John S. Foster Jr.

John S. Foster

The inaugural recipient of the Foster Medal was its namesake, John S. Foster Jr., former director of LLNL. At the Laboratory, Foster and his team contributed to a breakthrough in nuclear weapon design that formed the basis for all modern U.S. nuclear weapons. He also recognized the need for improved weapon safety and security features in deployed nuclear weapons. Foster’s legacy of teamwork, innovation, leadership, and scientific and technical excellence is exemplified in his long and distinguished career of national service.

John S. Foster, Jr. speaking in front of podium
John S. Foster, Jr black and white image
John S. Foster, Jr. with two other persons

Gen. Larry D. Welch

Air Force Gen. Larry D. Welch became the second recipient of the Foster, Medal, as announced on September 1, 2016. Welch received the award September 26 at a ceremony at CSIS. Welch served as commander in chief of the Strategic Air Command from 1985-86, and as the 12th chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force from 1986 to 1990. In this position, he was one of the principal military advisers to the secretary of defense, the National Security Council, and the president.

Gen. Larry D. Welch receiving the award
Gen. Larry D. Welch with an image of the John S. Foster, Jr. medal behind him
Gen. Larry D. Welch in uniform

Victor "Vic" Reis

Victor "Vic" Reis, former Department of Energy's assistant secretary of Defense Programs, was the third recipient. Announced on August 8, 2017, Reis received his award on November 3 at a ceremony at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Previous Medal winners Foster, Jr. and Welch were in attendance. From 1993-1999, Reis served as assistant secretary for Defense Programs in DOE, during which time he was the architect and original sponsor of the DOE’s science-based Stockpile Stewardship Program and its associated Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative.

Victor Reis with John S. Foster, Jr.
Victor Reis in front of an enlarged picture of the John S. Foster, Jr. medal
Victor Reis receiving the award

John Nuckolls

The fourth recipient of the Foster Medal was former LLNL Director John Nuckolls. Announced August 8, 2018, Nuckolls received the award November 8 at a Laboratory ceremony. Previous Medal winners Foster, Jr. and Welch were in attendance. Nuckolls is best known as the seventh director of the Laboratory, the driving force behind the birth of the laser program at LLNL and as one of the most innovative thermonuclear designers of the atmospheric test era.

John Nuckolls receiving the medal
John Nuckolls in front of the John S. Foster, Jr. medal
Two people in the lab conducting an experiment, picture in black and white.

Linton Brooks

Linton Brooks was named the fifth recipient of the Foster Medal on August 22 and received the award on November 14, 2019 in recognition of his leadership in advancing U.S. national security and international cooperation for a more secure world. Brooks is an ambassador for arms control, was an administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and a nuclear submarine officer, as well as a leader in advancing U.S. national security and international cooperation for a more secure world.

Linton Brooks receiving the medal from John S. Foster, Jr.
Linton Brooks speaking in front of podium.
Linton Brooks laying wreath

George Miller

Lab Director Emeritus George Miller was named the sixth recipient of the Foster medal in September of 2021 for his contributions to U.S. national security. Miller served as Laboratory director from 2006 to 2011, first under the management of the University of California. In 2007, he also was named Lawrence Livermore National Security (LLNS) president when NNSA awarded the contract to manage LLNL to LLNS. As the first president and director under the LLNS contract, Miller guided the Laboratory through transition to a new management system while pursuing the Lab's programs and science in the national interest.

George Miller with John S. Foster, Jr.
George Miller with the John S. Foster, Jr. medal in the background.
George Miller speaking in front of the podium at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Miriam E. John

The seventh recipient of the Foster Medal was Miriam “Mim” E. John, vice president emerita of Sandia National Laboratories. John led Sandia’s engagement with LLNL and maintained special responsibilities in the nuclear weapons and homeland security areas as vice president of Sandia's California Division and Homeland Security Strategic Management Unit from 1999 until 2006. A ceremony on September 8, 2022, celebrated John’s accomplished career and her continued contributions to national security science and technology, including nuclear survivability and proliferation monitoring.

Miriam Johns with (in yellow jacket) with from left to right, George Miller, John S. Foster Jr, and LLNL Director Kim Budil
Miriam Johns in front of an image of the John S. Foster, Jr. medal
Miriam Johns with John S. Foster, Jr.

Richard W. Mies

U.S. Navy Admiral Richard W. Mies was the eighth recipient of the Foster Medal. Mies was recognized for his exceptional career dedicated to national security, nuclear deterrence and scientific innovation. He served a 35-year career in the U.S. Navy and held key positions such as leading the U.S. Strategic Command. He presently serves as chairman of the U.S. Strategic Command Strategic Advisory Group and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory national security science directorate advisory board. Mies received the award on October 18, 2023, at a Laboratory ceremony.

Admiral Richard Mies received the Foster Medal at a luncheon and award ceremony. Pictured: the remarks and medal ceremony.
Richard Mies Foster Medal
Richard W. Mies Foster medal ceremony