How to nominate

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Please note that the following change (implemented as of April 2016) is currently in effect for ACM Fellow nominations:

  • Waiting period for a re-submission of a new nomination is two years. (Previously, if a nominee fails of acceptance two years in a row, the nominator would need to skip two years before re-submitting).

For questions on the above please contact fellow@acm.org

Fellow nominations are reviewed annually. This webpage describes the process and requirements for nominations. For helpful suggestions, see Frequently Asked Questions.

Next Deadline: September 7, 2016 - End of Day, Anywhere on Earth (AoE), UTC -12

Eligibility: Prior to the submission deadline, a candidate must have accrued:

  1. A sustained level of contribution over time, with clear impact that extends well beyond his/her own organization
  2. At least 5 years of continuous professional ACM membership (to verify membership eligibility, contact acmhelp@acm.org)

Moreover, the nominator and all endorsers must be:

  1. Professional members of ACM at the time of nomination
  2. Senior enough - and collectively representative enough - to make a credible case as to why the candidate's impact merits such a high level of recognition

The Fellows Committee evaluates each nomination in independently of other nominations and makes every attempt to equitably recognize a wide variety of accomplishments in the research, academic, practitioner, and service communities.

Selection Criteria: Successful candidates for Fellow must have achieved lasting impact on the field of computing, in terms of both technical and leadership contributions. At this level of recognition, there must be clear and compelling evidence that the individual has significantly influenced the directions of groups and organizations beyond those where he/she was employed. The nomination and endorsements should address the candidate's most important accomplishments, such as:

  • Specific theoretical or practical accomplishments that demonstrate innovation, originality, and creativity
  • Technical leadership resulting in new concepts, products, or systems that advance the state of computing
  • Leadership roles providing evidence of outstanding service to ACM and/or the broader computing community

Those accomplishments should be evidenced by publications, products, awards, or other artifacts that are publicly recognized as worthy of merit. The Fellows Committee relies on each candidate's nominator and endorsers to provide the information necessary to make an informed evaluation. It is incumbent on the nominator to ensure that the overall package (nomination plus endorsements) provides compelling evidence of the candidate's impact on the profession.

Each nominator will be notified of the committee's decision. If unsuccessful, a new nomination for the candidate may be submitted in two years (e.g., a nomination submitted in 2015 could be submitted again in the 2018 cycle year, after the two-year wait period).

Submissions: Candidates must be nominated by an ACM member (no self-nominations). The online nomination form is accessed by logging into ACM's member website and following the link to “Nominate a Fellow.” The requirements for nominations and endorsements are described below; further detail and examples will be found under Frequently Asked Questions.

All materials must be submitted in English. Each nomination involves several components:

  • The candidate's ACM username (email of record) or membership number. For assistance and to verify membership eligibility, contact acmhelp@acm.org
  • Suggested citation if the candidate is selected. This should be a concise statement (maximum of 15 words) describing the key technical or professional accomplishment for which the candidate merits this distinction. Note that the final wording will be at the discretion of the Fellows Committee.
  • Candidate's educational background, including institution, degree, year conferred, and major discipline.
  • Candidate's most significant professional accomplishments and their foundational, technical, commercial, or other achievements (limited to 750 words).
  • Up to 8 specific contributions epitomizing the significance and lasting impact of those accomplishments (limited to 300 words).
  • Candidate's most significant leadership roles in ACM or other service activities (limited to 300 words).
  • Formal professional recognition the candidate has received for his/her contributions, such as awards or other honors (limited to 300 words)
  • Basic information about the nominator, including how he/she knows the candidate. Note that no single person may nominate more than 2 candidates for Fellow in a given year.
  • Supporting letters from exactly 5 endorsers (see below). After submitting a nomination, the nominator will be sent an encrypted URL to forward to endorsers, enabling them to access the endorsement site. Note that no single person may endorse more than 4 candidates for Fellow in a given year.

Endorsements: The nominator must secure endorsements from 5 ACM members, preferably individuals who are themselves ACM Fellows or have otherwise achieved distinction in the field. Endorsers must have personal knowledge of the candidate's work. The endorsers attest that they know the candidate's work, that the nomination accurately describes his/her achievements, and that they believe the accomplishments meet the criteria for Fellow. Most importantly, they provide a brief endorsement statement giving their personal assessment of the candidate's impact on the computing field (limited to 400 words). These comments should be substantive and based on personal knowledge.

It's important that the nominator contact potential endorsers to get their consent and preferred contact info before submitting the nomination.  We also recommend that endorsers be sent the information about what endorsements should include (from the Frequently Asked Questions webpage); many nominations fail simply because the endorsers didn't receive good instructions from the nominator.

NOTE: After submitting the endorsement form, each endorser will be sent an email from fellow@acm.org with an encrypted URL which must be used to confirm the endorsement. Please warn endorsers in advance that they should expect that email and be prepared to respond to it promptly (or should contact fellow@acm.org if it doesn't arrive).

Further information is available on the Frequently Asked Questions webpage. If you still have specific questions, please send them to Rosemary McGuinness, ACM Awards Committee Liaison. ACM's conflict-of-interest guidelines apply to all membership grade nominations.