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For outstanding published works in science fiction and technical writings to inspire the human exploration of space.

The physical form of the Robert A. Heinlein Award consists of a sterling silver medallion bearing the image of Robert A. Heinlein as seen to the left depicted by the artist Arlin Robins. The medallion is matched with a red-white-blue lanyard. In addition the winner receives two lapel pins for use when a large medallion is impractical, and a certificate plaque designating the award suitable for home or office wall display. The Heinlein Award recipient is invited to be a headlining guest at Balticon where a ceremony is held to present the award each year.

The award committee consists of science fiction writers and was originally chaired by Dr. Yoji Kondo, a long time friend of Robert and Virginia Heinlein. Prior to 2013 the Baltimore Science Fiction Society provided logistical support for this award including processing of donations, manufacture of award materials, shipping and this webpage. Selection of winners was by a committee originally selected by Virginia Heinlein and not by BSFS as a group. As of 2013 the award is fully administered by, and funding ensured by, the Baltimore Science Fiction Society. The committee members originally selected by Virginia Heinlein have joined BSFS and continue to serve as judges in the selection committee.

BSFS thanks The Heinlein Society and the family of Dr. Yoji Kondo for providing funding for this award.

Virginia Heinlein authorized multiple awards in memory of her husband. The Robert A. Heinlein Award is not the one fully funded by Virginia Heinlein's estate. This award is supported by independent donations from the interested public. To donate contact dale at bsfs dot org for details.

Winners of the Robert A. Heinlein Award:

  • 2024 Tom Doherty
  • 2023 John Scalzi
  • 2022 David Gerrold
  • 2021 C. J. Cherryh
  • 2020 Vernor S. Vinge
  • 2019 Gregory Benford
  • 2018 Neal Stephenson
  • 2017 Robert J. Sawyer
  • 2016 Kim Stanley Robinson
  • 2015 Jack McDevitt
  • 2014 Geoffrey A. Landis
  • 2013 Allen Steele and Yoji Kondo
  • 2012 Stanley Schmidt
  • 2011 Connie Willis
  • 2009 Joe Haldeman and John Varley
  • 2008 Ben Bova and Spider Robinson
  • 2007 Elizabeth Moon and Anne McCaffrey
  • 2006 Greg Bear and Jack Williamson
  • 2005 Jerry Pournelle and Larry Niven
  • 2004 Arthur C. Clarke
  • 2003 Michael Flynn and Virginia Heinlein
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