The McComas Staff Leadership Award recognizes non-student wage and staff (classified and university) employees who regularly demonstrates the behaviors of a strong leader in support of the goals of the university, college/VP area or department. Employees who work at all Virginia Tech location are eligible.

The award is sponsored by University Organizational and Professional Development, the Division of Human Resources, and the Commission for Staff Policies and Affairs.


All employees in classified or university staff and non-student hourly wage positions (employed with the university for at least one year) are eligible.

These staff members need not be in a management or supervisory position, and in fact can be in any role. Their strength as a leader can be demonstrated through their participation in governance, providing leadership through their membership on steering committees and project teams, in their capacity as a supervisor, or in other capacities related to the university. 


Nominations should specifically describe through examples how the staff member demonstrates leadership qualities and behaviors and how these contribute to the university, college/VP area or department. Leadership examples include but are not limited to the following:

  • Providing appropriate feedback and guidance
  • Encouraging participation and involving others
  • Listening to and respecting the opinions of others
  • Using a leadership style appropriate to the person, task and situation
  • Setting clear goals and objectives – clearly communicating link between individual efforts and organizational mission
  • Involving others in opportunities for development and training
  • Leading by example


Nominations must be submitted online. Nominations are accepted each year in March/April. Self nominations are accepted. The nominee's department head will be asked to confirm the nomination. 

A working group from the Commission for Staff Policies and Affairs, including a representative from University Organizational and Professional Development, reviews the nominations. 


The recipient(s) of the award is recognized at the annual McComas Staff Leadership Seminar. Each recipient will receive a framed certificate and $500 (before taxes). Past winners are not eligible for five years.

For more information contact Heather Parrish.