Donald Hunter Excellence in Economic Development Planning Award

Deadline: Friday, February 7, 2014

The annual Donald E. Hunter Excellence in Economic Development Planning Award from the APA Economic Development Division is awarded to a community that shows innovation and success with an economic development plan or project.

Award winners receive a plaque as well as recognition at the annual Economic Development Division business meeting and reception at the 2014 APA National Planning Conference (in Atlanta). In addition, the award winner will be featured in the Division's newsletter, News & Views, and announcements will be disseminated through social media, email, and other digital outlets. In the past, Honorable Mentions have been selected and recognized in a similar manner.


  • Any economic development plan or project implemented in the United States or Canada within the last 10 years is eligible.
  • Any member of the American Planning Association may make a nomination. At least one individual who is nominating or submitting an application must be a member of the Economic Development Division.

    Join the Division

  • Members of the Economic Development Division Executive Committee and Awards Committee, APA Board Members, and AICP Commissioners are ineligible to make a nomination or submit for an award.

Submission Information

Applications should be submitted by email (or FTP/file sharing site) to Julie Herlands at Please indicate in the subject line:  "[Your Jurisdiction] Economic Development Division Award Application"

Contact information for questions:

Julie Herlands, AICP
Phone: 301-320-6900 x15

Application Requirements

There is no formal application form.  Please follow these guidelines:

Overview: Narrative Description of the Plan or Project

Provide description (up to 250 words) of the plan or project and describe how the project fits one or both of the following definitions:

  • Economic Development:  The creation of new employment and wealth-generating activities through the mobilization of human, financial, physical, and natural resources.
  • Economic Development Planning:  A series of deliberate activities leading to initiatives that enhance the jurisdiction's economic opportunities and quality of life.

Attachment A: Nominee's Fulfillment of Award Criteria

For each of the following criteria, provide up to a 50- to 100-word description of the project.  The entire attachment (all six criteria) should be no more than two pages (500 words).

  1. Originality: Unique concept or appreciable refinement of existing techniques or procedures.
  2. Transferability: Potential application to other areas or projects.
  3. Quality: Excellence of thought, analysis, writing, graphics, and professional character of the presentation.
  4. Implementation and Results: Effectiveness of work proposals that have been carried out or show the promise of being carried out. (Please quantify results wherever possible.)
  5. Comprehensiveness:  Submittal demonstrates a thorough and in-depth approach.
  6. Contribution to Community:  Demonstrates application to community needs and desires.

Attachment B (Optional): Supporting Materials

Applicants may provide relevant supporting material such as news clippings, brochures, slides, videos, etc. Please be judicious with supporting materials and only include documentation that clearly supports the application.

Previous Winners

Past winners of this award