A Celebration of Excellence in Public Participation:
The IAP2 USA Core Values Awards

Public participation is based on the belief that those who are affected by a decision have a right to be involved in the decision making process.

Congratulations 2016 Core Values Award Winners!

"IAP2 Canada and IAP2 USA are proud to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of our member/practitioners. Today's Core Values Awards recipients span a range of areas in which P2 is vital to advance the health and well-being of our communities and truly exemplify best practices in the field."

—Leah Jaramillo, President, IAP2 USA

What are the IAP2 Core Values Awards?

Each year, IAP2 affiliates around the world recognize leaders in the profession through the IAP2 Core Values Awards. The awards go to projects which best demonstrate IAP2's Core Values and help to raise the bar in the field of public engagement by sharing best practices and inspiring the P2 community to learn from one another. 

As a friendly competition, the Core Values Awards encourage new approaches and innovative uses of existing ones. The 2016 winning entries were recognized at the 2016 IAP2 North American Conference, September 28th through 30th, in Montreal, Canada

2016 IAP2 USA Core Values Award Winners

Organization of the Year
City of Hillsboro


Read the application

Hillsboro 2035 Community Plan

Media Coverage: Hillsboro Tribune

What the judges said:

  • The judges were duly impressed by the comprehensive nature of the Hillsboro project and the multi-faceted approach and techniques that were employed to reach as many different segments of the community as possible.
  • Hillsboro was one of our first winners of the Core Values Project of the Year Award 15 years ago, it became crystal clear that we were witnessing the kind of institutionalized and enduring commitment to public participation that is the hallmark of an organization that has built the Core Values into its fabric.
  • There are many lessons to be learned from the multiple ways that Hillsboro has made public participation a standard way of doing business, perhaps one of the most striking proofs was a “Fun Fact” that frankly knocked us out: “seven of our volunteer committee members have gone on to hold a variety of elected offices.”

Chris Hartye (City of Hillsboro Oregon) receives the award for Organization of the Year from Leah

Research Project of the Year
"Clearing the Error: Public Deliberation about Diagnostic Error"
Jefferson Center and Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University

Jefferson Center and Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University won the International Research Project of the Year Award (Press Release)

Read the application

What the judges said:

  • This unique partnership of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the Maxwell School of Citizen and Public Affairs created an innovative combination of research and practice, appropriately recognizing the important role of patients in reducing diagnostic errors in health care, supplementing the traditional approach of relying solely on physician and healthcare system input.
  • The partnership utilized a Citizen Jury approach designed to "empower" participants and provide them with opportunities to truly impact change. This is an approach that is very far advanced along the "Spectrum of Public Participation" and one that is not often observed in engagement efforts.

Kyle Bozentko (Jefferson Center) receives the award for Research Project of the Year from Leah

General Project of the Year &
Overall Project of the Year

Pinnacle Peak West Area Drainage Master Study
Flood Control District of Maricopa County


Theresa Gunn of GCI Consulting receives award for Project of the Year on behalf of the Maricopa County (Arizona) Flood Control District. (This was also the General Project of the Year.)

Read the application

What the judges said:

  • This project accomplished two important things – first, the process ensured that everyone in the community is aware of their risk, a fact that is not true in most communities today. Second, the process impacted the decision-making about which strategic investments to make to manage future risk based on public participation. Decision makers were willing to place the decision in the hands of the public – not usually done outside of elections.
  • It is a fantastic model for the kind of public conversation communities need to be having in the age of climate change, as community risk changes.
  • The level of detail in flood risk analysis, at the property level, involved an incredible level of effort and sophisticated flood analysis tools, providing the public with important information upon which to base future decisions on land use.
  • Not simply accepting that a community cannot change after they have worked to stop a project that is in the best interest of the public, but rather recognized the value of early engagement to come to a common understanding of the problem and the need for change.

Creativity and Innovation Award
Pre-construction Community Outreach for the Van Ness Improvement Project 
San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency

Read the application

What the judges said:

  • This project faced and overcame a number of challenges in a congested urban environment.
  • The judges were impressed with the SFMTA’s commitment to pushing the envelope and risking the use of new techniques that were not a part of the organization’s normal repertoire, including the pre-construction survey, business advisory committee and multilingual interactive text campaign.
  • The fact that this project is now serving as a model and inspiration for further innovation and advances in the organization’s public participation practices is further testament to the value of this project.

Lulu Feliciano of San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, describes how her group’s project was Creative and Innovative

"The Van Ness Improvement Project team had to be creative in finding ways to inform and engage with the community for a 3-year construction project along a major corridor in the City and County of San Francisco. At the onset, from legislating parking changes to pre-construction surveys, we have deployed a multi-channel approach including: traditional mailers, posters and notices as well as door-to-door canvassing, text surveys, email marketing campaigns. In addition, we’ve been holding walking tours, 'Meet the Expert' events and workshops to continue to stay top of mind for the community. We are proud to say that all the information we have gathered has informed the construction sequencing which will help us establish and maintain good relations with the community while building the first Bus Rapid Transit in San Francisco."
Lulu Feliciano, SFMTA Outreach Manager

Respect for Diversity, Inclusion & Culture Award
Facilities Master Planning 

Saint Paul Public Schools

Read the application

Media Coverage: StarTribune (pdf)
Redesigning a School District, Journal of the
American Institute of Architects, February 2017 (pdf

What the judges said:

  • The Facilities Planning project, a massive well-organized effort which reflects the needs and priorities of those who will actually use the resulting buildings is inspiring. You recognized that the usual way of “doing business” wasn’t working and you had the courage to change your approach by actively and thoroughly involving those most affected by the outcome.
  • Based on the results of your Board’s unanimous adoption of all plans and the high scoring evaluation results show you have achieved a culture change.
  • The active involvement of your architects and their participation in a racial equity workshop was remarkable.
  • You not only challenged the status quo, but got all of the key players to recognize a better way of doing business.

Former School Board member Anne Carroll and Facilities Director Tom Parent of Saint Paul Public Schools receive the award for Respect for Diversity, Inclusion and Culture from IAP2 USA President Leah Jaramillo

2016 IAP2 USA Core Values Award Judges

Cheryl Hilvert

Lewis Michaelson

Joel Mills

Marty Rozelle

Doug Sarno

Cheryl Hilvert is a management and leadership consultant providing education and technical assistance for local governments on key management strategies designed to enhance organizational efficiency and effectiveness. Read more.

Lewis Michaelson is a past-president, life member, and licensed trainer for IAP2 and a member of the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution Roster of Neutrals. Read more.

Joel Mills has worked for more than 20 years to strengthen civic capacity around the world. This work has helped millions of people participate in democratic processes, visioning efforts, and community planning initiatives. Read more.

Dr. Marty Rozelle has 35 years of experience in public policy development, third-party facilitation, process design, and conflict resolution. Read more.

Doug Sarno is a Master Certified Public Participation Professional (MCP3) and Licensed IAP2 trainer with over 30 years of experience in a wide range of disciplines that support participatory decision-making. Read more.

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