AES Research and Recognition Awards

The Research and Recognition Awards Committee of the American Epilepsy Society presents five awards recognizing members’ accomplishments, contributions, and service in the field of epilepsy each year.

The awards include three distinguished achievement awards: the Founders Award (formerly the Lennox Award), the Distinguished Service Award, and the J. Kiffin Penry Award; and well as two research recognition awards—the Basic Science Research Award and the Clinical Science Research Award. 

Distinguished Achievement Awards

    • Founders Award: Established in 1966 and considered the most prestigious award, it recognizes members of the society, usually at a senior level, who have a record of lifetime contributions and accomplishments related to epilepsy. The award is funded through the Lennox and Lombroso Trust, through its merging with the William G. Lennox Trust Fund, established in 1962 to advance and disseminate knowledge concerning epilepsy in all aspects – biological, clinical and social – and to promote better care and treatment for persons with epilepsy.
    • Distinguished Service Award: Established in 1993, this award recognizes outstanding service by an AES member in the field of epilepsy, including non-educational and non-scientific, with an emphasis on exemplary contributions to the welfare of the American Epilepsy Society and its members.
    • J. Kiffin Penry Award for Excellence in Epilepsy Care: Established in 1997 with an original gift from Abbott Laboratories, it is now supported through the J. Kiffin Penry Fund. The award honors Dr. Penry’s lifelong focus on and genuine concern for the patient with epilepsy. It recognizes individuals, members or non-members, whose work has had a major impact on patient care and who have improved the quality of life for persons with epilepsy.

 Research Recognition Awards

    • Basic Science Research Award
    • Clinical Science Research Award

These awards are designed to encourage and reward active basic science and clinical investigators whose research contributes importantly to understanding and conquering epilepsy. Honoraria are provided for the exclusive use of the recipients, not intended for institutional or departmental support.

Eligibility for these awards extends to work addressing all areas and aspects of epilepsy. Awardees are typically at a more senior level with a clear track record of accomplishments. Applications are evaluated on multiple criteria including pioneering research in epilepsy, quality of publications, research productivity, training activities, other contributions in epilepsy, and anticipated productivity over the next decade.

Award Recognition

All awards include complimentary AES Annual Meeting registration for the year in which the award is presented, round-trip coach airfare to the meeting, two nights at the Annual Meeting headquarters hotel, and per diem of up to $100 USD per day. All awardees are recognized on the AES website and in the meeting app, in the program for the Annual Meeting, and on signage at the meeting. The awardees are presented with an enduring memento and an honorarium.

    • Founders Award: $10,000
    • Distinguished Service Award: $1,000
    • J. Kiffin Penry Award: $3,000
    • Basic Science Research Award: $10,000
    • Clinical Science Research Award: $10,000

ILAE Awards

AES is the North American chapter of the International League Against Epilepsy. Click here to read about the awards offered by ILAE.


The Research and Recognition Awards Committee reports directly to the AES Board of Directors. Its composition is approved by the president as part of the annual committee appointments process.