The Tiptree Award was founded by Karen Joy Fowler and Pat Murphy. For the first few years of the award, Pat ran the finances out of her checking account, and the two Founding Mothers did all the administrative and organizing work. As you could guess, that shortly became untenable, and the award was formally incorporated as The James Tiptree Literary Award Council, a registered U.S. 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, which is why your donations are tax-deductible in the United States. As part of the incorporation process, the award was designed to be run by a “motherboard” (we love the pun!) of five or more people who make financial, process, and other practical decisions for the award.

The current motherboard members are:

Debbie Notkin (chair).

Motherboard: Debbie NotkinDebbie has been involved with the Tiptree Award since its inception, as the chair of the first panel of judges. When not doing Tiptree-related things, she has a day job as a contracts manager for a large nonfiction publishing company. She co-edited 80! Memories and Reflections on Ursula LeGuin with Karen Joy Fowler, and she wrote the text for Women En Large: Images of Fat Nudes and Familiar Men: A Book of Nudes, both of which showcase Laurie Toby Edison‘s photography. She also works with Strike Debt Bay Area and blogs with Laurie Toby Edison at Body Impolitic.

Jeanne Gomoll

Motherboard: Jeanne GomollJeanne Gomoll is a graphic designer with over 20 years of experience in the field. Until 2014, she was a key organizer and planner for WisCon for decades, including designing WisCon’s publications. A lifelong science fiction fan, Jeanne was a guest of honor at WisCon in 2000, and at the 2014 World Science Fiction Convention in London. She most recently designed and published The Tiptree Quilt Story.

Ellen Klages

Motherboard: Ellen KlagesEllen Klages writes science fiction, fantasy, and fiction about science. She is the author of The Green Glass Sea; White Sands, Red Menace; and Portable Childhoods, as well as many short stories. She has won the Nebula Award, the World Fantasy Award, the California Book Award, the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, the Judy Lopez Memorial Award for Children’s Literature, and the New Mexico State Book Award. She was the incomparably funny and popular auctioneer for the Tiptree auction until 2013. Her house is full of odd, old toys.

Alexis Lothian

Motherboard: Alexis LothianAlexis Lothian is Assistant Professor of Women’s Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. She researches and teaches at the intersections of queer theory, cultural studies, digital media, and speculative fiction. She received her PhD from the University of Southern California in 2012.

Her book manuscript, Deviant Futures: Speculative Fiction and Queer Time, explores alternative futures dreamed up by feminists, queers, and people of color in 20th- and 21st-century Britain and America––from feminist utopians to video remixers––in order to inquire into historical and political narratives that the seemingly transparent terminology of “the future” has obscured. She also works on new artistic forms that are emerging from fan communities, particularly digital remix video (vidding), especially as these forms engage critical readings of media texts and are used to participate in social justice activism. She is the moving force behind the Tiptree Fellowships.

Pat Murphy

Motherboard: Pat MurphyPat Murphy is a writer, a scientist, and sometimes a toy maker. All of her stories and novels have a hint of the strange. Some have been called science fiction, some fantasy, and some neither one. Most of her work falls between categories. She has won the Nebula Award for Science Fiction, the World Fantasy Award, the Philip K. Dick Award for best paperback original, the Christopher Award, and the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award.

For upwards of 20 years, she was a writer at the Exploratorium, San Francisco’s hands-on museum of science, art, and human perception. These days, she creates learning programs for K-12 students at a start-up in San Francisco.

Jeffrey D. Smith

Jeffrey D. Smith is the literary executor for Alice Sheldon (James Tiptree, Jr.) and was one of Tiptree’s closest friends (by correspondence) from long before the secret was revealed. Jeff edited Khatru, a 1975 symposium on women in science fiction with participants including Tiptree, Samuel R. Delany, and Joanna Russ, which is still fascinating reading forty years later.

Karen Joy Fowler

Motherboard: Karen Joy FowlerKaren Joy Fowler is no longer on the motherboard, but she remains closely involved with all decisions and conversations regarding the present and future of the award.