Skip to content
Get in touch | (614) 563-0788
ESDY Awards Eligibility

Individuals or entities that have promoted the principles of self determination which affected their own lives or the lives of others.

Principles of Self-Determination:

Freedom: The exercise of the same rights as all citizens. People with disabilities, with assistance when necessary, will decide where they want to live, with whom they want to live and how their time will be spent. They have the same rights, guaranteed under the Constitution, as everyone. Rights are not denied in order to get supports or services.

Authority: The control of whatever sums of money are needed for one’s own support and the authority to change what that money is used to buy. This is accomplished through the development of an individual budget that “moves” with the person.

Support: The decision about support are made by the person with a disability. This means that individuals do not receive “supervision” and “staffing”. Rather, people with a disability are encouraged to seek support from unpaid personal relationships, technology, community sources and direct the use of public funds to buy any number of discrete tasks for which they need assistance. This includes support for the person with the disability to use their talents and skills to generate personal income.

Responsibility: The wise use of public dollars. Dollars are used as an investment in a person’s life and not handled as resources to purchase services or slots. The responsibility of the person includes the ordinary obligations of all members of the community and allows individuals to contribute to their communities in meaningful ways.

Confirmation: Recognizing, demonstrating and supporting the control a person needs to have to be a leader and to create change. This means an individual is a leader with self-determination and spreads the word to others. The individual does everything he/ she can do to educate and mentor others to help them take control of the important decisions in their lives.  Some ways of doing this may include serving on boards and committees of community organizations.


What to Include:

  1. Nominations should explain how the nominee demonstrates excellence in Principles of Self Determination by accomplishing one or more of the five Principles described on the left.
  2. Nominations should be detailed and specific, providing examples of merit wherever possible.
  3. Current Picture of the Nominee


  • Completed nominations are due by 5:00 p.m. on August 31 each year.
  • Send application to Jeanette Carpenter, Knox County Board of DD,11700 Upper Gilchrist Rd, Mt Vernon, OH 43050  or Email to
  • The Selection Committee will hold all nominations in confidence. Please do not tell the person they are being nominated!!!