Rotary Person of the Year

 Frequently Asked Questions


What is the Rotary Person of the Year Award?


The Rotary Club of Milwaukee has no higher honor than the Rotary Person of the Year Award. Annually, our club honors an accomplished local individual who has distinguished herself or himself with professional accomplishments.


What are the criteria for the award? 


This award recognizes individuals, executives and entrepreneurs who, through their profession, are making the Milwaukee community a better place to live and work. As such, past Rotary Person of the Year Award recipients have shown outstanding leadership in the advancement of ideas, products or services.


How is this award different from other awards? 


Unlike other awards that recognize civic and philanthropic achievements, the Rotary Person of the Year honors leaders who build, employ, and have an economic impact in our region.


Is it awarded to Rotarians? 


Members of our club are eligible for the award, but, most often, the winner comes from outside the club.


Who are examples of people who have received the award? 


Last year we celebrated Janan Najeeb, President and CEO of the Milwaukee Muslim Women’s Coalition. Dr. John Raymond, President and CEO of the Medical College of Wisconsin was recognized in 2021, and Paula Kiely, former Milwaukee Public Library, Director/City Librarian received the award in 2020.


Who can nominate someone for Rotary Person of the Year?


The most important step in the process of selecting the Rotary Person of the Year is in your hands. The secret to a successful Rotary Person of the Year selection is the nomination submissions from RCM members. It is common for Rotary members to work together on one nomination submission.


How do I nominate someone for Rotary Person of the Year? 


The Rotary Person of the Year Committee requests that nominators follow these guidelines:

  • Describe why you think the individual you’re nominating meets our criteria and should receive the award.
  • Nominations should be one page or less in length and must be submitted electronically as a Word document.
  • Submit a one-page attachment if necessary to highlight or note any special attributes beyond what you have written in your nomination.


All submissions should be emailed to


 If I submitted a nomination in the past and person was not selected, can I nominate the same person again? 


Nominations are held over for two years. So, if you submitted a nomination last year, it will be automatically reviewed this year. Please consider providing important updates that could positively impact the decision process. If the nomination is more than two years old, you are welcome to submit again.


Can you provide an example of a successful nomination?


Please contact the Rotary office for examples of successful nominations.


 When are nominations due? 


Friday, January 27th 2023


 Who selects the Rotary Person of the Year?


A committee of your fellow Rotarians reviews the nominations. It’s a straight-forward process in which the nominees’ attributes are scrutinized and compared. The impressive list is narrowed, and one award winner is selected.


For any other questions, please email or contact RPOY Committee Chair Jeff Fleming at