Frances Lee — 2019 Barbara Sinclair Lecture Award Recipient

The American Political Science Association will present the Barbara Sinclair Lecture Award to Frances E. Lee at the 2019 APSA Annual Meeting & Exhibition, the world’s largest gathering of political scientists and source for emerging scholarship in the discipline.  This lecture, held at American University and supported by its Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies, commemorates the life and scholarship of renowned scholar of legislative politics, Barbara Sinclair.  

Frances E. Lee is professor of politics and public affairs at Princeton University.  Her research has appeared in the American Political Science Review, American Journal of Political Science, Journal of Politics, Legislative Studies Quarterly, and other outlets.  She is editor of the Cambridge Elements Series in American Politics and a series editor for the Chicago Studies in American Politics.

Here is what the Award Committee had to say about their decision:

Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019, Professor Lee is an eminent scholar of all things Congress, recognized for her extensive academic and popular contributions to the understanding of the legislative branch.  Her body of research has been consistently published in the discipline’s top journals.  Her books have received awards that are among the most prestigious honors for research in legislative politics: namely, the D.B. Hardeman Prize for Sizing Up the Senate: The Unequal Consequences of Equal Representation (co-authored with Bruce Oppenheimer), and the Richard F. Fenno, Jr. Award and D.B. Hardeman Prize for Beyond Ideology: Politics, Principles, and Partisanship.  She served as co-editor of Legislative Politics Quarterly and co-authored the widely adopted textbook Congress and Its Members.  Professor Lee’s significant contributions to the scholarly study and understanding of Congress are exceptional.

In naming her the presenter of the Barbara Sinclair lecture, the selection committee noted Professor Lee’s engaged approach to scholarship and commitment to deepening the public’s understanding of Congress.  In addition to her impressive record of scholarly achievement, these qualities make her a scholar very much in the tradition of Dr. Barbara Sinclair.  Professor Lee’s  interviews with members of Congress and their staff make her research substantively connected to the nuanced and real-world politics on Capitol Hill.  Early in her career, after receiving her PhD from Vanderbilt, Professor Lee’s dissertation received the E.E. Schattschneider Award for best dissertation in American Politics by the APSA in 1997.  From 2002 to 2003 she served as an APSA Congressional Fellow on the staff of the Senate Democratic Policy Committee and in the office of Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN).  As her nominator noted, “Frances would serve as an example of what the fellowship program aims to create with its alumni: engaged and deeply knowledgeable scholars who translate their time spent on Capitol Hill into insight that moves our understanding of Congress forward and builds long-lasting connections between the world of Congress and the world of political science.”  For these reasons, we are delighted to name Professor Frances Lee the presenter of the 2019 Barbara Sinclair Lecture.