What the JJA has previously called its "Discretionary Awards" — with the recipients selected at the discretion of the JJA board — have been renamed "The A Team Awards, for advocates, altruists, aiders and abettors of jazz." The A Team comprises activists who are neither jazz musicians, strictly or solely, nor jazz journalists, but without whom the jazz world would be much poorer. Each member of the A Team has a special strength in raising the profile and effectiveness of jazz. "Advocates, altruists, aiders and abettors" is meant to include educators, fundraisers, health care providers, innovators of techniques and inventors of equipment, organizers, and even philanthropists, promoters or publicists who selflessly invest special creative energies into disseminating the best of jazz and what it has to offer. The A Team now boasts the following distinguished roster, plus those elected to it this year:

George Avakian, veteran jazz album producer, writer of the first jazz album liner notes

Margaret C. Bridge, Executive Vice President, Englewood Hospital and Medical Center Foundation, for helping to establish the Dizzy Gillespie Cancer Clinic

Representative John Conyers, sponsor of H.R. 57 designating jazz as a significant American art form

Jim deJong, About the Music retail, presentation and and musician management consultant, Jazz Institute of Chicago

Dr. David Feldman, specialist in joint replacements donating services to musicians in need

Bruce Forman, guitarist and founder of JazzMasters Workshops and The Music Performance Developmental Workshops, Seaside, CA

Dr. Frank Forte, guitar enthusiast, cancer specialist at Englewood Medical Center, NJ, founder of the Jazz Foundation of America's Physicians Network

Barry Harris, pianist and director of the Jazz Workshop Theatre

Dr. David Hinkamp, specialist in occupational and preventive therapy for artists, Health in the Arts, Occupational Health Service Institute, University of Illinois at Chicago

Anna Immanuel, former journalist and advocate for children in areas of conflict

Dorthann Kirk, community outreach director, WBGO-FM Jazz 88

Arnie Lawrence, saxophonist and peace proponent employing jazz across borders

Dr. Robert Litwak, avocational drummer, cardiologist emeritus at Mt. Sinai Hospital, early instigator of New York-based volunteer physicians network serving jazz musicians

Dr. Lewis Marshall, internist to jazz musicians, Washington, D.C.

Dr. John Minichetti, specialist in dentistry donating services to musicians in need

Dr. David Morwood, drummer, jam session leader, and volunteer surgeon on children for Rotoplasty International

Herb Storfer, founder of the Jazz Foundation of America

Dr. Billy Taylor, pianist, composer, newscaster, educator, co-founder of the Jazz Foundation of America

Davey Yarborough, jazz director of the Duke Ellington School of the Arts, Washington, D.C.

The Jazz Journalists Association also wants to recognize those actors, entertainers, raconteurs and writers who have contributed to the Jazz Awards. They, too, belong in the A Team:

Eric Bogosian
Avery Brooks
Jayne Cortez
Keith David
Al "Grandpa" Lewis
Joe Piscopo
Soupy Sales
Paul Schafer