Authorized on February 6th, 1970 by Executive Order 11904 (EO11904) by President Gerald Ford.
Ribbon features thin red center stripe straddled by thicker white stripes. A pair of light blue stripes then bookend these and the outer edges of the ribbon feature thin yellow striping.
Award Criteria (as detailed by various official sources):
The DSSM is awarded by the Secretary of Defense to military officers who perform exceptionally with the Office of the Secretary of Defense, The Joint Chiefs of Staff, special or outstanding command in a defense agency or any other joint activity designated by the secretary. The service rendered will be similar to that required for award of the Legion of Merit. At the time of its creation it was decided that this medal would be obtained at the lowest possible cost and with as little involvement as possible.
For these reasons and because it would rank just below the Defense Distinguished Service Medal for similar service, it was decided to use the same design as the DDSM, except that it would be finished in silver rather than gold and the inscription on the reverse would be properly modified.
User Tags Detailing this Ribbon:
yellow   blue   white   red   united states   usarmy   usn   usaf   uscg