The All-America City Award recognizes communities that leverage civic engagement, collaboration, inclusiveness and innovation to successfully address local issues.

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Strengthening Democracy through Local Action and Innovation

The National Civic League invites you to apply for the All-America City Award, the nation’s most prestigious community recognition. This award, now in its 75th year, offers a moment for:

  • Reflection, as communities come together to assess their strengths, assets and challenges;
  • Celebration, as local coalitions mobilize to display on a national stage the people, organizations and initiatives that make their community a great place to live, work and play; and
  • Recognition of the resilience that communities across the country show when people come together to respond to local challenges.

2024 Theme

As the 2024 elections approach, many communities are experiencing some of the same threats to democracy we see at the national and international levels, including polarization, economic inequality, anti-democratic activities, and racial and ethnically motivated violence. We are at a decisive moment in history, and strengthening and improving democracy begins locally. When people have meaningful opportunities to help make decisions and solve problems, they build trust, create a stronger sense of community, and help address important challenges.

The 2024 All-America City Award will recognize communities that are finding innovative ways to equitably engage community members in activities that strengthen local democracy, like making it easier to vote, engage in community affairs, and serve in leadership roles.

2024 Areas of Focus 

Projects adhering to this year’s theme include, but are not limited to, those that:

  • Bridging divides across political, social, and economic differences
  • Improving public meetings through innovative practices
  • Undertaking reforms that give people a meaningful say in public decision-making
  • Increasing voter engagement, participation, and education
  • Reforming elections to be transparent, fair, and inclusive
  • Authentically engaging marginalized and/or historically disadvantaged populations
  • Removing barriers to participation in civic life
  • Advancing equity & inclusion
  • Using civic technology
  • Promoting youth civic education and engagement
  • Providing opportunities for civic leadership and participation
  • Creating a stronger sense of belonging and community
  • Promoting deliberative forms of public decision-making

Important Dates

July 2023-May 2024: Webinar Series
September 2023: Application Released
February 13, 2024: Submit Application
March 2024: Finalists Announced
March-June 2024: Competition Preparation
June 7-9, 2024: AAC Competition and Event in Denver, CO


Looking ahead to 2025?
We will be focusing on climate change and sustainability!

Download the 2024 Application

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Webinars, Interviews and Speeches

This page includes webinars, interviews and speeches covering promising practices around the country. The free monthly Promising Practices Webinar series highlights successful projects around the country with speakers from cities implementing creative strategies for civic engagement. These webinars are free and open to anyone who is interested in creating stronger communities. The National Civic League's interview series includes conversations with elected officials, civic engagement experts, figures important to our history and others. Recorded speeches allow you to re-live the keynote addresses of past All-America City awards events and conferences.

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