Awards of Excellence - Selection Process

Awards Committee

While the National Search and Rescue Secretariat (NSS) administers the Awards of Excellence as part of its National SAR Program mandate, selection of recipients will be entrusted to an independent Awards Committee, administered by the NSS and typically comprised of representatives as follows:

Representatives from these communities with SAR knowledge and experience will be invited to form the SAR Awards of Excellence Committee.  These individuals volunteer their time and expertise to support the National SAR Program Awards of Excellence, and are invited by the NSS from amongst various SAR committees, working groups and the Canadian SAR community.  

Committee members cannot themselves be nominees, or have submitted nominations to the program during the time they serve on the committee.  If a close associate, colleague, or relative of a sitting committee member is nominated for an award, that member will withdraw from voting or commenting on the nominations in that category.

The mathematically-driven evaluation grid eliminates possible subjectivity from one member having a notable impact on the final scoring, as there are six committee members who will be individually evaluating and scoring the submissions.  

Review Process

The nominations will be reviewed in a two-step process:

  1. Administrative review.  Following the final submission date for nominations, the NSS Awards of Excellence Coordinator will review all nominations for completeness and clarity.  Nominators may be contacted should clarification be required.  During this administrative review the NSS may also, upon consultation with the nominator, suggest that a nomination may be better suited for a different category that the one originally selected.  The nominator, however, will have the final decision.

  2. Assessment of Merit.  When the administrative review is complete, the nominations will be forwarded to the Awards of Excellence Committee members for review and scoring. The Committee members will evaluate and score each nomination individually, and submit the scoring sheets to the NSS. Once all Committee members have submitted their individual scoring sheets, the NSS will tabulate the scores for each nomination in each category. Winners in each category will be determined through a ranking system. The highest ranking score in each category will determine the winner.

The NSS reserves the right to present more than one award per category in case of a tie in winning scores; or, to decline presenting an award in one or more categories during a given year, regardless of the number of received nominations. 

Announcement of Results

Once the results have been tabulated, the NSS Awards of Excellence Coordinator will advise each nominator whether their proposal was successful. The NSS will also contact the selected award recipients, and provide them with information on the awards ceremony and related arrangements. Award recipients, nominators, and committee members will be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement valid until the SAR Awards of Excellence results are made public by the Minister of Public Safety Canada or his designate.

The NSS and the Awards of Excellence Committee members will not share details of the nominations, or why a particular nomination was unsuccessful.

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