Award Descriptions

The Take Root Steering Committee wishes to recognize activism as vital to the reproductive justice movement.  Award recipients have contributed to their community, provided leadership, and inspired others through work in reproductive justice (including reproductive rights, health access and equity, and social justice more generally). These individuals lead by example and inspire us with their ingenuity. The Take Root Steering Committee believes they should be recognized for their invaluable efforts and innovative spirits.

Check out our past award recipients!


The Carol Mason Student Activism Award:

The award is named in honor of Dr. Carol Mason. Dr. Mason organized the workshop “Interdisciplinary Perspectives and Reproductive Sexual Health” (2011) from which the Take Root conference was born. Dr. Mason is an interdisciplinary scholar of twentieth-century American culture and professor of Gender and Women’s Studies at University of Kentucky. Cornell University Press published Dr. Mason’s influential book Killing for Life: The Apocalyptic Narrative of Pro-life Politics in 2002.

Every year we recognize a student activist who is vital to the reproductive justice movement, a student who contributes to their community, provides leadership, and inspires others through their work in reproductive justice. The Carol Mason Award recognizes individuals that lead by example and inspire us with their ingenuity.

Members of the student organization, UCO-NOW, the 2016 Carol Mason Student Activism Award Winner

The Spreading Roots Award:

When you are an activist working for social, gender, and/or reproductive justice, you may find that some places are more hospitable than others. Many activists leave their home states for other pastures, or for opportunity—there are an endless host of reasons. Nevertheless, the struggle for things like access to reproductive, social, and gender justice continues no matter where you are. The Spreading Roots Award recognizes a red state activist who, though residing outside of their home state, has remained rooted in the community from which they came through their continued work for social, gender, and reproductive justice.

2015 Spreading Roots Award Winner Diana Thu-Thao Rhodes and 2016 Spreading Roots Award Winner Coya White Hat-Artichoker

The Staying Rooted Award:

Take Root is the only conference of its kind in the US, recognizing that our region’s unique cultures and concerns shape our focus on and approach toward achieving reproductive justice, and offering opportunities to explore red state perspectives and engage with new possibilities. For activists working in red states, the battles can be fierce, the attacks on individual rights are constant, and at times our victories are few and far between. Yet, we push on because we love the people and we believe that our activism makes a difference. The Staying Rooted Award recognizes a red state activist who has remained in their community and continues to fight for social, gender, and reproductive justice.

Take Root Organizers with 2014 Staying Rooted Award Winner, Dr. Martha Skeeters

Nomination Guidelines

Nominations can be submitted by completing the nomination form. The Take Root Steering Committee will review the nominations and select the 2018 award recipients. The deadline for nominations is December 15th, 2017.