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Innovation Awards

Applications Now being Accepted for the 2016 J. Robert Havlick and Thomas H. Muehlenbeck Award

An innovation is “the creative idea become realized”

The J. Robert Havlick Award for Innovation in Local Government was conceptualized by The Innovation Groups’ (now the Alliance for Innovation) Board of Directors to honor Bob Havlick, founder of IG who retired in 2003. One local government, its internal champion(s), and the innovation were acknowledged with the J. Robert Havlick Award for Innovation in Local Government. In addition, one local government and its program, initiative, project, etc. received the Thomas H. Muehlenbeck Award for Excellence in Local Government. Muehlenbeck has served as the City Manager of Plano, TX since 1987 and was The Innovation Groups Board of Directors’ Chair for 10 years.

Several awards were also given for outstanding achievements in local government innovation.

Criteria for the Awards

The submission should demonstrate one or more of the following:

  • How it successfully addressed an important dilemma of public service delivery concerns.
  • How it has had a positive impact and tremendous benefit to the community or jurisdiction.
  • A quantum leap of creativity.
  • The government’s commitment and support of bringing the innovation to life.
  • Service delivery improvements and/or efficiencies.
  • Organizational improvement because of the innovation.
  • Tangible effectiveness and results.

The Selection Process:

Only Alliance for Innovation members are eligible to apply for an innovation award.  The Award Selection Committee, made up of Alliance for Innovation Board of Directors, will review the applications and select the winners.

The Notification Process: 

All award applicants will be notified of the Committee’s decision via email by the end of March 2016. Those receiving awards will be announced and recognized throughout the 2016 Transforming Local Government Conference (Saint Paul, MN, June 15-17). The Muehlenbeck and Havlick Award winners will receive one free registration to the conference.

The Application Process:

To apply for an Innovation Award please complete the application HERE and return by January 29, 2016 to Ryan Spillers at . For more information please contact Ryan Spillers at


Congratulations to the 2015 Havlick/muehlenbeck award winners

J. Robert Havlick Award for Innovation in Local Government:

Catawba County, NC - Public Health Farmers Market: Improving WIC Utilization

Thomas H. Muehlenbeck Award for Excellence:

City of Greeley, CO - Community Image Initiative - Greeley Unexpected 

Outstanding Achievement in Innovation Awards:

City of Clearwater, FL - Ready for Today - Preparing for Tomorrow - RCW 2 GWR 4 CLW = 2025

Chesterfield County, VA - Whack-A-Watt

City of Loveland, CO - Creating a Replicable Model for Electric Vehicles Through Public-Private Partnerships

Maricopa County, AZ - The Great Reading Adventure

City of Olathe, KS - Healthy Communities

City of Peoria, AZ - United Community Action Network

City of Scottsdale, AZ - Eureka! Using Libraries to Create Innovation Hot Spots

City of Virginia Beach, VA - Regional Shared Services Project

the 2014 award submissions may be found in the knowledge network.