The 2023 WEF Awards application period closed on March 31, 2023. Award applicants and/or nominators were notified of their submission status via email in early July 2023.
Need more information on an award before beginning the application? Click on an award's name to see all the details on it, including the details submission criteria.
- Fair Distinguished Engineering Educator
- Operator Scholarship
- Public Communication & Outreach Program Award
- WEF Canham Graduate Studies Scholarship
- Industrial Water Quality Achievement
- Innovative Technology
- Member Association Excellence
- Water Quality Improvement
- WEF Project Excellence
- WEF Fellows
- Camp Applied Research
- Collection Systems Award
- Emerson Distinguished Service Medal
- Engelbrecht International Service Award
- Outstanding Young Water Environment Professional
- Public Officials
- Ralph Fuhrman Medal for Outstanding Water Quality Academic-Practice Collaboration
- Schroepfer Innovative Facility Design
- Water Heroes
- WEF Mentorship Award
- WEF Safety
- W. Wesley Eckenfelder Industrial Water Quality Lifetime Achievement
Fair Distinguished Engineering Educator
Recognizing accomplishments in research and the education and development of future engineers, this medal honors Gordon Maskew Fair, a professor of sanitary engineering at Harvard University, who achieved exceptional results in preparing students for the water environment profession.
The purpose is to provide funding for individuals who are seeking water sector operator education, training, or certification to enter the industry or to advance their knowledge, skills, abilities, or license.
Public Communication & Outreach Program
The WEF Public Communication & Outreach Program Awards recognize WEF members for significant accomplishments in promoting public awareness and the understanding of water environment issues through the development and implementation of outreach, education and/or communication programs. WEF Member Associations, individual WEF members, and other (non-WEF/MA) organizations, including groups, events and campaigns, are eligible for this award.
WEF Canham Graduate Studies Scholarship
This scholarship provides $25,000 for a post-baccalaureate student in the water environment field. The scholarship is for education-related expenses.
Industrial Water Quality Achievement
The Industrial Water Quality Achievement Award is presented to a corporation and, if applicable, to its engineering firm that best demonstrates significant, lasting, and measurable excellence in water quality improvement or in the prevention of water quality degradation as demonstrated by innovative design and operation of an industrial wastewater, pretreatment or source prevention program.
Recognizes WEF Exhibitor Members who have introduced new innovative products or services related to our industry.
Member Association Excellence
The Member Association Awards are established to recognize outstanding Member Associations and Member Associations that excel in areas of membership retention, financial strength, new memberships, scholarship programs, student achievement and support, technology transfers, and/or award programs.
Water Quality Improvement
The Water Quality Improvement Award is presented annually to the water quality improvement program that best demonstrates significant, lasting, and measurable excellence in water quality improvement or in the prevention of water quality degradation in a region, basin, or water body.
WEF Project Excellence
WEF's annual Project Excellence Award pays tribute to excellence and innovation in the execution of projects and programs in the water sector.
The WEF Fellows Program recognizes the 20+ years of professional achievements, stature, and contributions of WEF members to the preservation and enhancement of the global water environment in the practice areas served by WEF.
Camp Applied Research
Recognizes a WEF member who demonstrates a unique application of basic research or fundamental principles through the design or development of a wastewater collection or treatment system.
Collection Systems Award
The Collection System Award is presented to an individual for contributions to the advancement of the state-of-the-art wastewater collection.
Emerson Distinguished Service Medal
This award commemorates the service of the first president of the Federation, Charles Alvin Emerson, who served from 1928 to 1941, and was its first honorary member. This award is presented to an individual member of the Water Environment Federation whose significant career contributions to the Federation and the water environment profession merit recognition.
Engelbrecht International Service Award
The Engelbrecht International Service Award was named in memory of Richard S. Engelbrecht, who served as Federation President in 1977-78. This award recognizes sustained and significant contributions to the furtherance and improvement of the international activities of the Water Environment Federation.
The Public Officials Award is presented to an elected or appointed public official that has made a documented, significant contribution in the areas of clean water legislation, public policy, government service, or another area of public prominence that resulted in improvements to the water environment. The award can be presented for public service at the local, state, provincial or national level.
This award commemorates the service of Water Environment Federation Past-President Dr. Ralph E. Fuhrman, who was a master of collaboration among the academicians and practitioners. The Medal promotes and rewards extraordinary collaborative work by two or more people.
Schroepfer Innovative Facility Design
The Schroepfer Medal recognizes excellence in conceiving and directing the design of a project to achieve substantial cost savings or economic benefit, while achieving environmental objectives. The medal is in honor of George J. Schroepfer, WEF's third President, and an educator who stressed the economics in design of wastewater facilities. This award is presented to an engineering consultant, municipal engineer, or industrial engineer who is a professional engineer in responsible charge of the design of facilities for the conveyance, treatment or disposal of wastewater and/or treatment residues.
The purpose of the Water Heroes program is to recognize individuals or municipalities who performed duties above and beyond the usual call of duty during an emergency situation to continue to protect the public and the environment. These duties shall elevate the status of the water sector industry.
WEF Mentorship Award
The purpose of the award is to acknowledge those WEF members who have had a significant impact on the professional and personal development of one or more water quality professionals, including providing personal, social, and intellectual support.
The purpose of this award is to encourage active and effective safety programs in the water environment field and to recognize entities that not only invest their resources to develop high-quality safety programs and adopt them within their own culture but also actively seek out opportunities to share these programs with others in the water industry for the benefit of all.
The W. Wesley Eckenfelder Industrial Water Quality Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes and honors an individual who has made substantial and measurable engineering, scientific, and/or operations contributions to the management or treatment of industrial wastes related to the improvement of water quality.