NAWDP Awards

Nominations for the 2018 Advancing the Profession Awards may now be submitted using an electronic nomination form, accessible HERE beginning December 1 and available until January 31, 2018. 

Each year, the Advancing the Profession Awards program gives NAWDP's members the opportunity to recognize the accomplishments of their colleagues and peers in the industry. The nominations process begins in December and remains open through the end of January.  NAWDP members may choose to nominate themselves or others for consideration in the following award categories: 

1. The Tom Ahlers System Building Award recognizes exemplary contributions to the workforce development system – impacting a large area, such as a region or state. It is bestowed upon workforce development professionals who create impactful programs that exemplify what is possible when customers, stakeholders, and workforce development professionals partner to improve employment opportunities in multiple communities. Ideal candidates will have a track record of creating sustainable workforce development programs that result in highly productive partnerships that result in jobs.

Ideal candidates will likely have high engagement in the professional that allows them to build relationships across the private and public sectors – corporations, small businesses, nonprofits, schools, and local governments. High engagement also reflects the spirit of the award.

2. The Peter E. Kaiser Leadership Award recognizes significant contributions to workforce development.

Ideal candidates are likely to have a strong history of leadership and capacity building in the field of workforce development. They may have created a program from the ground up or successfully taken over the management of an existing initiative. This award is limited to NAWDP members only.

3. The Sar Levitan Research Award recognizes significant research to the field of workforce development, defined as research that leads to improved management and performance outcomes of in the execution of workforce programs and initiatives.

Ideal candidates are likely to have authored research that has been field tested in professional use, and proven to have improved a workforce development operation. The research is also likely to have served as a blueprint for the creation of an original workforce program that has been adopted into professional use, is currently up and running, with metrics that prove it is a success.

4. The NAWDP Professional Development Award recognizes individuals who have been instrumental in designing and implementing professional development initiatives that enhance the knowledge, skills and competencies of workforce development professionals. 

Ideal candidates will have created and implemented a training initiative with success substantiated through measurement. Whether a large or small initiative, the significance of the professional development program will rest in its impact. Candidates will be able to prove how the training initiative created ripples of impact in an organization or a community.

5. The Jodi Spiegel Customer Service Award recognizes exceptional behind-the-scenes customer services that pushes past internal silos to link different teams and accomplish workforce development project goals within an organization.

Ideal candidates are likely to have created an internal blueprint, change management plan, or training and development plan – and implemented it – to ready their organization to execute workforce development outreach initiatives or client service plans. Additionally, the ideal candidate has a track record of workforce-development related customer service within and outside of their organization. This award is limited to NAWDP members only.


    • Nominators must be members of NAWDP.  You may nominate yourself.  A detailed description of why the nominee should be recognized within the award category is required as part of the nomination form.  The information submitted on the nomination form is the only information that will be considered by the Award Committee. 
    • Nominees for the Peter E. Kaiser Leadership Award must be members of NAWDP.
    • Past award recipients may not receive a second award in the same category.
    • Nomination of current NAWDP Board members is strongly discouraged.
    • Award recipients will receive a complimentary registra­tion to attend the 2018 NAWDP Annual Confer­ence.
    • Award recipients will be recognized at an event during the NAWDP Annual Conference.  More details will be provided to nominees as it becomes available.
    • Award recipients will be re­quested to provide: (1) a concise, professional bio; and (2) a professional photo (headshot).

Awards are scored by a committee of NAWDP members using the numerical scale below, with the highest scoring candidates selected for acknowledgement during NAWDP's Annual Conference:

Area I:       Individual Achievement up to 30 points

Area II:      Circumstances and Challenges up to 25 points

Area III:     Advancement of the Profession up to 45 points

Award recipients receive a complimentary registration to attend the NAWDP Annual Conference, and are recognized at an event during the conference.

Any questions?  Contact Diane Duff at NAWDP.

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