Marilyn Raphael

Image © Ashley Kruythoff / UCLA

IoES Interim Director Marilyn Raphael elected Vice President of American Association of Geographers

Marilyn Raphael, interim director of UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, was elected vice president of the American Association of Geographers (AAG), a global network of researchers, educators and practitioners in geography. The AAG, the largest geography society in the world, has over 12,000 members who were invited to vote in this year’s election. Raphael was one of two candidates.  Vice presidents of AAG become president in their second year of service.

Raphael is a geography professor who served as the department’s chair from 2010 through 2013. She was an integral part of the formation of the Institute of Environment and Sustainability more than 20 years ago. Her research expertise includes atmospheric circulation dynamics, Antarctic sea ice variability and global climate change. She is co-author of the award-winning book The Encyclopedia of Weather and Climate Change: A Complete Visual Guide and she is author or co-author of more than 60 peer-reviewed journal articles. Teaching is one of the most satisfying aspects of her career, she said. She cherishes introducing undergraduates to the exciting world of climatology and graduate students to the joys of research.

As vice president, Raphael plans to have the AAG renew its commitment to diversity, representation and inclusion. She would like the organization to be a stronger force for positive social change and ensure that the geography discipline becomes more equitable. To her, diversity creates a more just, creative and happier environment. Her term begins July 1, 2021.

The AAG, founded in 1904, has contributed to the advancement of geography by supporting professional geographers representing public, private and academic sectors. Members from nearly 100 countries share research, practices and methods of geography which they cultivate through annual meetings and scholarly journals.