Distinguished Service Award Committee

MARAC's Distinguished Service Award Committee is a standing committee established by a vote of the membership at the Fall 2005 meeting.


The purpose of the Distinguished Service Award Committee is to recognize members who have made significant contributions to the organization as well as to the greater archival profession. It is the responsibility of the committee to publicize the award, and to encourage the membership to submit nominations for the award.


Members of the Distinguished Service Award Committee consists of four members: the immediate past MARAC Chair, who serves as the Committee's chair, two members elected by the membership for one-year terms, and the MARAC Archivist, who serves as a non-voting ex-officio member.

The Distinguished Service Award Committee reviews the nominations submitted by the membership and determines the award recipient. The committee does not have to make an award if in their collective judgment the individuals nominated do not meet the criteria. Nominations and letters of support must be received by the Committee Chair on or before February 15 of each year.

The committee chair will inform the award recipient to encourage attendance at the upcoming spring meeting, where the award will be given, as well as the MARAC Chair and award sponsors, but there will not be a public announcement until the conference business meeting.

The award recipient receives $250, sponsored by Hollinger Metal Edge.


Nominations can be made by any MARAC member using the Distinguished Service Award Nomination form which is available on the MARAC website. The form should be returned to the committee chair no later than February 16th of each year. Any member wishing to make a nomination is strongly encouraged to provide additional letters of support for the nomination, which may be sent with the nomination form or under separate cover to the committee chair.


When DSA members are ranking the nominees, they should not forget to consider the completeness of the nomination package. Is the information sufficient to rank the candidate? Are there a minimum of two letters of support?

According to the nomination form, the DSA Committee is looking for the following with MARAC service being “weighted more heavily”:

Significant Service to MARAC (in order of importance)

• MARAC officer
• Elected Member of Steering
• Committee chair (standing, ad-hoc, local arrangements, or program)
• Committee member
• Session or workshop presenter (especially if done multiple times)

Significant Service to the Profession (in order of importance)

• Board member, officer, committee chair, or section leaders of affiliated national or international organizations (such as SAA, ACA, NAGARA, ICA, ARMA, and ALA sections)
• Archival standards committee member
• Publications (books or journal articles) in area of archival theory or practice
• Archival educator (professors or workshop presenters, for audiences at all levels)
• CoSA or SHRAB member
• Grant reviewer for NEH, NHPRC, and other programs awarding archival grants

Note: We are not limited to the above. If the nominee has served the profession in other ways, that should be counted as well. On the other hand, if the DSA committee does not receive any nominations, incomplete nominations, or suggested candidates are not considered qualified, then no award has to be given.


After the Spring Meeting – New Committee Chair (past MARAC Chair) should contact new committee members with information on the process for the award. Note that DSA committee members should not nominate candidates for the award, but rather candidates should be brought forward by the MARAC membership.

Fall Meeting – Provide a flyer in attendee packet if possible. Also ask caucus chairs to announce the DSA in their respective caucus meetings.

November – Draft an article to go into winter issue of the Mid-Atlantic Archivist. Traditional deadline for submissions for the winter issue is December 1.

January – Post announcements on MARAC email lists. Again ask caucus chairs to remind caucus members about the deadline for applications. May also want to post an announcement on the Archives and Archivists List or contact those members with long tenure and encourage them to submit nominations.

February 16th – Traditional deadline for applications. May shift date if the 16th occurs on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday.

February 28th – Submit nominations to committee members. Allow 1-2 weeks for review and selection of winner.

March 11th – If review process is complete, alert winner of his/her selection and determine if s/he will be able to attend the spring meeting. If others were nominated, contact the nominator to inform him/her that their candidate was not selected and encourage them to resubmit the nomination in the future. Contact the MARAC Treasurer and ask that a check be prepared for the presentation at the spring meeting. Contact the MARAC Archivist and ask that a certificate be made for the presentation at the spring meeting.

Prior to the Spring Meeting – Prepare comments about the award winner to be read along with the presentation at the spring meeting. This should include a brief description of the award, acknowledgement of prior winners, and a brief biography of the honoree.

Spring Meeting Business Meeting – Present the award during the Awards section of the Business meeting.

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