Franklin H. Williams Award

2020 winners will be announced on Dec. 15.

The Franklin H. Williams Award recognizes ethnically diverse returned Peace Corps Volunteers who demonstrate a lifelong commitment to civic engagement, service, diversity, inclusion, world peace, and to the Peace Corps' Third Goal of promoting a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

Established in 1999, the award is named for Franklin H. Williams, an early architect of the Peace Corps. Williams worked at the agency from its inception in 1961 to 1963 and he helped Sargent Shriver—the first Peace Corps director—promote the agency and its programs to the world. The award recognizes Volunteers and staff who self-define as people of color and who have contributed to strengthening Peace Corps as an institution.

In addition to the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) honored as Franklin H. Williams Award recipients, the director of the Peace Corps can honor one individual with the Franklin H. Williams Director’s Award. This award recognizes a non RPCV for their outstanding commitment and steadfast support of peace and civic involvement and their commitment to Peace Corps’ mission and current and Returned Volunteers.

Award Criteria

Returned Volunteer must have:

  • Demonstrated a commitment to lifelong service
  • Self-identified as a RPCV of color
  • Exhibited efforts to generate awareness about the Peace Corps
  • Demonstrated dedication to the promotion of Peace Corps' third goal.

Director’s Awards candidates must:

  • Have concrete examples demonstrating commitment to civic engagement
  • Have steadfastly supported the cause of peace and shown commitment to supporting Peace Corps’ mission and current and Returned Volunteers