Horowitz Receives 2017 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Award

Larry W. Horowitz will receive the 2017 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Award at the 2017 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 11–15 December in New Orleans, La. The award recognizes research contributions by “exceptional mid-career (academic, government, and private sector) scientists in the fields of atmospheric and climate sciences.”

Citation for Larry W. Horowitz

“For his pioneering research in developing world-leading, global three-dimensional models of atmospheric chemistry particularly as it interfaces with meteorological and climate processes”

Throughout his career, Larry Horowitz has been the primary developer of a suite of atmospheric chemistry models, starting with his addition of isoprene chemistry to the Harvard GEOS-Chem model, to the National Center for Atmospheric Research MOZART model, to several versions of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) climate model. His leadership in the development of atmospheric chemistry models has led to a number of highly cited papers. One highlight of his work with MOZART was a study of the role of methane and isoprene’s role in the distribution of ozone and nitrogen oxides. Another highlight using the GFDL model was his investigation of the sensitivity of the regional distributions of ozone and aerosols to deposition mechanisms. He has had multiple collaborations across a number of institutions. Larry’s approach to scientific leadership embodies the core values of AGU, especially through his “unselfish cooperation in research.” This has led to more than 150 publications in peer-reviewed high-impact journals, together with an h-index of 55. Larry has been a pioneer in the modeling of chemistry–climate interactions as well as chemistry–air quality implications and linkages.

As one of Larry’s colleagues states, “I attribute Horowitz’s understanding of atmospheric chemistry and ability to implement that accurately in three-dimensional models as essential, critical guidance to the field. Horowitz has enabled, participated in, and in part directed much of the curiosity-driven, wild-question science of this collective body of research in atmospheric chemistry and climate.”

On behalf of the AGU Atmospheric Sciences section, I am pleased to present a 2017 Ascent Award to Larry Horowitz.

—Joyce E. Penner, President, Atmospheric Sciences Section, AGU


I am grateful and honored to receive the 2017 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Award. I appreciate this recognition of my research, and I would like to thank my nominators and the awards committee for this honor.

I am fortunate to have worked, throughout my career, at excellent institutions with amazing mentors and colleagues. First, I would like to thank Daniel Jacob, who introduced me at Harvard to the exciting field of atmospheric chemistry and who provided a fantastic model of how to be a scientist and to conduct collaborative research. Guy Brasseur provided me with the wonderful opportunity to broaden my research to include chemistry–climate interactions and to build strong collaborations with many scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research. I am indebted to Chip Levy, who brought me to the NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL), provided encouragement and mentorship, and helped me to establish my career there. The breadth of scientific activities being undertaken at GFDL and Princeton has provided a wonderful environment for my research, allowing me opportunities to explore Earth system modeling and to interact daily with outstanding colleagues. In particular, I would like to thank our laboratory director, V. Ramaswamy, for his support and mentorship, and all of my GFDL colleagues, including Leo Donner, Ron Stouffer, and Isaac Held, for their generous advice and friendship.

Finally, I would like to thank my family—especially my wife, Terri, and our children, Jillian and Lucas—for their constant love and support.

—Larry W. Horowitz, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, NOAA, Princeton, N.J.