How do you describe Chairman's in one line?

I’m going to be a senior next year and was working on my resume as part of class. When I was listing the awards our team has won I had to give my best, one-line description for each award (because you must always assume that the person reading your resume has no clue what the awards mean). I had a really hard time describing Chairman’s in one line. My description ended up being three lines, but 1. I still didn’t feel like I had done it justice, and 2. I got yelled at by my teacher because it was too long. So, Chief Delphi, what is your best ONE LINE description of the Chairman’s Award to someone who doesn’t have a clue?

One-line descriptions of other awards are fine in addition, but please try to focus on the Chairman’s Award

the team that most exemplified the spirit of FIRST…as in…

“I was on the team that best exemplified the spirit of FIRST”
“I was on the team that exemplified gracious professionalism”

I’d try…

“Built partnerships within the community to change students’ perception of science and engineering.”

If your team won Chairman’s, that’d go under a different heading.

If you had to explain the CA in one word, it would be “IMPACT”.

But you asked for one sentence so let’s try:

short version:
“The Chairman’s Award rewards a team for their educational and community impact”

long version:
“The Chairman’s Award rewards a team for their efforts to promote educational excellence and change cultural attitudes and perceptions about engineering and science.”

Something like that. Saying you are promoting FIRST values isn’t helpful to the general audience. That is coded language that only someone “in the club” will understand. And those people already know (or should know) what the CA is. Ditto for the GP part. That has to be translated to the general audience as “good sportmanship” (rough translation) when giving the initial talk to the uninitiated.

Everyone needs to have 2 pitches instantly available.

The first pitch is “the elevator ride”. A good one or two liner that explains the world in just a few seconds.

The first pitch is “the taxi ride”. A slightly more detailed thing that takes about 2 minutes to pitch.

Some people mistakenly think that FIRST exists to promote robots, like they need some sort of lobbying group. It’s not about the robots. It’s about the IMPACT !!

The reason FIRST exists it to get people to consider engineering/math/science activities/careers/etc as a positive desirable pursuit. It is to give relevance to all that stuff students study in school and hopefully motives students to pursue careers. It is about wall to wall educational impact, about motivating students to take a forward leaning stance and start taking an active, not passive stance toward learning. Hands on learning is way more fun than chalk and talk.

Ed Barker
Head Coach
Kell Robotics, #1311
Peachtree Regional Chairmans Award 2007

The FIRST mission is about partnership and impact.

Following Dave’s advice about stealing from the best, here’s my (verbose) one-sentence take:

The Chairman’s Award recognizes a FIRST team’s success in forming partnerships among their communities, educational institutions, and industrial sponsors to help change the way young people regard science and technology, and to inspire appreciation for the real-life rewards and career opportunities in these fields.

Just nit picking… it seems like partnership is the means and impact is the ends. The how and the what.

I’m curious as to you you put “industrial sponsors”. Why not just sponsors?


Thanks for nit-picking – details are what I love.

I rate the how as highly as the what, and the means just has highly as the ends. How we achieve an objective is just as important as the objective itself.

Impact is good, impact through partnership is the mission. Professionalism is good, gracious professionalism is our core value.

I use the word “industrial” in a broad sense – I tend to think of everyone in FIRST as belonging to one or more of the sets: community, education, industry.

The Chairman’s Award recognizes a single team, each year, that demonstrates the highest ideals of citizenship and “gracious professionalism” through their actions on and off the competition field and in their community, and carries such a great importance that a team may only be recognized once for this honor.

An award for being a “Big Brother” to the community.


The Chairman’s Award recognizes the team(s) who all of the other teams should be looking up to. It says “if your team needs an example, here’s the best one we can find for you”.

To add to all of these thoughts,
The Chairman’s Award is awarded to the team that best implements the FIRST acronym in ways that impact and change their community, their region, and potentially, our world.

Aside: one of my very favorite parts of the Championship is the Hall of Fame. It is a wonderful experience to see the teams that have worked so hard for the Championship recognition of this award, sharing their wealth of knowledge and experience with all of us at the display.