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   DOT - Guardian Medal
Service: DOT
Instituted: 11 September 2001
Authorized: COMDTINST M1650.25D
Issuing Country: ( US ) - UNITED STATES
DOT - Guardian Medal
Back of Medal

Establishing Authority

The Department of Transportation Guardian Medal was established by Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

Effective Dates

The Department of Transportation Guardian Medal has been in effect since September 11, 2001.


The Department of Transportation Guardian Medal may be awarded to senior government officials who, through visionary leadership, have re-directed the focus and resources of their organization, or major entities within their organization, and whose efforts have had a profound impact in their field, the Federal Government, or on the general public in providing for the protection and security of the United States and its citizens. To justify this decoration, nominations must demonstrate exceptional performance of duty while in a position of great responsibility, clearly above that normally expected, which has contributed materially to the betterment of the United States.

Approval authority for this medal was the Secretary of Transportation




No provision has been made for additional awards of the Guardian Medal


The design of the DoT Guardian Medal was not coordinated with the Army's Institute of Heraldry, and the identity of its actual designer is not known.

First Recipient

The first Department of Transportation recipient of the Guardian Medal was John Flaherty, who was the Chief of Staff to the Secretary of Transportation. The first Coast Guard recipient of the Guardian Medal was Rear Admiral Richard E. Bennis (Retired). It is not known if any other Guardian Medals were awarded.



In the center of a bronze medallion a representation of a colonial minute man holding s stylized flag is shown surmounting a scroll bearing the inscription BELLO VEL PACE PARATUS. The outer edge of the medal has parallel raised rims containing the inscription, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (at the top) and UNITED STATES OF AMERICA at the bottom. These two sections are separated by five stars at the three o'clock and nine o'clock positions.


The reverse bears the words FOR SERVICE TO THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION IN GUARDING THE INTERESTS OF THE AMERICAN PUBLIC. Inside a raised rim, this inscription is contained within a laurel wreath which extends from the bottom of the medal to its center.


The ribbon consists of a central stripe of blue bordered on either side by paprika, blue, white paprika, black, and paprika.