APRA Annual Awards

Recognizing excellence in the field of Parks, Recreation, Cultural and Community Services 

Award Nominations Open October 1st 2023

Award Categories 

Our Annual Awards honor communities throughout the State of Arizona that demonstrate excellence in long-range planning, resource management and innovative approaches to delivering superb park and recreation services with fiscally sound business practices.

The APRA Award Program includes eleven categories. At the beginning of each calendar year, agencies are invited to submit applications for consideration. Award winning recipients are announced at the ARPA Annual Conference.

A panel of park and recreation professionals reviews and judges all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both local and national levels.

Looking for past winners? Browse through winners going back to 2006. Should you find an error or have documentation prior to 2006 please email jsullivan@apachejunctionaz.gov. 

NEW in 2024

Agencies can submit a program submittal in several categories, but a program/event can only win one category.

The Professional Emeritus Award has changed to the Lifetime Achievement Award. The criteria has changed. 

Awards Presentation

Winners will be announced at the APRA Annual State Conference.

Anyone wishing to attend the event must be registered/paid in advance, including award winners.


Nomination paperwork and supplemental materials must be received in full by the Awards and Citations Committee Chair via email by midnight on the submission deadline date. If paperwork is not in by the specified date and time you will not qualify - the new on-line form will automatically close on the listed deadlines.


Awards must be paid in full when you submit the form; be prepared with credit card details.


Early Bird Deadline

$25 per nomination 

 payment must be made at the time of submission via c/c

All nomination information must be received by the Awards Committee Chair no later than 5:00 pm on April 1st 2024. 

Standard Deadline 

$40 per nomination 

payment must be made at the time of submission via c/c

All nomination information must be received by the Awards Committee Chair no later than 5:00 pm on April 28th 2024

No matter the amount of begging, pleading and excuses there will be no submissions accepted after the deadline!

Nominating Tips

Each year the Awards Committee receives approximately 100 nominations. Each nomination is carefully reviewed by a panel of APRA members from around the State. Their responsibility is to select the most outstanding nominations for recognition. When submitting a nomination, please consider the following suggestions:

  • Read the criteria for each award category and the nomination procedures carefully.

  • The committee suggests that you use award criteria headings when writing your nomination. Each criteria is assigned a point value. Nominations should provide information pertaining directly to each award criteria.
  • Nominations should be clear, concise and well written. Most awards win based on the way in which the submission is written so be sure to pay attention or have your grant writer or PR staff help you wordsmith the document.
  • Submit complete nomination materials, submissions that do not contain all of the required details will not be considered.
  • Spend time preparing the nomination application; and submit in a timely manner.

The way in which you write and present your award will impact the likelihood of winning.  


Contact Jamie Sullivan

Awards and Citations Chair

Awards Banquet Sponsor

Award Plaque Sponsor

12950 N 7th Street  |  Phoenix AZ 85022


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