The Medal of Valor represents the highest award our community can bestow upon the men and women who protect us and our property through the conscientious enforcement of our laws. And although this coveted award is presented to those few individuals who have distinguished themselves through meritorious service, it is, in a sense, a sincere tribute to all police officers.
Sponsored by the Crusade Against Crime of America and the St. Louis Area Police Chiefs' Association, the Medal of Valor is presented in recognition of a conspicuous act of bravery exceeding the normal demands of police service. It expresses the community's gratitude for the sound judgment demonstrated by the officer in the performance of his or her duty, often without regard for personal safety, yet with full awareness of the reasonable attainment of his or her objective. The award guidelines were broadened in 1974 to provide for the recognition of citizen involvement in performing a heroic act out of concern for the safety and welfare of a police officer or in the prevention of a crime.
Since its inception in 1969, the Medal of Valor has been presented to over 250 police officers and local citizens, including several individuals who have each received the Medal twice for heroic deeds. The recipients are selected each year from nominations submitted to the Medal of Valor Judges Committee by more than 140 Police Departments in the St. Louis metropolitan area. The guidelines governing the qualifications for nominations were established by a panel of high-ranking police officers. All nominees must be approved by their respective chiefs.
While the Medal of Valor provides a unique opportunity for honoring the heroism of individual police officers and citizens, it also offers the means through which everyone can express their support of all law enforcement officers.