The President's “E” Award was created by Executive Order of the President to afford suitable recognition to persons, firms, or organizations which contribute significantly in the effort to increase United States exports.
Winners of the “E” Award are authorized to fly the blue and white banner, to display the accompanying certificate of commendation which is signed by the Secretary of Commerce in the name and by the authority of the President, to wear and issue to employees an “E” or “E Star” lapel pin, and to refer to the award in their advertising.
During World War II, more than 4,000 ”E” Pennants were presented to war plants in recognition of production excellence. The famous flag with the big “E” emblazoned on it became a badge of patriotism in action.
President Kennedy revived the World War II “E” symbol of excellence to honor and provide recognition to America's exporters. Thus, the “E” Award Program was established by Executive Order 10978 on December 5, 1961.