The LSA is pleased to recognize four linguists for their work to support endangered languages, promote linguistics to the public, and advance and serve the field of linguistics as a whole. Congratulations to the winners of the following LSA Awards:

John McWhorter is widely known for his sustained and far-ranging efforts to illuminate complex questions of linguistic inquiry for a general audience, including his public-facing lectures, books, articles, commentary, numerous interviews produced by popular news media outlets, and for his service to the LSA in furthering public understanding of linguistics.

Over her career Sally Thomason has contributed more to the field of linguistics in both research and service than what most scholars will achieve in a lifetime in only one of these areas. Her research has propelled the field forward; her mentoring activities have placed many junior scholars on trajectories toward success; and her service to the Society has benefited all linguists in significant ways. Sally’s contributions to the field of linguistics and the LSA in particular is richly deserving of recognition through the  Victoria A. Fromkin Lifetime Service Award.


Dr. Kristen Syrett has demonstrated exemplary performance in research, teaching, and service since receiving her PhD. Dr. Syrett is a leading researcher in experimental semantics. Her work bridges multiple subfields, integrating formal linguistic theory and psycholinguistic experimentation. She has published widely in some of the top journals of our field. In addition to her extraordinary research, Dr. Syrett’s devotion to the field has been unparalleled for an early career researcher. She has been particularly devoted to the Linguistic Society of America, including in her current role as chair of the  Committee on the Status of Women in Linguistics.

In recognition of his contributions to the documentation of the languages of the Bolom group and to their speaker communities. Tucker Childs has devoted decades to research on Kisi, Bom, Mani, Kim, and Sherbro to produce a comprehensive picture of the languages and cultures of an endangered African language group. He has shown a commitment to both scholarship and speaker communities,producing grammars, dictionaries, readers, and primers, as well as numerous academic articles. His work provides a model for the documentation of African languages by an American scholar and the value in documenting an entire linguistic subgroup.



All LSA Awards will be presented at the 2018 LSA Annual Meeting on Saturday, January 6, at the Grand America Hotel, Salt Lake City, Utah. Congratulations and thanks once more to all our award winners.