AIR FORCE RECOGNITION RIBBON
The Air Force has a plethora of awards and trophies for winners of Air Force-level competitions as well as those selected at the functional level (e.g., Financial Management, Chaplain Services, Inspector General, and so forth). To provide recognition of the achievement in winning one of these awards or trophies, the Air Force established the Air Force Recognition Ribbon (AFRR), to be presented to any recipient of an eligible award since October 12, 1980.
Recipients include named individuals or the members of small teams who received a designated Air Force-level special trophy or award or a functional Air Force-level special award; they may also be individuals or members of small teams taking part in Air Force-wide competitions sponsored by a Major Command.
Small teams are not to be confused with a unit that is considered an Air Force organization by the assignation of a Department of the Air Force letter, and therefore will not have an attendant lineage or honors history. The Recognition Ribbon is an individual award, and therefore cannot be granted to entire DAF organizations, units, or activities. The key factor regarding eligibility is either an individual achievement or a small team’s achievement in which the contribution of each member of the team was essential to mission accomplishment, which stands in contrast to organization groups where the contributions of given individual could vary considerably and the mission still be accomplished.
To clarify which competitions are eligible for awarding of the Recognition Ribbon to the winners, the Air Force includes a list of AFRR-eligible competitions as an attachment in a Guidance Memorandum to AFI 36-2805, Special Trophies and Awards.