Make it More Personal with a Tribute

by Patti Dahlberg

Do you know of any organizations or individuals in your district that deserve recognition for their contributions to the community or congratulations for attaining a significant achievement?  Maybe the local high school won the championship for the first time or a middle school science whiz won a nationwide science competition. Perhaps the local XYZ Club just raised $150,000 for a charity or someone from your district discovered a lost civilization.

Tributes are the perfect way to acknowledge these types of achievements and to express appreciation for  individuals and groups within a legislator’s  community. A legislator can ensure that receiving a tribute is even more personal by presenting the tribute in person in front of friends and family or at a community event or meeting.

A tribute or joint tribute in either chamber:

  • Offers congratulations for significant public achievement;
  • Recognizes meritorious individual achievement;
  • Expresses appreciation for service to the state or to the General Assembly;
  • Recognizes an individual’s service in the military; or
  • Extends greetings to prominent visitors.

In addition, a tribute or joint tribute may:

  • Recognize an individual, organization, or group for a significant event or accomplishment;
  • Congratulate the members of an academic or athletic organization for achieving a specific historical, scientific, educational, or athletic goal, such as winning a league, state, or national title, competition, or championship; or
  • Designate a specified day for observing achievements, events, service, or accomplishments.

The content of a tribute is unique to each request and can be tailored to fit the needs of each requestor. A tribute may be short and created fairly quickly or it may be longer and contain specific information that the requesting legislator provides.

A Tribute from the House of Representatives
A Tribute from the House of Representatives

Tributes look special — they are presented in a calligraphy font, printed on presentation-grade paper, and placed in a special folder. In addition, a legislator has the option of presenting the tribute in a frame for display on a wall. Frames are available for purchase at the House Front Desk. The Speaker of the House signs all House tributes and the President signs all Senate tributes. Both the Speaker and the President sign all joint tributes.

If a respected and well-known community member who has not served as a member of the General Assembly passes away, the Senate or the House of Representatives may present a memorial tribute or joint memorial tribute to express its sentiments on the person’s death.

Colorado legislators are not limited in the number of tributes they may request to recognize or commend an individual or organization, but they must obtain permission from the Speaker of the House or the President of the Senate, or both if it is a joint tribute, to have the tribute prepared.

To request a tribute or memorial tribute in the House, a legislator should talk to the Front Desk staff. In the Senate, a legislator should talk to Senate Services.

The House and Senate have similar but not identical legislative rules governing the production and presentation of tributes. For a copy of a chart and rules explaining tributes in more detail, stop by the Office of Legislative Legal Services, Room 091 or click here.  A legislator may also discuss the rules regarding tributes with the Chief Clerk of the House or the Secretary of the Senate.