Prizes

The Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History awards five prizes for outstanding work in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer history; prize descriptions are below. Calls for prizes are announced in the early summer of each year; submissions are due to prize committee members in the fall. The prizes are awarded each year in early January at the annual meeting of the American Historical Association. The Boswell and Nestle Prizes are awarded in January of odd-numbered years for work published or written in the prior two years. The Bérubé, Lorde, and Sprague Prizes are awarded in January of even-numbered years for work produced, published, or written in the prior two years. Each prize comes with an award of $200. The CLGBTH funds the prizes, with the exception of the Bérubé Prize, which is underwritten by the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco.

The John Boswell Prize for an outstanding book on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history published in English. (Odd-numbered years, covering previous two years.)

The Joan Nestle Prize for an outstanding paper on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history completed in English by an undergraduate student. (Odd-numbered years, covering previous two years.) The undergraduate paper prize is funded through a special fund established by CLGBTH’s lifetime members.

The Gregory Sprague Prize for an outstanding published or unpublished paper, article, book chapter, or dissertation chapter on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history completed in English by a graduate student. (Even-numbered years, covering previous two years.)

The Audre Lorde Prize for an outstanding article on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history published in English. (Even-numbered years, covering previous two years.)

The Allan Bérubé Prize for outstanding work in public or community-based lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history. (Even-numbered years, covering previous two years.) The Bérubé Prize is underwritten by the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco, CA.

The Don Romesburg Prize for outstanding K-12 curriculum in LGBT history. (Odd-numbered years, covering the previous two years.)

Congratulations to all our recent prize winners!

The following prizes were awarded at the American Historical Association Meeting held this past January, 2022 in New Orleans. All three awards are awarded in even-numbered years, covering the previous two years. Our thanks to the members of the prize committees: on the Allan Bérubé Prize Committee, Sarah Watkins (chair), Hugh Ryan, and Stefanie Snider; on the Gregory Sprague Prize Committee, Cookie Woolner, chair (University of Memphis), Samuel Clowes Huneke (George Mason University), and Beans Velocci (University of Pennsylvania); and on the Audre Lorde Prize Committee, Marc Stein, chair (San Francisco State University), Patrizia Gentile (Carleton University), and Nic John Ramos (Drexel University).

Allan Bérubé Prize
For outstanding work in public or community-based lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history. The prize is underwritten by the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco.

WinnerIthaca LGBT History Tour

Prize Committee statement:

This campus/community collaboration that aims to preserve the LGBTQ history of Ithaca and Tompkins County, NY, represents a model of local public history that reaches beyond the physical boundaries of its locality to engage with broader communities of LGBTQ people as well as historians and marginalized groups. Its approach is well thought out and appealing to the broader public, with conscious and meticulous planning to allow the guide to be used and accessed much more globally than its specifically geographical focus. Particularly in the midst of Covid and ongoing discussions about accessibility and virtual event best practices, this virtual tour—with its easy mobile availability—provides an outstanding example of how to create queer sites applications for other locales, both large and small.

Audre Lorde Prize
For an outstanding article on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history published in English.

Winner: René Esparza for the essay, “‘Qué Bonita Mi Tierra’: Latinx AIDS Activism and Decolonial Queer Praxis in 1980s New York and Puerto Rico,” Radical History Review, no. 140 (May 2021): 107-141.

Prize Committee statement:

This essay, which focuses on the work of ACT UP New York’s Latina/o Caucus and ACT UP Puerto Rico, brilliantly showcases the diasporic, transnational, anti-racist, and anti-colonial politics of an influential set of AIDS activists in both New York and Puerto Rico. After describing the early history and distinct politics of ACT UP New York’s Latina/o Caucus, the essay turns to the transnational relationships and developments that led to the founding of ACT UP Puerto Rico and then to the reverberations and transformations that subsequently occurred in New York. As a case study that highlights the migration of radical LGBTQ activists, ideas, and strategies in the context of HIV/AIDS, Esparza’s work offers an inspiring new model for doing queer history.

Honorable Mention: Jesse Bayker, “‘Some Very Queer Couples’: Gender Migrants and Intimacy in Nineteenth-Century America,”Gender & History, online Aug. 2021; forthcoming in print edition.

Prize Committee statement:

This essay offers an exciting and original innovation in trans history by arguing for use of the term “gender migrant” to describe people who changed genders on long-term bases in their everyday lives. Through a sensitive examination of four nineteenth-century individuals, the essay productively argues for the existence of multi-directional gender migrations, the significance of both gender and sexuality as categories of analysis, and the importance of doing trans history in earlier historical periods.

Honorable Mention: Salonee Bhaman, “‘For a Few Months of Peace’: Housing and Care in the Early AIDS Crisis,” Radical History Review, no. 140 (May 2021): 78-106.

Prize Committee statement:

This essay breaks new ground in its analysis of the conflicting politics of those concerned about housing issues for New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS in the 1980s. Provocatively critiquing the legal arguments that were deployed to support tenancy survivorship rights for gay men in privileged types of intimate relationships, the essay offers revealing contrasts with the advocacy work of those who focused on the needs of unhoused people with HIV/AIDS.

Gregory Sprague Prize
For an outstanding published or unpublished paper, article, book chapter, or dissertation chapter on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer history completed in English by a graduate student.

Winner: Nikita Shephard for their forthcoming book chapter, “‘To Fight for an End to Intrusions into the Sex Lives of Americans’: Gay and Lesbian Resistance to Sexual Surveillance and Data Collection, 1945-1972,” which will be published in the anthology Queer Data, ed. Patrick Keilty (University of Washington Press, 2022). 

Prize Committee statement:

Shepard’s important chapter identifies and carefully traces striking shifts in how American gay and lesbian activists thought about data collection in the second half of the twentieth century. They contrast the current move to “Queer the Census” with mid-twentieth century gay and lesbian desires to remain illegible, and show how this earlier position derived not from a drive for abstract privacy or assimilation, but rather acute awareness of the threat of surveillance. The dialectical processes they unearth not only sheds new light on contemporary queer politics in an era of endless data, but also allows us to reconceptualize earlier gay and lesbian liberation movements.  In the end, Shephard’s work unearths “a strikingly visionary path not taken” in the queer history of privacy and surveillance in the United States.

Honorable Mention: Benjamin Bernard for their dissertation chapter, “The Sodomy Consultant of Paris: The Sodomy Consultant of Paris: The Abbeì Nicolas Theru and the Policing of Morals at the ColleÌge Mazarin, 1688-1737.”  for their dissertation chapter “The Sodomy Consultant of Paris: The Sodomy Consultant of Paris: The Abbeì Nicolas Theru and the Policing of Morals at the ColleÌge Mazarin, 1688-1737.” 

Prize Committee statement:

This chapter based on deep archival work connects intellectual history and the history of sexuality to “re-center the history of moral policing onto the early modern college.”


Prize Committees:

2022:
Lorde Committee: Marc Stein*, Patrizia Gentile, and Nic John Ramos
Allan Bérubé Committee:  Sarah Watkins*, Hugh Ryan, and Stefanie Snider
Sprague Committee: Cookie Woolner*, Samuel Clowes Huneke, and Beans Velocci

2020:
Lorde/Sprague Committee: Zeb Tortorici*, Elliott Powell, Sarah Watkins
Allan Bérubé Committee: Jennifer Brier*, Rachel Corbman, Eric Gonzaba
Boswell/Nestle Committee: Rachel Hope Cleves*, J.T. Roane, Caroline Radesky
Romesburg Committee: Don Romesburg*, David Duffield, Wendy Rouse

2018: 
Lorde/Sprague Committee: Emily Skidmore*, Abraham J. Lewis, Linda Velasco
Bérubé Committee: Jennifer Tyburczy*, Joshua Buford, Katherine Ott

2017: Phil Tiemeyer*, Carson Morris, Afsaneh Najmabadi

2016: 
Lorde/Sprague Committee:
James Green*, Chelsea del Rio, Stephen Vider
Bérubé Committee: Amy Sueyoshi*, Mark Bowman, Victor Salvo.

2015: Estelle Freedman*, T.J. Tallie, Mir Yarfitz

2014:
Lorde/Sprague Committee: Kevin Mumford*, Emily K. Hobson, Anita Kurimay
Bérubé Committee: Jill Austin*, JD Doyle, Maria-Anna Tesliou

2013: Margot Canaday*, Cookie Woolner, Ben Cowan

2012: 
Lorde/Sprague Committee: Thomas A. Foster*, Julio Cesar Capo, Claire Potter;
Bérubé Committee: Kevin P. Murphy*, Marcia Gallo, Lauren Jae Gutterman, Joey Plaster

Prize Committees (prior to 2012):

2011: Ellen Herman*, Chris Waters, Stephanie Gilmore
2010: Marc Stein*, Nicholas Syrett, Ellen Zitani
2009: John D’Emilio*, Amy Sueyoshi, Red Vaughan Tremmel
2008: Moshe Sluhovsky*, Christolyn Williams, Phil Tiemeyer
2007: Ramon Gutierrez*, Jennifer Evans, Daniel Rivers
2006: Vicki Eaklor*, Nan Alamilla Boyd, Don Romesburg
2005: John Howard*, Margaret McFadden, Pablo Ben
2004: Margaret Hunt*, Anne Rubenstein, Tim Retzloff
2003: John D’Emilio*, Lori Ginzberg, Robert Frame
2002: Chuck Middleton*, Margot Canaday, David Serlin
2001: Michael Sibalis*, Leisa Meyer, Christopher Capozzola
2000: Ellen Herman*, James Green, Victoria Thompson
1999: Allida Black, Bill Drummond, Terence Kissack
1998: John Fout, John Howard, Nancy Unger
1997: Linda Heidenreich, Leila Rupp, Michael Sherry
1996: Barry Adam, Leisa Meyer, Randolph Trumbach
1995: Vicki Eaklor, James Steakley, Marc Stein
1994: Steven Maynard, Eugene Rice, Leila Rupp

* indicates chair position