• 27 Jul 2023 1:50 PM | Joseph Lariscy (Administrator)

    The Co-Editors of Population Research and Policy Review (PRPR), an interdisciplinary Springer journal published in cooperation with the Southern Demographic Association (SDA), are currently seeking applications for Associate Editors and members of the Editorial Board.

    Scholars with expertise in all areas of demography/population, including those focused on non-U.S. populations, are encouraged to apply. Expectations and responsibilities will be adjusted according to Rank and Tenure status.

    Interested scholars should send a copy of their updated CV and a list of their top 3 areas of expertise to: Dr. David F. Warner, Co-Editor of PRPR, University of Alabama at Birmingham ( by September 1, 2023.

    After an initial review, applicants will be contacted for additional information.

  • 21 Jul 2023 12:02 PM | Joseph Lariscy (Administrator)

    The Southern Demographic Association has selected David F. Warner, University of Alabama at Birmingham, to serve as Co-Editor-in-Chief of Population Research and Policy Review (PRPR) for a 4-year term beginning July 2023. You can find information about PRPR’s co-editors Kara Joyner and David Warner here.

  • 13 Jul 2023 2:46 PM | Julia Wolf (Administrator)

    Hi SDA members,

    Please click HERE for a PDF version of the information below.

    Southern Demographic Association Annual Meeting
    October 18-20, 2023
    San Antonio, Texas

    We invite submissions of 250-word abstracts for individual research papers and/or posters in applied or academic demography, economics, geography, sociology, public health, psychology, and epidemiology. Also welcome are proposals for thematic sessions or panel discussions.

    All paper/poster/session submissions must be made by 11:59pm CDT on Tuesday, August 1, 2023 at the following link: SDA Abstract Submissions.

    During the meeting, SDA will announce the 2023 winners of three awards:

    1. E. Walter Terrie Award for “the best paper presented at the SDA Annual Meeting on an applied topic, especially one relating to state and local demography” (1 paper per 1st author)
    2. Everett S. Lee Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award (1 paper per 1st author)
    3. Outstanding Undergraduate Paper Award (1 paper per 1st author)

    All paper award submissions must be made by 11:59pm CDT on Friday, September 15, 2023 to their respective email addresses noted above. For award consideration, the paper submitted must be on the SDA program and must be presented at the SDA meeting by the author.

    Questions? Contact Jarron Saint Onge, Program Chair ( or see more details at

  • 6 Jul 2023 9:04 PM | Joseph Lariscy (Administrator)

    Mark A. Fossett, 1953–2023

    Dr. Mark A. Fossett, Professor of Sociology, Texas A&M University, died suddenly in Houston, Texas, in the early morning of June 21, 2023, from complications following two heart valve surgeries. He was 69 years old. Mark was born on December 17, 1953, in Aransas Pass, Texas. As a young child Mark and his parents and his two younger siblings lived for short periods of time in Texas, Montana, California, Arkansas, Indiana, Minnesota, Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee as they followed the construction project job demands of their father. In 1964 the Fossett family settled in Ingleside, Texas where Mark and his siblings finished their grammar school years and then progressed through high school.

    Mark received all three of his college degrees from The University of Texas at Austin: BA degree in sociology in 1976, MA degree in sociology in 1980, and PhD degree in sociology in 1983. He began his academic career in 1983 as an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Louisiana State University. In 1986 he moved to the University of Texas at Austin where he served for three years as a Research Scientist and Director of Data Services at the UT Population Research Center. In 1989 he moved to College Station, Texas where he joined the faculty of the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M University. Mark remained on the TAMU faculty for 34 years until his untimely death in June of 2023.

    While at Texas A&M, Mark served the Department of Sociology as Associate Head from 1995 to 2000, as Graduate Advisor from 2000 to 2005, and as Department Head from 2005 to 2011.

    In 2010 Mark and a team of other faculty began work to establish the Texas Federal Statistical Research Data Center (TXRDC) at Texas A&M. Mark and his team worked with officials at the U.S. Census Bureau and the National Science Foundation (NSF), winning an NSF grant that leveraged funding commitments of over two million dollars from the Texas A&M System, Texas A&M University, and a consortium of universities to fund the TXRDC. Mark was its Founding Director, serving from 2011 to 2020. The TXRDC provides access to restricted data from the U.S. Census Bureau and other federal agencies. At the time of its creation, the TXRDC was the only such center in the central and southern regions of the United States, making it a magnet for high level researchers in a variety of fields, including demography, public health, economics, agriculture, business, and sociology. The establishment of the TXRDC at Texas A&M was the crowning jewel of Mark’s numerous accomplishments in his 40-year career as a sociologist and demographer.

    From 1993 to 1999, Mark and several faculty colleagues directed summer programs at Texas A&M, known as Minority Opportunities for Summer Training (MOST) and as Alliances for Minority Participation (AMP), with funding from the American Sociological Association and the Ford Foundation. Then from 2000 to 2017 Mark directed four more programs, known as Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU), with funding from the National Science Foundation. The MOST and AMP and REU programs provided funds for eight- to ten-week Summer Institutes for undergraduate students that focused on inequality, stratification, race & ethnicity, and social vulnerability. They provided unprecedented opportunities for many first-generation college students and minority undergraduates to boost their research skills and learn about and even take steps toward graduate education. Every summer since the early 1990s, the programs were held in the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M, each one sponsoring six to ten undergraduate students, providing them with opportunities to participate in graduate-type classes and research programs, enabling them to learn first-hand about graduate school. Many MOST and AMP and REU students later enrolled in graduate programs at Texas A&M and at many other universities. Without these programs, these undergraduates would likely have never even considered pursuing graduate degrees. Mark was the principal leader and director of these programs in the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M for almost twenty-five years.  

    Mark’s research and teaching interests included racial and ethnic segregation and inequality, urban and spatial demography, social demography, computational methods, quantitative research methods, and demographic techniques. He directed the doctoral committees of eleven graduate students, and the MA thesis committees of ten graduate students. He also co-directed or served on the committees of dozens of other graduate students.

    Mark was awarded several large grants to support his research on residential segregation, including grants from the NSF and the NIH. In 2017 he published his monograph, New Methods for Measuring and Analyzing Segregation with Springer. This book was the result of decades of work to address serious flaws in the measurement of residential segregation and presents elegant solutions to these issues with great technical detail, reflecting his commitment to valid research of the highest quality. Mark has another book, coauthored with Amber Crowell, forthcoming with Springer entitled, Racial and Ethnic Residential Segregation Across the United States that applies his new methods and demonstrates the importance of having valid and reliable measurement tools to address residential segregation research questions.

    Mark was truly an extraordinary person, colleague, and scholar and one of the kindest human beings ever. He was dedicated to making things better, fairer, and more equitable, whether the focus was the Department of Sociology, Texas A&M University, or the larger society. He selflessly devoted much of his career creating opportunities for students and colleagues. In particular, he spent an enormous amount of time with his students. He wanted them to learn, understand, and be the strongest social scientists possible by following the science and using the most rigorous methods and approaches.

    Mark was scheduled in the Fall of 2023 to transition into a phase out retirement program where he would work 1/2 time at Texas A&M for two years and then fully retire in 2025, at age 71. He always told us he wanted to retire to the Texas Coast where he grew up and spend his retirement years surfing, sampling IPAs, and following his beloved Houston Astros. Sadly, his untimely death deprived him and his family and us of these most pleasurable times. 

    Mark’s colleagues, students, associates, and friends are all grieving at his early death. We’re grieving for his wife Betsy and their children Lane and Tyler and Kate and their families, and their grandchild, Flora.

    Finally, we note the establishment of the Dr. Mark Fossett Memorial Fund, which was created in June of 2023, to support Texas A&M graduate students working on projects in the Texas Research Data Center (TXRDC) or preparing a proposal to do research in the TXRDC. We know Mark would be pleased to be associated with opportunities for students to participate in the kind of research that meant so much to him.

    Students will be able to apply for conference travel funds from the Dr. Mark Fossett Memorial Fund to present results from a TXRDC project, or for funds for assistance with project needs such as fees or summer support. To contribute on-line, the Texas A&M Foundation link is Select “unlisted account” from the drop-down menu on the “Select a Unit or College” line, and enter this account name and Number:

    02-512709-10000 – Dr. Mark Fossett Memorial

    Dudley Poston, Texas A&M University; Jane Sell, Texas A&M University, Amber Crowell, California State University, Fresno; Walter Gillis Peacock, Texas A&M University

  • 5 Jul 2023 9:11 PM | Joseph Lariscy (Administrator)

    It is with great sadness that I share the news of the passing of my dear friend, Dr. Mark Fossett, Professor of Sociology at Texas A&M University, founding Director of the Texas Federal Statistical Research Data Center (RDC) and former President of the Southern Demographic Association.

    I had the opportunity to work with Mark at the Texas Federal Statistical Research Data Center for over 7 years. Every day, I saw his kindness. Kindness is a word I’ve heard friends use when talking about him since his recent passing. Mark was one of the most genuine people that I have ever met. He loved his ‘sweetheart’ Betsy and children Lane, Tyler and Kate with his entire heart. His face would light up when he spoke about them.

    “That guy is a genius,” was a common remark from folks who would leave Mark’s office and come to mine. Students and faculty from all around the university would go to Mark because he was so smart but also because of his kindness. It was an honor to work with him and I will miss him dearly.

    Mark received numerous research grants to further the understanding of racial and ethnic inequality and segregation. He invested heavily in developing programs that increased equitable access to scholarship for undergraduate students and he published numerous papers and books advancing scholarship in his field. His passing is a loss to demography, but his students will carry on because of his investment in them.

    Mark’s dear friend, Walt Peacock wrote about Mark…

    Mark was such an extraordinarily special person, colleague, and scholar. He was dedicated to making things better, fairer, and more equitable, whether we were talking about his department, the college, university, and, quite frankly, the world. Not surprisingly Mark’s research areas also focused on key issues of inequality, segregation, and racial and ethnic relations. His approach and work reflected not only his keen concerns about the importance of these issues in our world but also his commitment to science and measurement. He demanded the highest rigor in research if it was to provide insight and understanding, particularly if it was to have significance in shaping policy. He was an early developer of agent-based simulation approaches to model and capture how a variety of factors, including preference, shape segregation patterns in urban systems. His recent efforts developing new approaches for measuring and assessing residential segregation clearly reflected his drive to develop more valid and reliable tools upon which to base our science.

    Mark was a great, supportive, and kind friend with a wonderful wit and amazing insight. I count myself as being amazingly lucky to have been able to spend so many wonderful hours with him, whether talking over a beer or while walking around the disc golf course, or even working on a proposal or planning out a summer institute schedule. He helped make my life richer, as he did so many others. I will miss him dearly.

    One of Mark’s former students and colleagues, Amber Crowell, reports that they finished their book (Racial and Ethnic Residential Segregation Across the United States, forthcoming Springer) applying methods and approaches for examining trends in racial/ethnic residential segregation. Amber wrote the passage below:

    His commitment to doing the best quality research and to supporting students is one thing that everybody remembers about him. But there is not a single person who would not also mention how incredibly kind and generous he was. Students and junior faculty especially seem to have countless stories of him devoting extra time and effort to help them seek out opportunities and learn new skills. It was the greatest honor of my life to be his student, colleague, and friend.

    These are just two passages from those who were close with Mark. I have heard from so many former students, colleagues, and others who adored him. I was honored to work with him for so long. He was brilliant, witty, and kind. He would help anyone who asked, including my then 4-year-old son who would go to Mark who always had quarters for him to buy a bag of barbecue chips from the vending machine.

    We plan to celebrate Mark’s life and contribution to the field of demography at the upcoming SDA meetings. Details to follow.

    Bethany DeSalvo
  • 20 Apr 2023 9:13 AM | Gerald Shoultz (Administrator)

    UTSA Today has written an article about Steve Murdock:

    In Memoriam: UTSA Remembers Steve Murdock

    Obituary and Memorial Service information may be found here:

    Steven Murdock Obituary (1948-2023)-Legacy Remembers

  • 11 Apr 2023 2:37 PM | Joseph Lariscy (Administrator)

    Steve H. Murdock - Wikipedia

    We are sad to share the news that Steve Murdock passed away on Friday, April 7 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Memorial services are pending, but will likely be April 28th or 29th in Lakeway, Texas.

    Steve was President of the SDA in 1995. We will celebrate his contributions to our organization and the field of demography at the 2023 Meeting in San Antonio (October 18-20).

    As everyone knows, Steve had a long, distinguished career in demography, rural sociology, and impact analysis. Until Mary, Steve had no children – she gave him a grandson, George, whom he adored. Beyond his family, his legacy lives on the many distinguished careers of the students he taught and mentored.

    Folks can send condolences to: Dr. Mary Zey - 7102 Mountain Trail, Austin, TX 78732

    In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to

    The Alzheimer’s Association at, or 

    The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Dr. Steven Murdock and Dr. Mary Zey Demography Fellowship at

    • Choose “Other” in the drop down menu and designate your support in memory Steven Murdock, or 
    • Make checks payable to UTSA and mail to: UTSA Gift Services, One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249; on memo line, write “in memory of Steven Murdock.”  
    • You may call 210-458-4130 with questions


    Kara Joyner,

    President, Southern Demographic Association
  • 27 Mar 2023 12:56 PM | Julia Wolf (Administrator)

    Please click HERE for more information.

    Note: This recruitment will remain open until we fill the position. We reserve the right to make a hiring decision at any time. Early applications are encouraged. We will begin reviewing applications on March 29, 2023, and will review additional applications each week until we fill the position.

  • 1 Feb 2023 6:11 PM | Joseph Lariscy (Administrator)

    Save the date!

    The 2023 Southern Demographic Association meeting will be held October 18-20 in San Antonio, Texas, at Hotel Contessa. Stay tuned for more information about the conference and how to submit an abstract!

  • 12 Jan 2023 2:51 PM | Julia Wolf (Administrator)

    Congratulations Dr. David A. Swanson! 

    The Fellows Committee of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences (MAS) has nominated Dr. Swanson to be awarded the status of Fellow based on his professional achievements and service. The council members of MAS have affirmed his status as a Fellow of the Mississippi Academy of Science (FMAS) at the state level. He will be inducted as an FMAS and receive a certificate and a pin at a special inaugural ceremony during the upcoming Annual MAS meeting.

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