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FCW Insider: Who deserves a Fed 100 award? (22 days to go)

Earlier this week, a reader wrote to say he had noticed that many of last year's Federal 100 award winners were senior agency executives. Is that a requirement, he asked?


The question was dismaying but understandable. Indeed, many Fed 100 winners are in the upper ranks of their agencies or companies -- and with good reason, as I will explain in a minute.


But the short answer to the reader's question is an unequivocal "no." 


The Fed 100 recognizes individuals of all ranks who have made important contributions to the federal IT community. In fact, the judges are wary of giving an award to a higher up if there is any reason to suspect that the real work might have been done by a subordinate.


If there are any doubts about it, one of the judges will be asked to verify the selection by calling on sources familiar with the project involved. This happens every year.


We can't avoid the obvious: Senior executives often win the award because they have ended up in positions in which they have the kind of authority and visibility needed to make a difference. The bigger the club, the bigger the impact.


Still, we also know that a lot of important work is done by people who are not in the spotlight -- who don't have a lot of staff or budget authority, but who know what needs to be done and how to make it happen.


Those awards often are the most satisfying to give and their stories make the best reading.


So when nominating someone for the Fed 100 -- and do it soon: only three weeks remaining -- please look past grade and rank and find person who really did the job.


To read tips and find a link to the online form at http://www.fcw.com/fed100.


 

Posted by John Stein Monroe on Nov 20, 2008 at 12:18 PM


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