Home > Call for Award Nominations

Call for Award Nominations

Nominations are closed for all 2020 awards.

Each year ISTSS recognizes achievements of its members and others dedicated to the field of traumatic stress studies. The 2020 Awards Committee, chaired by Andrea Phelps, M. Psych(Clinical), PhD, seeks nominations for this year's awards. Together, these awards celebrate the efforts of those who work to advance the understanding of trauma and its effects. The Society will recognize award winners at the ISTSS 36th Annual Meeting.

How to Nominate

Nominations should include three documents: 
  1. ISTSS Award Nomination Form
  2. A one to two page statement summarizing the major achievements of the nominee
  3. The nominee's summarized curriculum vitae
Please send information in a Word document attachment to an email to Dr. Phelps. Be sure to include the award for which your nominee should be considered.

Lifetime Achievement Award 

This award is the highest honor given by ISTSS. It is awarded to the individual who has made great lifetime contributions to the field of traumatic stress.

New: Innovation Award

This award is given to an individual or group who has used innovative methods to advance the field of traumatic stress in the areas of prevention, research, treatment, teaching, policy and advocacy. 

Candidates will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Evidence of a scientifically informed approach to innovation
  • Evidence of reach and impact of the innovative research, treatment or knowledge translation activity

Applications are especially encouraged for innovative approaches that address diverse populations and health disparities.

ISTSS Outstanding Service Award

The Award for Outstanding Service to ISTSS is designed to recognize a member of ISTSS who has made a significant and sustained contribution to ISTSS that has enhanced the Society and helped it achieve its goals.  Examples would include serving as an initiator and key leader on ISTSS committees, task forces, publications, special interest groups, or policy or other initiatives that have demonstrably enhanced the organization and its ability to effectively (1) engage and serve the membership, (2) foster global collaborations, and/or (3) substantively contribute to the traumatic stress field. Nominees for the award must be current members of ISTSS who are nominated by ISTSS members.  Current ISTSS Board Members are not eligible.

Chaim and Bela Danieli Young Professional Award

The award was established by Dr. Yael Danieli in commemoration of her father and mother. This award recognizes excellence in the traumatic stress field by an individual who has completed his or her training within the last five years. For men or women with primary childcare responsibilities, one year per child can be added up to an eight-year limit post training. For example, an individual who completed his or her post-doctoral fellowship in 2012 and has two children would be eligible until 2019. The traumatic stress field may include research, clinical work, advocacy, policy, clergy or media. The definition of training includes clinical internship, post-doctoral training and medical residency. Please note that the criteria for this award have been updated as of 2011.

Robert S. Laufer Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement

This award is given to an individual or group who has made an outstanding contribution to research in the field of traumatic stress. Robert S. Laufer, PhD, was a sociologist who made early and important contributions to the field of traumatic stress and PTSD through his research on the effects of war experiences on Vietnam combat veterans. Laufer was Professor of Sociology at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, and an author of the groundbreaking study of returning veterans entitled Legacies of Vietnam: Comparative Adjustment of Veterans and Their Peers, published in 1981, with Arthur Egendorf, Ellen Frey-Wouters, and others. Laufer and colleagues expanded the concept of combat exposure to include multiple dimensions. In particular, he focused on witnessing or participating in abusive violence, an important new focus for a guerilla war where there were no front lines, and where enemy combatants and civilians were often difficult to distinguish. He found that abusive violence followed from more extreme exposure to combat, and was associated with distinctive psychological and behavioral outcomes, including different aspects of PTSD. Laufer died prematurely of cancer in 1989 at the age of 47. This award is made in his memory.

Sarah Haley Memorial Award for Clinical Excellence

This award is given to a clinician or group of clinicians in direct service to traumatized individuals. This written and/or verbal communication to the field must exemplify the work of Sarah Haley. Sarah Haley, MSW, was a psychiatric social worker in the VA clinic in Boston, now a part of VA Boston Healthcare System. Beginning with her treatment of a My Lai veteran who was severely distressed and unable to remember aspects of his highly traumatizing experiences in Vietnam, at a time when traumatic experiences were rarely the focus of treatment, she sat with hundreds of veterans who gradually were able to trust her enough to tell their horrific narratives. Working with these men, who repulsed or frightened many other therapists, led to her landmark article entitled When the Patient Reports Atrocities: Specific Treatment Considerations of the Vietnam Veteran, published in the Archives of General Psychiatry in 1974. She established that the Vietnam veteran who had witnessed or taken part in atrocities presented a new and difficult challenge to psychotherapy, one that took courage and conviction on the part of the therapist to help bring about healing. Haley died prematurely of cancer in 1989 at the age of 50. This award is made in her memory.

See past award winners