The Pick and Gavel Dinner is held in Washington D.C. in February or March at the Cosmos Club, whose history is steeped in geology. One of its founders and first presidents was John Wesley Powell, 1881 -1894 USGS Director and explorer of the Grand Canyon, and its membership has included many renowned geologists.
The Award consists of a mounted mineral, fossil, or rock, with a symbol that includes a geologist's pick, a policy-maker's gavel, and the Capitol, where geologists and policy-makers work together to respond to the needs of the nation.
AASG will recognize one or two distinguished friends of geology each year, customarily a Senator, Representative, Presidential Appointee, or a particularly distinguished and accomplished friend of AASG.
Suggestions for potential recipients are welcomed by the AASG Awards Chair by the end of November the preceding year, while nominees subsequently considered by Executive will be those named by or suggestions endorsed by their home State Geologist.
Late in the calendar year, the recipient or recipients will be named by the AASG President, in consultation with AASG Executive, following a selection supported by Executive, the Awards Chair, and/or a review panel as required.
- 2023: Senator Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada
- 2022: Senator John Barrasso M.D., Wyoming
- 2021: Dr. Elizabeth Eide, National Academy of Science, Engineering and Medicine
- 2020: Senator Joe Manchin, West Virginia
- 2019: Representative Anthony Brown, Maryland
- 2018: Senator Maria Cantwell, Washington
- 2017: Congressman Doug Lamborn, Colorado
- 2016: Anne J. Castle
- 2015: Dr. Pat Leahy, AGI
- 2014: Congressman Ken Calvert, California
- 2013: Congresswoman Betty McCollum, Minnesota
- 2012: Senator Dianne Feinstein
- 2012: Congressman Jim Moran
- 2011: Congressman Hal Rogers, Kentucky
- 2010: Representative Rush Holt, New Jersey
- 2010: Senator Lisa Murkowski, Alaska
- 2009: No award presented
- 2008: Harrison H. Schmitt
- 2007: Dr. Frank Press
- 2007: Congressman Norm Dicks
- 2006: Congressman Ron Kind
- 2005: Marcus Milling
- 2004: Senator Harry Reid
- 2004: Senator Pete Domenici
- 2003: Senator Ted Stevens
- 2003: Jeff Bingaman
- 2002: Gale A. Norton Secretary of the Interior
- 2001: Representative Ralph Regula
- 2001: Senator Joseph I. Lieberman
- 2000: Representative Jim Gibbons
- 2000: Dr. Rita Colwell
- 1999: Senator Larry E. Craig
- 1999: General Richard L. Lawson
- 1999: Representative Nick J. Rahall II
- 1999: Representative Barbara Cubin