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Markers of Distinction

Nomination policy and criteria

The Chicago Tribute Advisory Board is comprised of scholars and historians from numerous Chicago institutions. They meet annually, in mid-February, to select the year's markers. Nominations from the general public are welcome.

Individuals and groups must meet the following criteria in order to be considered for a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction:

1) Chicago Tribute markers may be nominated when one of the following requirements is met:

a. an individual has lived or worked within the Chicago city limits during a pivotal or formative period; or

b. a non-Chicagoan -- of international reputation or significant standing in their own country -- whose time in Chicago was a significant period, in time or importance, within their life and work;

and when one of the following criteria is met:

i. There are reasonable grounds for believing that the nominee(s) is regarded as eminent by a majority of members of their own profession, calling or community;

ii. The nominee has made some important positive contribution to human welfare or happiness;

iii. The nominee's contribution is unique or exceptional;

iv. The nominee shall have been such an exceptional and outstanding personality that the well-informed passer-by immediately recognizes his or her name.

2) Without exception, nominees will not be considered until they have been deceased for 10 years from the time of their nomination;

3) Markers may be erected at the residence (house or apartment), workplace, or other location having strong association with the individual; if the relevant structures are no longer extant, markers may be located at vacant parcels.

4) A building shall not be marked solely because it figures in a work of fiction;

5) All markers will share the same design;

6) The form of name or title in the inscription on the marker will be in accordance with that given in a standard American reference work, or as would be readily recognizable to a reasonably well-informed passer-by.

All marker nominations falling within the above criteria will be considered.


Nominate an individual or group.