Katherine Dowd receives Association for Women in Mathematics Service Award

August 16, 2022 — The Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) has recognized Katherine Dowd, Administrative Director of the School of Mathematics and Assistant Director of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA) at the University of Minnesota, with a 2023 AWM Service Award

The award honors individuals for helping to promote and support women in mathematics through exceptional voluntary service to AWM.

Dowd is being recognized for the “extraordinary professionalism, wisdom, and care” she bestowed upon the AWM as host of the 2022 AWM Research Symposium, as well as her service to the broader math community. The association detailed her contributions in a press release, saying:

The AWM Symposium Committee convened in October of 2019 with the intention of planning a 2021 AWM Research Symposium. In late 2020, the Symposium was postponed due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. In the face of pandemic-related setbacks, last minute schedule changes, unusual requests from the AWM, and various technical and logistic difficulties, Katherine Dowd remained calm, flexible, organized, responsive, patient, thoughtful, and thorough. She scheduled space for all of the special sessions, lectures, exhibitors, and special events; she chose menus, hired a photographer, arranged for the lectures to be recorded, and found caterers for an ice cream social, a La Mathematica Launch party, a reception, and a banquet. She communicated with the staff at the conference venue to ensure that everything AWM suggested would work and she consistently communicated with the AWM to make sure that the event was carefully orchestrated.

Katherine Dowd’s service goes well beyond this one amazing event. As Assistant Director of IMA, she provides the same level of support to programming for the entire mathematical sciences community. In the week before the Symposium, Dr. Dowd provided support for the Roots of Unity Workshop – designed to support women, particularly women of color, who are in years 1–3 of graduate school and are considering research in algebra, combinatorics, geometry, topology, or number theory – and she arranged for collaboration space for the WinCompTop Research Network. An RCCW (Research Collaboration Conference for Women) organized by the WiMB Research Network, and a Math-to-Industry Boot Camp both began the day after the Research Symposium.

The 2023 AWM Service Awards will be presented during the AWM Reception in Boston on January 6, 2023.