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Awards Validation Unit Guidelines And Information
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The Australian Parachute Federation has several awards available to recognise our highest achieving members. Whether it's in the sky, on the DZ, or at administrative level, we believe that those that make the most outstanding contributions to the sport should be honoured for their efforts.
The APF Service Award
recognises outstanding contribution in the service of sport parachuting.
The APF Master of Sport Parachuting
is the APF's highest honour, awarded in recognition of great personal achievement in any field of sport parachuting. It may only be awarded by a unanimous decision of the Board.
Honorary Life Membership of the APF
recognises exemplary and outstanding service in any capacity.
Nominations for the three awards listed above are assessed by the Awards Validation Unit (AVU) and then considered by the APF Board. Most of the information listed on this site relates to these three awards.
APF Achievement Award
Recognises outstanding personal achievement by an APF member in:
Other - as a member who has made a valuable and significant contribution to the Federation (Note: This award may apply for a single significant achievement, unlike the Service Award which tends to reflect sustained service.)
- Skydiving performance - as a holder of a national or international record, or as a medal recipient at an FAI First Category Event (Note: these are generally World Cups or World Championship events.)
- Nominations are presented to the Board via a report from the Director Judging, Director Competitions, the National Coach or the AVU.
- Judging - as an APF Judge selected to judge at an FAI First Category Event (Note: These are generally World Cup or World Championship Events)
- Nominations are presented to the Board via a report from the Director Judging or Director Competitions.
- Nominations are presented to the Board via a report from the APF President or any Technical Director.
Achievement Awards are subject to the formal approval of the Board, taking into account the criteria and nomination procedures listed above.
Created initially by Tim's family, the annual award recognises an outstanding APF member for their passion, ability, input, excellence and contribution. Nominations are sought from members at large. All nominations are assessed and a recipient is determined by a committee comprising the Bates family, the AVU and the previous year's winner.
Non APF Awards
The APF encourages Area Councils to establish their own award programs. We also urge members to nominate our high achievers for non APF awards, such as those offered by state or local governments.
For national awards, like the Australia Day Honours, the AVU can help with preparation of your nomination. We’d also do this for an FAI or IPC nomination if we believe it’s appropriate. If you want the APF to be the official nominator for such an award, you’d need to bring it to the AVU and allow us plenty of time to assess it.
About the awards process
Who can be nominated for the service types of awards?
Any individual APF member can be nominated, along with any club or organisation that has supported parachuting activities.
It's important to bear in mind that, if an award is granted, it's made on behalf of all the members. Nominees should be of good standing and character. Controversy should be avoided. The APF should not be embarrassed and the value of the award should not be undermined.
Members preparing a nomination must note all the AVU’s assessment guidelines listed below, to ensure the nominee is a worthy recipient.
Who can make an award nomination?
Any individual APF member, APF club, or APF Area Council can make a nomination. Where possible, award nominations should be supported by an Area Council. If you don’t have a council’s support, the AVU is likely to send it back to appropriate officers of the council for assessment. Councils must respect the confidential nature of nominations and should be tactful in soliciting opinion.
How do you prepare a nomination?
Complete the nomination form, attach all relevant supporting documentation and send it all to the APF Office by post or email. The Awards Validation Unit will NOT consider incomplete nominations.
An ideal award nomination would include:
- The completed Form O1 APF Award Nomination form
- A 1-2 page overview of the nominee's experience and contribution, including specific examples of their outstanding efforts. Demonstrate how their contribution is above and beyond what's reasonably expected for somebody in that role.
- 4-6 references from highly regarded people in the sport or in relevant areas outside the sport. (Current contact details essential so the committee can approach the referees.)
No matter how well known the nominee is, do not assume that AVU members are aware of their background.
This is deliberately a formal process, to ensure quality nominations and worthy recipients.
The AVU may recommend the nominee for a different award to the award proposed by the nominator.
What is the AVU?
The Awards Validation Unit is a committee appointed by the Board to assess nominations for APF awards and some non-APF awards. The AVU is responsible for:
- Reviewing assessment guidelines
- Communicating awards information to members.
- Ensuring the APF Office maintains an updated register of awards
Details of the AVU members can be found in the APF Zone, in the list of Appointees and Committees. (Click here)
The AVU will provide a confidential, written recommendation to the board, and, where its decision is not unanimous, that fact will also be revealed to the board.
The information in nominations and referee reports may only be used to help the AVU consider the merits of the nomination. The nominee should not be approached for information or advised of the nomination at any stage.
If a nomination isn’t accepted, the reason will not be divulged, except to the Board in confidence. The nominator or council should be notified of the decision but not the details.
How long does the process take?
It may take up to 3 months for the AVU to contact referees, assess a nomination and make a recommendation to the APF Board. Realistically, you'll need to allow for at least 4 months before a scheduled Board meeting.
Awards Assessment Guidelines
Within these guidelines, the AVU has a degree of discretion. However, it must avoid using such discretion in a way that would 'lower the bar' for APF awards.
- Genuine voluntary work is generally regarded higher than paid contributions.
- Sustained or long term commitment is usually of greater value than a short term contribution. It's highly unlikely that a single event would warrant a service award.
- The quality of the contribution is more important than the time served in a role. The nominee’s input should be demonstrably higher than what’s normally expected for a particular role.
- Avoid Controversy. For example, allegations of criminal activity or drug use may jeopardise the nomination, even if it has nothing to do with the nominee's role in the sport.
- Award recipients should be of good standing with the APF, not owing any debts to the Federation.
- To be consistent in its evaluations, the AVU makes comparisons with previous assessments.
- In special cases, the AVU may initiate a nomination itself. If so, it should seek opinion more widely to allow for fact that a council has not considered the nomination. This fact must be revealed to the Board.
- The AVU and APF Board are extremely reluctant to consider service awards for serving Board members, employees, or others in appointed APF positions. A nomination would only be considered if it is for a contribution well in excess of what’s normally expected for the role.