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Nominations Open for 2022 AANP National Leadership Awards

4860 Sharp Award Photo

Help the American Association of Nurse Practitioners® honor two outstanding leaders who have made a national or international impact on the nurse practitioner (NP) role.

Nominations are now open for the 2022 AANP National Leadership Awards, which will recognize achievements made by individuals who have incorporated the AANP mission into the success of initiatives that made a positive difference for NPs and their patients nationally or internationally. Each award recipient will have demonstrated and promoted diversity, equity and inclusivity within health care through social justice initiatives that have increased access to quality health care for all.

  • The Towers Pinnacle Award was initiated in 2013 in honor of Jan Towers, PhD, NP-C, CRNP, FAAN, FAANP, an accomplished NP leader and long-time health policy expert. The award is presented annually to an individual who, through policy, practice or education, has made outstanding contributions that resulted in increased recognition of NPs nationally or internationally and who expanded opportunities for NPs to provide care to patients.
  • The Sharp Cutting Edge Award was created in 1996 in honor of Nancy J. Sharp, MSN, RN, FAAN, an exemplar of excellence in organizational leadership within nursing. Recipients of this award have performed extraordinary service activities on behalf of NPs on a national or international scale.

Award nominations must be submitted electronically on the AANP National Leadership Awards Nomination Form. Any current AANP member may submit a nomination of 250 words or fewer detailing the reasons for nominating an individual for either award. Additionally, two letters of support from individuals other than the nominator must accompany each nomination. AANP elected leadership and Awards Committee members are not eligible to receive either of these awards during their term of office.

The deadline for nomination submission is March 11. Award recipients will be notified in late-March. Learn more about each of the awards.

  • Towers Pinnacle Award Selection Criteria

    The Towers Pinnacle Award was launched in 2013 by the AANP Board of Directors in honor of Jan Towers, Ph.D., NP-C, CRNP, FAAN, FAANP, an accomplished and much-admired leader in the NP movement. Dr. Towers has been at the forefront of legislative and regulatory issues, guiding health policy initiatives to ensure that NPs and their patients are represented wherever health care is being discussed. She has informed and educated numerous NPs on issues related to health policy through presentations at regional and national conferences. Her steadfast commitment, keen insight and vigilance have served to guide and direct NPs toward their current recognition as reimbursable providers of high-quality health care nationwide. The result of her life’s work is increased awareness by legislators and the general public of NPs’ contributions to health care, as well as advancement in expanding the scope of practice for NPs, advocating for equity in pay for services and expanding the commitment of NP professional organizations to provide leadership on health policy issues.

    Selection Criteria

    The recipient of this prestigious award should exemplify Dr. Towers’ advocacy, passion and dedication to the advancement of the NP role through policy, practice and education. Additionally, the recipient will have demonstrated and promoted diversity, equity and inclusivity within health care through social justice initiatives that have increased access to quality health care for all.

    Please note that this award is for achievements that have impacted the NP profession on a national or international level and incorporated the AANP mission into the success of the initiative(s).

    The individual nominated will preferably be an NP; however, consideration will be given to other individuals who have made outstanding contributions resulting in increased recognition of NPs and increased opportunities for NPs to provide care to patients through ongoing work in policy, practice and education at the national or international level in three of the five following areas:

    • Influencing health policy legislation by advocating for the removal of practice barriers, which led to the advancement of the NP profession.
    • Conducting advocacy work that is dedicated to the recognition and promotion of the high-quality, reimbursable health care services, with parity, provided by NPs.
    • Achieving recognition as a visionary leader for NPs in health policy, practice or education.
    • Providing mentorship and developing leadership in health policy, practice or education for NPs.
    • Being instrumental in articulating NP practice and the profession to stakeholders and legislators in the health policy arena.

    Make a Nomination

  • Sharp Cutting Edge Award Selection Criteria

    The Sharp Cutting Edge Award was initiated in February 1996 in honor of Nancy J. Sharp, MSN, RN, FAAN, an exemplar in the world of nursing organizational leadership for more than two decades. Nancy demonstrated a decisive positive influence for NPs, both professionally and politically. Not an NP herself, Nancy nevertheless left a legacy of early and steadfast service for NPs. Through her vision, foresight and service to the NP profession, Nancy focused on public policy issues clarifying the legislative and regulatory processes. She also utilized innovative strategies to meet major milestones as an office staff member and a volunteer leader in national nursing organizations. Examples of her many accomplishments are National President, American Nephrology Nurses Association (1981-1983); Director, Practice and Legislation, Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric, Neonatal Nurses (1982-1990); Founding Director, Nurse in Washington Internship (1985-1992); Editor-Publisher, The Nurse’s Directory of Capitol Connections: A Directory of Positions and Opportunities for Nurse Participation in Health Policy Development (1991-2000); Nurse Representative, U.S. Joint Working Group on Telehealth (1993-1997).

    Selection Criteria

    The recipient of the Sharp Award should demonstrate extraordinary service activities on behalf of NPs. This award is for achievements that have impacted the NP profession on a national or international level and incorporated the AANP mission into the initiative(s). Additionally, the recipient will have demonstrated and promoted diversity, equity and inclusivity within health care through social justice initiatives that have increased access to quality health care for all.

    The individual nominated may be an NP, nurse or non-nurse who has demonstrated exceptional belief and confidence in NPs and has shown efforts to advance the image, profile and visibility of NPs at the national or international level in three or more of the following areas:

    • Demonstrated leadership experience in an organization at the national or international level that supports and promotes the NP profession.
    • Impacted public policy issues clarifying the legislative and regulatory processes to the successful advancement of the NP profession.
    • Succeeded in building strategic partnerships, coalitions or alliances that have increased public awareness of the NP profession.
    • Utilized or leveraged technology, such as social media, to promote the value and advancement of the NP profession.
    • Provided mentorship or guidance to meet the strategic priorities for a successful organization.
    • Mentored others in the processes and techniques for successful use of technology to meet strategic priorities.
    • Utilized innovative strategies to meet goals in national nursing organizations.

    Make a Nomination

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