Distinguished Service Award

This award is presented to an individual who has made a lasting impact on the community and the profession.

NOMINATIONS OPEN: FEBRUARY 4, 2019
NOMINATIONS CLOSE: APRIL 22, 2019

Nomination guidelines 

The ICMA Distinguished Service Award is given to a manager retired from the profession for a minimum of two years and who has made an outstanding contribution to the management profession and local government. Unlike the Local Government Service Awards, this award is not given to recognize years of service, nor is it selected by the Awards Evaluation Panel. Rather, it  is conferred by the ICMA Executive Board. It recognizes a manager whose service in his or her community or communities has been judged by peers as strong or exceptional, and who has made major contributions beyond direct service to local government. Specific career activities to be considered include:

  • A consistent pattern of leadership in regional, state, and national management associations.
  • A pattern of support to peers, colleagues, and young people entering the profession as a mentor, counselor, or "sage."
  • A history of developing and implementing innovative programs and sharing and disseminating these through writing, participation on conference sessions, or direct assistance through a one-on-one peer assistance program.
  • Teaching, lecturing, and/or supervising of interns through an undergraduate or graduate public administration program over an extended period of time.
  • Development of a special area of expertise that has been exhibited and recognized, both within the community and by peers.
  • A demonstrated commitment to thought leadership to advance the state of the art and the state of the practice as evidenced but not limited to writing, participation on conference sessions, contributions to research, and/or task forces and committees. (New criterion as of 2019). 

Distinguished Service Award Nomination Form  

In summary, the individual must have made a lasting impact on the community and the profession.

A nomination for the Distinguished Service Award may be made by any member of ICMA, self-nominations will not be accepted.

Except in unusual circumstances, a maximum of two awards will be conferred each year.

Click here to see the list of past recipients, including the 2018 recipients: Peter Marshall (State College, Pennsylvania) and Joel Valdez (Tucson, Arizona).

Contact Joyce Lee, senior program manager, ICMA Membership, at 202/962-3656 or jlee@icma.org with questions or for more information.

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