Awards and Honors / Prix et honneurs

Over the years, the Association has developed awards and honors to recognize individuals and organizations for vexillological work and service. The post-nominals for individuals listed below are for the then-current postgraduate degree and military branch for flag officers. The + symbol indicates the individual is deceased.

Whitney Smith Fellows

Named for the Association’s founder and first president, the executive board may elect as a Whitney Smith Fellow any active member who makes an outstanding contribution to North American vexillology, upon the recommendation of the awards and honors committee. Fellows are entitled to use the post-nominal WSF. Only a single fellow may be elected annually and only when there is a worthy recipient. The award consists of a badge suspended on a cord and a certificate. This is the Association’s highest recognition.

  • Whitney Smith+ Ph.D. (1992)
  • Grace Rogers Cooper+ (1994)
  • Scot M. Guenter Ph.D. (1998)
  • John M. Purcell+ Ph.D.+ (1999)
  • Charles A. Spain J.D. (2013)

Honorary Membership / Membre honoraire

Honorary Membership / Membre honoraire is conferred by the executive board on an individual who renders distinguished service furthering the Association’s purpose, upon the recommendation of the awards and honors committee. Currently recipients must either (1) have not been a member for the 25 years preceding the individual’s election or (2) a past president. The award consists of a certificate.

  • Vivian W. Lehman+ (1970)
  • Rear Admiral William Rea Furlong USN+ (1972)
  • Robert S. Gauron+ (1982)
  • Harry F. Manogg+ (2001)
  • The Rt. Rev. D. Ralph Spence (2001)
  • The Rev. John R. B. Szala+ (2001)
  • Whitney Smith+ Ph.D. (2009)
  • John M. Purcell+ Ph.D.+ (2010)
  • Scot M. Guenter Ph.D. (2011)
  • Austin Smith (2013)
  • Kirby A. Baker Ph.D. (2013)
  • Don E. Carleton Ph.D. (2013)

Captain William Driver Award / Prix Capitaine-William-Driver

The Captain William Driver Award / Prix Capitaine-William-Driver is conferred by the executive board on the individual who presents the best paper as part of annual meeting’s scientific program, upon the recommendation of the award judges consisting of the executive board and the three most recent Driver Award recipients. Under the award guidelines, important factors in judging the papers are the quality of research and the presentation of new documented information. The award honors Captain William Driver, who coined the phrase “Old Glory” to refer to the U.S. flag. Capt. Driver was from Salem, Massachusetts, and the award was first presented when NAVA 13 was held there in 1979. The award consists of a certificate and an honorarium that currently is US$250. Only one award may be given at an annual meeting; however, the executive board may designate an additional paper as “Honorable Mention / Mention honorable.” Currently an individual may not receive the award more frequently than once every three years, and members of the executive board are not eligible. The honorarium is usually underwritten by the Association’s organizational members.

  • Robert S. Gauron+, The Life and Achievement of “Old Glory” Driver—Godfather to the United States Flag and Fascinating Flags of Plundering Pirates and Profiteering Privateers (1979)
  • Emmet V. Mittlebeeler+ J.D., Ph.D., Flag Profanation: An Aegean Perspective (1980)
  • James A. Croft, South African Civic Flags (1981)
  • John M. Hartvigsen, The Brandywine Flag (1982)
  • Whitney Smith+ Ph.D., Vexillology and Patriotism (1983)
  • James J. Ferrigan III, A Flag Incident in San Francisco (1984)
  • Scot M. Guenter M.A., This Flag Has Flown Over the U.S. Capitol (1985)
    ◦ Henry Untermeyer+, The New Flag of the City of Palm Springs (1985 Honorable Mention / Mention honorable)
  • Alistair B. Fraser Ph.D., Chadwick and the Canadian Red Ensign (1986)
  • Arnold F. Rabbow Ph.D.+, Flags: Life After Death (1987)
  • Donald T. Healy, Evolutionary Vexillography (1988)
  • Kevin Harrington M.A.(T.), From Kava’s Apron to the Butcher’s Apron: Names and Nicknames of Flags (1989)
  • Mark A. B. LeMessurier, The Signal and Commercial Flags of St. John’s, Newfoundland c.1500–c.1900 (1990)
  • Charles A. Spain J.D., The Flags and Seals of Texas (1991)
    ◦ Gustavo Tracchia, The Banners of Yale’s Residential Colleges (1991 Honorable Mention / Mention honorable)
  • Anne M. Platoff, Where No Flag Has Gone Before: Political and Technical Aspects of Placing of a Flag on the Moon (1992)
  • Peter B. Edwards, Yacht Flags—A Preliminary Study (1993)
  • Robert J. Goldstein Ph.D., Whatever Happened to the Great 1980–90 Flag Desecration Controversy? (1994)
  • Donald T. Healy, Flags of the Native American Peoples of the United States (1995)
  • John H. Gámez, Evolution of the U.S. National Air Ensign: 1861–Present (1996)
  • Gustavo Tracchia, Argentine Flags Monument (1997)
  • Luc V. Baronian, American-Influenced Flags in Lower Canada (1998)
  • Mason E. Kaye, Tribar Flags—A Survey and Analysis (1999)
  • Kevin Harrington M.A.(T.), The Michigan Flags Project (2000)
  • Gustavo Tracchia, The Banners of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table (2001)
  • Peter A. Ansoff, The First U.S. Navy Jack (2002)
  • Joseph E. Donovan, Two Irish Flags: A Comparative Analysis (2003)
  • Devereaux D. Cannon, Jr. J.D.+, The Genesis of the Stars and Bars (2004)
  • David B. Martucci, Flag and Symbol Usage in Early New England (2005)
  • Kenneth W. Reynolds Ph.D., To Make the Unmistakable Signal “CANADA”: The Canadian Army’s “Battle Flag” During the Second World War (2006)
  • Perry Dane J.D., Flags in Context: A Discussion of Design, Genre, and Aesthetics (2007)
  • Anne M. Platoff M.S., M.A., Lions and Babrs and Bears: Analyzing the Flags of Russia’s Federal Subjects (2008)
  • Scot M. Guenter Ph.D., Juxtaposing Symbols in Civil Religion: The Lady and the Flag (2009)
    ◦ Peter A. Ansoff, Flags of the State Navies in the Revolutionary War (2009 Honorable Mention / Mention honorable)
  • John M. Hartvigsen, Utah’s Mammoth Statehood Flag (2010)
    ◦ Louis Maxime Meka Meka, Creation, Significance, Evolution, and Display of the Cameroonian Flag (2010 Honorable Mention / Mention honorable)
  • Kenneth J. Hartvigsen M.A., Picturing Flag Violence in Civil War Sheet Music: The Case of “Down With the Traitors’ Serpent Flag” (2011)
  • Steven A. Knowlton M.L.I.S., Pragmatic Unity and Visual Synecdoche in Tennessee Flag Culture (2012)
  • Dean C. Thomas, Flags and Emblems of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea: Vexillidolatry in Its Purest Form (2013)
  • Scot M. Guenter Ph.D., The Phenomenon of Flag Homes: Musings on Meanings (2014)
  • Hugh Brady, J.D. FF, “But It Was Ours”: The Red Ensign, Dominion Day, and the Effects of Patriotic Memory on the Canadian Flag Debate

Publication of Captain William Driver Award Presentations

Kevin Harrington Award / Prix Kevin-Harrington

The Kevin Harrington Award / Prix Kevin-Harrington honors the best article to appear in a nonvexillological publication during the preceding year. The award’s namesake is a prolific author whose writings have appeared in a spectrum of publications, both within and outside our discipline. Mr. Harrington’s record of vexillological outreach sets an example for expanding the scope and reach of vexillology by sharing ideas, promoting discussion, and encouraging involvement. The award is conferred on an individual by the executive board, upon the recommendation of the award judges consisting of the executive board and the three most recent Driver Award recipients. It is given only when there is a worthy recipient, and members of the executive board are not eligible. The award consists of a certificate.

  • Kevin Harrington M.A.(T.) (2013)
  • Christoph Bartneck Ph.D., and Adrian Clark Ph.D., Semi-Automatic Color Analysis for Brand Logos (2014)

John Purcell Award / Prix John-Purcell

Named for the Association’s sixth president and the author of American City Flags, the John Purcell Award / Prix John-Purcell is conferred on an individual by the executive board for an exemplary contribution that promotes public understanding of vexillology in North America, upon the recommendation of the awards and honors committee. Only one award may be given annually and only when there is a worthy recipient. The award consists of a medal and a certificate.

  • John M. Purcell+ Ph.D.+ (2012)
  • John M. Hartvigsen (2013)

Doreen Braverman Award / Prix Doreen-Braverman

The Doreen Braverman Award / Prix Doreen-Braverman is conferred by the executive board on an organizational member that has supported the Association’s mission by making a significant contribution to the vexillological community, upon the recommendation of the awards and honors committee. Founder of The Flag Shop, Ms. Braverman is one of only two women and one of only two Canadians to serve as president. Her diverse interests in business and politics “led her to excel in multiple facets of life.” The first Award was given to Ms. Braverman individually. Only one award may be given annually and only when there is a worthy recipient. The Award consists of a certificate.

  • Doreen Braverman (2013)
  • Dixie Flag Manufacturing Co.—H.P. (Pete) Van de Putte, Jr. (2014)

Presidential citations / Mentions présidentielles

President citations / Mentions présidentielles are awarded to members who make significant contributions to the Association or to vexillology, but whose accomplishments do not fall within the criteria for other awards. They are awarded by the president only when there is a worthy recipient and are intended to recognize distinguished achievement by a member.

  • John M. Hartvigsen (2011)
  • The Rev. Richardson A. Libby (2011)
  • Great Waters Association of Vexillology (2012)
  • Gustavo Tracchia (2014)

FIAV awards and honors / Prix et honneurs du FIAV

The Association nominates individuals for awards and honors from the Fédération internationale des associations vexillologiques (FIAV). Currently nominations are made by the president based upon the recommendation of the awards and honors committee. Association members who have been recognized by FIAV based on such nominations are listed below.

Laureates of the Federation / Lauréats de la Fédération

Established in 1969, Laureates / Lauréats are named by the FIAV Board for making an outstanding, original contribution to the science of vexillology. The award consists of a certificate signed by the FIAV Board, a plaque, and a medal bearing the central knot device of the FIAV flag suspended from a neck ribband of blue and yellow, the colors of the FIAV flag, as well as lapel pin. Laureates may use the post-nominal LF. This is the highest recognition in vexillology.

  • Whitney Smith+ Ph.D. (1991)
  • Scot M. Guenter Ph.D. (2003)

Fellows of the Federation / Fellows de la Fédération

Established in 2001, Fellows are named by the FIAV Board for making significant contributions to vexillology and/or for rendering significant service to FIAV or a FIAV Member. The award consists of a certificate signed by the FIAV Board and a medal bearing the central knot device of the FIAV flag suspended from a chest ribbon of blue and yellow, the colors of the FIAV flag, as well as a lapel pin. Fellows may use the post-nominal FF.

  • Whitney Smith+ Ph.D. (2001)
  • John M. Purcell+ Ph.D.+ (2005)
  • Gustavo Tracchia (2005)
  • Kevin Harrington M.A.(T.) (2007)
  • Harry Oswald+ (2009)
  • Hugh L. Brady J.D. (2011)
  • Scot M. Guenter Ph.D. (2011)
  • Zachary K. Harden (2011)
  • John A. Lowe M.D. (2011)
  • Anne M. Platoff M.S., M.A. (2013)

The Vexillon / Le VexilloN

Established in 1989, The Vexillon / Le Vexillon has developed into an award for the most important contribution to vexillology during the two years preceding an International Congress of Vexillology. The recipient is selected by the FIAV Board. The award consists of a certificate signed by the FIAV Board and a plaque.

  • Donald T. Healy and the editorial board and staff of Raven: A Journal of Vexillology who worked on Flags of the Native Peoples of the United States (1999)
  • John M. Purcell+ Ph.D.+ and the other authors, editors, and staff of Raven: A Journal of Vexillology who worked on American City Flags Part 1: United States—150 Flags from Akron to Yonkers (2005)
  • Howard M. Madaus+ and Whitney Smith+ Ph.D., The American Flag: Two Centuries of Concord & Conflict (2007)
  • Anne M. Platoff M.S., M.A., Russian Regional Flags: The Flags of the Subjects of the Russian Federation (2011)