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Recognition Awards

  Heroism Medal

Description: Red square knot on white background with white border. Knot was previously used for Sea Explorer white uniforms for the Honor Medal. Colors correspond to red, white and red ribbon on medal.

Worn by:Cub Scouts, Boy/Varsity Scouts, Male and Female Explorers, Male and Female Scouters

The Heroism Medal is presented to those that save live at little or no personal risk. In the past, those persons would receive a Certificate of Heroism from the local Council. Today, those previous holders of Certificates of Heroism as well as present Scouts, Explorers or Scouters are honored with the present Medal.

  Honor Medal

Description: Knot is composed of two red ropes. Difference between old and new knot is only background in which worn on field uniform.

Worn by: Cub Scouts, Boy/Varsity Scouts, Male and Female Explorers, Male and Female Scouters

The Honor Medal is presented to those for lifesaving at some personal risk or to those whom died while attempting to save life. In very exceptional cases, the Medal is presented with crossed gold palms, to Scouts, Explorers and Scouters whom risked their life at a great personal risk.

  William T. Hornaday Award

Description: Badge is either Gold, Silver or Bronze, with a beaver on the wearer's right, a flying bird making the top part of the bar, and a large fish making the left side of the bar. In the center is a wilderness scene above a small bar with the lettering "BSA" and below this, on the Silver and Bronze Awards, the lettering "William T. Hornaday Award". The square knot is made up of green, white and blue strands intertwined as one rope. Ends showing blue tips are worn to wearer's right.

Worn by: Boy/Varsity Scouts, Male and Female Explorers, Male and Female Scouters

The William T. Hornaday Award recognizes Scouts, Explorers and Scouters for their service to conservation and ecology efforts in their communities. Prior award holders only earned the Gold medal, and wore the Badge in the same manner and location as other square knots. Present Bronze and Silver Medalists now wear the square knot; present Gold Medalists may wear the Gold Badge or the square knot; and those whom have earned the Badge as a group (Den, Patrol, Crew or Squad), may wear the Badge. To earn the Hornaday Award as an individual, youth members must earn a series of merit badges followed by a concentrated series of conservation and /or environmental education projects to be conducted in the member's community or nearby, under the advisement of a trained conservation, naturalist, or environmental engineering expert. The present adult Gold award is nominative in nature, and extends over at least a ten-year span of working in or with conservation or environmental education/reclaimation efforts in the community, state or nation.

  Merit Medal

Description: Knot is composed of blue and gold ropes, with the blue end worn to wearer's right.

Worn by: Cub Scouts, Boy/Varsity Scouts, Male and Female Explorers, Male and Female Scouters

The Merit Medal honors Scouts, Explorers and Scouters that have performed some act of meritorious service above and beyond what is normally expected of a youth or adult member of the Boy Scouts of America. Key in the difference between this award and the heroism awards is that the action need not involve saving life, but must employ some aspect of Scouting learning or skills in the execution.

  James West Fellowship Award

Description: Knot is composed of green and gold ropes, with the green end worn toward the wearer's right.

Worn by: Male and Female Scouters, youth members

The James West Fellowship Award is presented through a local Council to any individual that gives $1000 or more to the local Council's West Fellowship Fund (local Councils have differing names for this special pool) on behalf of him/herself, or another individual to be honored or recognized through membership within the West Fellowship. The money goes to support critical local Council and national programs which have suffered major losses due to diversion of funding for national-level resolutions of risk-management issues. Only registered Scouters or youth members receive and wear the square knot; all contributors receive special invitiations to local Council and national West Fellowship Dinners, special publications, and a certificate in addition to some local Council plaques and other items.

  Youth Religious Emblem Award

Description: Old square knot consists of mylar silver knot on a purple background with purple border. Present square knot is made identical except that purple background is fully embrodered.

Worn by: Cub Scouts, Boy/Varsity Scouts, Male and Female Explorers, Male and Female Scouters

This square knot is worn by those whom have earned a religious emblem or award as a youth member of the BSA or some other organization (Girl Scouting, YMCA, Salvation Army, etc.). The awards are NOT BSA awards; they are awards presented by a church body for education, service and devotion to faith. Only ONE youth award square knot is worn, no matter how many times the holder earns a second or subsequent religious award as a youth member. Since many faiths offer several times within a youth's tenure to earn the award, the program in which the award(s) is earned is denoted by small program devices which are placed on the square knot. Devices are availabe for Tiger Cubs, Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting and Exploring.

Square Knot Insignia