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    Environment Agency Medal - what was it awarded for?


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    Duncan, eMedals has an archived  listing of 3 US Environmental Protection Agency medals in gold, silver, & bronze (https://www.emedals.com/three-american-environmental-protection-agency-medals#:~:text=Three American Environmental Protection Agency Medals United States%3B,Commendable Service%2C Individual and Group (bronze%2C 38.3 mm).). They have different ribbons than the example you illustrated. The auction listing text states: "United States; Gold Grade Medal for Exceptional Service, Individual and Group (bronze gilt, 38.5 mm); Silver Grade Medal for Superior Service, Individual and Group (silvered bronze, 38.7 mm); and Bronze Grade Medal for Commendable Service, Individual and Group (bronze, 38.3 mm). Each medal with its original ribbon with brooch pinback, scattered silvering wear on the obverse of the Silver Grade Medal, near extremely fine." A 11 March, 2021 eBay listing of a bronze example identifies it as "US Environmental Protection Agency Civilian Distinguished Career Medal". All of the photos I can find online show the ribbon colors shown below, not those on your example. There is some additional information on then US Environmental Protection Agency  blog (https://www.epa.gov). OMSA has additional photos (https://www.omsa.org/images/?parent=846), there may be an example in their archives with the same ribbon as on the example you illustrated above. 





    Obverse of the 3 US Environmental Protection Agency medals in (L-R): gold, silver, & bronze.




    Reverse of the three US Environemental Protection Agency Distinguished Career medals in (L-R): identifying each classes award "FOR EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE" (gold); "FOR SUPERIOR SERVICE" (silver); and "FOR COMMENDABLE SERVICE" (bronze). 




    The above image of a gold US EPA medal shows the same ribbon as on Duncan's example turns up in an image search for these medals & identifies the source as OMSA (https://www.omsa.org/ImageDB/images/812/EPA_Exceptional_Service_Medal_type2.JPG), but it is not illustrated on the OMSA page referenced in the first paragraph of this post. 




    A past eBay auction listing (https://i.ebayimg.com/images/i/380396891278-0-1/s-l1000.jpg-no longer available) shows the above example that appears to be gold, has a slightly different ribbon configuration, and is inscribed on the reverse "FOR DISTINGUISHED SERVICE". 


    The San Mateo County Historical Association Online Collections Database, Redwood City, CA,  has a couple examples with additional information,.  See the 2 listings below to view then copyrighted photos. The The San Mateo County Historical Association Online Collections Database illustrates an example of a cased bronze medal and lapel pin to JoAnn Semones, with another slightly different ribbon color scheme (https://historysmc.pastperfectonline.com/webobject/9551643F-E5EA-40C3-8AC4-925749863570). The description of that example states: 


    Title: EPA Bronze Medal, c. 1990s


    Object Name: Medal, Commemorative


    Description: EPA Bronze Medal, c. 1990s. Awarded to JoAnn Semones for commendable service with the Environmental Protection Agency. Medal (A) is circular and bronze; "UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY" is written around the edge in raised text; and in the center is a design with a stylized butterfly on the bottom and a circle on top containing what looks like ocean waves and a smaller, raised circle near its center. The design is put together so it also looks like a stylized flower, with the butterfly being the stem and leaves and the circle the bulb. On the back is written "FOR COMMENDABLE SERVICE", surrounded by a leafy wreath pattern. Attached to the medal is a green ribbon with two vertical blue stripes bordered in white. Pin (B) is a smaller version of the medal, with the same border text and the same butterfly/flower design in the center. Box (C) is a textured vinyl, navy blue with a gold plastic border around the opening and a vertical painted gold design stripe on the left of the lid; the design is made up of two vertical stripes on either side and a pattern of alternating stylized plant designs in the center. The inside is lined in white papery vinyl and the medal and pin rest on a soft gray insert in the bottom of the box.


    Date: c. 1990s


    Collection: 3D - Personal Symbols


    Inscription Text: "UNITED STATES / ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY" (raised text around edge of medal); "FOR / COMMENDABLE / SERVICE" (raised text on back of medal); "UNITED STATES / ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY" (raised text around edge of pin); "UNITED STATES / OF AMERICA" (gold text, bottom right corner of top of box)


    Provenance: Items related to JoAnn Semones professional career.


    Notes: Awarded to JoAnn Semones for commendable service during her time at the San Francisco EPA office (1980-2001).


    Dimensions: H-7.5 W-4.25 D-7.75 inches


    Dimension Details: open box (medal (A) is 3.125 x 1.5 and pin (b) is .625 x .625)


    Search Terms: Awards  
    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  
    Semones, JoAnn  


    Subjects: Awards
    Environmental policy


    People: Semones, JoAnn 


    Credit line: JoAnn Semones - Julia Barrow Collection


    Catalog Number: 2017.008.055.2


    The San Mateo County Historical Association Online Collections Database, Redwood City, CA, also illustrates an example of  gold medal and award certificate to Julia Barrow from 1995 (https://historysmc.pastperfectonline.com/webobject/012B5112-6F61-4A4E-A910-524922534770). That example exhibits the same ribbon colors as shown on the eMedals example. The description of the framed certificate and medal reads: 


    Title: Framed EPA Gold Medal Awarded to Julia Barrow, 1995


    Object Name: Medal


    Description: Framed EPA Gold Medal Awarded to Julia Barrow, 1995. Gold medal and certificate awarded to Julie Barrow by the EPA for her exceptional service. Certificate is on the left, and states that she received the award for her public outreach program about California's air quality. Certificate has a gold foil EPA logo in the bottom left corner, made up of a flower shape with a setting sun over ocean waves on the round bulb and leaves that resemble butterfly wings. In the bottom right corner is a black signature from the EPA administrator. To the right of the certificate is the gold medal. It is round and also has the EPA logo in the center, and an attached ribbon with green stripes on a blue background. Medal and certificate are set into rectangular cutouts in a blue-gray marble patterned poster board, with a gold border around the medal's cutout. The entire thing has a thick gold plastic frame, designed to look like painted wood, with subtle abstract carvings around its main ridge. On the back is a sticker for Eriksen Gallery and Frame Shop in Half Moon Bay.


    Date: February 8, 1995


    Collection: 3D - Personal Symbols


    Creator: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)


    Inscription Text: "the united states environmental protection agency / Awards to / Julia Barrow / the / Gold Medal for Exceptional Service / For the successful design and implementation / of a comprehensive public outreach process / which resulted in innovative air quality strategies / under the California FIPs" (printed on certificate in black, with the first letters of the words of the first few lines in red); "Carol W. Browne / Administrator" (top line signed in black marker; not 100% confident that it's accurate); "UNITED STATES / ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY" (on medal, around the logo in raised text); "ERIKSEN GALLERY / & Frame Shop / 524 Main Street / Half Moon Bay, CA 94019 / (415) 726-1598" (on small white sticker, back of frame, bottom center)


    Provenance: Part of the Semones - Barrow Collection


    Notes: Julie held management positions with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in San Francisco, winning the agency's National Gold Medal for Exceptional Service by developing innovative air quality strategies. She is also a three-time recipient of the agency's National Bronze Medal for Commendable Service. She began her environmental career in Chicago, Illinois where she won the Regional Administrator's Award for Excellence for the Women in Science and Engineering Program." The gold medal is the EPA's highest honor.
    [source: biographical information provided by collection donors]


    Dimensions: H-15 W-22.5 D-2.25 inches


    Dimension Details: entire framed thing; 8 x 10 certificate; 3.25 x 1.5 x .25 medal


    Search Terms: Awards  
    Barrow, Julia  
    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  


    Subjects: Air quality
    Environmental policy


    People: Barrow, Julia 


    Credit line: JoAnn Semones - Julia Barrow Collection


    Catalog Number: 2017.008.082


    Edited by Rusty Greaves
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    That's fantastic, thank you for all the information. I'm thinking that the ribbon on the example i posted is an incorrect ribbon, though I have seen a few photos on the web with that ribbon, so who knows!

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