Leadership Conference


2020 In-Person Leadership Conference at the Penn Stater Hotel & Conference Center Cancelled; Virtual Leadership Conference Announced

Due to the ongoing pandemic, and the indefinite suspension of all Special Olympics Pennsylvania events and activities, we are cancelling our in-person Leadership Conference and all related activities. However, in its place, we are planning a Virtual Leadership Conference which will include various online sessions and our Annual Leadership Awards ceremonies. All virtual events will be held on Saturday, August 29, 2020. A final session schedule and registration will be sent to programs by the end of June.

Virtual Athlete Congress, AND New Manager’s Training activities will be managed separately, and you will hear from staff regarding each.

Please note that we are still accepting Annual Awards nominations. We have thousands of success stories of those who have benefited from and contributed to the Special Olympics movement. Now is the time to say “THANK YOU!” Please see that your program takes advantage of the opportunity to recognize deserving athletes and volunteers with this statewide recognition. Show them how much you value their contributions!

2020 Leadership awards applications can be accessed via the Special Olympics Pennsylvania “Submittable” web page: https://specialolympicspa.submittable.com/submit.  

All nominations must be submitted by June 30, 2020. (NEW DATE!).

Future Leadership Conference Dates at The Penn Stater Hotel & Conference Center

  • 2021 - Leadership Conference – Saturday, August 28, 2021 – Sunday, August 29, 2021
  • 2022 - Leadership Conference – Saturday, August 27, 2022 – Sunday, August 28, 2022
  • 2023 - Leadership Conference – Saturday, August 26, 2023 – Sunday, August 27, 2023
2020 Leadership Awards

2020 Leadership Awards - New Application Process

Special Olympics Pennsylvania will be awarding the following awards at the as a part of the 2020 Virtual Leadership Conference (August 29)

  • Athlete Leaders of the Year 
  • Coach of the Year
  • Family of the Year
  • Male/Female Athlete of the Year
  • Management Team Member of the Year
  • Program of the Year
  • Unified Athlete of the Year
  • Volunteer of the Year (Non-management team member)

All programs should take the time to look at the volunteers and athletes who have helped their program work towards the goals and mission of SOPA. Taking time to fill out nomination forms is the 1st step in showing all volunteers and athletes how valued they are to the Special Olympics movement. We have thousands of success stories about the many who have benefited from participating in Special Olympics, and now is the time to say “THANK YOU!”

2020 Leadership awards applications will now live on the “Special Olympics Pennsylvania Submittable website” (https://specialolympicspa.submittable.com/submit) Submittable is a website that will collect application forms for each award. Once you select one of the awards, you will be asked to create a username and password. This way you can save drafts of your work and finish the application at a later date. (Notes on the Submittable website are below)  

  • Only one nominee per category per program. Do not submit multiple nominations for each award category. 
  • Please notify your manager. All submissions must be run past your manager. If you do not have a program manager, please contact your SOPA field director.
  • You may not submit a nomination in a category where your program had a winner last year. This will allow more people to be recognized both within your local program and throughout the state. However, you are welcome to nominate last year’s award winners in a different category.
  • Paid Managers should not submit nominations. While they may provide input into the nomination process, in the interest of fairness, we request that they do not complete or submit the nomination forms. 
  • Please remember the submission is for work done in Program Year 2019

All nominations must be submitted by June 30, 2020.  Click here for Submittable Instructions.

Please contact Carolyn Kushner if you have any questions about the application process and she will walk you through it.