The J.C. Brown CEO Communication Leadership Award (J.C. Brown Award) recognizes an electric cooperative or public power district chief executive officer/general manager who is committed to advancing communication at the cooperative and in the electric cooperative industry. The award memorializes the late J.C. Brown and his unwavering dedication to the importance of communication as a vital link connecting electric cooperatives with each other and with their consumers, and to advancing the cooperative business model. Read the J.C. Brown fact sheet (PDF) for more detailed information.

The J.C. Brown Award winner is recognized at NRECA's CEO Close-Up conference in January.

Application Process and Timeline

The 2019 award cycle is closed.

The next Call for Entries will open on the second Monday of August and close on the last Monday of October. Specific information for the next cycle will be posted on this page and shared through email and social media notifications.

Please review the 2019 J.C. Brown award criteria (PDF) for an overview of the award and process to help you prepare. Please note subsequent award criteria are subject to change.

2019 J.C. Brown Award Winner

The 2019 award was presented during NRECA's CEO Close-Up conference in January. Congratulations to Duane Highley, president/CEO of Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corp. and Arkansas Electric Cooperatives Inc.

Read more: Arkansas’ Duane Highley Wins J.C. Brown Award

Ready for more inspiration as you consider a J.C. Brown award application? Take a look through these links to see past winners and highlights of recent winners.

Listing of Past J.C. Brown Winners
Information and Highlights of Recent J.C. Brown Winners


Contact Anne Prince,, 703-907-5544

The J.C. Brown CEO Communication Leadership Award is sponsored by the Certified Cooperative Communicator Program and the Council of Rural Electric Communicators in conjunction with the Spotlight on Excellence Awards Program.