Jimmy Garner and David Hood were fishing on Cambois Beach in Blyth last summer when they saw a distressed woman walk into the sea.
They waded in after her but were unable to reach the woman, who was up to her neck in water, and quickly dialled 999.
All six heroes have now each been awarded Chief Constable Commendations and certificates from the Royal Humane Society in recognition of their life-saving actions.
PC Armstrong entered the water, while his colleagues waded in to waist level to assist.
Jimmy and David tied a rope to a life vest and helped pull the PC and woman back to shore where further support was provided.
Northumbria Police Chief Superintendent Janice Hutton said: “Nothing makes me prouder to live and work in the North East than the people – who in my opinion are among the most kind, caring and compassionate.
“Jimmy and David are great examples to their community. When they came into contact with a woman in need of help, they didn’t hesitate to do everything they possibly could to ensure her safety.
“Their bravery, level-headedness and compassion is something that deserves recognition.
"In another life they would have made great officers... in fact, it’s not too late to join!”
The Royal Humane Society awards medals, testimonials and certificates for acts of bravery in the saving of human life and for effecting successful resuscitations.
Chief Superintendent Hutton added: “I’d also like to thank PCs Armstrong and McKenzie and PCSOs Humble and Thompson who all went above and beyond in this incident.
“They put the safety of a member of the public above their own – and their actions that day reflected the very best traditions of Northumbria Police.
“They showed immense courage and kindness and should be incredibly proud of what they did – we are indebted them and they richly deserve these accolades.”