The 2018 American Spirit Awards

The National WWII Museum's annual celebration of the values and spirit of those who served our country during World War II and throughout history.

The National WWII Museum honored the leaders of yesterday, today, and tomorrow on Friday, June 8, at the American Spirit Awards, celebrating individuals and organizations whose work reflects the values and spirit of those who served our country during World War II and throughout history. The Museum annually recognizes those who inspire others through their own selfless acts—particularly in the areas of leadership, service to country and community, education, and preservation of American history.

At the evening American Spirit Awards Gala, Maurice R. “Hank” Greenberg, US Senator John McCain, and Gary Sinise were honored with the American Spirit Award. 

Events of the day launched with the American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (watch it here), at which one student from each state and the District of Columbia received the Billy Michal Student Leadership Award, given annually to recognize young leaders who demonstrate the American spirit in his or her community. Also presented were the Silver Service Medallion, awarded to veterans and those with a direct connection to World War II who have served our country with distinction and, upon retirement, continue to lead by example; and the American Spirit Medallion, bestowed upon individuals who through their work and philanthropy exemplify the highest standards of integrity, discipline, and initiative while making unselfish contributions to their community, state, or nation. 

Silver Service Medallion recipients were Bernice “Bee” Falk Haydu, Lieutenant General Victor “Brute” Krulak, and his son General Charles C. Krulak. American Spirit Medallion honorees were Susan Hess, Archie Manning, and Adair Margo. 

The luncheon culminated with a forum during which the medallion honorees fielded questions from the students—the passing of leadership lessons from the present to the future. 

Proceeds from the American Spirit Awards support the Museum’s educational mission. Read full biographies of the 2018 honorees, details about the evening’s entertainment and cuisine, and grateful recognition of the presenting and supporting sponsors of the American Spirit Awards, here