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SIPAwards Judging Process

Each category is judged by multiple SIPA members on three or four major criteria based upon the category. Judges can review entries virtually or in-person (see timeline further down). The judges' decisions are final.

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Responsibilities of Judges

Before signing up to be a judge, please make sure you understand the process so you know what to expect. Please scroll down and take a moment to read our Terms & Conditions of Judge Participation before completing your application.

  • Judges can anticipate spending 6-8 hours reading and judging the entries in their category. Of course, participation in individual categories varies from year to year.

  • As a judge, you will be expected to evaluate nominations in your categories of expertise. 

  • After you have reviewed the nomination, you will fill out your judge score sheet online. 

  • Judging Timeline
    • Category assignments will be sent to judges April 2-6, 2018.
    • Virtual Judging: April 8-20, 2018.
    • In-Person Judging: April 12, 2018.
    • Judge evaluations are due no later than Friday, April 20, 2018.

Do the judges change each year?

Generally, about half the judges change each year. We try to balance continuity with fresh perspectives, but in all cases the judges are thoroughly qualified. If you wish to be considered as a 2018 SIPAward judge, please submit your application by February 23, 2018. 


Terms & Conditions for Judge Participation

  • Qualifications: To qualify to participate as a SIPAwards Judge, an individual must have proven experience in the category they would like to review. Potential judges must disclose any possible conflicts of interest. Judges cannot review any entries from companies they have worked with in the past three years.
  • Review of Nominations: By agreeing to participate as a member of the Judge Panel, you agree to review every nomination in every category you are assigned to by SIPA.
  • Conflicts of Interest: A Judge must recuse themselves from discussing, reviewing and voting on particular nominations with which he/she could be perceived of having a conflict of interest. All SIPAwards Judges must promptly notify SIPA in writing of any existing or potential conflicts of interest so that SIPA can determine whether a real or perceived conflict of interest exists and what action SIPA and the Judge shall take to obviate or remedy the conflict. A conflict occurs, for example, where the category includes a nomination of one's own company product/effort/program, or that of a close friend or family member. It can also occur when a nominated entry or company is one in which you personally, a company you own, or your employer has an investment/financial relationship. It also occurs if you, a company you own or your employer participated in the design or marketing of the nomination entry. A conflict may also exist if you previously worked for a company whose product or program is nominated, or previously participated in the design, development, or marketing of the product or service, but do not do so currently. No Judge will review nominations where they have a conflict, as determined by SIPA.
  • Conduct: Judges are asked to carry out their judge responsibilities in a professional manner. If an assignment reacts in a way that a Judge deems inappropriate, please notify Nancy Brand at of the infraction. If a complaint is lodged against a Judge from a nominee, SIPA will fully explore the matter and take action. If a second complaint is filed, SIPA will strip the offending judge of his or her SIPAwards responsibilities.

  • Permitted and Prohibited Uses: Judges must not engage in any activity that would be considered to be a violation of U.S or international copyright law, this includes, but is not limited to:
    • modifying, merging, or transferring copies of the nominated entry
    • disassembling or decompiling in any manner the nominated entry for any reason;
    • placing the nomination onto a server in a manner that makes it accessible to others via a public network such as the Internet.

  • Recusal: If, at any time during the SIPAwards review and/or voting process, a Judge believes that he or she cannot comply with any of these terms and conditions the Judge must notify SIPA immediately and submit a letter to SIPA recusing themselves from discussing, reviewing and voting in the SIPAwards competition, and returning any nomination to its owner.

Judge Application Approval

Once you submit your application to become a judge, you will receive a confirmation email informing you that we are in the process of reviewing your application. We will send you email advising you of your approval status once the application has been reviewed.

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For more details about judging, contact Ronn Levine at