Angelicque White will receive the 2015 Ocean Sciences Early Career Award at the 2015 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 14–18 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes “significant contributions to and promise in the ocean sciences.”
For her contribution to the mechanistic understanding of exchanges of elements between microbial communities and surrounding seawater, it is my great pleasure to announce that Dr. Angelicque “Angel” White is the recipient of the 2015 American Geophysical Union Ocean Sciences Early Career Award. Angel’s research focuses on the natural exchanges of elements between marine microbial communities and their environment. Highlights of her work include key advances on (1) how marine phosphorus dynamics modulates oceanic nitrogen fixation, a key source of new nitrogen in the tropics and subtropics, (2) the possible positive feedback mechanisms between mid–water column anoxia and surface nitrogen fixation, (3) mechanisms driving summer phytoplankton blooms in the subtropical North Pacific, and (4) new pathways of methane production in the surface ocean that may explain the decades-old mystery of surface water methane supersaturation. Angel’s insight and ability to creatively link a variety of disparate approaches have resulted in numerous high-impact publications that will be cited for years to come. Angel is also known for her superb communication skills and ability to work with others. She has initiated collaborations and contributed to projects with scientists from a number of institutes and raised several million dollars in grant funds from sources including the Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, NASA, the National Science Foundation, and the Simons Foundation. In addition to being a seagoing research scientist, Angel also finds time to contribute to substantial outreach and education while also participating in numerous services to the oceanographic community. This is well beyond the call of duty for a young soft-money scientist at this career stage. Given her current trajectory in the field, I am excited to see where Angel’s research will lead next. I know it will continue to be exceptional.
I would like to first thank Mark Abbott, Scott Doney, Fred Prahl, and Claudia Benitez-Nelson for the nomination as well as Adina Paytan and the Ocean Sciences section for selecting me. I also thank my colleagues in the College of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University for fostering a supportive and collaborative research environment. Oceanography is a team sport. The research highlights cited above are not solely my own. They are all the result of strong collaborations and interdisciplinary science. And so, in receiving this award, I have to primarily acknowledge my colleagues for broadening my research, sharing their knowledge and skills, and expanding my intellectual horizons. Together, we have the privilege to study the oceans, to learn how they function, to outline the biological and physical structures, and to document change. The task is grand, formidable even. We dunk bottles into the ocean, we send little drones into the seas, we tether moorings and launch drifters, we scan the surface with satellites, yet in the end we see so very little of this immense, moving, alive, and fluid ocean. Oceanography is a bold science. I can’t imagine a more fulfilling career for myself. While it is an honor to have my work recognized by my peers, it is an honor that I share with my collaborators, students, and technicians.—Angelicque White, Oregon State University, Corvallis