Visionary City Award

Award Description

Visionary City Award Logo

GMA is partnering with Georgia Trend magazine to bestow the annual Visionary City Award to nine cities—three from each population size group: under 4,999, 5,000-24,999, and over 25,000. This award honors cities that have created positive community change through effective civic engagement and collaboration. Cities are encouraged to submit nominations that foster healthy working relationships and make their communities places where people truly love to live and work. The award application opens on Aug.15, 2022 and closes on Oct. 7, 2022 at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time (ET). Contact Latisha Gray with any questions.

Award Criteria

Preference is given to initiatives/projects that are measurable and judged on how well they demonstrate the following:

  • Civic Engagement: Comprehensive community engagement in the planning and execution of the initiative/project that inspires and fosters unique ways for citizens to participate in the development and improvement of their community
  • Inclusiveness and Equity: Involvement of diverse segments and perspectives (ethnic, racial, socio-economic, age, people with disabilities and others) in initiative/project decision-making
  • Collaboration: Cross-sector collaboration (business, local government, nonprofits, military, etc.) and regional collaboration
  • Innovation: Resourceful methods of delivering services that address a community need, significantly improve an existing service or leverage community resources
  • Long-term Value to the Community: Plans that ensure the continual fulfillment of this initiative/project through the transition of elected officials, city staff and/or initiative/project leaders

Nomination Process

Your nomination should fully articulate how your city’s initiative/project creates positive community change for your residents. 

  • Complete a detailed questionnaire. 
  • Submit a summary no longer than 400 words to supplement the questionnaire. This should not repeat information provided in the questionnaire.
  • Submit no more than three statements expressing the impact of the initiative/project from partners and/or residents outside of city staff and elected officials.
  • Submit no more than four digital photographs, graphics or other printed visual items.
  • (Optional) Submit no more than two videos totaling four minutes in length.

Nomination Examples

  • Community Collaboration: Partnering with businesses, school systems, community groups and non-profits in the city to create mutual investments that decrease costs and/or improve performance
  • Government Collaboration: Partnering with a city’s county, neighboring cities, state and federal partners and non-profits to create mutual investments that decrease costs and/or improve performance
  • Structural Enhancements: The impact of a new facility or city amenity or historic reconstruction and preservation to influence civic engagement and collaboration
  • Public Safety: Can include police, fire, rescue services, emergency planning and coordinated response, building code enforcement, jails, health and mental health initiatives/projects dedicated to engaging the community and fostering civic engagement
  • Working with Youth: Can include civics education, pre-k-12 education, summer programs, parks and recreation and literacy programs
  • Inclusion Opportunities: Intentionally creating a space for thoughtful discussion concerning topics relevant to civic health, community issues, public meetings, etc.

Please submit the following by the award deadline 6:00 p.m on Friday, Oct. 7:

  • Your city’s completed admission form (below)
  • Community impact statements
  • No more than four digital photographs, graphics or other printed visual items
  • 400 word summary and video links (optional)  

Send to Latisha Gray.

Visionary City Award Form

Please answer each question in 300 words or less