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Champion of Talent Development Award

This award is presented to an individual from outside the profession whose commitment, advocacy, and actions in support of talent development within or outside an organization have influenced audiences, organizations, or society.

This award has been presented to:

  • Daniel H. Pink, author and thought leader
  • Dr. Jeff J. Clawson, "Father of Emergency Medical Dispatch"
  • Carol Dweck, professor of psychology and author of Mindset: The New Psychology of Success
  • Liz Wiseman, author Multipliers
  • Chris Anderson, TED
  • Azim Premji, chairman, Wipro Limited
  • Salman Khan, founder, Khan Academy
  • Doug Conant, founder and CEO of Conant Leadership
  • Ram Charan, business consultant
  • Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger III, founder and CEO of Safety Reliability Methods
  • John Seely Brown, independent co-chair of Deloitte's Center for the Edge
  • Robert Kaplan and David Norton, creators of the Balanced Scorecard
  • Jim Collins, researcher and author
  • Frances Hesselbein, chairman of the board of governors, Frances Hesselbein Leadership Institute
  • Danny Wegman, CEO of Wegmans Food Markets
  • Steven Piersanti, president of Berrett-Koehler Publishers
  • Frederick W. Smith, CEO of Federal Express
  • John Chambers, CEO of Cisco Systems
  • William Taylor and Alan Webber, founding editors of Fast Company
  • Robert W. Galvin, chairman of the executive committee of Motorola
  • Thomas A. Stewart, board of editors of Fortune magazine
  • John F. Welch, chairman and CEO of the General Electric Company


Nominations will be evaluated on the scope and depth of documented advocacy, commitment, and actions that have promoted talent development. The criteria are:

  • Scope: The nominee's actions, ideas, writing, or speaking influences audiences and organizations in the United States or globally.
  • Commitment: The nominee promotes the value of learning and the development of talent as a strategic differentiator for organizations or society. The nominee's own work has also demonstrated this commitment.
  • Actions: The nominee's work includes multiple examples of why the development of talent matters. Within or outside an organization, the nominee has publicly demonstrated (in written work or through speeches or presentations) that developing the knowledge, skills, and abilities of people can positively affect organizations and society.


Eligible candidates are individuals from outside the talent development field. Elected officials are not eligible.

Submission Requirements

1. Application

2. Please direct questions to:

Kristen Fyfe-Mills

Selection Procedure
Nominators will receive notification of the decisions regarding their entries by March 30, 2020.

The award winners will be honored at the awards ceremony held during the ATD International Conference & Exposition in May 2020, in Denver, CO. Announcements of the award will be in ATD publications and on the ATD website.