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Awards and Recognition
Agency Honor Awards
NASA's most prestigious honor awards are approved by the Administrator and presented to a number of carefully selected individuals and groups of individuals, both Government and non-Government, who have distinguished themselves by making outstanding contributions to the Agency's mission. The Chair of the Incentive Awards Board (IAB) annually requests nominations for the various NASA honor awards. After rigorous review by Center Review Boards, the nominations are approved by the Center Director or Official in Charge, and are forwarded to the IAB Chair. NASA medals and/or certificates are, subsequently, presented to the award recipients by the Agency's highest officials at the annual awards ceremonies held at each NASA Center. NASA’s highest honors, the Distinguished Service Medal and Distinguished Public Service Medal, are presented by the NASA Administrator at an annual ceremony. The Administrator’s ceremony begins the presentation of honors across the Agency, and all Center ceremonies are subsequently executed.
Click here for a toolkit to assist in preparing Agency Honor Award nominations

Click on the award titles below to view the award and selection criteria.

Distinguished Service Medal (DSM)

Distinguished Service MedalThis is NASA's highest form of recognition that is awarded to a Government employee who, by distinguished service, ability, or vision has personally contributed to NASA's advancement of United States' interests. The individual's achievement or contribution must demonstrate a level of excellence that has made a profound or indelible impact on NASA mission success, and therefore, the contribution is so extraordinary that other forms of recognition by NASA would be inadequate.