The higher education community can feel small. Colleagues connect in their graduate programs, during fellowships, collaborative research, and at conferences. A quick Google or LinkedIn search often reveals only a few degrees of separation between you and a seemingly unknown acquaintance.
Administrators have the option to activate the Comments to the Administrator text box in both application and review forms. This provides both applicants and reviewers the option of submitting private information that will only seen by the admins managing the opportunity. This is the perfect place for applicants to list any potential reviewers with COI for their proposal, such as mentors or past supervisors. Similarly, reviewers can let administrators know of any potential bias at the time of reviewing a proposal, even recommending that they be removed from the review process.
BONUS: It is also a great place to start the reviewer recruitment process for the next award cycle by having applicants agree to be reviewers if they are selected as awardees on the competition.