The Craftsman of the Year Award

Award Winner MedalEach year the Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship presents one or more awards. The premiere annual award is for the Craftsman of the Year. This award consists of a $2000.00 check, and an engraved gold medallion. The Craftsman of the Year award is presented annually at the North American Model Engineering Society (NAMES) exposition. Details about past winners can be found here.

Every year, the foundation selects an individual craftsman who has made an outstanding lifetime contribution to machining—with emphasis on the small end of the size scale. The award is not a popularity contest, but rather a reward for genuine achievement. The winner is an individual whose achievements stand head and shoulder above all others in their area of specialty. The person who receives this award should be regarded nearly unanimously as "the best" in their field by their peers. The Craftsman of the Year should be someone who has taken their own skills to the highest level, but has also shared their knowledge and encouraged others to improve their level of work along the way.

Although Joe Martin was the owner of a tool manufacturing company, there is no requirement that any particular brand of tools be used for the projects. The award includes a presentation plaque, a gold medallion, and a check for $2000.00. It is presented by a representative of the Joe Martin Foundation at the NAMES exposition in Michigan or Ohio each April.

With each award presented, selection to this group becomes more of an honor. This is more a reflection of the quality of individuals in the group than a result of anything the foundation has done. If it is true that you are judged by the company you keep, then this is certainly a group that any craftsman would be proud to be associated with. We feel that by maintaining the goals of the Joe Martin Foundation, the prestige of this award will increase each year as honorees continue to see the standard of excellence raised.

Each person below has been honored by the foundation for their outstanding craftsmanship. Follow each link for more details about the craftsmen and their projects.

Craftsman of the Year Honorees:

Richard Dosdall

Richard Dosdall (2020)

A self-taught designer and builder in both metal and woodworking. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2020.

James Hastings

James Hastings (2019)

Highly detailed, traditional plank-on-frame wooden ship models. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2019.

Chuck Balmer

Chuck Balmer (2018)

Miniature live steam locomotives a cut above the rest. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2018.

Cherry Hill

Cherry Hill (2017)

One of England’s master model engineers, and her incredible traction engines. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2017.

George Britnell

George Britnell (2016)

A wide variety of model engineering projects from guns to engines, with an emphasis on Fords. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2016.

William R. Robertson

William R. Robertson (2015)

Museum quality, historically correct scale miniatures in metal and wood. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2015.

Steve Lindsay

Steve Lindsay (2014)

World famous engraver and engraving tool maker with a bold style. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2014.

Guillermo Rojas-Bazan

Guillermo Rojas-Bazan (2013)

Master scratch builder of aluminum aircraft models. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2013.

Gary Conley

Gary Conley (2012)

Conley Precision. Manufacturer of quarter scale V-8 engines. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2012.

Michel Lefaivre

Michel Lefaivre (2010)

Superb miniature guns from France. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2010.

Louis Chenot

Louis Chenot (2009, 2011)

A running scale model Duesenberg, and other fine scale models. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award for 2009, and the Craftsman of the Decade Award for 2011.

Richard Carlstedt

Richard Carlstedt (2009)

A 1/16 scale model of the historic ironclad USS Monitor engine and more. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2009.

Ron Colonna

Ron Colonna (2008)

Miniature engines, including a masterful 1/4 scale Offenhauser, and a book on how to build it. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2008.

Pierre Scerri

Pierre Scerri (2007)

A fully functional Ferrari 312 PB race car model at 1/3 scale. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2007.

David Kucer

David Kucer (2006)

World-class miniature guns from Canada. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2006.

Gerald Wingrove

Gerald Wingrove (2005)

Model cars from England, and books on how to build them. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2005.

Roger L. Ronnie

Roger L. Ronnie (2004)

Master engraver, miniature gunsmith, watch tool maker, and model engine builder. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2004.

Barry Jordan

Barry Jordan (2003)

Masterful miniature machine tools from England. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2003.

Young C. Park

Young C. Park (2002)

Aluminum model Corsair and Mustang aircraft with detail like you’ve never seen. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2002.

George Luhrs

George Luhrs (2001)

Builder of the world’s smallest running internal combustion engines. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2001.

William R. Smith

William R. Smith (2000)

Award-winning clocks and instructions on how to build them. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 2000.

Wilhelm Huxhold

Wilhelm Huxhold (1999)

Masterful miniature steam engines, machine tools, and other model engineering projects. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 1999.

Alan Ingersoll

Alan Ingersoll (1998)

A miniature Curtiss V-12 engine, and the model biplane to house it. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 1998.

Jerry Kieffer

Jerry Kieffer (1997)

Miniature engines, Harley-Davidson’s, tractors, and much more. Winner of the Joe Martin Foundation Craftsman of the Year Award for 1997.


Artisan Search

Presented by The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship