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Nominations for FY 2019 Presidential Rank Awards

Friday, March 1, 2019
Nominations for FY 2019 Presidential Rank Awards

I am pleased to announce the call for nominations for the FY 2019 Presidential Rank Awards (PRA) program. 

A Presidential Rank Award is the most prestigious award in the Federal career civil service; and, accordingly, I am asking you to nominate your most exceptional career executives and senior professionals – those who have made extraordinary and lasting contributions to the Federal Government. The individuals who are nominated and chosen for these awards perform valuable services on behalf of the American public and consistently demonstrate strength, integrity, industry, and a relentless commitment to public service.We are looking for extraordinary leaders who have made significant contributions in advancing the President’s Management Agenda (PMA) delivering mission critical solutions, providing excellent customer service and being good stewards of taxpayers’ dollars.  Consistent with the overall strategy of the PMA, this is an opportunity to recognize and reward your top performers.  These leaders address some of the most difficult organizational challenges, while developing a strong and diverse workforce for the 21st century. 

This award program was established by statute in 1978 as a means of recognizing extraordinary performance.  This memorandum serves as a call for agency nominations for those whose service merits the highest level of recognition through a PRA.  This is an excellent opportunity to identify career Senior Executive Service (SES) members and other senior career employees (SL/ST) who have made significant impacts on your agency's effectiveness on a sustained basis.  I encourage you to look at your full spectrum of candidates, and consider the full array of skills and talents evidenced there before identifying the select group you will nominate. 

Nominations for FY 2019 Presidential Rank Awards are due to OPM by Friday, March 29, 2019. 

Inspectors General should nominate executives separately from their parent agencies through the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE). 

By regulation, all agencies, as well as Inspectors General nominations made through CIGIE, may nominate up to nine percent of their career SES and SL/ST populations; however, Agency Heads should consider their fiscal conditions and resources needed to meet overall agency mission priorities in determining the number of nominations to submit.  Nominees must meet stringent personal and professional standards, and are therefore subject to extremely rigorous review and evaluation processes. 

As set forth in 5 U.S.C. § 4507(d)(1) and (2), awards for the Distinguished Rank may not exceed one percent, and for the Meritorious Rank may not exceed five percent, of the career SES and SL/ST populations.  The President makes the final decision approving award recipients. 

Attached is detailed guidance for preparing and submitting nominations. When considering potential nominees, agencies must exercise due diligence in reviewing both the background of nominees including any issues relating to personal and professional conduct, such as past misconduct or disciplinary actions, timely payment of Federal taxes, findings in a final resolution of an Equal Employment Opportunity proceeding that suggest that the individual discriminated in violation of a civil rights statute, findings by an Office of Inspector General (or equivalent) proceeding that the individual engaged in misconduct, and evidence of as yet un-adjudicated misconduct in relation to Office of Inspector General (or their equivalent) matters, as well as the programs and organizational components for which the nominees have any responsibility.  This is to help determine the appropriateness of the individuals receiving this Presidential recognition.  (In relying upon proceedings which have not concluded, or to which the individual was not a party, it will be important to consider countervailing accounts and evidence as well.)  

If you or your staff members would like any additional information about the program, please contact Laura Lynch, Deputy Associate Director for Senior Executive Services and Performance Management, by telephone at (202) 606-8046 or Karen English, PRA Program Manager, Senior Executive Resources Services, by email at or by telephone at (202) 606-2747. 

Attachments (see 508-conformant PDFs below):  FY 2019 Presidential Rank Awards Program Guidance, Billing Forms, Senior Career & SES Appointee Nomination Templates, Biographical/Career Summary Template, Authorization for Release of Information Form, and Code of Conduct Self-Certification Form 

cc:  Chief Human Capital Officers (CHCOs), Deputy CHCOs, and Human Resources Directors