Editorial: Call for nominations

Federal Computer Week begins accepting nominations for the Federal 100 awards program this week. The deadline is Dec. 21, so don't delay.

The Federal 100 awards recognize government and industry employees who have played pivotal roles in the federal information technology community. Each year, we receive hundreds of nominations that our panel of judges must sift through and sort. Many people are deserving, but we recognize only 100. Here are a few tips for writing a winning nomination:

n Get personal. Nominate an individual, not a project or a team. Federal 100 winners are people who go above and beyond their daily responsibilities. They bring uncommon dedication or unique vision to their jobs. Projects are often successful because of several individuals' contributions, so why should this one person be recognized?

n Think about impact. Many people do good work, but the award is not only for a job well done. It is for people who made a difference in how technology was bought, managed or used in 2005. If you are nominating someone for a successful program, describe the impact the nominee had on that program and the impact that program had on an agency or a community at large.

n Don't get nostalgic. The Federal 100 is not a hall-of-fame award but a most-valuable-player award. It recognizes work accomplished, to a great extent, during a specific year. Given how long some government programs run, it can be difficult to decide when someone warrants an award. The biggest factor is impact. In some cases, an individual's major accomplishment is simply getting a procurement under way. In other cases, the impact comes once a project is complete.

n Don't get sentimental. This is not a popularity contest. Occasionally, a person makes a big impact by pushing an unpopular agenda or by questioning conventional wisdom. People might not perceive their impact as positive, but it is felt all the same.

Again, the deadline will be here before you realize it. Nominate early and often. Find the specifics and submit nominations at www.fcw.com/fed100.

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