Distinguished FACOS Designation Application Process

The designation, Distinguished Fellow of the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons (DFACOS), is conferred upon ACOS members for their considerable involvement, dedication, and contributions to the College and the osteopathic community. Distinguished Fellows are chosen based upon an outstanding and long sustained demonstration of engagement and service to the ACOS, exceptional professionalism, consummate integrity and noted leadership. This honor is bestowed upon the best of our profession.

The recipients of the DFACOS designation have demonstrated their commitment to the practice of surgery, surgical teaching, authorship of professional papers, and participation in local, state, and national organizations. Recipients also have adhered to the professional and ethical standards established by the ACOS.

Let us recognize your ongoing service and dedication as an ACOS Fellow: Apply today! A formal application is required and must be submitted by April 30.


DFACOS Requirements

  • Be a Fellow of the ACOS (FACOS) for 10 years or more.
  • Be or have been an active member of an ACOS committee, an ACOS Mentor, or a lecturer for an ACOS educational program, within the last 10 years.
  • Be certified by an AOA or ABMS-recognized certifying board.
  • Be a member in good standing of ACOS and local and state osteopathic societies.
  • Demonstrate commitment to the practice of surgery through participation in teaching programs and on hospital, local, state, and national surgical society committees.
  • Demonstrate a continued pursuit of knowledge through participation in continuing surgical education programs.
  • Demonstrate adherence to the professional and ethical standards as established by the ACOS.

Application Process

A formal application is required and must be submitted to the Membership Committee by April 30 to be considered in the same year. In addition to completing the application, applicants are required to:

1) Sign an authorization for hospitals, medical organizations, and others to release information deemed by ACOS to be necessary to review and consider the application for approval (page 8 of application).

2) Include with the application three letters of recommendation attesting to the applicant’s qualifications as a surgeon, as well as the applicant’s character, professional and ethical standing.

One recommendation letter shall come from a member of the ACOS who has been a Fellow (FACOS) for at least 5 years; and two recommendation letters may come from persons (D.O. or M.D.) who can vouch for the skills, achievements and character of the applicant (may come from non-members, mayor, elected official, chief executive officer of a corporation, hospital administrator, etc.).

3) Include with the application a personal statement explaining why the applicant deserves to receive the Distinguished Fellow title (DFACOS).

4) Provide on application (page 7) a signed endorsement from the hospital medical staff administrator/department verifying that the applicant is or was a member of the medical staff or has participated on the various hospital committees or boards listed on page 6 of the application.

5) Pay a $600 nonrefundable processing fee.


Applicants who apply by April 30 will have their applications reviewed and acted upon by the Membership Committee at its summer meeting. Applicants are notified whether the application is complete and whether, if necessary, any deficient items must be submitted. ACOS will make inquiries to state licensing boards and federal data banks.  Applicants also are notified at which meeting the Membership Committee will consider the application and when they will receive notification of the committee’s decision.

One of the following actions will be taken by the Membership Committee:

1)  The application is approved, and the award is bestowed.
2)  The application is not approved. The applicant did not fulfill all requirements.  Applicants who are not approved may submit a new application one year following the membership committee action to not approve the previous application. Reapplication requires the submission of the $100 processing fee and compliance with all other application requirements. Applicants who are not approved are notified of the requirements that they have not fulfilled.

The DFACOS designation is an honor.  Completion of the DFACOS application does not establish a contract between the applicant and the ACOS.  Fulfillment of the requirements for the DFACOS designation is determined by use of a rating system, inquiries to state licensing boards and federal data banks, a personal statement from the applicant and three letters of recommendation.  The Membership Committee, at its discretion, may consider other criteria in addition to the stated requirements.



ACOS Distinguished Fellows are recognized in a ceremony during the College’s ceremonial conclave in the same year following the approval of the application.

Applicants may choose a person to be their escort to the stage for their induction. Presentation of the award is made by the ACOS President and the Chair of the Membership Committee.

All newly elected ACOS Distinguished Fellows are required to be inducted at the ceremonial conclave held during the ACOS annual conference that takes place following notification of the approval of their DFACOS designation. If the applicant fails to participate in the ceremony to receive the title, then the pending DFACOS title will be withdrawn, except for good and sufficient reason as determined by the Membership Committee.

Upon discontinuation of ACOS membership, the title of DFACOS will be automatically withdrawn.

DFACOS Ratings Guide
(Adobe PDF File)
DFACOS Application
(Adobe PDF File)

Click here to download the DFACOS logo.