Improving Lives and Communities Award

The NLGA Improving Lives and Communities Award is given in partnership with Elevance Health in recognition of a NLGA member who is committed to working within a state, region and/or community to bring partners together around a shared commitment to address the social drivers of health.  Recognizing that a healthy and vibrant community is the best medicine for healthy outcomes, the Award honors these dedicated public servants who work to enhance the lives of their constituents and impact every aspect of community life and do so through addressing social drivers of health such as nutrition, affordable and accessible housing, economic stability, and transportation in order to promote the wellbeing and quality-of-life for individuals and families residing there.

To nominate yourself or an eligible recipient:

  • Visit (Do not include www. in the website). You must register as a user with your name, email address, and create a password. A verification email will be sent to you – click the link in the email to begin your submission. If you have already registered, login using your email address and password.
  • After logging in, click START APPLICATION. Under CATEGORY, select AWARDS NOMINATIONS from the pull-down menu, and then select NLGA IMPROVING LIVES AND COMMUNITIES AWARD from the pull-down menu. Give your nomination an Application Name.
  • Complete the fields within the application. You will have the option to submit attachments in support of your nomination.
  • Click SUBMIT APPLICATION when complete.
  • You can submit multiple nominations for the award using this process.
  • Contact [email protected] for assistance.

Who is eligible to submit a nomination for an award? NLGA Members, their staffs, employees of Elevance Health, any NLGA Partner, and other state government observers, researchers, and advocates are eligible to make nominations. NLGA staff may NOT nominate an individual.

Who is eligible to receive an award? Only NLGA Members are eligible for the award.  This is defined as the state official first in line of gubernatorial succession in every state and U.S. territory.

How will the awardee be selected? The selection is recommended by Elevance Health through an internal process. Nominations are reviewed based on each nominee’s eligibility and the nominee’s contributions as required. The winner will exhibit the benchmark of success described in the award’s criteria. NLGA must agree to the award recipient via its Director. The NLGA Member recipient must attend the NLGA Meeting in person to accept the award, no acceptance virtually or by proxy.

NLGA Improving Lives and Communities Award honorees include the following:

  • 2023:  Iowa Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg (R)
  • 2022: Michigan Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist (D)
  • 2021: New Jersey Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver (D)
  • 2020: Arkansas Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin (R) – Watch Lt. Gov. Griffin accept the award!

From 2015 – 2019, NLGA awarded an Advancing Healthy Lifestyles award as follows:

  • 2015: Connecticut Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman (D)
  • 2016: South Dakota Lt. Governor Matt Michels (R)
  • 2017: Michigan Lt. Governor Brian Calley (R)
  • 2018: New York Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul (D)
  • 2019: Montana Lt. Governor Mike Cooney (D)