The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) is presented annually by the President of the United States to organizations that demonstrate quality and performance excellence. Three awards may be given annually in each of six categories:
Established by Congress in 1987 for manufacturers, service businesses and small businesses, the Baldrige Award was designed to raise awareness of quality management and recognize U.S. companies that have implemented successful quality-management systems.
The education and healthcare categories were added in 1999. A government and nonprofit category was added in 2007.
The Baldrige Award is named after the late Secretary of Commerce Malcolm Baldrige, a proponent of quality management. The U.S. Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology manages the award and ASQ administers it.
Organizations that apply for the Baldrige Award are judged by an independent board of examiners. Recipients are selected based on achievement and improvement in seven areas, known as the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence: