Governor General of Canada

Governor General of Canada

April 09, 2009 12:04 ET

Media Advisory: Presentation of Two Meritorious Service Decorations (Military Division)

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 9, 2009) - On behalf of Her Excellency the Right Honourable Michaelle Jean, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, the Honourable Michael Wilson, Ambassador of Canada to the United States, awarded two Meritorious Service Decorations (Military Division), to foreign individuals whose specific achievements have brought honour to Canada. Colonel Thomas Seay and Colonel Richard Stephen Williams received the Meritorious Service Medal during a private ceremony held at the Canadian embassy in Washington, on March 24, 2009.

The recipients' citations follow. For additional information on the Meritorious Service Decorations, see Annex A.

Colonel Thomas Seay, M.S.M.

Lackland AFB and San Antonio, Texas, United States of America

Meritorious Service Medal (Military Division)

When the Multi-National Medical Unit in Kandahar was left without a radiologist, Colonel Seay volunteered to serve from September 2007 to January 2008. The services he provided to Canadian and coalition soldiers greatly impacted on the quality of medical care they received, and directly contributed to saving numerous lives.

Colonel Richard Stephen Williams, M.S.M.

Fort Richardson, United States of America

Meritorious Service Medal (Military Division)

From May to November 2006, Colonel Williams of the United States Army applied dogged determination, as well as outstanding leadership, to ensure that Task Force Grizzly performed to exceptional standards. As deputy commander of the Multinational Brigade - Regional Command South, in Afghanistan, he coordinated combat enablers and implemented quick impact reconstruction projects in the battlespace. His combined experience in the area of operations, his knowledge of resources and his well-established relations with high-ranking officials and key leaders of Afghanistan served to directly support the strategic goals of the Canadian mission in Afghanistan.


The Meritorious Service Decorations include a military division and a civil division, with two levels each: a medal and a cross. The military division recognizes individuals for their outstanding professionalism and for bringing honour to the Canadian Forces and to Canada. The civil division recognizes individuals who have performed an exceptional deed or an activity that brought honour to the community or to Canada.

The Meritorious Service Cross (Military Division) recognizes a military deed or activity that has been performed in an outstandingly professional manner, according to a rare high standard that brings considerable benefit or great honour to the Canadian Forces.

The Meritorious Service Medal (Military Division) recognizes a military deed or activity performed in a highly professional manner, according to a very high standard that brings benefit or honour to the Canadian Forces.

These decorations are an important part of the Canadian Honours System, which recognizes excellence. Meritorious Service Decorations honour either a single achievement or an activity over a specified period. The Meritorious Service Decorations are open to both Canadians and non-Canadians.

Anyone may nominate an individual for the civil division of the Meritorious Service Decorations, while military candidates are recommended by the Chief of the Defence Staff. Nominations and awards may be made posthumously, but nominations for activities that occurred prior to June 1984, the year in which the honour was first created, are not accepted.

Contact Information

  • Rideau Hall Press Office
    Marie-Paule Thorn
    613-993-2569 /
    Department of National Defence
    Media Liaison Office
    613-996-2353 or 1-800-377-0811