Faculty & Staff Insider

Honors & Awards

These are among the honors and awards the University of Washington bestows upon alumni, faculty, staff, retirees and students who contribute to the richness and diversity of the University community.

Nominations now open

The following awards are accepting nominations.

Distinguished Retiree Excellence in Community Service Award

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Nominations open
Sep. 9, 2019
Nominations due by
Feb. 3, 2020

The Distinguished Retiree Excellence in Community Service Award, created in 2012, is designated to honor a retired UW faculty or staff member for excellence in service that exemplifies the University’s values with special distinction. The award is based on the individual’s contributions subsequent to retirement in service to the community, locally, regionally or nationally, and carries with it a prize of $1,500 funded by the University of Washington Retirement Association.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee selected by Retiree Relations
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
University of Washington Office of Retiree Relations
Additional information
UWRA website

Marsha L. Landolt Distinguished Graduate Mentor Award

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Nominations open
Sep. 16, 2019
Nominations due by
Jan. 8, 2020

The Marsha L. Landolt Distinguished Graduate Mentor Award recognizes a faculty member who excels at the intense, one-on-one teaching that is the hallmark of graduate study. First awarded in 1999, the award was renamed in memory of Marsha L. Landolt, who served as dean of The Graduate School from 1996-2004.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee appointed by the Dean of The Graduate School
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
The Graduate School
Additional information
Marsha L. Landolt Distinguished Mentor Award

Distinguished Librarian Award

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Nominations open
Sep. 23, 2019
Nominations due by
Nov. 25, 2019

Established in 2008 by the Dean of University Libraries in cooperation with the Association of Librarians of the University of Washington, the Distinguished Librarian Award is presented annually to a librarian whose contributions advance the mission of the UW Libraries and the University. The award recognizes excellence in librarianship, especially as it benefits the academic community through teaching, research, learning, and innovative approaches to practice. Librarians at the UW Seattle, Bothell, and Tacoma Libraries and the M.G. Gallagher Law Library are eligible.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of three librarians, one faculty member, and one student appointed by the Dean of University Libraries in consultation with the Association of Librarians of the University of Washington
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
University of Washington Libraries
Additional information
Distinguished Librarian Award site

Distinguished Contributions to Lifelong Learning Award

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Nominations open
Sep. 27, 2019
Nominations due by
Dec. 20, 2019

The Distinguished Contributions to Lifelong Learning Award, established in 2003, is given to a full-time University of Washington faculty member who has taught for at least two years in innovative, non-degree programs sponsored by the University and designed for professional development, personal interest, or career redirection.

Selection
Spring Quarter
Selection made by
A committee appointed by the Vice Provost for Continuum College
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Continuum College

Distinguished Teaching Award — Seattle

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Nominations open
Oct. 7, 2019
Nominations due by
Nov. 13, 2019

The Distinguished Teaching Award is given annually to seven faculty members — five from the Seattle campus and one each from the UW Bothell and UW Tacoma campuses.

Recipients are chosen based on their mastery of the subject matter; enthusiasm and innovation in the teaching and learning process; ability to inspire independent and original thinking in students;  innovations in course and curriculum design; and service as a mentor, collaborator and consultant to other faculty members and teaching assistants.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty members, graduate students and staff educators appointed by the Center for Teaching & Learning
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Center for Teaching & Learning
Additional information
Seattle teaching awards

Distinguished Teaching Award — Bothell

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Nominations open
Oct. 7, 2019
Nominations due by
Dec. 13, 2019

The Distinguished Teaching Award is given annually to seven faculty members: five from the Seattle campus and one each from UW Bothell and UW Tacoma. Recipients are chosen based on a variety of criteria, including mastery of the subject matter; enthusiasm and innovation in the teaching and learning process; ability to engage students both within and outside the classroom; ability to inspire independent and original thinking in students and to stimulate students to do creative work; and innovations in course and curriculum design. Faculty members in Seattle who receive the Distinguished Teaching Awards are inducted into the University of Washington Teaching Academy. As Teaching Academy members, awardees are eligible to participate in a variety of Academy-sponsored projects and events to further excellence in the teaching and learning process at the UW. The Distinguished Teaching Award was established in Seattle in 1970 and in Bothell and Tacoma in 1995.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty, students and alumni appointed by the President
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of the Chancellor, UW Bothell
Additional information
Bothell teaching award

Distinguished Teaching Award — Tacoma

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Nominations open
Oct. 7, 2019
Nominations due by
Jan. 17, 2020

The Distinguished Teaching Award is given annually to seven faculty members: five from the Seattle campus and one each from UW Bothell and UW Tacoma. Recipients are chosen based on a variety of criteria, including mastery of the subject matter; enthusiasm and innovation in the teaching and learning process; ability to engage students both within and outside the classroom; ability to inspire independent and original thinking in students and to stimulate students to do creative work; and innovations in course and curriculum design. Faculty members in Seattle who receive the Distinguished Teaching Awards are inducted into the University of Washington Teaching Academy. As Teaching Academy members, awardees are eligible to participate in a variety of Academy-sponsored projects and events to further excellence in the teaching and learning process at the UW. The Distinguished Teaching Award was established in Seattle in 1970 and in Bothell and Tacoma in 1995.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty, students and alumni appointed by the President
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of the Chancellor, UW Tacoma
Additional information
Tacoma teaching award

Excellence in Teaching Award

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Nominations open
Oct. 7, 2019
Nominations due by
Nov. 13, 2019

This award recognizes stellar teaching by graduate students. The recipients are honored for demonstrating extraordinary teaching ability as graduate instructors or as a graduate teaching assistant.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty members, graduate students and staff appointed by the Center for Teaching & Learning
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs
Additional information
Center for Teaching & Learning – Teaching awards

James D. Clowes Award for the Advancement of Learning Communities

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Nominations open
Oct. 7, 2019
Nominations due by
Nov. 13, 2019

This award was established in 2003 in memory of James D. Clowes, who was a leader of the Comparative History of Ideas Program and a member of the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies. The Clowes Award recognizes a faculty or staff member who transforms undergraduate learning at the UW through the development of learning communities.

Recipients are chosen based on their demonstrated capacity to connect cohorts of students with one another and with faculty members to advance learning; transform traditional classroom communities into shared experiences beyond the classroom; and to develop service/community-based learning opportunities for undergraduates that are integrated into their programs of study.

Selection made by
A committee of faculty members, graduate students and staff educators appointed by the Center for Teaching & Learning
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs
Additional information
Center for Teaching & Learning – Teaching awards

Distinguished Teaching Award for Innovation with Technology

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Nominations open
Oct. 7, 2019
Nominations due by
Nov. 13, 2019

This annual award recognizes a current faculty member from our Seattle, Tacoma or Bothell campuses who has improved student learning or engagement through an inventive use of technology. The award is open to individual instructors and instructional teams.

 

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty members, graduate students and instructional designers appointed by the Center for Teaching & Learning
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Center for Teaching & Learning
Additional information
Center for Teaching & Learning – Teaching awards

Distinguished Staff Award

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Nominations open
Oct. 14, 2019
Nominations due by
Nov. 22, 2019

The Distinguished Staff Award honors outstanding University of Washington staff and teams. All individual and team nominees are recognized for their achievements at a campus-wide reception. Five individuals or teams are selected to be the award recipients based on their extraordinary accomplishments and contributions to their departments and the University.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of staff appointed by the Vice President for Human Resources
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of Human Resources
Additional information
Distinguished Staff Award

Alumnus Summa Laude Dignatus / Alumna Summa Laude Dignata

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Nominations open
Oct. 15, 2019
Nominations due by
Jan. 10, 2020

This award is the highest honor bestowed upon a University of Washington graduate and is presented annually by the UW and UW Alumni Association. It recognizes a legacy of achievement and service built over a lifetime. Since its inception in 1938, more than 70 alumni who personify the University’s tradition of excellence have received this prestigious honor. Nominations are open to the public.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of alumni and faculty appointed by the Executive Director of the Alumni Association
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Alumni Association
Additional information
UWAA alumni awards

Distinguished Service Award

MAKE A NOMINATION

Nominations open
Oct. 15, 2019
Nominations due by
Jan. 10, 2020

This award honors an Alumni Association group or member who has made a great impact on the Alumni Association and the University of Washington community. The award was established in 1970.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee appointed by the President of the Alumni Association
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Alumni Association
Additional information
UWAA alumni awards

Future nominations

Click an award below to see when nominations open.

David B. Thorud Leadership Award

Nominations open
Oct. 21, 2019
Nominations due by
Dec. 6, 2019

First awarded in 2006, the David B. Thorud Leadership Award is awarded to two employees who have demonstrated exceptional abilities to lead, serve, inspire and collaborate with broad impact. The award is named in honor of David B. Thorud, who has effectively served the University in leadership positions for 25 years.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee with representatives from the Board of Deans & Chancellors, Faculty Senate, PSO and previous awardees.
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of Human Resources
Additional information
David B. Thorud Leadership Award

University Faculty Lecture Award

Nominations open
Dec. 13, 2019
Nominations due by
Jan. 24, 2020

Since 1976, this award has honored current or emeriti faculty whose research, scholarship, or art has been widely recognized by their peers and whose achievements have had a substantial impact on their profession, on the research or performance of others, and perhaps on society as a whole. It acknowledges outstanding creativity and scholarship by University faculty. The recipient delivers the University Faculty Lecture to inform the UW community about his or her work.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty appointed by the President
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of the Provost
Additional information
Email to make a nomination

Outstanding Public Service Award

Nominations open
Jan. 1, 2020
Nominations due by
Feb. 3, 2020

Established in 1980, this award recognizes exceptional achievement in public service by a faculty or staff member of the University. Nominations may be made by faculty, or staff, or by a member of an organization that has benefited from the public service of a University of Washington faculty or staff member.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of alumni, faculty and staff
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of the Vice Provost for Student Affairs
Additional information
Outstanding Public Service Award

Nominations now closed

The following awards are not accepting nominations.

Distinguished Alumni Veteran Award

Established in 2012, this award is given to a living UW alumnus veteran who made a positive impact on the local, national or international community, the University of Washington or the veteran community.

Selection
A recipient has already been selected and will be announced in the spring.
Selection made by
A committee comprised of alumni, student, faculty, staff and members of the broader community
Presentation
UW Veterans Day event and the Awards of Excellence
Administration
Alumni Association
Additional information
UWAA alumni awards

Distinguished Teaching Legacy Award

Created in 2017, the Distinguished Teaching Legacy Award celebrates the legacy of transformational teaching. It honors a UW teacher, living or not, who has influenced and inspired students long after they graduated.

Selection
A recipient has already been selected and will be announced in the spring.
Selection made by
A committee of alumni, faculty and academic staff appointed by the Executive Director of the Alumni Association
Presentation
Fall and Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Alumni Association
Additional information
UWAA alumni awards

Freshman, Sophomore and Junior Medals

The president annually presents the Freshman, Sophomore, and Junior Medals to undergraduate students for outstanding academic achievement. The Freshman Medal is awarded to the sophomore having the highest scholastic standing for the first year of his or her course. The Sophomore Medal is awarded to the junior having the highest scholastic standing for the first two years of his or her course. The Junior Medal is awarded to the senior having the highest scholastic standing for the first three years of his or her course. Freshman and Sophomore medals were first given for the 1974-75 academic year and the first Junior Medal was awarded for the 1994-95 academic year.

Selection
Fall Quarter
Selection made by
Faculty Honors Committee, a subcommittee of the Faculty Council on Academic Standards
Presentation
Winter Quarter at a private reception
Administration
Office of Student Life

Gates Volunteer Service Award

This award, established in 2002, is presented annually to recognize and honor an individual whose extraordinary volunteer efforts have encouraged others to support the University of Washington through time, service and philanthropy.

Selection
Spring Quarter
Selection made by
Award and Recognition Committee
Presentation
Annual Recognition Gala, Fall
Administration
UW Foundation
Additional information
The Gates Volunteer Service Award

President’s Medals

Each year since 1932, the President has presented a medal to the graduating senior who has achieved the most distinguished academic record at the University. In 2004, the President began giving the medal to two graduating seniors: one medal to a student who has completed at least three-fourths of his or her degree requirements at the University of Washington and one medal to a student who entered the University with at least 60 transfer credits from a Washington community college.

Selection
Spring Quarter
Selection made by
Faculty Honors Committee, a subcommittee of the Faculty Council on Academic Standards
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of Student Life

S. Sterling Munro Public Service Teaching Award

Named for S. Sterling Munro, former top aide to the late Senator Henry M. Jackson and administrator of the Bonneville Power Administration, this award was established in 2000. It is given annually to a faculty member who has demonstrated exemplary leadership in community-based instruction, including service learning, public service internships, and community partnership projects. The Munro Award recipient is inducted into the University of Washington Teaching Academy. Teaching Academy members are eligible to participate in a variety of Academy-sponsored projects and events to further excellence in the teaching and learning process at the University. This award was established by the Henry M. Jackson Foundation.

Selection
Winter Quarter
Selection made by
A committee of faculty, students, and alumni appointed by the President
Presentation
Awards of Excellence, June
Administration
Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs
Additional information
The Marsha L. Landolt Distinguished Mentor Award