Presidential Medal of Freedom
Highest civilian award
Recognizes individuals including non-US citizens for... "an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, or to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors."
Established in 1945 by President Harry Truman to honor service during WWII.
President John F. Kennedy revived the medal that is awarded annually on or near July 4th to several people.
Recipients for most recent years
Presidential Citizens Medal
Second highest civilian award
Recognizes U.S. citizens who have performed exemplary deeds of service for the nation.
Conferred annually and may be posthumously
Established on November 13, 1969 by President Richard Nixon