With just a few hours of your time to complete the nomination process, you could have a significant impact on the work of a leader you know.
We encourage nominations of candidates and organizations that reflect the broad diversity of California.
Nominations for the 2018 Leadership Awards opened on February 9, 2017. Nominations close on April 28, 2017.
SIGNIFICANCE The leader's work addresses an issue that is critical to California's future, and the issue is anticipated to affect the quality of life of a substantial number of Californians into the future.
EFFECTIVENESS The leader has been highly effective in achieving positive change. His or her work has a measurable record of accomplishment.
INNOVATION The leader is advancing an innovative strategy that directly improves people's lives. The work represents a leap in creativity or a fundamental departure from usual practice.
INCLUSIVENESS The leader helps build bridges among people with differing viewpoints or different backgrounds.
TIMING OF RECOGNITION The leader's project is at a stage at which this recognition could substantially enhance its probability to inspire replication, and/or the relevant policy environment is conducive to progress at this time.
FIELD LEADERSHIP The leader has demonstrated an interest in sharing his or her model within the field and informing policymaking on related issues.
February 9, 2017
Nomination period opens for the 2018 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards.
April 28, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. PDT
The nominations period closes.
The Selection Committee meets to discuss nominations and selects approximately a dozen finalists. Finalists are notified.
Irvine program staff and an expert in each finalist's field of work meet with finalists individually to further understand his or her work and its impact on California.
The Selection Committee meets to review reports of the site visits and to select four to six award recipients. Recipients and other finalists are notified.
Award recipients are announced.
(Chair) Member, Board of Directors, The James Irvine Foundation
Executive Director, Sustainable Conservation
Joseph I. Castro
President, California State University, Fresno
Executive Director, California State Association of Counties
Oscar E. Cruz
President and CEO, Families In Schools
Dr. Katherine Flores
Director, UCSF Fresno Latino Center for Medical Education and Research
President and CEO, The James Irvine Foundation
Thomas S. Sayles
Senior Vice President, University Relations
University of Southern California
Julie A. Su
California Labor Commissioner
Organizational affiliations are listed for identification purposes only.
Nominated leaders may be:
Nominees must be residents of California. We seek nominees who have not been extensively recognized for their work through other awards.
We seek to recognize leaders who are advancing innovative and effective solutions to critical issues facing California, and whose work is making a significant difference to the future of our state. We ask nominators to review the six selection criteria carefully before nominating.
We welcome nominations from people who are well acquainted with the nominated leader or leadership team and can attest to their qualifications. The nominator must be someone other than the nominee or a family member. We encourage nominations from persons not employed by the nominee. Nominators do not need to collaborate with a nominee in preparing the nomination, nor do they need to keep the submission confidential.
Most nominees have only one nominator, although we will consider multiple nominations for the same leader. The information in the nomination submission, rather than the number of nominators, determines whether the nominee will advance to the next stage.
Yes. Several past award recipients were nominated in multiple years.
We discourage posthumous nominations. The awards are designed to provide an opportunity for recipients to educate policymakers and practitioners in their field about the solutions they have implemented, thereby expanding the number of Californians who benefit from their work.
When James Irvine established the Foundation in 1937, he stipulated that its funds “shall be used for such charities that do not enjoy substantial support through taxation.” As a result, we may only make a grant to a publicly-funded organization if the grant supports a specific project that does not receive most of its funding from public dollars. For the Leadership Awards, if a recipient’s organization receives more than 50 percent of its total revenue from government sources, the award funds would need to be applied to a specific project that is not supported in majority by government funds.
The nominations deadline is April 28, 2017, 11:59 p.m. PDT.
No, references and/or letters of support are not necessary.
The Foundation will contact nominators by late summer 2018 to notify you of the status of your nomination.
This timeline explains the selection process throughout the year:
February 9, 2017 Nomination period opens for the 2018 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards.
April 28, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. PDT The nominations period closes.
August 2017 The Selection Committee meets to discuss nominations and selects approximately a dozen finalists. Finalists are notified.
August–October 2017 Irvine program staff and an expert in each finalist’s field of work meet with finalists individually to further understand his or her work and its impact on California.
November 2017 The Selection Committee meets to review reports of the site visits and to select four to six award recipients. Recipients and other finalists are notified.
February 2018 Award recipients are announced.
We anticipate publicly announcing award recipients in February 2018.
Yes, the process is designed so that nominators can stop and save their work at any time. Simply create a username and password and save for future use. Nominators may re-enter the application by clicking on this link. Please note that once a nomination has been submitted it may no longer be edited.
The narrative portion of the nomination application contains the following seven questions, each with their own word limit:
Project Description – In 100 words or less, please briefly describe the nominee's work or project.
Significance – In 500 words or less, please address how the work of the nominee (or nominees) helps solve an issue that is critical to California's future, and how the work currently or will affect the quality of life of a substantial number of Californians.
Effectiveness – In 500 words or less, please indicate whether and how the nominee (or nominees) has been effective in achieving positive change that impacts the lives of Californians, including any measurable record of accomplishment. Please summarize the results of internal or external assessments, studies, or formal evaluations, and/or provide concrete examples of effectiveness, if possible.
Innovation – In 500 words or less, please describe how the work of the nominee (or nominees) is innovative in improving people's lives. If possible, indicate how the work represents a leap in creativity or a departure from usual practice or approaches.
Inclusiveness – In 300 words or less, please address whether and how the nominee (or nominees) helps build bridges among people with different viewpoints or backgrounds.
Timing of Recognition – In 400 words or less, please address whether the work of the nominee (or nominees) is at a stage where recognition could substantially aid its expansion, inspire replication, and/or how the policy environment is conducive to progress at this time. If possible, address the methods or paths that the nominee/s has or would use to expand, replicate or advance the work. This could include:
Altering people’s attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors;
Changing public policies, funding sources or levels;
Directly replicating a program or services in other sites or locations;
Recruiting and training others to deliver services or a solution;
Distributing the work through an existing network or system that can replicate it in many locations;
Changing public systems;
Using technology to reach a larger audience.
Field Leadership – In 300 words or less, please indicate whether and how the nominee (or nominees) has demonstrated an interest in sharing his or her model within the field, or informing public policy.
Once the nominator has submitted the nomination, the nominator will receive an email confirmation.
Phone: 1.866.586.6465 (toll-free)