CASW’s history

Earthrise from the moon
Earth rising over the Moon’s horizon as seen from the Apollo 11 spacecraft. Photo: NASA

The Council for the Advancement of Science Writing was born in 1960 during the Sputnik era, as a group of professional science journalists came together to do something about the poor quality of reporting reaching a science-crazed public. The story was told by the late Jerry Bishop, who riffed on the “who, what, when, where, and why” of CASW’s early years in The 5 W’s of CASW.  Fifty years later we celebrated a half century of science and science writing with a gala celebration held in Washington, DC, on April 17, 2010.

Science and technology lie at the very center of today’s critical issues. So in 2020, we marked our 60th anniversary by refocusing our efforts and launching a new Science Journalism Initiative. The SJI is aimed at addressing the trends that erode the ability of a free press to inform public dialogue and hold powerful institutions accountable. At stake is the future of public discourse, science’s relationship with and accountability to the public, and the health of the planet.

Over the years, CASW has been guided by a wise “council” of  leaders from the science writing world. We are grateful to all of our board presidents (listed here) and board members who volunteer their time to ensure that our work makes a difference now and into the future.

CASW Board Presidents

2021-Robin Lloyd
2013-21Alan Boyle
2006-13Cristine Russell
1997-2006Jerry E. Bishop
1989-97Joann E. Rodgers
1985-89Barbara J. Culliton
1975-76Philip Meyer
1972-75Ira W. Cole
1971-72Pierre C. Fraley
1967-71Albert Rosenfeld
1965-67Arthur J. Snider
1960-65Earl Ubell

Source: New Horizons in Science programs and Board of Directors minutes