Response to Prevalent Racial Tensions


To respond to prevalent racial tensions and inequities with tangible actions.


Released a public statement on racism and protests; Established AIP’s 2020-21 Diversity Action Fund to support Member Society initiatives and to recognize Black leaders in the physical sciences.


Enabled the extended AIP and physical sciences community to pursue actions and initiatives in response to racial injustices.

The American Institute of Physics issued in June, 2020 a “Statement on Racism and Protests,” expressing solidarity with the victims of police brutality, their families, and those protesting racism in the wake of the brutal killings at the hands of police. The statement also acknowledged the larger system of social, economic, and academic injustice that marginalizes and dehumanizes our fellow citizens. The AIP Board of Directors established a $200,000 Diversity Action Fund to support Member Society initiatives in response to racial injustices. Supported projects range from diversity training for staff and volunteer leadership, to mentor communities, fellowships, and financial support for minority students. Also, the Fund supported the establishment, with the National Society of Black Physicists, the AIP-NSBP Joseph A. Johnson II Award for Excellence in science and mentorship. AIP fully recognizes the overlapping pandemics of anti-Blackness, COVID-19, and that disease’s disproportionate effects on minoritized groups. In response AIP has instituted additional paid mental health days and organizational closures to accommodate the veritable effects of racial, medical, and social tensions. An African American employee alongside an Asian employee led a learning session for the AIP community on both anti-Black and anti-Asian racism. AIP established an African American employee support group. Moving forward, AIP is committed to addressing racism, antiracism, and anti-oppression as an inclusive and collective whole. We will engage staff in a series of affinity-based focused groups to guide our immediate next steps, near-term plans, and longitudinal strategies for proactively, not reactively, addressing racial tensions. We will develop both a professional learning series and a professional leadership series for community members to expand their understanding of racial equity, social justice, and belonging-based best practices.  


Michael H. Moloney, Ph.D., CEO


Systemic racism will continue to proliferate unless we use our collective voices to call it out and stop it in its tracks. All of us in leadership positions need to condemn strongly racial injustices that occur not only in our organizations, but also across society at large. We need to acknowledge, listen to and elevate diverse voices of color. We need to utilize our power and privilege to formulate plans of action designed to have meaningful impact, and with measurable goals so we can hold ourselves accountable for systemic change.

Michael H. Moloney, Ph.D.
CEO, American Institute of Physics
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