George E. Valley, Jr. Prize

To recognize an early-career individual for an outstanding scientific contribution to physics that is deemed to have significant potential for a dramatic impact on the field. The prize consists of $10,000, a certificate citing the contribution made by the recipient, an allowance for travel to the APS Medal and Prize Ceremony and Reception in Washington, D.C., and an invited talk at an APS March or April Meeting. It shall be awarded to one individual who has received his/her Ph.D. no earlier than 5 years before April 1 of the year of the nomination deadline.

Rules and eligibility

Nomination documents must include a statement from the nominator or from the candidate's department certifying the date of the candidate's PhD. Unsuccessful nominations can be carried over to the next time that the prize is awarded provided that: a) the requirement specified above is still met; b) the nominators update the dossiers of the candidates to include the elapsed two years.

Nominations will be considered for three review cycles provided the nominator re-certifies the nomination before the next deadline and all other eligiblity criteria are still met.

Note: Work done by a graduate student for his/her thesis is eligible for consideration if it is demonstrated that the student's contributions have been crucial to an important piece of research.

Process and selection

Nominations received by APS will be distributed to the APS Society Medal & Prize selection committee for review. The selection committee's recommendation will be forwarded for approval by the APS Council of Representatives and upon such approval a notification letter will be sent to the recipient. The Prize will be presented at the next appropriate meeting of the APS at which the recipient will also be invited to present a lecture.

The nomination package must include:

  • A letter of not more than 5,000 characters evaluating the qualifications of the nominee(s).

In addition, the nomination should include:

  • A biographical sketch.
  • A list of the most important publications.
  • At least two, but not more than four, seconding letters.
  • Up to five reprints or preprints.

Selection Committee

  • John Doyle (Chair)
  • Daniel Fisher
  • Peter Schiffer
  • Karen Winey
  • Kenneth Brown
  • Brian Fields
  • John Wilkerson
  • Robert Bernstein
  • Michael Brown
  • Kristan Corwin
  • Bruce Carlsten
  • David Weiss
  • Xuan Chen
  • Howard Stone
  • Dragana Popovic
  • Amy Liu
  • Peter Olmsted
  • Tanja Cuk
  • Manuela Campanelli

Establishment and support

The prize was established by the APS Council in 2000 under the terms of a bequest by George E. Valley, Jr.

Recent recipients

Geoff Penington

2024 recipient

For computation of the quantum entropy of an evaporating black hole and its radiation.

Lina Necib

2023 recipient

For the discovery of a massive, previously unknown stellar structure that may have shaped the history of the Milky Way, and the development of groundbreaking new methods to study our Galaxy's dark matter halo and growth history.

Andrew Lucas

2022 recipient

For pioneering contributions to developing the theory of hydrodynamic transport in interacting electron fluids.

Vedika Khemani

2021 recipient

For seminal theoretical work on novel phases of many-body localized and Floquet systems, including demonstrating the absolute stability of a time crystal in such systems.

Norman Yao

2020 recipient

For the elucidation of non-equilibrium quantum phases of matter, in particular time crystalline order, and for enabling the realization of these phases in quantum optical systems.

See all recipients

The membership of APS is diverse and global, and the nominees and recipients of APS Honors should reflect that diversity so that all are recognized for their impact on our community. Nominations of members belonging to groups traditionally underrepresented in physics, such as women, LGBT+ scientists, scientists who are Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC), disabled scientists, scientists from institutions with limited resources, and scientists from outside the United States, are especially encouraged.

Nominees for and holders of APS Honors (prizes, awards, and fellowship) and official leadership positions are expected to meet standards of professional conduct and integrity as described in the APS Ethics Guidelines. Violations of these standards may disqualify people from consideration or lead to revocation of honors or removal from office.

George E. Valley, Jr. Prize

Nominations deadline
May 1, 2024
Early career and students

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