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About The Indianapolis Prize

​​The Indianapolis Prize is an internationally recognized award created to honor the men and women who have made extraordinary contributions to conservation efforts involving an animal species or group of species, resulting in an advancement in long-term sustainability. Initiated by the Indianapolis Zoo, it was instituted as a significant component of the Zoo's mission to empower people and communities, both locally and globally, to advance animal conservation.

Since its establishment in 2005,
The Indianapolis Prize is the largest individual monetary award given for animal conservation in the world. Every other year six finalists are selected from a distinguished slate of internationally recognized conservationists. From these six a winner is chosen to receive the prestigious Lilly Medal and the unrestricted Indianapolis Prize cash award of $250,000, sponsored by the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation. Each of the top five finalists are also awarded with an unrestricted cash prize of $10,000.

The presenting of the Indianapolis Prize and the Lilly Medal is hosted by Cummins Inc. at a formal Gala in downtown Indianapolis.
As the winner and finalists are honored for their selfless dedication, scientific expertise and lasting success, an influential audience is captured by  an impactful evening of storytelling and emotion as they witness the impressive stories of these men and women and their extraordinary dedication to protecting animal species in a high definition presentation, shot on location in remote areas of the globe. This spectacular night is a victory for all animal conservation enthusiasts and a win for Indianapolis' efforts to bring international attention to this great cause.

The Indianapolis Prize represents the vitality and commitment of the Indianapolis community's dedication to make a difference to our natural world.​

Gala photo courtesy of Swan Photo
Lilly Medal © 2013, Indianapolis Zoological Societies