Nomination Guide / Instructions

Nomination Guide / Instructions

This guide is intended for individuals nominating a colleague for OSA Fellow. We greatly appreciate your participation in this process – it can’t happen without you. We know that writing an effective nomination can seem like a challenge, so we have created this guide to assist you. As a reminder, only current OSA Fellow Members may submit a Fellow nomination.

In the interest of efficiency and speed, all nominations are submitted online through BEAM, OSA’s Awards and Honors System.  All nominations (and references) must be submitted by 15 June. 

Important - To maintain confidentiality, the necessary facts should be obtained from the nominee only if the complete and correct background information is not available elsewhere. Ideally, the nominee should not participate in the nomination process, and in particular, should not ask Fellows for a nomination.

What is Required from Nominators?

  1. Nominee’s name and primary email address
  2. A 25-35 word suggested citation, which typically starts with “for” and should be concise, but broad enough to encompass the nominee’s contributions. Examples of citations.
  3. A 1-page narrative that provides a concise and accurate description of the nominee’s contributions, with an emphasis on impact and activities that support the nomination category you select. Tips for an effective narrative. Note, this must be submitted as a PDF document.
  4. Supporting documents, in PDF format,  (10 pages or less in total):
    1. Current CV/resume
    2. Patent/Publication List (optional)
    3. Other supporting documents (optional)
  5. Identifying the OSA Technical Division that best fits the nominee's work. View a listing of the technical groups under each division.
    1. Bio-Medical Optics
    2. Fabrication, Design & Instrumentation
    3. Information Acquisition, Processing & Display
    4. Optical Interaction Science
    5. Photonics and Opto-Electronics
    6. Vision and Color Division
  6. Selecting the nomination category that best matches the nominee's significant contributions. The Fellow Members Committee will evaluate the nomination within the context of this category. 
    1. Business Leadership
    2. Education
    3. Engineering, Application and Development
    4. Engineering and Science Research
    5. Technical Leadership
    6. Volunteer/Professional Service
  7. Selecting three (3) to five (5) references. Since references are also due by 15 June it’s recommended that you enter the references into BEAM as soon as possible. Once a reference has been added they will immediately receive an email with instructions for submitting their reference, even if you have not completed/submitted the nomination.
  8. Monitoring your nomination to ensure the references are received by the deadline. While OSA sends occasional reminders to references, it is the nominator's responsibility to ensure all materials are submitted by the deadline.

Who is eligible to be Nominated?

Current OSA members who have served with distinction in the advancement of optics and photonics may be proposed for election to the class of Fellow.

OSA serves a diverse and inclusive community worldwide.  Nominations of women and members of underrepresented groups are especially encouraged. Nominations of colleagues from outside your home institution are also encouraged.

The number of Fellows is limited by the Society's bylaws to be no more than 10% of the total OSA Membership and the number elected each year is limited to approximately 0.5% of the current membership total.  Currently, only about 50% of the nominees are elected annually.

To maintain confidentiality, the necessary facts should be obtained from the nominee only if the complete and correct background information is not available elsewhere. Ideally, the nominee should not participate in the nomination process, and in particular, should not ask Fellows for a nomination.

Who can be a Reference?

Three (3) to five (5) references are required for a nomination.

  1. At least one (1) reference must be a current OSA Fellow Member.
  2. It’s recommended that only (1) reference be from the same institution as the nominee.
Need help finding references?
  1. Consider co-authors
  2. Faculty or department colleagues
  3. Those serving with the nominee on Boards, Committees and Councils
  4. Use the OSA Directory for reference

What Information do References see in BEAM?

References are able to view the following information:

  1. Proposed citation for the nominee
  2. 1-page narrative
  3. Nominee’s CV/Resume
  4. Nominee’s category of achievement

What’s the Timeline?

June 15 – Nominations and references are due

June – August – Fellows Member Committee Reviews Nominations

September / October – Approval of Fellows by the Awards Committee & OSA Board of Directors

October – Announcement of new Fellows

            OSA notifies successful nominees by email and mail, their nominators and references are notified via email. Nominators of unsuccessful nominees are also notified by email.

            Nominations are eligible for consideration for up to three years. Nominators are asked to update a continuing nomination before the 15 June deadline. After review by three committees, a nomination is retired.

What are the Evaluation Criteria?

The Fellow Members Committee considers the following criteria when evaluating nominations; no individual is expected to meet all of them. Each nominee is rated numerically on the basis of this information. Overall, the impact of the nominee’s achievements will be evaluated.

  1. Evidence of scientific, technical or engineering accomplishments.
  2. Significant inventions, discoveries or advances in optics and photonics.
  3. Substantial innovation, creativity, and development, advancement or application of science and technology.
  4. Exceptional career as an educator or significant contributions to education.
  5. Sustained and substantial leadership to OSA or service to the global community, including industry.
  6. Entrepreneurial or business leadership critical in the development or growth of a segment of the optics and photonics industry.
  7. Record of important publications related to optics or photonics.
  8. Record of significant patents related to optics or photonics.
  9. Excellence in product development, advancement in systems, application or operation, project management, process development, or other application of technology.
  10. Outstanding engineering application or scientific accomplishments resulting from a managerial, team, or company-wide effort.
  11. Confidential opinions of references.