Nominations for the Copper Black Award are taken until March 1 every year.
This award is not given for the creativity of a person, but for a specific creative achievement that may include an invention that has been patented or otherwise demonstrated to be of practical value, or an innovation that has been implemented, at least in part, to the advantage of persons other than the nominee. The conditions of the award do not recognize achievements in the arts (graphic arts, drama, literature, music, etc.).
Achievements demonstrated to be effective within the three calendar years preceding the award year will be considered by the Award Committee. For two nominations of equal value, the more recent may be given some additional points.
Under the conditions of the Copper Black Award, the Award Committee may consider and give various points to achievements that exhibit some or all of the following:
- Extraordinary insight or ingenuity in defining or redefining a problem.
- Significance and persistence of the problem.
- Whole or partial implementation of the solution, innovation, novel procedure, etc.
- Creative ideas and innovations related to high intelligence, intelligence in general, or giftedness.
- Creative ideas and innovations directly or indirectly related to an activity of, the status of, or long- or short-range goals of American Mensa, Ltd., Mensa International, Ltd., or the Mensa Foundation.
Conciseness and objectivity will be valued more highly than subjective wordiness.
A few more important points:
- Testimonials and other documentation of the achievement may not exceed five pages. However, no limit is placed upon published articles, newspaper or magazine clippings, etc., that are directly relevant to the problem or the innovative solution. Clear photocopies are acceptable.
- The Award Committee may, at its discretion, seek to verify some or all of the information submitted and, if it is not a self-nomination, that the nominee has approved the nomination.
- Nomination packages will not be returned.