How To Apply For the City Cultural Diversity Awards

December 1, 2017 - (3 min read)

The National League of Cities recognizes and celebrates the growing diversity of America’s communities and believes that diversity should be reflected in the activities of all cities and towns across the nation.

As a result, the National League of Cities, in partnership with the National Black Caucus Local Elected Leaders (NBC-LEO), established the City Cultural Diversity Awards in 1995, as a means of demonstrating quality and innovation in relation to the many aspects of cultural diversity. This award program is designed to: 1) encourage citizen involvement in local government-sponsored activities; and 2) enhance and show the appreciation of cultural diversity as a way of life in our municipalities.

The City Cultural Diversity Awards Program showcases examples of how cities achieve excellence in diversity. It also promotes the positive results of “a total community collaboration.” The awards are given to honor community leadership in developing creative and effective programs to improve cultural diversity, based on a simple question:

What programs have you implemented that support cultural diversity in your community? Describe what makes your program a good example of cultural diversity for your community and others.

If your city can answer that question, you should apply for the City Cultural Diversity Award in four easy steps.

To apply:

  1. Describe the program. Tell us how it has enhanced the quality of life for your community and how it fits into an ongoing effort to support diversity in your community.
  2. Answer three core questions on the lessons your city learned from the program that may be helpful for other communities.
  3.  Submit support materials that help tell your story, like a photograph, a flyer or a link to a webpage.
  4. Pay the $100 submission fee!

Award Criteria

Only National League of Cities member cities are eligible to apply.

The City Cultural Diversity Awards application must focus on one municipal program.  If you have additional programs, they must be submitted separately with an additional application form and entry fee.

Up to four City Cultural Diversity first place awards will be presented during the Celebrate Diversity Breakfast at the National League of Cities Congressional City Conference.

The awards will be broken down by the following population categories:

  • The 50,000 and under population category.
  • The 50,001 – 200,000 population category.
  • The 200,001 – 500,000 population category.
  • The over 500,000 population category.

A program must demonstrate:

1) that it has enhanced the quality of life of your community for the improvement of equal opportunity and for the provision of greater access to government and government services by multiracial and multicultural populations;

2) that it has increased citizen participation in government and community activities by all segments of the community;

3) that cultural diversity is an ongoing and recognized effort in your city or town.

Programs may cover government-generated or community-based efforts in your municipality. Each program should ensure that its staff is diverse or exemplifies diversity.

All award recipients will be chosen by an independent panel of judges, the City Cultural Diversity Awards Program Committee, with representatives from each of the NLC constituency groups.