Fulton County, Georgia, election worker Ruby Freeman (left) puts her head on the shoulder of her daughter Shaye Moss, who holds her Presidential Citizens Medal, as former Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell looks on. Freeman and Moss, who processed ballots for the 2020 presidential election and were falsely accused of manipulating votes, were honored by President Joe Biden (right) on Jan. 6, 2023, at the White House during a ceremony to mark the two-year anniversary of the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. (Cheriss May/The Washington Informer)
Fulton County, Georgia, election worker Ruby Freeman (left) puts her head on the shoulder of her daughter Shaye Moss, who holds her Presidential Citizens Medal, as former Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell looks on. Freeman and Moss, who processed ballots for the 2020 presidential election and were falsely accused of manipulating votes, were honored by President Joe Biden (right) on Jan. 6, 2023, at the White House during a ceremony to mark the two-year anniversary of the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. (Cheriss May/The Washington Informer)

Two years after the Capitol insurrection, a dozen Americans were honored Friday with the Presidential Citizens Medal for their bravery in standing up against those attempting to overturn the 2020 election.

U.S. Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn holds his Presidential Citizens Medal on the North Lawn of the White House on Jan. 6, 2023. He received the medal from President Joe Biden earlier in the day during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House to mark the two-year anniversary of the Capitol insurrection. (Cheriss May/The Washington Informer)
U.S. Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn holds his Presidential Citizens Medal on the North Lawn of the White House on Jan. 6, 2023. He received the medal from President Joe Biden earlier in the day during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House to mark the two-year anniversary of the Capitol insurrection. (Cheriss May/The Washington Informer)

Honorees included mother-daughter duo Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss, who processed ballots in Fulton County, Georgia, during the 2020 elections, and were wrongly accused of manipulating votes by then-President Donald Trump and his lawyer Rudolph Giuliani, as well as the website The Gateway Pundit. The two later sued the website and Giuliani, and Freeman later testified during the January 6th insurrection hearings.

Harry Dunn, who was said to have faced racism and harassment when he defended the Capitol against rioters, was also among the 12 honored with the Presidential Citizens Medal.

Brian D. Sicknick, the officer who died from the injuries he sustained defending the Capitol, was also among the many honored.


U.S. Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman stands with President Joe Biden to receive the Presidential Citizens Medal during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6, 2023, marking the two-year anniversary of the Capitol insurrection. (Cheriss May/The Washington Informer)

Others included: 

  • Jocelyn Benson, while serving as Michigan’s secretary of state, faced aggression and major pressure to overturn election results, including protests outside her home.
  • Russell “Rusty” Bowers, then the Republican Arizona House speaker, pushed back at efforts to overturn and deny election results.
  • Caroline Edwards, who was the first law enforcement officer injured during the Capitol riots and suffered a traumatic brain injury.
  • Michael Fanone, who resigned from the Metropolitan Police Department soon after being injured while defending the Capitol.
  • Eugene Goodman diverted an aggressive mob from the Senate floor as senators were evacuating. 
  • Aquilino Gonell, a Capitol Police sergeant injured during the attack.
  • Daniel Hodges, a District of Columbia officer who suffered injuries during the Capitol attack.
  • Al Schmidt, who served as Philadelphia County Board of Elections’ city commissioner, made sure votes were counted despite pro-Trump pressures.

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