Please visit the AAAED website for information regarding the Call for Awards nominations for the AAAED 47th National Conference (2021).

AAAED Awards 

Each year  the American Association for Access, Equity and Diversity (AAAED) gathers at our National Conference and Annual Meeting to celebrate the lives and accomplishments of those who have made an impact in our industry.  If you know of someone who has made or is making a difference, please let us know.  Nominations can be for individuals, groups, organizations or companies.  Thank you for your support of nominees who share AAAED's commitment to access, equity and diversity. 

The AAAED Award Categories are:

Drum Major for Justice Award

The Drum Major for Justice is the highest award the association confers. The Award is a special acknowledgement of the extraordinary contributions that an organization or individual, including a public servant or one who has held an elective office or appointment to public service, has made to the cause of access, equity and diversity. Previous recipients include Rev. Dr. CT Vivian (2018), Dr. Shirley A Jackson (2017) Rep. G. K. Butterfield (2016), and Representatives August F. Hawkins and Parren Mitchell (deceased) (2008).


Arthur A. Fletcher Award

Named for the “Father of Affirmative Action,” former Assistant Secretary of Labor Arthur A. Fletcher, who established the Revised Philadelphia Plan requiring goals and timetables in the construction industry - the precursor for what became “Affirmative Action,” the Arthur A. Fletcher Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a career devoted to promoting and advocating for affirmative action, EEO and diversity. 


Cesar Estrada Chavez Award

The award is named for Cesar Estrada Chavez, an American labor leader and civil rights activist who, along with Dolores Huerta, co-founded the National Farm Workers Association (later the United Farm Workers union, UFW) in 1962. The Cesar Estrada Chavez Award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated leadership in support of workers' rights and humanitarian issues. 

Rosa Parks Award

Named for the civil rights icon who refused to surrender her seat to a white passenger on a segregated bus and sparked not only the Montgomery Bus Boycott but the ultimate end of racial segregation of public facilities, the Rosa Parks Award recognizes an individual who serves as a role model and leader for others through his or her personal achievements, excellence in a chosen field; commitment to human, civil rights and social issues and contributions to the betterment of society. 


Edward M. Kennedy Community Service Award

Named for the former Senator from the State of Massachusetts who was a lifetime champion of civil rights, disability rights and other issues on behalf of disadvantaged persons, the award is presented to an individual or organization demonstrating outstanding community service.


Roosevelt Thomas Champion of Diversity Award

This award was named after the late R. Roosevelt Thomas Jr., known for developing and implementing innovative concepts and strategies for maximizing organizational and individual potential through Diversity Management. The award is therefore given to an organization or corporation for outstanding achievements in promoting diversity in the workforce. 


Emerging Leader Award

This award is given to an individual who is becoming a leader on the national stage and who has demonstrated excellence in his/her workplace and/or community. This is the first year that the award will be conferred.