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The AAG Rose Award for Anti-Racism Research and Practice was created in 2012 to honor Harold M. Rose, who was a pioneer in conducting research on the condition faced by African Americans. The award honors geographers who have a demonstrated record of this type of research and active contributions to society to advance the discipline as well as impact anti-racist practice.

Bobby Wilson’s career exemplifies the principles for which the Harold M. Rose Award was established. Professor Wilson’s path-breaking research agenda examines the socio-spatial dialectics of race and class in the United States, and he demonstrates not only how racism perpetuates inequality but also how capitalism, in its structural dependence on inequality, perpetuates racism.

His journey to the insights he published in his multi-scalar studies America’s Johannesburg and Race and Class in Birmingham, began in childhood as he struggled to understand why his mother’s best job opportunities were hundreds of miles from home. Later on, as a doctoral student at Clark University, he consolidated his direct experience under the theoretical frame of historical materialism.

His leadership roles as a geographer, researcher, writer, teacher, mentor and community resource are the reasons why the AAG is pleased to recognize Bobby Wilson with this award.