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Honoring the Contributions of Leaders

These prestigious industry awards are presented to outstanding individuals annually at the SMPTE Awards Gala.

Unless otherwise specified in the Governance Operations Manual, any member of the Society is entitled to nominate individuals as candidates for Society awards and conferred honor grades of membership, with the exception of Fellow Membership. If you are interested in submitting a nomination, please complete and return the Award Nomination form to SMPTE Staff.

Download 2021: Fellow Headshots and Award Recipient Headshots

Membership Honors

Honorary Members and The Honor Roll

Honorary Membership in the Society recognizes individuals who have performed eminent service in the advancement of engineering in motion pictures, television, or in the allied arts and sciences. Such contributions shall represent substantially a lifetime's work inasmuch as Honorary Membership shall be the supreme accolade of the Society.

When an Honorary Member passes away, their name shall be added to the Honor Roll.  The name of deceased individuals who have not been awarded Honorary Membership may also be added to the Honor Roll for contributions which would have been sufficient to warrant election to Honorary Membership during their lifetime

 

Fellow Membership

The Fellow Grade of membership is awarded to individuals who have, by proficiency and contributions, attained an outstanding rank among engineers or executives in the motion-picture, television or related industries.

The Fellow Membership Nominations Committee, which is responsible for submitting nominations for elevation to Fellow membership, is made up of the Board of Governors, Directors, Section Chairs, and Engineering Technology Committee Chairs.  Every nomination must be supported by two Fellows; therefore, Fellows not participating on the Fellow Membership Nominations Committee, are able to support a Fellow Nomination by signing as one of the Sponsors.  

Click here to download the nomination form and submission guidelines.

 

Medal Awards

SMPTE Progress Medal
Established 1935

The SMPTE Progress Medal honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding technical contributions to the progress of engineering phases of the motion picture, television, or motion imaging industries. The Progress Medal may be awarded annually, and it should be awarded for an invention or for research or development, which, in the opinion of the Committee, has resulted in a significant advance in the development of motion picture, television or motion imaging technology. In considering an award to an individual, continued technical contributions over a period of years should be weighed as an important factor.

David Sarnoff Medal
Established 1950

The David Sarnoff Medal, sponsored by SRI International, honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding contributions to the development of new techniques or equipment which have contributed to the improvement of the engineering phases of television technology, including large-venue presentations.

Samuel L. Warner Memorial Medal
Established 1946

The Samuel L. Warner Memorial Medal, sponsored by Warner Bros., honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding contributions in the design and development of new and improved methods and/or apparatus for motion picture sound, including any step in the process.

Excellence in Education Medal
Established 2016

The Excellence in Education Medal, sponsored by William C. Miller and Ellen Sontag-Miller, honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding contributions to new or unique educational programs that teach the technologies of motion pictures, television, or other imaging sciences including emerging media technology. The award shall recognize an individual who advances the educational process at any level through innovative and inspirational methods.

Workflow Systems Medal
Established 2012

The Workflow Systems Medal, sponsored by Leon D. Silverman, honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding contributions related to the development and integration of workflows, such as integrated processes, end-to-end systems or industry ecosystem innovations that enhance creativity, collaboration, efficiency or novel approaches to the production, post-production or distribution process.

Digital Processing Medal
Established 2012

The Digital Processing Medal honors the recipient by recognizing significant technical achievements related to the development of digital processing of content for motion picture, television, games or other related media.

Camera Origination and Imaging Medal
Established 
2012

The Camera Origination and Imaging Medal honors the recipient by recognizing significant technical achievements related to invention or advances in imaging technology including sensors, imaging processing electronics and the overall embodiment and application of image capture devices.

James A. Lindner Archival Technology Medal
Established 2012, Renamed 2017

The James A. Lindner Archival Technology Medal, sponsored by James A. Lindner, honors the recipient by recognizing significant technical advancements or contributions related to the invention or development of technology, techniques, workflows, or infrastructure for the long-term storage, archive or preservation of media content essence.

Natalie M. and Herbert T. Kalmus Medal
Established 1955, Renamed 2021

The Natalie and Herbert T. Kalmus Medal honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding contributions that reflect a commitment to the highest standards of quality and innovation in motion picture post-production and distribution services.

For recipients of the previously named Technicolor - Natalie M. and Herbert T. Kalmus Medal, click here.

 

SMPTE Awards

Journal Award 

One Journal Award is presented to the author(s) of the most outstanding paper originally published in the Journal of the Society during the preceding calendar year.

Journal Certificate of Merit

In addition, up to two Journal Certificates may be presented to the author(s) of other outstanding paper(s) from the preceding calendar year.

Presidential Proclamation

The Presidential Proclamation recognizes individuals of established and outstanding status and reputation in the motion picture and television industries worldwide.

Citation for Outstanding Service to the Society

The Citation for Outstanding Service to the Society recognizes individuals for dedicated service to the Society over a sustained period of time. Particular emphasis is to be placed on service performed at the Section level, including, but not limited to, services performed at Section meetings, special Section meetings, and national conferences.

Excellence in Standards Award

The Excellence in Standards Award recognizes individuals or companies who have been actively involved in advancing Society standards activities and processes.

Student Paper Award

The Student Paper Award recognizes an outstanding paper prepared and submitted by a Student Member. The paper receiving the Student Paper Award will be published in the SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal and identified as the award-winning paper, giving recognition to the author and the institution at which the work was done.

Louis F. Wolf Jr. Memorial Scholarship

The Louis F. Wolf Jr. Memorial Scholarship is designed to help students further their undergraduate or graduate studies in motion pictures and television, with an emphasis on technology. 

Discontinued Awards

Eastman Kodak Gold Medal Award

This award honors an individual by recognizing outstanding contributions which lead to new or unique educational programs utilizing motion pictures, television, high-speed and instrumentation photography or other photography sciences. The award shall recognize developments in equipment, systems or instructional applications, which result in advancing the educational process at any or all levels.

Fuji Gold Medal Award

This award honors an individual by recognizing outstanding engineering achievements in the design and development of new or enhanced techniques and/or equipment that have contributed significantly to the advancement of photographic or electronic image origination.

John Grierson International Gold Medal Award

This award honors an individual who has made significant technical achievements related to the production of documentary motion picture films.

James A. Leitch Gold Medal Award

This award honors an individual who has made outstanding contributions in the application of digital technology to the motion imaging arts and sciences. The award recognizes developments in software, equipment, systems, or the standardization of technology involved in the acquisition, processing, or distribution of sound and images related to motion imaging.

Kodak Educational Award

This award honors the recipient by recognizing outstanding contributions to new or unique educational programs utilizing the technologies of film in motion picture, television, high-speed and instrumentation photography, or other photographic sciences. The award shall recognize an individual who advances the educational process at any level through innovative and inspirational methods.

Technicolor-Natalie M. and Herbert T. Kalmus Medal
Established 1955, Renamed 2020

This award recognizes outstanding contributions that reflect a commitment to the highest standards of quality and innovation in motion picture production, post-production, and distribution services. Preference is given to developments and innovations in the areas of color science and color management including image acquisition, post-production processes, and preservation and restoration technologies that insure long-term access to motion picture content.

The Society Citation

This award recognizes individuals or companies who have actively been involved in specific Society engineering or editorial functions.