Nominations PAO of the Year

updated 30 NOV 2015
To this download guide in Word click here

Guide to Consider For Pennsylvania Member/Units

Public Affairs Officer of the Year Nominations

 (Applies to Squadron, Group and/or Wing level nominees)
Commanders are encouraged to use the following guidelines in selecting a nominee for the Public Affairs Officer (PAO) of the Year Award:
The items below are provided as a guide to what we are looking for in a nominee for a Squadron, Group and/or Wing PAO of the Year Award.  As with all "Of-The-Year Awards" The PAO of the Year is not awarded to a PAO/nominee for simply “doing his/her job.”
In other words, we are looking for nominees who have raised the bar, and gone above and beyond, to greatly enhance the perceived value of Civil Air Patrol to the community, and has developed a truly exemplary unit Public Affairs program that is a model for others to follow.
Nominations may be made utilizing the CAPF120 with supporting documentation provided as appropriate.
Guide for the Nomination and Submission Package

  • Is the nominee a PAO (Unit, Group or Wing level)? or is the nominee a staff or general member? (any senior member may be nominated for PAOoty Award.)
  • Is the nominee a senior member in good standing? AND safety current?
  • Does the nominee have both a current public affairs AND crisis communications plan on file with PAWG PAO?  Is there documentation available to substantiate each plan’s usefulness to the unit/group/wing and its overall effectiveness?  Has this plan been reviewed and updated annually as per CAPR 190-1?
  • Has the nominee progressed in the CAP professional development program and has he/she been enrolled in or completed the PAO Specialty Track?  What rating(s) has the nominee achieved?
  • Has the nominee participated in other CAP programs?
  • Is the nominee a rated and current (mission qualified) CAP Public Information Officer (PIO)?  If so, describe the nominee’s participation in mission training and/or actual missions. This would also be a good place to talk about how the nominee supports the unit in crisis situations and emergency services missions.)
  • Relying upon the nominee’s PA Plan, select the top three goals/objectives and describe in detail how the nominee has succeeded in supporting the unit’s mission through these Public Affairs initiatives. (Did the nominee’s effort show creativity, innovation, appropriate research and wise selection of implementation strategies leading to successful achievement of each goal? Do the nominee’s accomplishments stand out in comparison to his/her peers? Explain and provide documentation.)
  • Describe how the nominee has greatly enhanced the perceived value of Civil Air Patrol to the community. Include example press releases, and media coverage (articles published, and/or links to TV and radio coverage, social media/ Facebook etc.)
  • List any other major accomplishment of the nominee not cited above. (What projects and major tasking(s) have been completed by the nominee and what was the benefit to the unit/group/wing of those projects/tasking?
  • Is the nominee a valuable member of the commander’s team? Explain.
  • Letters of Recommendation – Commanders, unit staff, and general membership are encouraged to include letters of recommendation for their nominee for consideration by the Wing CC and the Wing Awards Review Board. This is your chance to “endorse” your nominee and his/her achievements. These LORs must be part of the package that is submitted to Headquarters.

Nominations should be submitted electronically in one pdf file with the CAPF120 “Other – PAO of the Year” and include supporting documentation (see attached)
Nominations are due to the Wing Commander by 15 January. Nominations are to emailed to
If you have questions or need assistance please contact the PAWG PAO, Lt Col Annette Carlson at  - Lt Col Carlson is available to review and to provide suggestions on your submittal if emailed to her at least five days prior to the due date.



CAPR 190-1 Paragraph 13a - Public Affairs Program - PAO of the Year:
14. Awards. Each year, Civil Air Patrol recognizes the Public Affairs Officer at any level (unit, group, wing and region) who excels in conducting and managing an exceptional public affairs program.
a. The Colonel Robert (Bud) V. Payton Public Affairs Officer of the Year award recognizes the PAO who epitomizes the Public Affairs program of CAP. The award is presented to the PAO at any level of the organization who provides outstanding and exemplary support for the CAP Cadet Program, Aerospace Education Program and Emergency Services Program and has a Public Affairs plan that greatly enhances the perceived value of Civil Air Patrol to the community.   Unit commanders should submit nominations to the wing commander for consideration By 15 January.
CAPP201 - Specialty Track Study Guide-Public Affairs Officer
CAPF120 - Recommendation for Decoration
CAPP39-3 Awards Made Easy - specifically pages 4 thru 8
CAP Knowledgebase:  PAO of the Year
Criteria To Consider For National PAO Of The Year Nominations
CAP National Public Affairs website:
CAP PA Wing Public Affairs website