Nomination Details

Thank you for your interest in submitting a Sammies nomination! If you know a federal employee who demonstrates innovation, strong leadership and a passion for public service in their work, we want to recognize them through the Service to America Medals.

General Information

Our online nomination process allows the nominator to start and save a submission and return to it at a later time.

Finalists are announced the first week of May during Public Service Recognition Week and the honorees are announced at an awards gala in Washington, D.C. each fall.

Please read more about the current medal categories below and their specific eligibility requirements before submitting a nomination. The Partnership will determine and assign medal categories based on the nominations received.

We welcome nominations for individuals and teams. While we acknowledge that many important accomplishments involve hundreds of federal employees, our honoree recognition is limited to a maximum of three people who represent the team and their achievement.

Nomination Guidelines


Nominators can be anyone—fed or non-fed, friend or family member, supervisor or employee. However, we do not accept self-nominations.


While nominators are not required to be federal employees, nominees must be career civilian federal employees of the Executive Branch of the U.S. government. Similar employees of the Library of Congress, Government Accountability Office, Congressional Budget Office, Office of the Capitol Architect, Government Publishing Office, Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, Smithsonian Institution and Botanical Gardens, plus commissioned officers of the U.S. Public Health Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are also eligible.

For all medal categories, with the exception of Career Achievement, please identify an accomplishment that has occurred within the past three years. We want to share the most recent government success stories that will best resonate with the American public.

For Career Achievement, nominations should highlight a series of accomplishments or sustained achievement throughout the nominee’s 20 or more years as a public servant.


2020 nominations are now closed. 2021 nominations will open in September.


Please see our Frequently Asked Questions for additional information about the nomination process.


Still have questions? Contact Nola Tolsma at (202) 775-9111 or [email protected]. Also, be sure to read our guide to writing a winning nomination.

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Medal and Nomination Categories

Federal Employee of the Year

This award recognizes a federal employee whose professional contributions exemplify the highest attributes of public service.

Special Guidelines:
This award is chosen by the Sammies Selection Committee from among the group of finalists. We do not accept nominations directly for this category.

See Past Honorees
Paul A. Volcker Career Achievement

This medal recognizes a federal employee who has led significant and sustained achievements during 20 or more years of public service.

Special Eligibility Criteria:
Nominee must have worked in public service for at least 20 years as of January 1 during the current nomination cycle.

See Past Honorees
Emerging Leaders

This nomination category is offered to encourage special consideration for young federal employees who have made an important contribution early in their professional career. Selected finalists will be assigned to other medal categories according to the nature of their work and accomplishments.

Special Eligibility Criteria:
Nominee must be 35 or younger as of January 1 during the current nomination cycle.

See Past Honorees
Safety, Security and International Affairs

This medal recognizes a federal employee for a significant accomplishment in fields such as civil rights, cyber-security, emergency preparedness and response, border security, counter-terrorism, defense and military affairs, intelligence or diplomacy.

See Past Honorees
Management Excellence

This medal recognizes a federal employee for demonstrating superior leadership and management excellence through a significant contribution to the nation that exemplifies efficient, effective and results-oriented government.

See Past Honorees
Science and Environment

This medal recognizes a federal employee for a significant contribution to the nation in activities related to science and environment (including biomedicine, economics, energy, information technology, meteorology, resource conservation and space).

See Past Honorees