Top senior executives will be honored next week at the State Department for their contributions to public service, less than a month after the White House reinstated the annual Presidential Rank Awards.
The Senior Executives Association will host a two-hour evening reception on June 5 in Washington for the 2013 Presidential Distinguished and Meritorious Rank Award finalists, the group announced. In previous years, the black-tie affair was a formal, sit-down dinner with high-profile speakers, administration officials and lawmakers. SEA said it will announce next week the speakers and other distinguished guests scheduled to attend the June 5 reception.
The Office of Personnel Management announced on May 12 that the prestigious awards and accompanying banquet would be reinstated for fiscal 2014, after President Obama canceled them in June 2013 during the height of sequestration-related furloughs. The 2013 finalists may be nominated again in 2014, since they will not receive any monetary awards for last year. Nominations for the fiscal 2014 awards are due June 5 – the same day as the SEA reception honoring the 2013 finalists.
“You may also decide to re-nominate eligible senior Executives and senior Professionals that were nominated in fiscal 2013 since no monetary awards were conferred for Presidential Rank Award finalists in fiscal 2013 and therefore none of these nominees are currently subject to the statutory prohibition from receiving the same rank award more than once within a five-year period,” OPM Director Katherine Archuleta said in a May 12 letter to agency heads. She also cautioned agencies to “consider the current challenging fiscal conditions and resources needed to meet overall agency mission priorities in determining the number of nominations to submit.”
Last year was the first time the awards were canceled: The president has honored top feds with rank awards since 1978, providing a one-time bonus of between 20 percent and 35 percent of the employee’s salary. Agencies must first nominate candidates for the awards to OPM before the White House ultimately selects the winners.
OPM published the names of 100 finalists and their departments from 2013, though noted that it was not a comprehensive list and only included those who agreed to be publicly recognized as of May 13.
NASA boasted 18 finalists, the most of the agencies on OPM’s public list.