The Top Awards for Women in Government

As you’ve probably heard, this week is Public Service Recognition Week (PSRW). It’s a week dedicated to recognizing government workers who go above and beyond to serve their city, state, or country. Of course, PSRW is definitely a week worth celebrating (if you aren’t yet, start by sending our free e-card).

However, I don’t think one week is enough time to honor public servants. Especially for women in government, it’s crucial to take every opportunity to recognize their contributions to the public sector.

Why? Awards not only elevate the profile of individual women, they also highlight examples of successful women that others can imitate. As we attempt to make government a place of equal opportunity for both genders, recognizing the female leaders who are already excelling can go a long way toward making the same career paths open to others.

So if you have an awesome female govie in your workplace, consider nominating them for one of the following public service awards:

DC FemTech Awards

These awards are a perfect opportunity to celebrate women excelling in STEM fields. While not exclusive to public servants, many government employees from agencies like GSA, Commerce, and Veterans Affairs have been honored by DC FemTech.

The Sammies

More formally known as the Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals, the Sammies are touted as the Oscars of government service. Not exclusive to women, they nevertheless are an awesome opportunity to recognize a female public servant in front of some of the biggest leaders in government.

Women in Municipal Government (WIMG) Leadership Award

Offered by the National League of Cities, the WIMP Leadership Award is dedicated to honoring women in local government. “Each year, a winner is recognized for individual achievement in initiating creative and successful programs in municipal government that helps citizens, particularly if the leadership serves as a specific mentoring model for future female leaders,” the website states.

Luckily, applications are still open for this year!

Governing Institute’s Women in Government Program

This is less of an award and more of a fellowship program, although it does celebrate female public servants. Each year, 25 women serving in state or local offices are selected to participate in the program, which offers leadership training and other skills during three in-person retreats.

The 2016 class has already been selected, but applications are open for the 2017 program.

NextGen Public Service Awards

Hosted by GovLoop and Young Government Leaders, these awards are a great opportunity to recognize public servants from all levels of government. As a bonus, awardees get free access to the Next Generation of Government Training Summit.

Unfortunately, 2016 nominations are now closed but they’ll be back next year to celebrate even more awesome public servants!

Federal 100

These awards recognize government and industry leaders who have played pivotal roles in the federal government IT community—individuals who have gone above and beyond their daily responsibilities and have made a difference in the way technology has transformed their agency or accelerated their agency’s mission.

Local Government Excellence Awards

Hosted by the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), the Local Government Excellence Awards celebrate the value of professional management and honors creative contributions to professional local government leadership. The awards highlight public awareness of the value of professional management and its impact on the quality of life in communities.

Finally, there are also a number of local organizations that honor women in public service, including Baltimore, MD’s Woman of the Year Award , Pima County/Tucson, AZ’s Women in Government Awards, and Pennsylvania’s Governor’s Awards for Local Government Excellence. Check with your local government for more opportunities to recognize women in government.


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