2016 Gold Medal Ceremony and Events

Congratulations on earning the Congressional Award Gold Medal.  The 2016 Gold Medal Ceremony will be held in Washington, D.C. on June 16, 2016. Please find information below about the Gold events as well as how to RSVP, submit a biography about your activities, and some FAQ’s about the events. We will update this page as information is confirmed.

We have added the Ceremony Schedule below!!

Schedule of Events

Gold Medal Ceremonies on Capitol Hill
Thursday, June 16, 2016
10:00 a.m. & 2:30 p.m.

Cannon House Office Building

The Ceremonies will be held in the Caucus Room of the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill (345 CHOB).  All Medalists are provided with four (4) complimentary guest spaces at the Ceremony. Additional guest requests are due by May 1st and will be approved via email after May 19, 2016 (there is no charge for additional ceremony guests, however we are limited based on the capacity of the room). Medalists should arrive 45 minutes before your ceremony is scheduled to begin and guests may check in 20 minutes before the ceremony is scheduled to begin. When entering the building, you will need to go through security (metal detector and x-ray machine for belongings). Please allow additional time (note – this is not like airport security and should only add 10-15 minutes of time to entry).

Cannon House Office Building
First and Independence Avenues, SE
Washington, DC 20515

Metro Accessible:  Capitol South Metro Station (Blue/Orange/Silver Lines)

Handicap Accessible Entrance: New Jersey Avenue, SE, south of the terrace at the intersection with Independence Avenue

** NOTE – We have approved a record number of Gold Medalists this year and probably will not be able to meet all Ceremony Extra Guest Requests due to the room capacity on the Hill.  Please keep this in mind when planning your trip.**

UPDATED!

The 10:00 a.m. Ceremony will feature the following states:
Alabama,  California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Tennessee & Wyoming

The 2:30 p.m. Ceremony will feature the following states:
Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington & Wisconsin

Group Pictures (East Capitol Steps – House Side)

Immediately following the first Ceremony, medalists will be led to group pictures. Medalists from the second Ceremony should arrive at the location by 12:oo p.m.

The group pictures will be taken on the South East Capitol Steps (picture below).

 

 

 

 

 

Gold Medal Recognition Dinner
Thursday, June 16, 2016
6:00 p.m. – Reception Begins; 7:00 p.m. – Dinner and Program Begins
Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center

2016 Gold Medalists are invited to attend a Recognition Dinner in Washington, D.C. Reception and check in will begin at 6:00 p.m., the program will begin at 7:00 p.m. and will last approximately 2 hours. When entering the building, you will need to go through security (metal detector and x-ray machine for belongings). Please allow additional time (note – this is not like airport security and should only add 5-10 minutes of time to entry). All Medalists are provided with one (1) complimentary guest space to join us at the event with Members of Congress, special guests, and friends. Additional guest requests are due May 1st and will be approved via email after May 19, 2016. Each additional guest is $100 and must be paid after the seat is confirmed. If you accept any additional guest spaces, you will need to pay the Foundation, even if there is a cancellation.

Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
1300 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20004

Metro Accessible:  Federal Triangle Station (Blue/Orange/Silver Lines) is connected to the building OR Metro Center Station (Red/Blue/Orange/Silver Lines)  is two blocks walking distance.

 

RSVP

The deadline to submit your RSVP for the 2016 Congressional Award Gold Medal events was May 1, 2016.  You may check your status HERE.  This spreadsheet has been available and online since 4/20/2016 and updated 12 times.  Medalists who did not submit an RSVP and/or Biography were also contacted multiple times before and after the May 1, 2016 due date.  We have closed the RSVP and Bio Submissions and will not be accepting any more submissions as we have to focus on the June events.  You may contact us at Gold@congressionalaward.org if you have any questions.

The following information was also available:

As the deadline has passed, we will not be able to guarantee your allocated guest seats as we are expecting a large group. We will follow up with late RSVP’s (anything received May 2 on) the week of May 9 to confirm the approved allocated guest counts.  RSVP’s received after May 1 will not be able to request additional guests at the Ceremonies as we are nearing capacity and the deadline has passed.   If you fail to submit your RSVP  to the National Office by the May 6th cut-off date, your Medal will be mailed directly to you following the Gold Medal Ceremony. You will receive a confirmation email once you submit your RSVP. Note – this is a separate form from the biography submission.  If you do not receive this, we have not received your RSVP!

** NOTE – We have approved a record number of Gold Medalists this year and probably will not be able to meet all Ceremony Extra Guest Requests due to the room capacity on the Hill.  Please keep this in mind when planning your trip.**

Biography

The deadline to submit your Biography for the 2016 Congressional Award Ceremony Program Book was May 1, 2016.  You may check your status HERE.  This spreadsheet has been available and online since 4/20/2016 and updated 12 times.  Medalists who did not submit an RSVP and/or Biography were also contacted multiple times before and after the May 1, 2016 due date.  We have closed the RSVP and Bio Submissions and will not be accepting any more submissions as we have to focus on the June events.  You may contact us at Gold@congressionalaward.org if you have any questions.

Resources

FAQ's

Below utilize the Frequently Asked Questions for clarifications you may have. If you still have questions after reviewing, please feel free to contact us at gold@congressionalaward.org. Please include the name of the Gold Medalist and we will respond to your inquiry.

When do you release the Ceremony information?

While we begin working with the Speaker’s Office a year in advance in preparation for the Gold events, we do not receive confirmation of dates until the beginning of the year. We therefore do not release dates, etc. until they have been re-confirmed by the Speaker’s Office. We will send all RSVP information including applicable dates to approved Gold Medalists after the first of the year. We do not recommend making travel arrangements or the like until you have received your approval letter AND RSVP information.

We will provide the Ceremony breakout in mid-April. We must try to ensure that each Ceremony is equal in attendance in order to not exceed the capacity of the room and keep the presentations even. We cannot take requests for certain Ceremony times – you will be invited to the Ceremony that your state will be in.

What is the set-up for the Gold Ceremony?

The Gold Medal Ceremony is usually in the Cannon Caucus Room in the Cannon House Building on Capitol Hill. We have two ceremonies in order to accommodate guests and family members in the Cannon Caucus Room. The ceremonies are divided by state. Once we notify medalists of their appropriate ceremony time, we will work with the Congressional Offices to confirm your Representative’s attendance.

On the day of the Ceremony, Medalists are asked to check in for their ceremony 45 minutes before the scheduled start time, allowing National Staff time to prepare the Gold Medalists for the presentation. Guests will be able to check in and enter the room 20 minutes before start time. The ceremony includes a color guard presentation, invocation, speakers, and a brief introduction of each Medalist as they receive their medals.

When do I know about my Ceremony time?

We do not assign a state to a ceremony time until we receive RSVP Forms, to confirm which states will be represented. We will notify Medalists of their ceremony time via mail and will post the ceremony listing by state on our web site, generally two months before the ceremony date.

Can I request a specific ceremony time?

No. We do not take requests for specific ceremony times as we cannot accommodate everyone. While we understand that a specific ceremony time may be preferred, we must be conscious of your Congressional Offices’ schedules as well as other Medalists from your state.

Can I contact my Congressional Office to let them know about my Award?

Yes. You may reach out to your Congressional Offices; however this often leads to confusion within the offices regarding the event. We ask that you allow us to contact your Congressional Offices about your attendance. If the office wants to reach out to you directly, we will release your contact information. It is imperative that we have your accurate contact information, including a means for contacting you while you are in Washington, DC, as schedules change and you may need to be notified of changes while you are here.

What happens if my Member of Congress cannot attend?

We make every attempt to have your Representative present for the presentation. If they can not make the presentation, we will ask another Member of Congress to step in for the presentation.

When do Medalists need to check in?

Medalists are asked to arrive 45 minutes before their assigned start time.

When do guests check in for the Ceremony?

Guests of medalists may check-in for the Ceremony 20 minutes before start time. We request this time for a run down of the proceedings with our medalists. Parents and guests will not be allowed to check-in for the Ceremony until 20 minutes before start time. We ask that guests remain quiet if they choose to wait to check-in as the Cannon Building holds many Congressional Offices that are doing normal business during our Ceremonies. Guests may visit the Longworth Building cafeteria in the interim.

Will there be a photographer at the Ceremony? Can my family take a picture of my presentation?

Pictures will be taken of each Medalist as they are presented with their Gold Medal. A picture of the Ceremony will be mailed directly to you in the weeks following the Gold Medal Ceremony, after you notify our photographer of your preferred picture (information will be given at the Ceremony). If you would like additional pictures, please contact our photographer (information to be provided). As we will be providing a picture of the presentation, we ask that family members and guests not attempt to take their own picture. Flash photography and maneuvering for a personal picture may interfere with our professional photographer and may obstruct the view of other families.

Where are the group photos taken? What if the location changes?

The group pictures will be taken on the South East Capitol Steps.  We will provide a map when we get closer to the event.

Immediately following the first Ceremony, medalists will be led to group pictures. Medalists from the second Ceremony should arrive at the location by 12:00 p.m.

A large group shot will be taken of all Gold Medalists followed by smaller group shots based on affiliation (Air Force, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, 4-H, etc). If you have an affiliation with any of our partners, please feel free to join the group picture for that organization.

How do we get to the Ceremony? Can we drive to the Capitol?

Parking is VERY limited around the Capitol. We recommend taking Metro (Washington, DC’s subway system) into the city for the day of the Ceremony. The Cannon Caucus Building is almost directly off of the Capitol South stop on the Orange, Blue, and Silver Lines. Please visit www.wmata.com for details about the Metro System. You may also look into other ground transportation options like taxis.

What if I cannot attend the Gold Medal Ceremony and Events?

If you are unable to attend the Washington, DC Ceremony, you will be given the option to have a local presentation (if you have not already) or have your medal mailed to you.  We schedule the majority of local presentations after the Ceremony to allow for changes in schedules.  We will mail out all materials to those who could not attend the Washington, DC Ceremony, including copies of the Program Book with your biography and the 2016 Gold t-shirt, after the Gold events (usually mid-July).

If I am not attending the Ceremony in Washington, DC, do I have to send in my RSVP forms and Biography?

Yes. We ask that you send in your RSVP Forms, even if you are not planning on attending the Ceremony in Washington, DC. We also request information from you regarding your choice of presentation if you cannot attend, your t-shirt size, and your contact information. The Gold Medal Biographies appear in the Program Book, allowing an opportunity for all Gold Medalists to share their accomplishments in earning the Congressional Award. The Program Book is shared with Congressional Offices and all Gold Medalists. If we do not receive your biography, it will not be included in the 2016 Gold Medal Program Book.

If I request a local presentation, what can I expect?

Following the Gold Medal Ceremony, if you have not had your local presentation, we will notify your local Congressional Office regarding your Award. Local presentations most often occur in local Congressional District Offices, allowing families and Medalists an opportunity for an intimate meeting with their Member of Congress. In July, you will receive Gold Materials from the National Office, including your Gold 2016 T-shirt and Program Book. If you have questions about your local ceremony, please contact us. If you move or change your contact information before your presentation is scheduled, please let us know.

If I request my medal to be mailed to me, what can I expect?

We will send your Gold Medal Packet, including your Gold Medal and any of your lower levels, your Gold T-Shirt and copies of the Gold 2016 Program Book in July. If you move, we request that you update your contact information with us. If you decide that you would actually like a local presentation, please let us know.

Can I come to next year’s Gold Medal Ceremony if I can’t make this one?

Probably Not. You may request a deferral via email (gold@congressionalaward.org) before April 10, 2016. We offer deferrals to those who have extenuating circumstances that would not allow them to travel to Washington, DC for the appropriate ceremony. Deferrals have been granted in the past for military deployments, study abroad programs and health issues. We will not make deferrals if you would like to wait for a sibling to be approved.  If you need to request a deferral, please submit your request via email before April 10, 2016, including the reason for deferral. We cannot accept deferral requests if you simply want to change the year of your presentation or if you have a sibling that you would like to wait for. We will respond to your deferral request by April 20, 2016.

Is press contacted about my accomplishments?

Yes. We will notify the press contact on your RSVP submission before your presentation and then will follow up with any press organization who has shown interest after with pictures and additional presentation information. While we do contact all press submitted, it is up to the news organization to actually run the story.