • Demographics

    • Geographic location/type of institution

    • This often comes to light in the letters of recommendation

  • The budget 



Contribute to The DeLill Nasser Fund:


Contribute online with your membership renewal or click here to donate online.

Or, send a check to the Genetics Society of America with “DeLill Nasser Fund” written in the lower left memo and mail to:

Genetics Society of America
9650 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, MD 20814-3998

* The Genetics Society of America is a nonprofit 501 (C) 3 corporation and contributions are tax deductible under the U.S. Federal Income Tax Code.