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Diplomacy in Action

The Secretary of State's Award for Corporate Excellence

Fact Sheet
Bureau of Economic, Energy and Business Affairs
December 17, 2010


The Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE), established by the State Department in 1999, recognizes the important role U.S. businesses play abroad as good corporate citizens. The Award sends a strong signal of the Department’s commitment to further corporate social responsibility, innovation, exemplary international business practices, and democratic values worldwide. The ACE helps define America as a positive force in the world. It highlights our increasing outreach to the business community, our public-private partnerships, and both our commercial and public diplomacy efforts. The ACE recognizes the contributions business makes to improving lives at home and abroad.

U.S. companies are nominated by Chiefs of Mission worldwide and the winners are chosen by the Principals’ Award Selection Committee. The Committee, chaired by the Under Secretary for Economic, Energy, and Agricultural Affairs, includes a representative of the Secretary, the Under Secretary for Global Affairs, and various Assistant Secretaries. It also includes the President of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and senior officials from the U.S. Agency for International Development, MCC, and the Department of Commerce. Winners are recognized with a handsome, copyrighted award statue unveiled in a formal ceremony hosted by the Secretary of State. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton presents the ACE award, continuing the tradition that former Secretaries of State Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell and Madeleine Albright established during their tenure. The ceremony, attended by Congressional staff, the Diplomatic Corps, and leaders from the business, NGO, and academic communities, includes participation, via satellite, of Chiefs of Mission whose candidates have won, in-country company executives, and invited guests at post. The ACE event is open to the media and broadcast worldwide.

ACE winners include both multinational and small-to-medium size enterprises. Historically, the Selection Committee, which meets during the summer months, has recognized two to three winners based on a thorough discussion and evaluation of the nominations submitted.

ACE winners include:

2010 - Cisco Systems, Israel; Mars, Inc., Ghana; Denimatrix, Guatemala.
2009 - Trilogy International Partners, Haiti; TOMS Shoes, Argentina.
2008 - Cargill, China; SURevolution, Colombia.
2007 - GE, Indonesia; Transnational Automotive Group, Cameroon.
2006 - General Motors, Colombia; Goldman Sachs, Chile; Sambazon, Brazil. 2005 - Cisco Systems, Jordan; Lapa Rios Ecolodge, Costa Rica.
2004 - Motorola, Brazil; FIJI Water, Fiji.
2003 - Chevron/Texaco, Nigeria; U.S. Steel Corporation, the Slovak Republic. 2002 - Coca-Cola, Egypt; Chindex International, China.
2001 - Ford Motor Company, South Africa; SELCO, Vietnam.
2000 - Motorola, Malaysia; Rayonier New Zealand; Land O’Frost, Uruguay.
1999 - Xerox, Brazil; F.C. Schaffer & Associates, Ethiopia.

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