The United States Mint unveiled 18 candidate designs earlier this month for the 2.5-ounce .999 fine Coast Guard Silver Medal for 2020. The medal celebrates the U.S. Coast Guard and is part of the Mint’s upcoming series of products honoring the nation’s armed forces.
The Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) reviewed the designs on Oct. 16 and the Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) reviewed them on Oct. 18. Both bodies recommended the same designs, obverse #4B paired with reverse #9.
Obverse Coast Guard Medal Design Recommendation
Obverse design #4B depicts a U.S. Coast Guard National Security Cutter at full throttle, speeding head-on toward the viewer, conveying the Coast Guard is "Always Ready." The inscription "SEMPER PARATUS" is arced across the top of the design.
To forestall the possibility that the design could come across as unrealistic or confusing on a medal, the CFA encouraged further refinements, possibly including adjustments to the waves, the position of the ship, or the addition of a horizon line.
Reverse Coast Guard Medal Design Recommendations
Reverse design #9 features a life preserver ring as an outer border. The inner design is the distinctive Coast Guard racing stripe mark, which is found on almost all Coast Guard crafts. The racing stripes are depicted with a heraldic hatching tradition to indicate color. The horizontal stripes indicate the color blue, while the vertical stripes indicate the color red.
The Coast Guard emblem, which is part of the racing stripe mark, is also in the center. Inscribed into the life ring are the Coast Guard’s core values, "HONOR," "RESEPECT," and "DEVOTION TO DUTY."
The Treasury Secretary or his designee will select the final designs after considering all recommendations.
In addition to being featured on a silver medal, the designs may later appear on traditional U.S. Mint 3-inch and 1.5-inch bronze medals.