Missouri Public Safety Recognition Day - Picture 2

Gov. Mike Parson proclaimed Nov. 13, 2018 to be Missouri Public Safety Recognition Day and held ceremonies in St. Louis and Jefferson City to honor a total of 53 first responders and civilians for valorous service to protect the public. Read the news release about the St. Louis ceremony here. View photos of the St. Louis ceremony on Flickr here.

Missouri Public Safety Recognition Day

Gov. Mike Parson with the Missouri Public Safety Medals winners in Jefferson City on Nov. 13, 2018. Read the news release about the Jefferson City ceremony here. View photos from the Jefferson City ceremony on Flickr here.

Watch: Gov. Mike Parson and DPS Director Sandy Karsten honored some of Missouri's outstanding first responders and civilians who saved lives, protected the public and made Missouri safer and more secure.

The state of Missouri currently awards two annual medals honoring first responders for acts of heroism – the Missouri Medal of Valor, which is an individual award, and the Governor’s Medal, which is a team award. In addition, the state awards the Public Safety Civilian Partnership Award to civilians who assist emergency responders during critical incidents.  

Medal of Valor

Medal of Valor is Missouri’s highest award for public safety officers

The Medal of Valor is Missouri’s highest award for public safety officers.

The Medal of Valor is Missouri's highest award recognizing public safety officers who exhibit exceptional courage, extraordinary decisiveness and presence of mind, and unusual swiftness of action, regardless of his or her personal safety, in the attempt to save or protect human life. The Medal of Valor is awarded annually by Missouri's Governor after recommendations are submitted by the Medal of Valor Review Board. The board includes representatives from Missouri’s public safety disciplines and the general public.

To be eligible for the Medal of Valor, a person must have been serving a public agency, with or without compensation, as a firefighter, law enforcement officer or some emergency response role. State and local corrections, court and civil defense officers (emergency management personnel) are also eligible. The Medal of Valor was created in 2004 by Senate Bill 972 during the 92nd General Assembly. The first medals were awarded for acts of bravery performed during 2007.

Governor’s Medal

The Governor's Medal is awarded to a group of public safety officers (an organized team that works and trains together, such as a unit, squad, company, task force, etc., or an ad hoc group of responders who work together during a single event) in recognition of acts above and beyond the call of normal duty during a critical incident or life-threatening situation in which the collective performance or teamwork of the group was essential to the successful resolution of the incident. The Governor’s Medal was first awarded in November 2018 for acts performed in 2017.

Award nominations are reviewed by the Missouri Medal of Valor Review Board, which recommends individuals for recognition to the director of the Department of Public Safety.

Public Safety Civilian Partnership Award

The Public Safety Civilian Partnership Award is awarded to a civilian or group of civilians who provided valuable or courageous assistance to members of a Missouri public safety agency in an emergency situation or whose training of public safety officers can be directly linked to the saving of a life by a public safety agency. The Public Safety Civilian Partnership Award may be awarded to a citizen whose assistance was given without regard for their own personal welfare and had a positive bearing on the outcome of an incident. The Public Safety Civilian Partnership was first awarded in 2017 for acts performed in 2016.

Award nominations are reviewed by the Missouri Medal of Valor Review Board, which recommends individuals for recognition to the director of the Department of Public Safety.

Honors Awarded Previously

Public Safety Medal of Merit

The Public Safety Medal of Merit was awarded in 2017 and 2018 to public safety officers in recognition of an individual’s brave actions above and beyond the call of normal duty that played a critical role in successfully resolving a situation that endangered public safety. It was discontinued after 2018.

Director’s Leadership Medal

The Public Safety Director's Leadership Medal was awarded in 2017 and 2018 to individuals at the command or staff level whose demonstrated actions in the areas of community-oriented engagement and collaborative community-based activities have promoted an environment of greater safety, security and cooperation for community members. Through their leadership, the award winner established a sustainable program or cultivated and/or enhanced relationships that encouraged the collaboration of two or more groups to create an identifiable and meaningful impact on public safety. It was discontinued after 2018.

Hall of Fame Award

The Hall of Fame Award was presented to a senior or retired public safety professional in recognition of an exemplary career of service to the state of Missouri. To be considered for the Hall of Fame Award, the nominee’s career must have served as a model of exceptional courage, service, fairness and compassion. Those nominated* for this award had distinguished career histories of service above and beyond normal expectations and have devoted their talents, time and resources to improving the safety and security of Missouri’s citizens. It was discontinued after 2018.