ACM Distinguished Members
How to Nominate
Distinguished Member nominations are reviewed annually. This webpage describes the process and requirements for nominations. For helpful suggestions, see Frequently Asked Questions.
August 1, 2020 - End of Day, Anywhere on Earth (AoE), UTC -12
Prior to the submission deadline, a candidate must have accrued:
- At least 15 years of professional experience in the computing field. The candidate's highest completed college degree counts toward that time as follows: 5 years for a doctorate, 4 for masters, 3 for baccalaureate, or 2 for associate degree
- At least 5 years of continuous professional ACM membership (to verify membership eligibility, contact firstname.lastname@example.org)
Successful candidates for Distinguished Member must have achieved a significant level of accomplishment or made a significant impact in the field of computing, computer science, and/or information technology. This means that he/she demonstrates substantial depth and breadth of understanding of the field, including the creation of new ideas and the synthesis of work by others. In addition, it is expected that a Distinguished Member serves as a mentor and role model guiding technical career development for others and exhibits eminence by contributing to the field beyond the norm. The nomination must provide clear evidence of at least two of the following:
- Significant professional leadership: project/engineering leadership, research leadership, education leadership, management, etc.
- Significant technical contributions: publications in refereed journals or conference proceedings, textbooks and/or novel curricula, success product engineering/development, patents, standards, etc.
- A track record of technical and professional awards
- Substantial professional contributions: service to professional societies, review committees, conference committees, standards committees, etc.
The nomination statement is carefully reviewed and evaluated. However, the Committee gives particular weight to the supporting evidence provided by the endorsers, who must be individuals with personal knowledge of the candidate's achievements and impact.
Candidates for Distinguished Member must be nominated by another ACM professional member, preferably one who holds a senior role in the computing field. An online nomination form is used. The requirements for nominations and endorsements are described below; further details and examples will be found under Frequently Asked Questions.
All materials must be submitted in English. Each nomination involves several components:
- Basic information about the candidate (including ACM membership number or username).
- Concise statement (75 characters or less) naming the most important technical or professional achievement(s) for which the candidate should be recognized. Avoid abbreviations, acronyms (unless explained) or technical jargon which may not be obvious to evaluators.
- Description of accomplishments showing that the candidate deserves recognition as a Distinguished Member (limited to 4,000 characters). Rather than simply listing as many things as possible, this should highlight the candidate's most significant contributions to the computing field.
- Candidate's educational background, including institution, degree, year conferred, and major discipline.
- Candidate's professional background (organization, time period, and position held).
- Copy of the candidate's CV, listing publications, patents, honors, service contributions, etc.
- Basic information about the nominator.
- Supporting letters from 4-5 endorsers (see below).
- After submitting the nomination, the nominator will be sent an encrypted URL to forward to endorsers enabling them to access the endorsement site.
A minimum of 4, and a maximum of 5, endorsements are required. At least 2 of endorsers must be current ACM professional members, preferably individuals who are themselves ACM Fellows or ACM Distinguished Members. 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 Distinguished Member. Most importantly, they provide a brief endorsement statement giving their personal assessment of the candidate's key achievements and impact on the computing field (limited to 2,500 characters). It's the nominator's responsibility to ensure that each endorser will make individual, substantive comments that will strengthen the case for the candidate. Please note: the nominator cannot also serve as one of the endorsers.
It's important that the nominator contact potential endorsers to get their consent. 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 email@example.com 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 firstname.lastname@example.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 Jade Morris, ACM Awards Committee Liaison. ACM's conflict-of-interest guidelines apply to all membership grade nominations.
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