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2017 Leadership Recognition Awards - Nominations Closed

Nominations will open in Spring 2018. 

Overview & Criteria
  • NAGDCA welcomes nominations from 401(a), 401(k), 403(b) and 457 plans.
  • Submissions will be judged on originality and measurable results that led to a sound improvement in the plan.
  • Submissions are accepted from government members only and governmental staff must have played a significant role in developing the program, project, or activity.  
  • Templates or similar submissions from other government entities will not be considered. 
  • Multiple submissions to the same category are discouraged.
  • Prior submissions will not be considered for an award.  
  • Some award winners may be selected to be showcased in a NAGDCA video at the 2017 NAGDCA Annual Conference.
  • Awards will be limited to only five winners in each category to ensure that awards are a testament to offering the best retirement savings plans. 

Scoring criteria:

  • Submission is clear, concise, and contains sufficient detail.
  • Campaign deemed innovative, unique, and comprehensive in its approach. Different types of media are utilized. 
  • Campaign resulted in clear and measurable results in terms of desired outcome(s) for retirement savings (e.g., new enrollments, increased deferrals, etc.). Campaign reflects the needs of plan participants. 

Some award winners may be selected to be showcased in a NAGDCA video or to present at the Annual Conference!

All award applications are due on Friday, May 19, 2017.


To be eligible for the Leadership Recognition Award, a nominated state or local government defined contribution/ deferred compensation program, project, or activity must be submitted in the following format:

  • The program, project, or activity must have been implemented between January 1, 2016 and April 30, 2017;
  • Must not only be making federally required changes;
  • Governmental staff must have played a significant role in developing the program, project, or activity;
  • The nomination must be signed by the government member submitting the form.
  • All nominations should include the following: 
    If this format isn't met your submission will be returned to you and possibly not scored. 
    • A completed nomination form (below)
    • One document containing a one-page summary of the project and a written justification containing:
         1. A description of the project, including length of time in operation and when first implemented.
         2. Relative significance of the improvement to the operation of the plan and a brief background perspective for the change.
         3. Measurable benefits and results realized, specifically by the plan participants.
         4. Feasibility of use by other governments of a similar size.
    • If providing supporting documents (screen shots, brochures, etc.) the submission should not exceed five pages (one-page summary, two-page written justification, two-page supporting documents).

Awards will be presented to government members and their industry partners at NAGDCA's Annual Conference September 24-27 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Winners will be recognized in a printed publication at the NAGDCA Annual Conference. Please note: you do not need to mail in additional materials with your award submission (brochures, DVD, etc.).

Award recipients will be notified in July 2017.

To view past recipients of NAGDCA's Leadership Recognition Award, please visit:


Participant Education/Effective Communication
Category includes: Communication materials on the “benefits of the supplemental retirement plan” to potential and current participants, as well as other interested parties.

Plan Design & Administration  
Category includes: Changes in plan design (e.g., Automatic Enrollment, Roth, customer service, etc.); and administration (e.g., online access to board manuals).

National Retirement Security Week - General Campaign
Category includes: A campaign or specific strategy that raised awareness of National Retirement Security Week, increased enrollments/deferrals, and/or generated media coverage.

National Retirement Security Week – Your Whole Story
Category includes: A campaign or specific strategy that raised awareness of National Retirement Security Week using the Your Whole Story theme and materials offered by NAGDCA.  The campaign must have utilized at least approximately 75% of the Your Whole Story materials (materials include logo, journey map, field notes, video, social media designs, and accessory designs) and demonstrated impact (i.e. participant engagement with the materials, increased enrollment/deferrals, and/or generated media coverage.)

Technology and Social Media
Category includes: A technological advancement/enhancement in government processes, an app for smart devices, or a unique way of participating on social media platforms.

Excellence in Governmental 403(b) Plans
The Excellence in Governmental 403(b) Plans Award was designed to recognize a plan sponsor that created or developed significant innovations that address the retirement readiness of their employees, and concurrently, have contributed to the larger thought leadership concerning the unique challenges that are facing governmental 403(b) plan sponsors.

To qualify for this award the following criteria must be met:
1) would be worthy of recognition, therefore not something that would be considered part of the normal course of retirement plan operations
2) could be objectively measured (i.e. statistics regarding improved retirement readiness, improved employee engagement, etc.) and
3) would be recognized as contributing to the larger issues that confront governmental 403(b) plans (budgetary constraints, addressing retirement outcome concerns, addressing lifetime income issues, integrating DB components into the DC plan)

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