Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (Banner Imagery) - Go to home page

Governor's Volunteer Awards

Governor's Volunteer Awards

The Governor's Awards for Outstanding Volunteer Service program celebrates the extraordinary volunteer efforts of Kentuckians all across the commonwealth. Awards are presented at an annual ceremony in the Spring coinciding with National Volunteer Month.

Virtually everyone knows at least one of those exceptional people who give their time, talent, enthusiasm and support to serve the unmet needs of others while asking nothing in return but the satisfaction of helping. Volunteers give selflessly of themselves to help improve the lives of countless others. They perform their good deeds largely unnoticed and wholly without compensation.

"There are so many Kentuckians who regularly help their neighbors, and this is a good way to say 'thank you' to some of Kentucky's great unsung heroes and role models," said Eileen Cackowski, KCCVS director.

2007 Governor's Volunteer Awards Recipients

2006 Governor's Volunteer Awards Recipients

2005 Governor's Volunteer Awards Recipients

2004 Governor's Volunteer Awards Recipients


Individuals and groups may be nominated in only one category. Self-nominations are accepted.

Members and staff of the KCCVS, its awards committee and judges are not eligible to nominate or be nominated.

Three categories honor both a youth (age 17 and younger) and an adult (age 18 and older): Impact, Innovation and Challenge.

Two categories honor both an individual and a group: National Service and Faith-Based.

Individuals or groups who volunteer as part of work-release and for course credit are eligible. However, they may not receive compensation other than reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses to be eligible for this awards program.

Programs using “living allowances,” (such as AmeriCorps) are eligible. However, these applications will be judged based on nominee involvement in addition to their national service assignments.

Governor’s Award winners from the previous five years are ineligible for this year’s awards program.

List of Governor's Award Winners 2000-06 (PDF)


A panel of judges with significant experience in volunteerism and/or service will carefully review every application.

Staff reserves the right to reassign a nomination to a more appropriate category.

Judges may opt not to issue awards in every category.

Award winners are based on the highest average scores out of 100 possible points.

Decisions of judges are final.

General Information

With the exception of the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Director of Volunteers Award, the nomination must focus on service activities that occurred between July of the year before and December of the current year.

Information from nominations may be released to the media and elected officials.


Award Categories

Lifetime Achievement

Recognizes a long-term commitment to volunteerism and community service at a variety of levels. Nominees should have made a substantial and sustained impact in the community as a result of their service efforts. One individual may be selected.


Recognizes individuals who have met a community need in a manner that is both effective and extraordinary. The nominee must have demonstrated an exceptional ability, talent or idea. One youth (age 17 and younger) and one adult may be selected in this category.


Recognizes individuals who have made the greatest difference through changed and improved lives and/or community conditions as a result of their service efforts. One youth (age 17 and younger) and one adult may be selected in this category.


Recognizes individuals who have overcome significant personal obstacles in order to engage in volunteer service. These obstacles may include anything from physical and/or mental challenges to significant time constraints. One youth (age 17 and younger) and one adult may be selected in this category.


Recognizes groups that have made a substantial impact through innovation, volunteer hours and number of volunteers, etc. One non-profit organization, including schools, labor unions and civic organizations, and one business may be selected for this award.

National Service

Recognizes an individual and/or group that has demonstrated outstanding volunteer service over and beyond the requirements of their designated program, such as AmeriCorps, AmeriCorps*VISTA, AmeriCorps*NCCC or Senior Service Corps.

Volunteer Support

Recognizes the historical record of an entity in supporting volunteerism through policies and practices. The supported volunteers may be employees or members of the business or corporation. The nomination must be able to demonstrate ongoing community or statewide impact.

Director of Volunteers

Recognizes paid staff who exemplify good management skills in volunteer training, risk management, screening, recognition, evaluation and retention of volunteers. (Can come under the title Director of Volunteers, Manager of Volunteers or other related title.)


Recognizes one individual and/or one group who volunteers through a faith community organization in Kentucky. Nominees may serve members of or populations outside the service-sponsoring faith community. The nomination must demonstrate significant volunteer service.



Last Updated 9/12/2008