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The Arc Tennessee Annual Awards
The Arc Tennessee Awards 2021

Recognizing the impact of deserving individuals

The Arc Tennessee’s annual awards event is a positive experience, dedicated to highlighting those who go above and beyond in the disability community. One of the most inspiring events of the year, The Arc Tennessee Awards will be virtual again this year. Nominations for the 2021 event are now closed. The awards event is scheduled for Wednesday, December 1st at 11:30am CST via Zoom. Registration is free and required. See the link below.

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Join us Wednesday, December 1st at 11:30am CST

Join us on Wednesday, December 1st at 11:30am CST for The Arc Tennessee Virtual Awards event hosted by Alonzo Kelly & Dylan Brown. Fifteen awards will be given out during the hour long event. All registered attendees will receive the event link and instructions.

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Award Categories & Criteria

Nominations for The Arc Tennessee 2022 awards will open in Summer 2022.

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(s) with disabilities who shows the initiative to start and/or operate his/her/their own business or an employee with a disability who has had a positive impact on their work environment.


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 Sibling Award

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 DSP Code of Ethics can be found HERE

The Jake Award

Honors a person whose advocacy connects people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to the supports and services they need to be fully included members of the community, across their lifetime.