Obverse: The Coast Guard Achievement Medal is a bronze medallion, 1-1/4 inches in diameter. In its center is the Coast Guard seal surrounded by a laurel wreath. The laurel wreath is, in turn, surrounded by a continuous cable. The Coast Guard seal signifies that this is a Coast Guard decoration; the laurel wreath represents achievement, and the continuous cable refers to both naval service and the ideal of perfection.
Reverse: At the top of the medal, in two lines, the words “AWARDED TO;” at the bottom of the medal, also in two lines, the words “FOR ACHIEVEMENT.” Directly above the word “For” is a raised bar, above which the recipient’s name may be engraved.