At its June 18 meeting, the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) reviewed and discussed designs for upcoming Congressional Gold Medals by the Mint.The medals reviewed included the Steve Gleason Congressional Gold Medal and the Anwar El Sadat Congressional Gold Medal.
Steve Gleason Congressional Gold Medal
On Dec. 20, 2018 the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation to award former New Orleans Saints football team defensive back Steve Gleason the Congressional Gold Medal.This follows the U.S. Senate’s unanimous approval of him receiving this honor earlier that year in June. President Trump signed the bill, now known as Public Law 415-415, on Jan. 3, 2019. This is the highest honor Congress can bestow upon a civilian.
Gleason has been active in raising money and awareness for research into Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).Gleason was diagnosed with ALS in 2011.The Team Gleason foundation strives to develop and provide technology to help ALS patients live longer, more fulfilling lives.
The CCAC reviewed ten obverse designs and ten reverse designs. The recommended obverse for the Gleason medal depicts a portrait of Gleason from the waist up with his left fist clenched and raised high with the inscription STEVE GLEASON at the top left and ACT OF CONGRESS 2018 on the right border reading from the bottom up.
For the reverse, the CCAC recommended a reverse akin to the landscape where Gleason spent his childhood in the Pacific Northwest, traveling and exploring.The inscription KEEP EXPLORING is important to Gleason, as it represents his travels and journeys with ALS. ACT OF CONGRESS 2018 is inscribed along the bottom border.
Some modifications to the reverse design were suggested by the CCAC, which were based on input from the Gleason family. These include moving KEEP EXPLORING to the where the inscription ACT OF CONGRESS 2018 is and then eliminating that inscription on the reverse.
It was also suggested to enlarge the moon and sky space while moving the trees, mountains and water elements down to accommodate the enlargements.
Gleason’s medal will be presented to him by the congressional leadership on behalf of Congress.
Anwar El Sadat Congressional Gold Medal
President Trump also signed Public Law 115-310 on Jan. 3, 2019, to award the Congressional Gold Medal to Anwar El Sadat in recognition of his heroic achievements and courageous contributions to peace in the Middle East.
Fourteen obverse and reverse designs were reviewed by the committee. The design recommended for the obverse features a large close-up of Sadat facing stoically to the right with the inscription ANWAR EL SADAT along the right border in bold dark type.
The reverse design recommended by the committee depicts the Unknown Soldier Memorial as well as Anwar El Sadat’s tomb.The inscription HE LIVED FOR PEACE AND DIED FOR PRINCIPLES is inscribed along the top border, while ANWAR EL SADAT 1918-1981 slants along the memorial.ACT OF CONGRESS 2018 is at the bottom border.
The medal will be presented to Sadat’s widow, Jehan Sadat, or if she is unavailable, the next of kin, as Sadat was assassinated on October 6, 1981 while serving as Egypt’s third President.
Final approval for both medal designs will be made by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin or his designee.Bronze duplicates of both the Gleason and Sadat medals, bearing the final approved designs, will be offered for sale to the general public by the United States Mint.Two sizes will be available – a three-inch version which will retail for $39.95 and a one-and-a-half-inch version which will retail for $6.95. ♦