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Childhood Immunization Champions

The CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award

CDC Childhood Immunization Champion award

The CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award is an annual award given jointly by the CDC Foundation and CDC to recognize individuals who make a significant contribution toward improving public health through their work in childhood immunization.

Each year, up to one CDC Immunization Champion from each of the 50 states, 8 U.S. Territories and Freely Associated States, and the District of Columbia is honored.

Award recipients in 2014 were announced during National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW), April 26-May 3, 2014.

The Role of Champions

Young children rely on the champions in their lives to keep them safe and healthy.

Those champions may be parents who keep a record of their child's vaccinations and ask at each doctor appointment whether their child is up-to-date on immunizations. And, those champions may also be doctors, nurses, physician assistants, and other healthcare professionals who ensure that the children in their care receive all the recommended vaccines.

The CDC Childhood Immunization Champions are an inspiration to everyone who cares about children's health. The CDC Foundation and CDC are pleased to recognize the recipients of the award for the special contributions they have made through their work in childhood immunization.

Award Criteria

The Champion Award is intended to recognize individuals who are working at the local level. It honors those who are doing an exemplary job or going above and beyond to promote or foster childhood immunizations in their communities. The nomination and selection of a local Champion should be based on the following criteria: 

  • Leadership: The candidate is considered an authority on immunization in their community, medical system, or individual practice. Activities may include acting as a spokesperson, trainer, mentor, or educator.
  • Collaboration: The candidate has worked to build support for and increase immunization rates in infants and young children. Activities may include establishing or strengthening partnerships, coalitions, committees, working groups, or other. 
  • Innovation: The candidate has used creative or innovative strategies to promote immunization or address challenges to immunization in their practice, community, state, or region. Activities may include either new strategies or adapting existing strategies in new ways such as for reaching under-immunized populations.
  • Advocacy: The candidate is active in advancing policies and best practices to support immunization in infants and young children in their community, state, or region. Activities may include providing legislative testimony or promoting, analyzing, or evaluating policies.

Champions can include coalition members, parents, health care professionals (e.g., physicians, nurses, physicians' assistants, nurse practitioners, medical assistants, etc.), and other immunization leaders who meet the award criteria. State immunization program managers, state and federal government employees of health agencies, individuals who have been affiliated with and/or employed by pharmaceutical companies, and those who have already received the award are not eligible to apply.

Selection Process

Nominations are submitted directly to the Immunization Program in the state or territory where the nominee resides. Immunization Program Managers are responsible for reviewing and evaluating nominees and recommending one individual to be the Childhood Immunization Champion for their state or territory. CDC reviews and confirms the recommendations and issues awards.

Award Recipients

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