Ducks Unlimited has changed the awards criteria for its Top Ten States to afford more opportunities and legitimate possibilities for less-populated states. Ten awards go to the top performers in each of the nine categories summarized below:
 Top Ten States Awards.jpg 
Here are Wyoming's end-of-year figures from fiscal-year 2023 which concluded at the end of June:
            Event Income Overall Performance—$624,145
            Event Income Absolute Growth—$162,684
            Event Income Percentage Growth—35% (Wyoming placed 9th nationally)
            Event Attendance Overall Performance—3.456
            Event Attendance Absolute Growth—701
            Event Attendance Percentage Growth—25%
            Volunteer Overall Performance—169
            Volunteer Absolute Growth—27 (Wyoming placed 7th nationally)
            Volunteer Percentage Growth—19% (Wyoming placed 4th nationally)
The tabulations demonstrate the critical importance of accounting for all event attendees as well as everyone categorized as a volunteer—both committee members working through the committee season and everyone assisting at any event.
Any year Wyoming's "Absolute Growth" numbers are all positive, the state qualifies for a State Excellence Gold Award. Positive absolute growth numbers in event income and one other category qualify the state for a Silver Award, and a positive absolute growth number in event income alone qualifies for a Bronze Award.
While these nine categories afford several opportunities for Top Ten category recognition, Ducks Unlimited officially considers its State Excellence Gold Award as any state's pinnacle achievement.