Edgar T. Wherry Award - Pteridological

This award is in honor of Dr. Wherry's many contributions to the floristics and patterns of evolutions of ferns. This award is given for the best paper presented during the contributed papers session of the Pteridological Section. The Wherry award distributes $250 each year.


Katelin Burow, Purdue University, For the Presentation: Genetic Mechanisms of Sex Determination in Ceratopteris richardii. Co-authors: Grace Estep, Brian Dilkes, Jody Banks, Jen Wisecaver.

Sonia Molino, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, For the Presentation: Discovering Parablechnum: a complex evolutionary history within the youngest fern family. Co-authors: Weston Testo, Mario Mairal, Guillermo Santos-Rivilla, Rafael Medina


2022 - Jessie Pelosi, University of Florida, For the Presentation: Here we go again (and again): repeated rounds of polyploidy and biased gene retention in ferns. Co-Authors: Emily Kim, W. Brad Barbazuk, Emily Sessa

2021 - Ana Gabriela Martinez, National Autonomous University of Mexico, UNAM. Faculty of Higher Studies Zaragoza, For the Presentation: Disentangling the systematics of the Elaphoglossum petiolatum complex (Dryopteridaceae). Co-Author: Alejandra Vasco

Honorable Mention:
Jacob Watts, University of Cambridge, For the Presentation: Microarthropods Increase Sporophyte Formation and Enhance Fitness of Ferns. Co-Authors: Aidan Harrington, James Watkins

David Wickell, Cornell University, For the Presentation: Gene fractionation and differential expression of homoeologues following whole genome duplication in the tree fern, Alsophila spinulosa. Co-Authors: Fay-Wei Li, Li-Yaung Kuo, Xiong Huang, and Quanzi Li

2020 - Amanda Grusz, University of Minnesota-Duluth, For the Presentation: An environmentally-based model for the origin of obligate apomixis in ferns: insights from the pellaeid clade (Pteridaceae; Cheilanthoideae). Co-authors: Michael D. Windham, Kathryn Picard, Kathleen Pryer, Eric Schuettpelz, and Christopher Hauflerz

2019 - Hannah Ranft, Sometimes it only takes one to tango: using natural history collections to assess the impact of asexuality in the fern genus Pteris. Co-authors: Kathryn Picard, Amanda Grusz, Michael Windham, Eric Schuettpelz

2018 - Ariana Eily For the presentation: A glimpse at genes critical to the Azolla-Nostoc symbiosis Co-authors: Kathleen M. Pryer, Fay-Wei Li

2017 - Dr. Lisa Hooper, Truman State University
For her paper; "The current status of Aleuritopteris (Pteridaceae) based on recent molecular analyse" Co-authors: George Yatskievych, Layne Huiet, Kathleen Pryer and Michael D. Windham

Dr. Alejandra Vasco, National Autonomous University of Mexico
For her paper; "Leaf evolution and development: building better models from fern leaf diversity" Co-author: Barbara A. Ambrose

2016 - Libing Zhang, Missouri Botanical Garden
For the paper;  "Circumscription and phylogeny of the fern family Tectariaceae based on plastid and nuclear markers, with the description of two new genera: Draconopteris and Malaifilix (Tectariaceae)"

2015 - Emily B. Sessa, University of Florida
For her paper; "Exploring potential asymmetric hybridization in a Mediterranean fern complex: the Asplenium obovatum group"

2014 - Dr. Joanne M. Sharpe, Sharplex Services
For her paper; "Hindsight is 20/20: Highlights from a 20-year ecological study of 20 fern species in the Luquillo rainforest of Puerto Rico" and

Dr. Fay-Wei Li, Duke University
For his paper; "Massive horizontal gene transfer of a chimeric photoreceptor within ferns" Co-author: Kathleen M Pryer

2013 - Sally Stevens , Purdue University, Advisor and co-author Nancy Emery
For her paper; "No Place Like Home? Testing for Local Adaptation and Dispersal Limitation in the Fern Vittaria appalachiana (Vittariaceae)"

2012 - Weston Testo, Colgate University, Advisor and co-author James Watkins
For his paper; "Comparative gametophyte ecology of the American hart's-tongue fern and associated fern taxa: evidence for recent population declines in New York State"

2011 - Monique McHenry,University of Vermont, Advisor and co-author David S. Barrington
For her paper; "Investigating morphological diversity of Andean Polystichum (Dryopteridaceae): seeking explanations for incongruence between sequence variation and morphological variation"

2010 - Susan Sprunt, Miami University of Ohio
For her paper; "Of genes, scales and venation: Detecting patterns of variation in the Pleopeltis polypodioides species complex (Polypodiaceae)"

2009 - Michael Sundue, The New York Botanical Garden’s Institute for Systematic Botany, for his paper entitled “Silica bodies and their systematic implications in the Pteridaceae."

2008 - Mary Stensvold, of USDA Forest Service, Alaska Region
For her paper; “Genetic diversity in the Botrychium lunaria (Ophioglossaceae) complex." Her co-author was Don Farrar; and

Melanie Link-Perez of Miami University, for her paper, “Toward a Redefinition of Adiantopsis Fée (Pteridaceae).” Co-authors were Linda Watson and Jim Hickey.

2007 - Renee A. Lopez-Smith, Southern Illinois University
For her paper; " Sperm cell architecture and the neck canal in diploid and tetraploid Ceratopteris cytotypes: does size matter?" Her co-author was Karen Renzaglia.

2006 - Eric Schuettpelz, Duke University
For his paper; " Toward a comprehensive phylogeny of extant ferns"

2005 - James (Eddie) Watkins, University of Florida
For his paper “Stress physiology of fern gametophytes: consequences for distribution and abundance.”

2004 - Harald Schneider, University of Goettingen
For for his paper “Radiations in Drynarioid ferns: evolution of humus collectors as a putative morphological key innovation”. The paper was co-authored with Thomas Janssen.

2003 - Michael Barker, Miami University, Ohio
For his paper "Microlepidopteran soral mimics in the Caribbean". The paper was co-authored by Shane Shaw, James Hickey, and John Rawlins.

2002 - David S. Barrington, Univ. of Vermont
For his paper "New insights into the phylogeny of Asian Polystichum(Dryopteridaceae) from expanded rbcL data, co-authored with Yoko Yatabe and Wu Sugong.

2001 - Sabine Hennequin, Universite Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, France
For for her paper "Systematics of the fern genus Hymenophyllum s.l. (Hymenophyllaceae) inferred from rbcL and rps4 nucleotide sequences and morphology." The paper was co-authored by Jean-Yves Dubuisson.

2000 - Patricia Sanchez-Baracaldo, University of California, Berkeley
For the for her talk entitled, "A recent radiation of Neotropical fern genera in paramo ecosystems."

Petra Korall, Stockholm University
For her poster entitled "Phylogeny of Selaginellaceae based on rbcl gene sequences" (co-author Paul Kenrick).

Catherine Cardelus, University of Connecticut
For her poster entitled "Habitat selection of epiphytic and terrestrial ferns" (co-author James Watkins).

1997 - James P. Therrien, Univerisyt of Kansas
For his talk entitled "Evolution and diversification of the Selaginellaceae."

1991 - David S. Conant
For his presentation co-authored by Diana B. Stein and Angela E. Valinski entitled "Phylogenetic implications of chloroplast DNA variation in the Cyatheaceae."

1990 - Judith E. Skog, George Mason University
For her paper entitled "The relationship of the fossil fern Schizaeopsis to Schizaea and Actinostachys."

1989 - Cathy A. Paris, University of Vermont
For her paper, "Evolutionary genetics of the Adiantum pedatum complex: Phylogeny and biogeography."

George Yatskievych, Missouri Botanical Garden
For his paper, "A reconsideration of the genus Pityrogramma in the southwestern United States."