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2018 Gold Circle Award Competition Eligibility Requirements

The Gold Circle Awards program operates under the eligibility and submission requirements detailed below. Please familiarize yourself with the requirements to ensure that your entry is complete and that your organization is eligible for entry.  Important: Entries must include project overview, goals/ objectives, strategies/ tactics and success metrics/results achieved. Judges must be able to evaluate what the program was intended to do and whether it achieved its objectives.

Ineligible organizations as well as incomplete or improperly completed entries will be disqualified from competition.  ASAE will retain all Gold Circle Award competition entries - they will not be returned to the submitter.

Eligibility Requirements

1. The Gold Circle Award competition is open to all US-based, non-profit organizations or associations with a 501(c) tax designation. Nonprofit associations outside of the United States may also eligible as long as the content of the entry is in English.  (Please feel free to e-mail goldcircle@asaecenter.org if you have additional questions about your organization’s eligibility.)

2. Both members and non-members of ASAE may submit entries. 

3. The Gold Circle Award competition is open to all 501(c) nonprofit organizations. The competition is open to those who are members of ASAE for Association Leadership as well as non-member. Entries may be submitted on behalf of a 501(c) nonprofit organization by a for-profit business partners; however only the 501(c) nonprofit organization will be recognized as the winner.

4. The submitter listed as the main contact on the entry form must be employed by the organization or association submitting the entry. The entry fee will be based on the submitter's ASAE membership status.

5. All Gold Circle Award trophies will be inscribed with the name of the organization or association the communication was produced for, not the name of the individual employed by said organization or association who created the communication. 

6. Employees and staff of applicants to the Gold Circle Award competition may not serve as a judge for categories their organization is entering.

7. Entries must be completed and distributed between January 1, 2017, and December 31, 2018, are eligible for the 2018 competition.


In order to be eligible for the 2018 Gold Circle Award competition, entries should meet the following submission requirements. If all submission requirements are not met, the entry will be automatically disqualified.

1. All 2018 Gold Circle Award entries must be received (not postmarked) by 5:00 p.m. EST at the ASAE offices by the deadline – February 5, 2018.

2. Materials created by vendors and/or consultants must be submitted in the name of their client organization or association.  (For example, if a consulting firm ABC Consulting is submitting materials created for XYZ Association, the entry must be submitted under the name of XYZ Association)  Vendors must notify their client associations about the submission.  If selected as a winner the award will be presented in the name of the organization.  

3. All entry forms must be completed online and submitted by the deadline. Entry fee payment must also be received in order for the entry to be considered complete All entries must be accompanied by a paid entry fee. Entry fees for ASAE members are $150 for each entry. The fee for non-members is $300 per entry. There are no discount entry fees for multiple entries (see details below for credit card and check payments for entry fees).

4. Categories that require printed samples of submission materials must be received (not postmarked) by February 5, 2018 5:00 p.m. EST at the ASAE offices by the deadline listed. 

5. Late entries and entries missing any required payment and/or samples by the deadlines will be disqualified from the competition. 

6. Multiple entries may be submitted by an organization or association in one or more categories, provided each entry is submitted on a separate entry form and includes the additional entry fee and any required samples.

7. Entry samples must be submitted in original format presented to targeted audience; for categories that require printed materials, six sets of the required printed materials for that category must be provided.  (So if your magazine is transmitted to your members as a PDF, you can submit it to the contest as a PDF, but if you mail hard copies of your magazine to your members, you must submit hard copies with your entry.)

8. In rare cases, Judges may award a Merit Award to an entry. Merit Awards should not be construed as a Gold Circle Award recipient.

9. All entries must include a succinct explanation of the project’s goals, objectives, and the metrics used to determine whether the communication, publication, or program you are entering was successful. To ensure that you submit a strong entry, consider gathering this information before you fill out the entry form. Any entry that does not include a statement of objective and documentation of results achieved will be considered incomplete and disqualified from the competition. 

10. Judges reserve the right to transfer entries submitted incorrectly under a division and/or category to the correct category.

11. Judges may disqualify an entry for non-compliance with submission requirements.

12. All categories that require printed hard copies of submitted materials must include six (6) hard copies with their submissions. These entries must be recieved according to the deadlines outlined in point 1 above.

13. ASAE is not responsible for loss or damage of enty materials and entries will not be returned. 

14. By entering the Gold Circle Award competition, submitters are granting permission for ASAE to post their entries to ASAE’s Online Knowledge Center, a free resource for ASAE members. 

15. Gold Circle Award winners will be recognized with a crystal trophy. Gold Circle Award winners will also be publicized in ASAE communications and publications. 

16. The winner of the Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence will be announced during the 2018 Marketing, Membership & Communications Conference in Washington, DC.  Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence will be selected by ASAE’s Gold Circle Award Committee from among all the 2018 Gold Circle Award recipients. The winner will receive a special trophy.

17. Entries receiving a Merit Awards will receive a plaque.

Submission Checklist:

  • Complete a 2018 Gold Circle Award Electronic Entry Form at www.asaecenter.org/goldcircle.

  • Pay the Gold Circle Award entry fee via credit card or check.


    1. If you are paying by check, please enter the check number on the 2018 Gold Circle Award Electronic Entry Form.

    2. Please make sure you have requested a check from your finance department before filling out the Electronic Entry Form.

    3. Make sure you print a copy of your completed Electronic Entry Form and include it in the envelope with your check.

  • If the category requires print samples for the entry, please also include a copy of your Electronic Entry Form with the print samples.

  • Checks (which should include a copy of the Electronic Entry Form) and print samples (including a copy of the Electronic Entry Form) can be sent to the following address:


Volunteer Relations Department

Attn: Gold Circle Awards

1575 I Street NW

Washington, DC 20005


For more information about the Gold Circle Award competition, please visit www.asaecenter.org/goldcircle or contact Myisha Headen, Manager, Volunteer Relations or at goldcircle@asaecenter.org.