Virginia Genealogical Society

VGS Awards

In September 1995, the Virginia Genealogical Society's Board of Governors formally established an awards program to recognize individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the genealogical community. Awards are not necessarily annual awards, but will be presented when merited by a nominee. Nomination forms are due by 1 February.

VGS Award Nomination Form

  • Fellow of the Virginia Genealogical Society (FVGS) AwardThis award recognizes individuals for their long-term contributions in a given area, long-term contribution in more than one area, and exemplary service in the promotion of study of genealogy and family history in Virginia.
  • Virginia Records Award.  This award recognizes outstanding contributions in making more records available to researchers through publication. Individuals who have excelled in the areas of publishing, writing, or editing Virginia genealogical source materials.
  • Commonwealth Award. This award recognizes other societies or organizations within the state for performing outstanding service in the promotion of genealogical study. Achievements in this area would include maintaining a genealogical research library, preserving local records, improving genealogical education through special projects, compiling widely-accessible electronic databases, and producing high-quality publications.
  • Volunteer AwardThis award recognizes an individual for exceptional or long-term volunteer service that supports or advances local or statewide Virginia genealogical research.
  • Honorary Life Member Award. This award recognizes an individual for volunteer service and activities over a long period that supported or advanced the goals of the Virginia Genealogical Society.  
  • Chuck Novak Commemorative Outstanding Member Award. This award recognizes a society member who has contributed to the growth and success of VGS by demonstrating an intense commitment to advance the mission of the society. Evidence of commitment may include planning and executing relevant programs such as conferences, serving on committees to promote and improve the society, demonstrating leadership ability by accepting positions as officer and/or board member, inspiring sharing of ideas and collaboration to enhance opportunities for society members, promoting genealogical education through speaking engagements and contributing articles, and maintenance of volunteer activities for at least a decade. Note: Current Board members are eligible for this award, and nominee must be a VGS member.  
Eligibility and Nomination Criteria
  • Current VGS Board members are not eligible for awards.
  • Membership in VGS is not required of a nominator or nominee.
  • Awards can be given posthumously.
  • A nominator may not submit a nominee for more than one award.
  • A nominator may submit multiple nominees for a given award.
  • A nominator may submit nominees for all three categories.
  • Nomination forms are due February 1.
Requested Information
  • Name, address, e-mail, and telephone number of the nominator
  • Name, address, and e-mail of the nominee
  • Supporting information that is brief yet detailed; discussion of at least three achievements is requested
  • Additional documentation, such as a list of publications
  • If award is posthumously, provide additional information including to whom presentation should be made
  • A citation that highlights the significance of the nominee’s achievements

Review of Nominations:  All nominations will be reviewed by the Awards Committee.

Selection and Presentation of Awards:  Successful nominees will be notified prior to the announcement.  Award presentation will be made during the VGS' annual meeting




Fellow of the Virginia Genealogical Society (FVGS)

John Frederick Dorman (1999) deceased 2021

Netti Schreiner-Yantis (1999) deceased October 2022

Robert Young Clay (1999) deceased 2010

Wesley E Pippenger (2005)

Barbara Vines LIttle (2010)

Shirley Langdon Wilcox (2014)


Virginia Records Award Recipients

Dr. Benjamin B. Weisiger, III (posthumously, 1999)

Ruth and Sam Sparacio (1999)

John Vogt (1999)

June Banks Evans (1999)

Patricia B. Duncan (2006)

John Frederick Dorman (2006)

Belle Harrell (2006)

Wesley E. Pippenger (2008)

Virginia Lee Hutcheson Davis (2008)

Mary Kegley (2008)

Jean L Cooper (2009)

Marty Hiatt (2014)

Ronald Ray Turner (2016)

Lena French Fuller (2019)


Commonwealth Award Recipients

Virginia-North Carolina Piedmont Genealogical Society (1999)

Ruth Eastern Lloyd Information Center (RELIC) (2006)

Bedford Genealogical Society (2007)

Virginia-North Piedmont Genealogical Society (2007)

Fairfax Genealogical Society (2008)

Tidewater Genealogical Society (2008)

Stewart Bell Jr. Archives (2013)

Central Rappahannock Heritage Center (2015)

Wythe County Genealogical and Historical Association (2016)

Fairfax Circuit Court Historic Records Center (2017)


Volunteer Award Recipients

Babe Fowler (2007)

Char Bah (2011)

Ruth Blevens (2012)

Temple Lawrence (2012)

Carole Field Lacy (2015)

Ronald Ray Turner (2016)

LaVonne Patterson Allen (2018)

Becky Howard (2019)