Chris Stapleton has been announced as the Academy of Country Music's inaugural Artist-Songwriter of the Decade. Stapleton was honored with the new award at Berry Hill Studios in Nashville in a surprise presentation.

Radio success, sales and streaming numbers, commercial media, artistic merit and previous ACM Awards recognition were all considered in determining an ACM Artist-Songwriter of the Decade winner. Stapleton was nominated for his first ACM Award in 2015, as a songwriter; the next year, he won six ACMs, including Album of the Year for his debut album, Traveller.

Stapleton received three ACM Awards in 2018, including his second Album of the Year award, for From A Room: Vol. 1. In total, Stapleton now has 10 ACM Awards.

"Had Chris Stapleton not been an artist, his impact on country music as a songwriter would be indelible," Kelly Rich, ACM Special Awards Committee co-chair, says in a press release. "Had he not been a songwriter for himself and others, his influence as a recording artist, performer and vocalist would have been just as undeniable. In combination, however, Chris epitomizes the spirit and intent of this award. We are thrilled to recognize both aspects of his contribution to country music over the last decade."

Stapleton joins previously announced ACM Decade winners Rhett Akins (ACM Songwriter of the Decade Award); Miranda Lambert, Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin (ACM Song of the Decade Award, for Lambert's hit “The House That Built Me"); and Jason Aldean (ACM Dick Clark Artist of the Decade Award). Stapleton, Lambert and Akins' awards categories are three of the seven newly announced Decade Awards created by the Academy of Country Music.

Other new ACM Decades categories include Album of the Decade, Breakout Artist of the Decade, Single of the Decade and Music Event of the Decade. The ACM will announced the other winners in the coming weeks.

WATCH: The Secret History of Chris Stapleton's Breakout Night

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