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INCOSE Foundation announces the David Wright INCOSE Leadership Award

David Wright’s exemplary leadership was one of his many contributions to INCOSE. The INCOSE Foundation wishes to foster further excellent leadership with the David Wright INCOSE Leadership Award. David Wright was a great friend, a great leader, and a man of vision; a vision which fueled his drive, passion, belief, and commitment to INCOSE. His spirit will live on through this Award.David was devoted to the art and practice of system engineering as a means for solving the great challenges of our planet. He foresaw that success would entail both technical and interpersonal competencies and was an outstanding role model working diligently to help INCOSE become a world leader in this regard. He focused both on orchestrating INCOSE internal actions and or increasing INCOSE synergy with other organizations toward the same ends.

The David Wright INCOSE Leadership Award will recognize and encourage INCOSE members who demonstrate similar motivations and competencies. The award will enable them to facilitate synergies between INCOSE and other organizations to pursue expanding the applications of the art and practice of systems engineering for societal benefit.

Awardees will receive a cash award to allow attendance at other organization’s conferences, at INCOSE’s International Workshop and International Symposium including appropriate travel expenses for the three meetings.

In addition, a qualified Council member will mentor the awardee in their endeavors.

Eligibility Requirements:

Applicant shall be a current member of INCOSE. (Note there is no requirement for length of INCOSE Membership.) No one may receive the award more than once.

Any INCOSE member can self-nominate or be nominated by another member. Nominations will be judged by criteria based on David’s character, personality, and approach to systems,

  • Engaging, friendly and gracious
  • A true leader, a very capable practitioner, brilliant yet humble
  • Provider of wise advice, common sense.
  • Respectful and respected by others
  • Positive and vibrant attitude, always willing to assist
  • Delivery focus with a minimum of fuss, not distracted easily
  • Involved everyone, open-minded, international orientation.
  • The applicant is a well-rounded individual – ideally the elusive balance of theory/practice, leadership and team-play, open-mindedness and delivery focus.
Application Process:

The INCOSE Foundation will administer the Award and advertise the availability of the award, including the recommended theme for the application period. The recommended focus area will not be tied to any particular organization or partnership but to a theme. The 2013 theme is program management. However, an applicant with an alternative compelling justification for developing a partnership for a different area is welcome to present their idea.

The Award will be tied to the election cycle for the President-elect. Recipients will be in place for the same two-year term as the President-elect. Nominations will be due on 1 November (when the election begins). Recipient announcement would be made at IW to correspond with installation of President-elect, who would serve as one of the INCOSE mentor(s) for the recipient of award. (Note: For this first cycle, the plan will be to announce the award at IW 2013 and implement beginning with the next election cycle as described above since we will be electing a President-elect for a full term at that time.)

Each applicant must submit an application package to include:

  • Complete resume/curriculum vitae
  • Brief bio sketch
  • Proposal describing the area of interest, the partnering organisation (including a named point of contact), the intended activities and a discussion of the contributions and expected outcomes that will benefit systems engineering practice.
  • Two references familiar with the applicant's capabilities and proposal, who will submit recommendation letters on their behalf outlining the applicant’s capabilities, and their view of the potential benefits to systems engineering practice that could accrue from their proposal.
  • One reference from the applicant’s Chapter leadership or Sector Director endorsing the candidate’s leadership credentials/potential.

Electronic applications should be sent to Ms. Holly Witte at

The selection committee includes:

  • Sitting INCOSE President-elect
  • Standing member from the INCOSE UK Chapter (UK Chapter appoints)
  • INCOSE Foundation representative (Foundation appoints)
  • INCOSE Fellow representative (Fellows appoint)
  • Three representatives selected by the three Sector Directors (one each)

Recipient announcement would be made at IW to correspond with installation of President-elect.

Criteria for assessing Proposed Themes:
  • 1. The applicant demonstrates the personal characteristics required of this leadership award, as evidenced in their application and references.
  • 2. Proposed activity will advance the state of the leadership capability of the recipient in the following areas:
  • a. Leadership qualities and soft-skills
  • b. Purposeful engagement with others, without artificial limitations
  • 3. Proposed activity will be a catalyst for improving the partnership in line with INCOSE’s strategic aims.
  • 4. Proposed activity is underpinned by suitable agreements with the third party organisation. For existing partnerships either INCOSE or the applicant may secure cooperation from the collaborating organization of someone senior enough and influential enough to provide the right introductions, enough information to get the person started, and who should be able to remove any obstacles that might turn up.
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Content Owner: Wright Leadership Award Committee | Last Updated: 11 Jul 2011
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