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2020 Maryland Rural Impact Awards

The Rural Maryland Council (RMC) will be holding the 2020 Maryland Rural Impact Awards at the Annual Executive Board Meeting. The awards ceremony is an opportunity to recognize individuals and organizations that have performed extraordinary acts of service to communities throughout rural Maryland.  We encourage you to submit your nominations.

The RMC serves as the State’s federally designated state rural development council and advocate for the interests of rural Maryland. In this capacity, we strive to bring together citizens, grassroots community-based organizations, federal, state, county and municipal government officials as well as representatives of the for-profit and nonprofit sectors to collectively address the needs of Rural Maryland communities.  Through our work, we recognize there are individuals and organizations that have performed extraordinary acts of service to communities throughout rural Maryland.  We invite you to share your nomination for such an individual or organization. Awards, award criteria and nominating instructions follow.

DEADLINE – Please submit by Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Submissions can be made to

Awards and Award Criteria:

Rural Community Volunteer

For leadership, dedication, and noteworthy volunteer achievement beyond the call of one’s professional duties to help improve their community.

Award criteria:

  • Distinctive volunteer efforts
  • Understanding of community needs
  • Positive contributions impacting the economic, health, or well being of their community
  • Dedication to community
  • Overall leadership in community

Outstanding Rural Economic Development Award

For a program, project or organization that successfully attracts, retains or creates jobs in at least one rural county.

Award criteria:

  • Significance of jobs attracted, retained or created in relation to a community’s economic development objectives
  • Noteworthy, creative, or innovative techniques brought to bear on challenging economic development situations
  • The use of partnerships for leveraged resources in achieving business development goals

Outstanding Rural Community Development Award

For a program, project or organization that substantially improves the quality of life in at least one rural community.

Award criteria:

  • Dedication and creativity in providing community-oriented service(s)
  • Evidence of collaboration with relevant stakeholders to resolve social problem(s)
  • The use of partnerships or leveraged resources to realize community-achievement goals

Rural Champion Award

This award is presented for outstanding leadership and public service in promoting legislation and/or policy solutions to benefit rural communities.

Award criteria:

  • Demonstrated wisdom and foresight in dealing with rural issues
  • Exemplary leadership
  • Ability to work with community members and organizations to understand Rural Maryland priorities
  • Commitment to working with public servants to address rural community needs
  • Overall dedication to serving constituents

Nominating Instructions

  1. Create a separate MS Word document for each nomination. Be sure to address the award criteria specific to each award.  Supporting documents can be scanned to PDF.

If submitting scanned documents, please make sure they are saved as a “searchable PDF,” which means they can be searched and have optical character recognition (OCR).

  1. The following information must be provided in your submission:
    1. Name of person making the nomination
    2. Address, telephone and e-mail of the person making the nomination
    3. Nominee (individual or program – see criteria above)
    4. Nominee’s address, telephone and e-mail contact information
    5. Biographical sketch of the individual or history of program (one page)
    6. Names of three individual supporters of the nomination
  1. Please describe nominee’s contributions to their community with particular attention to the criteria identified for the award. Narratives cannot exceed one page.


  1. The biographical sketch or program history does not count toward the one page narrative.


  1. Other pertinent information may be included such as news articles, organization newsletters, letters of support or endorsement, or other documentation. Please be judicious.


  1. E-mail your nominations to the Awards Committee care of Please use the subject line 2020 Rural Impact Awards Nomination.


While we prefer that you e-mail your nominations, you have the option to mail them to
Rural Maryland Council, 50 Harry S Truman Parkway, Annapolis, Maryland  21401.

Maryland Rural Impact Award Guidelines

  1. Nominations must be submitted on time to be considered
  2. Self-nominations are not allowed.
  3. The Rural Impact Awards Committee will be comprised of individuals from diverse organizations from each of the rural regions of the state. The committee will rank nominees using a scoring matrix for each of the criteria of an award to determine the winner.