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Award Guidelines for Immunization Programs

The CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award

Each immunization program will nominate one individual to receive the CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award based on award criteria. There will be up to one Champion for each of the 50 U.S. states, 8 U.S. Territories and Freely Associated States, and the District of Columbia.


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 meeting one or more of 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. Immunization program managers, state and federal government employees paid by state or federal immunization funding, 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. (For details, see page 3 of the nomination packet [10 pages]).

Nomination Process

The nomination packet [10 pages] UPDATED DEC 2017 is available as a Word document.

Also available is this checklist [2 pages] UPDATED DEC 2017. The upper half provides steps for individuals submitting nominations to immunization programs.

Immunization program managers are encouraged to distribute the award information and promote the award in their state or territory (e.g., post it to their immunization program web site, include in newsletters, attach to an email blast). CDC will also distribute the nomination packet through national partners. Immunization program managers may also post and share the web button, which links to Childhood Immunization Champions web site.

Nominations should be submitted directly to the immunization program manager or designee. A complete list of contact information for all state and territory immunization programs is included within the nomination packet. The suggested deadline for nomination submissions to state or territory immunization programs is February 2, 2018.

Key Dates

  • February 2, 2018
    Suggested due date for nominations to program managers
  • February 23, 2018
    State and territory award nominations due to CDC
  • April 21-28, 2018
    Champions announced during NIIW


Promote Champions

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CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award: Nominate a Champion and learn more about the CDC Childhood Immunization Award


Selection Process Guidance

Immunization program managers are responsible for assembling a review committee to evaluate nominees and recommend one individual to be the Childhood Immunization Champion for their state or territory. CDC will review and confirm these recommendations and issue awards.

CDC recommends that immunization program managers involve the following representatives in the review and selection process, as applicable:

  • Immunization program senior management
  • Local and/or state immunization coalitions and health departments
  • Immunization program managers from CDC-funded cities (Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, San Antonio, Houston, and New York)
  • Indian Health Service staff
  • HHS regional staff

This scoring sheet [3 pages] UPDATED DEC 2017 is available to assist review committees in their selection process.

Steps for immunization programs submitting selected Champion to CDC are listed in lower half of this checklist [1 page].

Program managers must notify CDC of their nomination via an email to by February 23, 2018.

CDC will certify all nominations and distribute awards.



Ready to solicit nominations and promote the award program?

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CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award Presentation & Recognition

Awards will be announced in conjunction with National Infant Immunization Week, April 21-28, 2018.

Awardees will be mailed/presented a CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award certificate. Additionally, the Champions will be highlighted in a national press release, featured on CDC’s NIIW web site, and may be recognized at events and conferences throughout the year. Immunization programs are also encouraged to highlight their Champion at their state and local NIIW events. CDC will also provide states and territories with a draft news release that can be tailored to highlight their Champion locally.