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Chapter Excellence Awards

The AORN Chapter Excellence Awards celebrate the network of more than 250 chapters that provide members with valuable local programs and support. Award recipients are announced at the annual AORN Surgical Conference & Expo.


Local chapters were recognized from 1989-1996 with one overall Chapter of the Year award. As this program expanded in 1997, chapters were honored with Bronze, Silver, and Gold awards. One year later, chapter size categories of small, medium, intermediate, and large were added to encompass participation from the increasing number of local chapters. In order for the presentation content to focus on measurable chapter goals, the 2013-2014 Awards Committee revised the application effective for the 2014 submission process.

General Information

AORN's network of over 250 chapters provides members with a valuable local connection to peers. They assist chapter members to achieve professional and personal growth by offering educational programs; inspire students interested in the perioperative field; promote the value of AORN membership; and seek to increase public awareness of perioperative nursing by involvement in community activities. Through the Chapter Excellence Awards program, AORN has the opportunity to recognize these valuable contributions at the chapter level.

Showcase YOUR chapter's contributions to the field of perioperative nursing. For this award recognition to thrive, we need YOUR participation. Just as YOUR chapter works together throughout the year, it takes a group effort to submit an award application. So don't hold back… YOUR chapter can do it.

Points to Remember

  • Fiscal year for all chapters will be June 1, 2015 - May 31, 2016. Use your chapter's fiscal year as near to this timeframe as possible.
  • All submissions received will be held confidential.
  • A new award application must be completed and submitted each year. No award submissions will be kept on file for consideration in subsequent years.
  • Applications must be typed; handwritten applications will not be accepted.

Selection Process

Chapter award submissions are judged by the Membership Committee. They are responsible for reviewing all chapter award submissions received for the year that meet the requirements; incomplete submissions will not be considered. If a committee member's chapter submits an application, the committee member will refrain from judging and scoring the application due to conflict of interest.

When selecting recipients of the awards and depending on the number of submissions and scores, Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards may not all be awarded in each chapter size category. Chapter Excellence Award recipients will be announced at the AORN Surgical Conference & Expo 2017; recipients will be notified prior to Expo. The Chapter of the Year award will remain suspenseful and will be presented at Expo.

Chapter Size Categories

  • Small: 0-50 members
  • Medium: 51-150 members
  • Intermediate: 151-300 members
  • Large: 301+ members

Awards Recognition

In each size category, chapters with first, second, and third place scores will receive Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards respectively. The top scoring Gold chapter will be selected as Chapter of the Year, representing the best submission among all size categories. A chapter may only be the recipient of the Chapter of the Year award once every three years, while chapters may be selected for the Chapter Excellence Awards consecutively.

All Chapters Submitting Applications

  • Chapter group photo at the AORN Surgical Conference & Expo 2017
  • Certificate of Appreciation from Awards Committee to all non-recipient chapters

Bronze, Silver, and Gold Chapter Recognition in All Size Categories

  • Award presentation at the AORN Surgical Conference & Expo 2017
  • Recognition of award on AORN Website and other AORN publications

Chapter of the Year Recognition

  • Award presentation at the AORN Surgical Conference & Expo 2017
  • Recognition of award on the AORN Website and other AORN publications
  • Chapter visit by an AORN Board member
  • Chapter presentation at Volunteer Leadership Academy (when possible)

Please contact the Awards Committee staff liaison Deb Warren ( with any questions regarding the awards process.