Presidential Medal of Freedom

From Academic Kids


The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the highest civilian award in the United States. It is designed to recognize individuals who have made "an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, or to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors."

It was established by President Harry Truman in 1945 to honor service during World War II. President John F. Kennedy revived the medal in 1963 through Executive Order 11085, and expanded its purpose.

The medal is awarded annually, on or near the Fourth of July, and at other times as chosen by the President. Recipients are selected by the President, either on his/her initiative or based on recommendations. The order reviving the medal also expanded the size and the responsibilities of the Distinguished Civilian Service Awards Board so it would serve as a major source of such recommendations.

Unlike many other US awards, the Presidential Medal of Freedom can be awarded to non-US citizens; the first such recipient was a Canadian spymaster, Sir William Stephenson. The medal can be awarded to an individual more than once (for example Colin Powell), and may also be awarded posthumously (for example John F. Kennedy himself).



Missing image
Badge of the medal

The badge of the Presidential Medal of Freedom is in the form of a golden star with white enamel, with a red enamel pentagon behind it; the central disc bears thirteen white enamel star on a blue enamel background (taken from the crest of the U.S. coat-of-arms) within a golden ring. Golden American eagles with spread wings stand between the arms of the star. It is worn on a blue ribbon with white edge stripes around the neck.

A special grade of the medal, known as the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction, has the abovementioned medal worn as a star on the left chest; in addition, the abovementioned ribbon is worn as a sash on the right shoulder, with its rosette (blue with white edge, bearing the central disc of the medal at its centre) resting on the left hip.

Another special grade of the medal, known as the Presidential Medal of Freedom, with Military Distinction, has the abovementioned medal worn from the the abovementioned ribbon differenced with a series of white stars upon the ribbon.

The medal may also be worn on the abovementioned ribbon on the left chest, with a silver American eagle with spreaded wings on the ribbon (or a golden eagle if a medal "With Distinction").

Notable recipients

The medal is presented ceremonially as a neck order.
The medal is presented ceremonially as a neck order.

See also

External links

pl:Medal Wolności


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