As the leading voice, authority and advocate for the genetic counseling profession, NSGC seeks to recognize our members who contribute to our society through their work on committees, task forces, SIGs, and as individual members.
Through the continuous efforts of these dedicated members, NSGC is able to grow and achieve the strategic goals of our organization. The annual NSGC Leadership Awards Program recognizes the contributions of members who have gone above and beyond in their work on behalf of NSGC.
Nominations for the 2021 Leadership Awards are now closed.
Natalie Weissberger Paul National Achievement Award
The Natalie Weissberger Paul National Achievement Award is the most distinguished honor within the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Awards Program. Natalie Weissberger Paul retired in 1993 after a long career with the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation. A long-time advocate for genetic counselors and NSGC, she was instrumental in promoting the profession in its early years and in securing financial support for numerous initial projects and publications. Together with the Paul Family, NSGC established this award in 1994. Mrs. Paul died in January 1996. This award honors one outstanding member who has served NSGC with exemplary national achievements and volunteer activities on behalf of NSGC and the profession. The award is customarily bestowed annually.
Individuals may be nominated to acknowledge and celebrate outstanding contributions to the genetic counseling profession. Candidates may be selected from all specialties of the profession.
Leader in Cultural Advocacy
The Leader in Cultural Advocacy Award recognizes an individual demonstrating significant dedication to cultural advocacy to stakeholders, patients and communities outside of the genetic counseling profession. Cultural advocacy may include, but is not limited to, exploring or elevating person-focused experiences across race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, and/or spoken/understood language. Candidates will be considered based on one or more of the following criteria:
- Significant work with under-represented populations, such as: providing multilingual genetic counseling services, coordinating/conducting research with underserved or vulnerable populations, and developing/disseminating accessible health information
- Significant contributions in addressing/eliminating health care disparities in genetics/genomics/genetic counseling
- Education of lay/healthcare communities regarding genetics/genetic counseling/genetic technology in underserved populations, vulnerable populations, or an international venue
- Expansion of services, which may include, but is not limited to, the establishment of genetic counseling clinics or services outside of the United States
Leader in Diversity and Inclusion
The Leader in Diversity and Inclusion Award recognizes one outstanding individual who has demonstrated leadership and/or exemplary achievements in dedication to diversity and inclusion efforts within the genetic counseling profession. Candidates will be considered based on one or more of the following broad criteria:
- Significant contributions to improving diversity and inclusion in any genetic counseling role, practice/specialty area(s), research, industry, and/or training
- Achievements may include efforts towards increasing minority recruitment to the field of genetic counseling, researching gender/race parity in the genetic counseling profession, providing education on diversity & inclusion efforts at institution or to trainees, etc
- Expansion of services, which may include, but is not limited to, the establishment of genetic counseling training programs outside the United States, defining new roles, creating career ladders, etc
New Leader Award
The New Leader Award is presented to a new genetic counselor who has shown significant initiative in their contributions to NSGC and to the profession. Eligible candidates shall have graduated within the 5 years prior to the time of nomination and must be current members of NSGC. Since joining NSGC the member has done one or a combination of the following:
- Made significant contributions to a committee, SIG or task force
- Participated significantly in mentoring of genetic counseling students
- Expanded the reach of genetic counseling services/genetic counselors within the medical community (i.e. created a new subspecialty)
- Made significant contributions to education of lay/healthcare communities regarding genetics/genetic counseling/genetic technology
- Made significant contribution to research involving genetics/genetic counseling
Outstanding Volunteer Award
The Outstanding Volunteer Award is presented to candidates for exceptional contribution and volunteerism to NSGC. Candidates must be current members of NSGC. Candidates will be considered based on the following activities:
- Volunteered at the national level on one or more committee(s), task force(s) and or specific project(s) during the specified time frame
- Made considerable contributions toward the progress of the designated committee(s) during the specified time frame
- Went above and beyond the expected duty of their position
- The strongest candidates will have made significant contributions to NSGC beyond the specified time frame
Strategic Leader Award
The Strategic Leader Award is presented to outstanding candidates who the Awards Subcommittee believes promote the genetic counseling profession as a recognized and integral part of healthcare delivery, through such avenues as education, research and public policy. Candidates must be current members of NSGC. When submitting candidates for nomination, the nominator should consider the methods of NSGC's current strategic plan. Examples of activities include:
- Demonstration of strategic thinking and leadership skills through their work with NSGC
- Significant contributions to the goals of NSGC as related to the Strategic Plan
NSGCares Community Engagement Award
This award shall be presented to a genetic counselor who demonstrates outstanding engagement in their community. NSGCares recognizes that community can take many forms and broadly defines it as “a group of people with a common characteristic or interest”. Involvement with a community may be on a local scale (such as city, place of employment, with patients/families, etc.) or a global scale (such as genetics professionals, advocacy groups, etc.) Candidates will be considered based on one or more of the following criteria:
- Exemplifies the core values of NSGCares by showing compassion and creating connection within a community
- Demonstrates active and ongoing commitment to community engagement that is relevant to, sustainable, and reflective of the values of genetic counseling
- Promotes the well-being, health, development and/or achievements of their community
- Exhibits innovative ways of serving their community
Past NSGC Leadership Award Winners
To view a listing of past NSGC Leadership Awards recipients, click here.