Trustees’ Award for Organizational Excellence

The Trustees' Award for Organizational Excellence recognizes a nonprofit organization, large or small, that has demonstrated sustained and superlative achievement in historic preservation.

Key Dates for 2023

  • January 13, 2023: Nominations open
  • February 24, 2023: Nomination deadline
  • July 2023: Nominators and award recipients notified. The nominator will be notified for those not selected.
  • November 8-10, 2023: The award ceremony is currently scheduled to take place at PastForward 2023 in Washington, D.C.


  • Nominees must be a non-profit organization that has historic preservation as its primary mission. Staffed and all-volunteer organizations are eligible.
  • Nominations submitted in previous years that were not selected to receive an award may be updated and resubmitted.
  • Nominations may be made without the knowledge of the nominee.
  • Self-nominations will be accepted.
  • Properties owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation will not be considered, nor will individuals or groups of individuals for their work relative to National Trust properties.

Award Criteria

To be considered for the Trustees' Award for Organizational Excellence, nominated organizations must:

  • Have achieved outstanding success in historic preservation over a sustained period of time
  • Have broadly and effectively communicated the value of historic preservation to its constituents
  • Have exhibited leadership in issues of importance to historic preservation
  • Have demonstrated integrity in its dealings, including financial management
  • Have made appropriate efforts to be inclusive in the composition of its board, staff, membership, and programs

Award Benefits

The Trustees’ Award for Organizational Excellence recipients will receive a physical award.


  • At least one representative of the recipient organization must appear at the awards ceremony during the PastForward conference, as determined by the National Trust.
  • Recipients are responsible for their own travel, lodging, and registration fees to PastForward
  • Recipients will be available to provide quotes and background information for press releases and other media surrounding the award and the award presentation.
  • Recipients may be asked to give brief remarks during the awards ceremony.
  • Recipients may be asked to write a story for the National Trust website and/or contribute to a National Trust publication.
  • Recipients may be asked to serve as panel members for educational sessions at PastForward.
  • Recipients will be asked to publicize their award through their social media channels, if applicable.

Nomination Process and Procedures

Nominators must complete one nomination form (requirements listed below) and submit it by the deadline in order for the nominee to be considered. All nominations must be submitted using our online form in Submittable. Paper or email submissions will not be accepted.

Nominations must conform to the procedures outlined on this page to be considered for an award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. A link to the nomination form can be found at the bottom of this page. Please be sure to read all guidelines and eligibility information before starting your nomination.

Nomination Requirements

Please include in your nomination form:

  • A concise narrative (7,500 characters or less including spaces) that describes the individual’s preservation achievements and addresses the award’s specific criteria (listed above)
  • Up to 5 brochures or news clippings
  • Up to 3 letters of recommendation
  • Up to 10 photos. We strongly recommend including photos demonstrating community engagement, advocacy or preservation work, and programming.
  • Up to 2 video files related to the nominee's work. Examples: footage of preservation projects, community testimonials, news cuts, etc.

Nomination Form

Click here to access the National Preservation Awards submission form. To begin your nomination, you will need to sign up for a Submittable account or sign in to an existing Submittable account if applicable. Once you have signed into Submittable, the submission form will become available. Answer the first question according to which award category you are submitting a nomination for. If you wish to be considered for multiple categories, you will need to submit multiple nominations. Once you begin your nomination, you will be able to save your progress and return to the site to continue working on the form by clicking "Save Draft" at the bottom of the page.

If you have any questions, please contact us at

Now accepting nominations for the 2024 list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places! Letters of Intent are due September 29, 2023.

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