Homeland Security Distinguished Service Medal

The Homeland Security Distinguished Service Medal is a United States military award which is awarded to any member of the Armed Forces of the United States by the United States Department of Homeland Security. The current version of the medal was established in February 2003, retroactive to March 1, 2002.[2]

Homeland Security Distinguished Service Medal
Awarded by the
Department of Homeland Security[1]
TypeMilitary medal
EligibilityMembers of the United States Armed Forces
Awarded forExceptionally meritorious service
StatusCurrently awarded
Established28 February 2003 (retroactive to 1 March 2002)
First awarded2006
Next (higher)Army: Distinguished Service Cross
Navy and Marine Corps: Navy Cross
Air Force: Air Force Cross
Coast Guard: Coast Guard Cross
EquivalentDefense Distinguished Service Medal, Department of Commerce Gold Medal, Transportation Distinguished Service Medal
Next (lower)Coast Guard: Coast Guard Distinguished Service Medal

Homeland Security Distinguished Service Medal ribbon


The decoration was originally established as the Transportation Distinguished Service Medal by Executive Order 12824, signed by President George H. W. Bush on December 7, 1992. On February 28, 2003, President George W. Bush signed Executive Order 13286, which, among other things, replaced the Transportation version of the award with the Homeland Security version retroactively to March 1, 2002. On April 5, 2011, President Barack Obama amended Executive Order 12824, as amended, modifying the award eligibility from "a member of the Coast Guard" to "any member of the Armed Forces of the United States".[3]

Order of precedence

As a distinguished service medal, this decoration is one of the highest awards that can be bestowed upon a member of the U.S. Armed Forces.[1]

The award would be worn after the Medal of Honor, Navy Cross, Distinguished Service Cross, Air Force Cross and Coast Guard Cross and, for members of the Coast Guard, before the Defense Distinguished Service Medal and any of the service-specific Distinguished Service Medals from the other armed services. For members of the all other service departments, the Homeland Security Distinguished Service Medal is worn after service-specific DSMs. The medal may be awarded to any member of the Armed Forces of the United States.[1]

Notable recipients

See also


  1. "COMDTINST M1650.25E: Coast Guard Military Medals and Awards Manual" (PDF). United States Department of Homeland Security. 15 August 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 March 2018. Retrieved 5 March 2018.
  2. "14 USC § 492 – Distinguished service medal". Legal Information Institute, Cornell University Law School. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  3. "Executive Order 13569--Amendments to Executive Orders 12824, 12835, 12859, and 13532, Reestablishment Pursuant to Executive Order 13498, and Revocation of Executive Order 13507". U.S. Department of Defense. 5 April 2011. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  4. Barr, Stephen (May 11, 2006). "Honoring Those Who Went Above and Beyond During Katrina". Washington Post. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  5. Schept, Susan (25 May 2010). "Oil spill overshadows CG change of command". Navy Times. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  6. "Coast Guard Change of Command Ceremony". C-SPAN Video Library. 25 May 2006. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  7. "U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano congratulates Coast Guard Vice Adm. Vivien Crea for a job well done during the Coast Guard Vice Commandant Change of Watch Ceremony at Coast Guard Telecommunications and Information Systems Command". USCG Press. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  8. "Panetta hosts Chief Change for National Guard Bureau". U.S. Department of Defense. Archived from the original on April 15, 2013. Retrieved September 27, 2012.
  9. Headquarters Public Affairs (May 24, 2018). "Photo Release: US Coast Guard welcomes new vice commandant". U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters. Washington, DC.
  10. Cooney, Mike (October 23, 2018). "Adm. Robert Papp Jr. – 2005 Norwich Native Son". Norwich Native Son-Daughter. Norwich, CT: Rotary Club of Norwich.
  11. Wadlow, PO1 Kip. "Vice Commandant Change of Watch [Image 2 of 5]". US Coast Guard Atlantic Area. Retrieved 20 January 2014.
  12. Biography of Vice Admiral Paul F. Zukunft, Pacific Area Commander, Coast Guard Defense Force West, last accessed 4 May 2015
  13. Sherbs, Diana (June 1, 2018). "U.S. Coast Guard welcomes new commandant". Coast Guard Compass. Washington, DC.
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