Awards Program

The Arc Tennessee annually recognizes people who have made significant contributions to enhance the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Award winners are honored at an Awards Banquet the evening before the TN Disability MegaConference.

Award Categories and Criteria for 2019

The deadline for nominations is Friday, April 5, 2019.  Award winners will be honored at our Awards Banquet on Wednesday, May 22, 2019, 6:00 pm at the Nashville Airport Marriott. The nomination form is at the bottom of this page.

Agency of Distinction
Honors a public or private community organization that provides exemplary supports and demonstrates a commitment to community inclusion for people with disabilities. 

Community Service
Honors an individual or group who has demonstrated commitment to the mission and positions of The Arc by volunteering time locally or on a statewide basis to enhance opportunities for people with disabilities or working on special projects or events.

Exemplary Educator
Honors a Tennessee educator or leader in education who has demonstrated excellence in providing for the education of students with developmental and other disabilities.  Nominees for this award may include teachers, principals, administrators, school board members, college faculty or researchers.

Inclusive Employer
Honors a Tennessee employer with an exceptional record of providing inclusive community employment opportunities and accommodations for people with disabilities. 

Public Awareness
Honors outstanding efforts by state and local media entities or individuals that create better public understanding of people with disabilities.  The award recognizes a variety of broadcast, print, and internet mass media, including – television, radio, newspapers, magazines, books, podcasts, and blogs.

Work Initiative
Honors a person or a group who seeks or has the knowledge, skills and initiative to start and operate his/her/their own business or an employee with a disability who has positively contributed to a workplace setting.

Honors an outstanding self-advocate who is a role model for others.

Promising Young Leader
Honors an individual (under age 22) or a group whose members are age 22 or younger, who have demonstrated outstanding leadership potential as seen in volunteer efforts on special projects or events that enhance opportunities for people with disabilities in their community.

The Ruth Roberts Memorial
Honors a sibling (brother or sister) of a person with a disability who, through their community involvement and advocacy efforts, creates an environment that fosters inclusion for all.

Direct Support Professional (DSP) Above and Beyond
Honors a DSP with $500 whose first allegiance is to the person he/she supports, who demonstrates the DSP Code of Ethics. The Code of Ethics can be found here: HERE.

To download the nominations form, click HERE.