Ends on May 1, 2018

About the Award

The LEAD® Awards for Excellence in Accessibility Leadership are unique in that they recognize a full body of work and concentrate on addressing the needs of the disability community as a whole.

Recipients are selected for having sustained accessibility efforts over a significant period of time, demonstrating either an individual or institutional commitment to the inclusion of all people with disabilities. This pertains to incorporating accessibility into organizational programs, projects, and environments. Other factors considered in selecting award winners are the breadth of impact and how the person or entity has served as a role-model or leader within the cultural arts community and in areas such as business, social service, and government.


Individuals who have attended the Kennedy Center's LEAD® Conference within the past four years are eligible to nominate arts organizations or individuals for the LEAD® Awards for Excellence in Accessibility Leadership.

Applications for the 2018 Awards for Excellence must be received by May 1, 2018. Applications will be reviewed by committee and applicants may be contacted for an interview.


Employees of the Kennedy Center and individuals contracted to work directly with the Office of VSA & Accessibility at the Kennedy Center are ineligible for LEAD Awards while they are under contract and for one year after termination of their agreement. This shall not include individuals engaged solely to provide expertise as speakers or otherwise in connection with any Kennedy Center events.

VSA Affiliates and VSA Contractor organizations are welcome to apply or be nominated for LEAD awards, however, they must demonstrate that a significant portion of their cultural access work is not funded by the Kennedy Center.

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