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  4. Secretary Mayorkas Honors DHS Employees with Annual Secretary’s Awards

Secretary Mayorkas Honors DHS Employees with Annual Secretary’s Awards

Release Date: April 7, 2022

WASHINGTON – Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas today announced the winners of the 2022 DHS Secretary’s Awards, which will honor 876 employees from all 9 DHS component agencies and headquarters across 26 states, Guam, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Vietnam. These individuals have demonstrated a commitment to the DHS mission and exemplify the values of duty, honor, and excellence.

“There is no higher calling than public service. The personnel throughout our Department give so much of themselves to keep our communities safe and to better the lives of others. The individuals we recognize today exemplify the best of our Department and the best of public service,” said Secretary Mayorkas. “I am grateful for their service to our nation and proud to recognize their extraordinary accomplishments.”

This year’s award winners led the Department’s response to cyberattacks; saved lives by sea and air; secured our nation’s elections to protect our democracy; and deployed across the country to support our fellow Americans receiving vaccinations against COVID-19 to help end the pandemic. 

Leading up to May’s Public Service Recognition Week, Secretary Mayorkas and Department leadership will pay special tribute to members of the workforce and their incredible contributions. As part of this “Month of Recognition,” recipients of DHS Secretary’s Awards will be honored during regional awards ceremonies in communities across the country. 

Recipients of the DHS Secretary’s Awards will be recognized under one of the following categories:

Exceptional Service Gold Medal: This is the highest award for service granted by the Secretary of Homeland Security. The award honors exceptional leadership or service that is distinguished by achievements of unique national or international significance, reflecting great credit on the Department of Homeland Security by markedly improving the security of our homeland.   

Meritorious Service Silver Medal: This award is the second highest award presented by the Secretary and recognizes outstanding leadership, superior public service, or unusually significant contributions to strengthening homeland security.  

Award for Valor: This award is the highest recognition for extraordinary acts of valor occurring either on-or off-duty. The employee will have demonstrated selfless response by performing courageously in a highly dangerous or life-threatening situation to protect another's life or to save significant assets or infrastructure from harm. Both civilian and military employees of the Department are eligible for this award. 

Award for Leadership Excellence: This award recognizes an individual and/or team who exemplifies the Department of Homeland Security's leadership philosophy, principles, and core values of integrity, vigilance and respect, and who puts employees first and inspires and motivates others. 

Award for Innovation: This award recognizes individuals or teams that employ a strategic and enterprise-wide approach to strengthen the Department of Homeland Security mission and its operations. 

Award for Team Excellence: This award recognizes any unit within the department (such as a Component, directorate, office, division, or section) with outstanding team achievements in operational areas such as law enforcement, aviation, cybersecurity, border patrol, hiring, acquisition and information technology.  

Champion of Equity: This award recognizes an employee who has excelled in efforts to promote diversity at DHS through outstanding leadership and innovation.

Award for Volunteer Service: This award recognizes significant contributions by DHS employees who serve as volunteers with non-profit or community service programs or activities. 

For a list of all awardees, please click here.  

Last Updated: 04/07/2022
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