What are the New Jersey State Governor’s Jefferson Awards?
The New Jersey State Governor’s Jefferson Awards is a joint program administered by The Community Foundation of New Jersey, The Star-Ledger Powering NJ.com, and The Governor’s Advisory Council on Volunteerism, with support from corporate underwriters.  It is a local program of The Jefferson Awards.

The Jefferson Awards is a national volunteer recognition program established in 1972 by the American Institute for Public Service in cooperation with the U.S. Senate and the White House. Designed to honor volunteers in all areas of the United States, the programs are coordinated by local media partners.

Why are the volunteer awards important to New Jersey? 
Volunteers are the unsung heroes of our state. In addition to the substantial financial impact volunteerism provides to thousands of New Jersey’s non-profit organizations, volunteers foster a sense of greater community and well-being, often directly impacting the lives of children, the elderly and less fortunate among us.  Recognizing volunteers who reflect the Jeffersonian ideals of citizen involvement seems only right.

What is the selection process?

Candidates are nominated through the New Jersey State Governor’s Jefferson Awards website.  Representatives from The Community Foundation of New Jersey, The Star-Ledger Powering NJ.com, and the Governor’s Advisory Council on Volunteerism assist in the selection process.  The nomination form asks a series of questions, which highlight individual and/or group achievements.

Honorees will be recognized in more than 20 various award categories, which includes underwritten categories. Nominators will be able to select up to 3 categories for their nominee. Multiple nominations for a single nominee do not affect the judges’ choice – each nomination is assessed on its own merit. Honorees will be announced in the Spring of each year.

What is an underwritten award category?
A corporation or organization has the opportunity to underwrite one or more award categories. The award category is named after the underwriting organization, and in addition to considerable promotional consideration, a representative of the organization will present the award to the honoree.

Is there an awards ceremony that will take place?

Honorees will be recognized at a local ceremony in the late Spring, in which they will receive a Jefferson Awards medal and a certificate of recognition. A select group of honorees will be invited to participate in a national ceremony, taking place in Washington D.C. every June.
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