The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Marks 40th Year by Honoring Young Leaders through Awards

This is a guest post from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation's largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to health and health care, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, measurable and timely change.

For 40 years the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has been helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need. As one way to mark its anniversary, RWJF has established the Young Leader Awards: Recognizing Leadership for a Healthier America. Up to 10 awards will be given to young leaders, 40 years of age and under, who offer great promise for leading the way to improved health and health care for all. Each winner will receive an individual award of $40,000.

Third party nominations will be accepted between May 31, 2012, and July 16, 2012.  Award winners will be announced at a RWJF October 25/26, 2102 conference in Princeton, NJ.

To view the Call for Nominations and complete information about selection criteria and nomination requirements, visit

The Young Leaders Awards will recognize emerging leaders who have demonstrated the characteristics needed to improve health and health care through leadership and innovation. These characteristics – a combination of personal attributes, commitment to health and health care, and successful experience – demonstrate an ability to lead and innovate and they signal the potential to become a greater leader in the coming years. Some of the characteristics a nominee will have demonstrated include:

  • The ability to bring others together to achieve results greater than what a single person could bring about
  • The capacity to apply learning beyond the boundaries of a single discipline by developing great ideas into products, services or policies that have made a difference in health and health care
  • A previous experience of impacting health and health care that held potential to extend beyond an initial group of people to reach additional populations, with the likelihood of  remaining sustainable for decades to come

For the complete list of young leader characteristics sought, please visit

These Young Leaders might work, for example, in government, business or not-for-profit organizations and may come from a variety of geographic, disciplinary and philosophical orientations. Examples of potential young leaders include but are not limited to: scientists working on discontinuities with potential to cure or largely control major diseases; technology developers who could lower the cost of health care; role models or behavioral scientists who could greatly increase health consciousness and healthful behaviors; change agents shaping policy, systems, or behavior, who could successfully address important social factors for health; and developers of innovative community programs or new learning approaches that show the way for other communities.

A prestigious panel of experts from diverse fields of innovation will select the awardees to recommend to RWJF. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Pioneer program area sponsors Mayo Clinic's Center for Innovation Transform Symposium student scholarships.

To learn more about this year's Transform Symposium, explore the Transform website or watch the Transform 2012 video.