Awards Program

The National Ski Patrol has a strong awards program designed to recognize patrols and patrollers. Each year, the NSP gives out its National Outstanding Awards, which are awarded in 12 categories: Outstanding Large Alpine Patrol, Outstanding Small Alpine Patrol, Outstanding Administrative Patroller, Outstanding Alpine Patroller, Outstanding Patroller, Outstanding Paid Patroller, Outstanding Nordic Patrol, Outstanding Nordic Patroller, Outstanding Instructor, Outstanding OEC Instructor, Outstanding Patrol Representative, and Outstanding Young Adult Patroller. The awards are handed out in the fall, and an article featuring the winners is published in the winter Ski Patrol Magazine. Click the image to read the article on the winners for the most recent year.


Outstanding Large Alpine Patrol
Mt. Brighton Ski Patrol

Outstanding Small Alpine Patrol
Pine Mountain Ski Patrol
Outstanding Administrative Patroller
Robert Carpenter, Mt. Brighton Ski Patrol
Outstanding Alpine Patroller
David Moore, Big Bear Ski Patrol

Outstanding Patroller
Kristin Holmbeck, Big Bear Ski Patrol
Outstanding Paid Patroller
David Smith, Ski Roundtop Ski Patrol
Outstanding Nordic Patrol
Mt. Pinos Nordic Ski Patrol
Outstanding Nordic Patroller
Cassius Murphey, Mt. Pinos Nordic Ski Patrol

Outstanding Instructor
Rene Perez, Big Bear Ski Patrol
Outstanding OEC Instructor
Nancy Stromswold, Kirkwood Ski Patrol
Outstanding Patrol Representative, Keith Neergaard, Heavenly Area Ski Patrol
Outstanding Young Adult Patroller
Sydnie Van Zeeland, Pine Mountain Ski Patrol

The NSP also gives out a variety of other awards,  As part of its 75th Anniversary Celebration in 2013, the NSP created a Hall of Fame, which recognizes important people in the NSP's history in similar ways that professional sports have in the past. Click the image at right to read more about the Hall of Fame from an article in the winter 2016 Ski Patrol Magazine.

Perhaps the most coveted NSP awards are the various Merit Stars: Purple, Blue, Green, and Yellow. A Purple Merit Star is given to a patroller who has "saved a human life thorugh emergency care and the use of ski patrol skills." A Blue Merit Star is given to patrollers who played a supporting role "using emergency care in an attempt to save a human life." A Green Merit Star is given to "NSP patrollers for an outstanding act of heroism that does not meet the lifesaving requirements of the Purple Merit Star." A Yellow Merit Star is given "to NSP patrollers for any outstanding act or service to the National Ski Patrol."

National Appointments have long been a staple of the NSP, and recognize a patroller who demonstrates leadership, good judgment and character, and showcases extraordinary service to the NSP. Over 10,000 National Appointment Numbers have been given out since the NSP was formed in 1938.

The NSP also has the Distinguished Service Award for "individuals who have performed extraordinary service to the National Ski Patrol and the skiing public over a long period of time (minimum is 20 years)," and the Meritorious Service Award for "extraordinary and outstanding service and leadership as a region or division staff member (region director or division director ineligible)."

In addition to patrols and patrollers, the NSP sometimes recognizes mountains that have long been associated with NSP and have supported the organization through the Fifty Year Association Award.

The Minnie Dole Award is one of NSP's most rarely given awards, which "recognizes those exceptional few patrollers who, over the year, have closely exemplified the long-term dedication, devotion, and self sacrifice of the founder of the NSP, Charles Minot "Minnie" Dole. Since the first Minnie Dole Award was given in 1969 to Winter Park patroller Charles Sauer, only 26 more have been given, the most recent to former NSP Board Chair Ed McNamara in 2015.

Minnie Dole Award winners
(Adobe PDF File)