The Special Tony Award category includes the Lifetime Achievement Award and Special Tony Award. These are non-competitive honorary awards, and the titles have changed over the years. The Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre is to "honor an individual for the body of his or her work." (The Tony Award for Best Special Theatrical Event was a competitive award, given from 2001 to 2009.) Another non-competitive Tony award is the Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre, to "recognize the achievements of individuals and organizations that do not fit into any of the competitive categories."
Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt presented a special award to volunteer worker Philip Faversham of the American Theatre Wing's hospital program, representing those workers who had performed hospital volunteer work outside of New York.
Mrs. Martin Beck for fifteen years of untiring dedication to the American Theatre Wing, which she served as treasurer, secretary and chairman of the board of directors. Presented by Elaine Perry, daughter of Antoinette Perry.
Walter F. Diehl International President of Theatrical Stage Employees and Moving Picture Operators, has been an active force in advancing the well-being of the Broadway theatre and of theatre nationally
Richard Fitzgerald honored for his installing the infrared system in Broadway theatres, thus bringing the compassion and dedication of making theatergoing for those with impaired hearing, rewarding and enjoyable (Theatre Award '80)