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In celebration of Black History Month, nominations are currently being accepted by the Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism for the Annual Black History Month Leadership & Service Awards. This program recognizes Maryland-based, African and African-American-founded organizations that provide volunteer service to improve Maryland communities for all. Selected recipients will be invited to the Black History Month Leadership & Service Awards ceremony on a weekday in February.

The nomination period is open until January 3, 2020.


Any Maryland-based, African or African-American-founded organization or group of volunteers that has demonstrated commitment and dedication to Maryland through significant and direct volunteer service can be nominated. The nominee’s volunteer service must occur in Maryland and must be for the direct benefit of Maryland citizens and/or the environment.

Organizations and groups must have been operational for two years to be eligible for this recognition.

The volunteer service must not be provided for the sole benefit of a for-profit business.

Activities relating to political advocacy do not qualify for this award.

Self nominations by the organization or group, or nomination of family members/spouses will not be accepted.

No more than three nominations will be accepted from any individual nominator.

If a nominator submits multiple submissions for the same organization or group, only the most complete and/or most recent nomination will be accepted.

Past recipients of the Black History Month Community Leaders Awards are not eligible to receive an award again.

The Nomination Form

Please include contact information for yourself and the organization being nominated in the nomination form. In addition, the nominator must describe the organization’s volunteer service and accomplishments by answering the following questions in 1,000 characters or less each. A copy of your nomination will be emailed to you after it has been submitted, and you will be given access to edit your submission until January 3rd.

Provide a brief description of what the group/organization does.

Describe why the group/organization was created.

What are the volunteer service accomplishments of the group/organization since its inception? Provide data, such as total number of volunteer hours completed, number of people served, etc., that shows specific and measurable results of the volunteer service activities.

What made this group/organization’s volunteer service exceptional? Provide anecdotal information, such as stories and quotes, to demonstrate the non-measurable impact of the group’s volunteerism.

Submit your nomination form, here.

Selection and Notification

Each nomination received by the posted deadline will be reviewed internally by the Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism. Nominations will be scored and ranked, based on eligibility. Following a fact-checking process, the Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism will notify each recipient of his/her selection. Selected groups and organizations will be invited to the Black History Month Leadership & Service Awards on a weekday in February.

Please note: All selected recipients must provide a digital photograph for promotional use on social media, website, and in recognition materials upon notification of selection.


Contact Joanna Chen, Outreach & Communications Coordinator, Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism, at 410-892-9332 or [email protected].

Note that nominations for our other recognition ceremony, the annual Governor’s Service Awards, will open in March.

Learn about last year’s Black History Month Community Leaders Awards recipients.


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