The WPSA launched a fund-raising campaign as part of its 75th Anniversary celebration. The primary goal of the campaign has been to raise funds for a new WPSA Travel Award. Unlike other major political science associations, the WPSA has not had a fund to help underwrite the cost for graduate students and less well-off faculty to attend the annual meeting. As a result, some potential participants have not been able to attend because they did not have the funding. In 2022, the WPSA Executive Council renamed the award the Elsa Favila Travel Award to honor our long-serving associate director who retired in October 2022.

There association has other needs, so the council has also been encouraging members to contribute to one of our awards funds as part of the Anniversary campaign. Contributions to these funds will help ensure their long-term survival and build the size of the awards. If you just want to provide help to the Association to ensure its long-term viability and to build a base for growth, please consider donating to the WPSA Endowment Fund. This fund was created to provide security if a financial crisis occurs and to provide support for major projects.

Click here now to make a donation online. If you prefer to make a donation through the mail, send your check or credit card information to:

Western Political Science Association
5505 SW Illinois St.
Portland, OR 97221

Here are our funds to which we are accepting donations:

Elsa Favila Travel Award Fund

The Elsa Favila Travel Award Fund was created to help underwrite the cost for graduate students and less well-off faculty to attend the annual meeting. The award fund was named to honor Elsa Favila, who retired in 2022 after working for the association for 38 years.

The WPSA Endowment Fund

The WPSA Endowment was created to provide a financial reservoir to help protect the long-term security of the Association and to fund special projects. Your generous contribution to this fund enables the WPSA to better handle unanticipated challenges and to launch new projects and programs that benefit the association and its members.

Betty Moulds Lifetime Service Award

The Betty Moulds Lifetime Service Award is given to individuals who have made a long history of service and an extraordinary contribution to the WPSA. The award is named in honor of Betty Moulds, who served for 25 years as the chief administrator for the WPSA.

The Fund for Asian Pacific Americans

The Fund for Asian Pacific Americans is used to support Asian Pacific American Caucus (APAC) research and education efforts broadly, to serve as awards for scholarship and service, and to subsidize meetings, events and publicity.

Joel Olson Award Endowment

This endowment was created to fund an award honoring Joel Olson, an associate professor of political theory at Northern Arizona University and a long-time WPSA member. The award is for activist-scholars whose work is at the creative intersection of radical political theory and practice. The Joel Olson Award is funded entirely through an endowment. The award will not be given until the endowment reaches its funding goal.

Award Funds

Historically, the association has funded most of its annual awards out of its general operating budget. However, the association has begun to accept donations that will be set aside for underwriting the cost of these awards. The association hopes to eventually raise a sufficient amount of money so that these awards can be funded entirely through the interest generated through contributions. Your generous support for these awards helps ensure that there will be adequate funding in future years. Donations can be directed to the following awards:

Betty Nesvold Award (Women and Politics)

This award is for the best paper on women and politics presented at the previous annual meeting of the WPSA. The award is named in honor of Betty Nesvold, a long-term member of the association who played an important leadership role in improving the status and treatment of women political scientists.

Blacks and Politics Award

The Blacks and Politics Award is given to an outstanding paper that focuses on issues and problems that concern Black Americans.

Dissertation Award

The Dissertation Award is given to the best doctoral dissertation completed at a university within the regional groupings of the WPSA between July 1 and June 30 of the previous academic year.

Don T. Nakanishi Award for for Distinguished Scholarship and Service in Asian Pacific American Politics

This annual award will recognize outstanding scholarship or service advancing the understanding or practice of Asian Pacific American politics. The recipient will be someone who has made a significant contribution to the understanding of Asian Pacific American politics (scholarship that examines more than one ethnoracial group is also eligible), or whose professional work has made a substantial contribution to the practice of Asian Pacific American politics.

Environmental Political Theory Award

This award is presented to the best paper in environmental political theory presented at the annual WPSA meeting.

Latina/Latino Politics Award

This award is for an outstanding paper on Latina/Latino politics that is presented at the annual meeting.

William E. Connolly Award

This annual award is for the best political theory paper in contemporary democratic thought, whether recognizing daring and innovative work by a young scholar or a bold new line of inquiry by an established scholar. It is named after William E. Connolly, world renowned political theorist, revered teacher and mentor, and long-time WPSA member.

WPSA Virtual Communities

WPSA Virtual Communities bring academics together regularly on Zoom or other virtual platforms for scholarly, pedagogical, and/or professional development in political science and related fields. The program has multiple purposes: to maximize scholarly engagement while minimizing climate-warming carbon emissions; to support the professional growth of those who find it difficult to travel to in-person conferences for any reason; to help democratize access to academic networks; to broaden participation in WPSA; and to provide academics in political science and related fields the opportunity for regular intellectual exchange and development throughout the year.