Saunders has vowed to continue with her work with the charity until fuel poverty, which affects 5.4 million households in the UK, has been eradicated.
Ruth Thompson OBE, chair of NEA said: “Jenny is well known for her unstinting contribution to ending fuel poverty.
“As chief executive of NEA her leadership, energy and dedication have ensured that the plight of those unable to afford to keep their homes warm does not go unnoticed and that action is taken to help.
“This is a proud moment for us. We are delighted that Jenny’s work has been recognised in this way. Her award is richly deserved.”
Saunders was also recognised in her award for her work in establishing the Chesshire Lehmann Fund which supports young academics and community groups wishing to undertake active research and evaluation into the relationship between fuel poverty and energy efficiency.