American Spirit Awards

American Spirit Awards

Presented by Whitney Bank
June 7-8, 2018

American Spirit Awards

The American Spirit Awards is an awards gala celebrating individuals and organizations whose work reflects the values and spirit of those who served our country during the World War II years. We honor those who inspire others through their own acts of courage, sacrifice, initiative and generosity—particularly in the areas of leadership, service to country or community and education. 

Event Schedule

Thursday, June 7, 2018 – American Spirit Awards Patron Reception

Windsor Court Hotel

7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

 

VIP guests from across the country are invited to the Windsor Court Hotel to experience a taste of New Orleans. The champagne and Sazeracs will flow as we join the Museum’s Board of Trustees to toast the 2018 American Spirit and Silver Service Medallion recipients while enjoying traditional New Orleans jazz.

Friday, June 8, 2018 – American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

 

Leading through example is a hallmark of the Museum’s honorees and at the American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum each will share their wealth of experience with the 51 student leaders representing every state in the Union, as well as the District of Columbia.

The Luncheon begins with the Leadership Forum where the 2018 Medallion recipients tell their stories of courage and fortitude and, through a question and answer period with our student honorees, offer motivating advice to the young leaders of the future. 

Friday, June 8, 2018 – American Spirit Awards Gala

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

6:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.

 

The high point of the weekend will be the presentation of the American Spirit Award at an elegant black-tie gala in the Museum’s US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center. 

Guests will follow the red carpet from the beautiful Founders Plaza on Andrew Higgins Drive leading to a cocktail reception in the Solomon Victory Theater complex and BB’s Stage Door Canteen before being escorted into the gala for a night of inspiration and star-studded entertainment.

Following a savory three-course meal, the Museum will present its highest honor to deserving Americans who inspire greatness in all of us.

Official Hotel of American Spirit Awards

Windsor Court

As soon as you submit your response to the Museum, we suggest you make travel and hotel accommodations. As the official hotel of American Spirit Awards, the luxurious and renowned Windsor Court Hotel will host several auxiliary events associated with the American Spirit Awards including the Patron Party and Gala After-party. For your convenience, the Museum has reserved a room block for guests of American Spirit Awards. Call 504-528-1944 x 334 for room details and the booking code to take advantage of this special reduced rate.

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American Spirit Award

 

The American Spirit Award recognizes an individual who best exemplifies the outstanding qualities of the American spirit, including teamwork, optimism, courage, and sacrifice, and who inspires the exploration and expression of these values through their own life and work. The award recognizes those who demonstrate through word and deed an extraordinary dedication to the enduring principles that strengthen America's freedom and democracy. The award also recognizes those who make unselfish contributions to their community, state, or nation; those who lead by example; and those who exhibit the highest standards of integrity, discipline, and initiative.

2018 American Spirit Award Recipient

Gary Sinise

Actor/humanitarian Gary Sinise has been working in support of veterans for nearly 40 years. His commitment started in the early 1980s, when he created the Vets Night program at the Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago, which he cofounded. Among his numerous film and television roles, it was his portrayal of Lieutenant Dan Taylor in the landmark film Forrest Gump, in 1994, which formed an enduring connection with servicemen and women throughout the military community. In 2003, he volunteered for the USO and began visiting our troops in Iraq and around the world. In 2011, to expand upon his individual efforts, Sinise established the Gary Sinise Foundation. Its mission is to serve and honor our nation’s defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need by creating and supporting unique programs that entertain, educate, inspire, strengthen, and build communities. Through the Foundation, Sinise started the Soaring Valor program, which provides one-of-a-kind experiences for our nation’s honored WWII veterans. This includes a trip to New Orleans to tour The National WWII Museum, which features a heroes welcomes from the local community, entertainment, celebratory meals, and an opportunity for connecting with fellow veterans.

sinise

Maurice Greenberg

Maurice Greenberg is the Chairman and CEO of C.V. Starr & Co. Inc. Greenberg retired in March 2005 as Chairman and CEO of American International Group (AIG), the largest insurance financial services company in the world, which was created by C.V. Starr & Co. under Greenberg’s leadership. He serves on the President’s Council on International Activities of Yale University, Honorary Vice Chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations, and Vice Chairman of the National Committee on United States-China Relations. He is also the past Chairman and Director of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. He is active on the boards of many other civic and charitable organizations working in the United States and Asia. On June 6, 2014, at the 70th Anniversary celebration of D-Day at the Statue of Liberty in New York, Greenberg was awarded the French Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur for his service during World War II. He also received of The Bronze Star Medal from the United States. In addition, on November 9, 2015, Greenberg received the insignia of Commandeur de l’Ordre National de la Legion d’Honneur, recognizing his leadership and contributions as Chairman of AIG. Greenberg received his pre-law certificate from the University of Miami and an LL.B from New York Law School in 1950 and has been granted honorary degrees from a number of universities. He is married and has four children.

American Spirit Medallion Recipients

 

Since its beginning as The National D-Day Museum, the Museum has bestowed this award upon individuals who demonstrate extraordinary dedication to the principles that strengthen America’s freedom and democracy. Through their work and philanthropy, American Spirit Medallion recipients exemplify the highest standards of integrity, discipline, and initiative while making unselfish contributions to their community, state, or nation.

2018 American Spirit Medallion Recipient

Archie Manning

When people think of Archie Manning, they think football—but Archie’s appeal transcends his athletic achievements. People far and wide have been inspired by his warm personality, drive, and sense of humor. Archie is active in a wide variety of charitable and civic causes. His community activities include Louisiana Special Olympics, the New Orleans Area Boy Scout Council, The Salvation Army, United Way Speakers Bureau, Allstate Sugar Bowl Committee, and the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation. He is also Chairman of the Board of the National Football Foundation. Archie attended the University of Mississippi, where he was an All-American. He was voted Mississippi’s Greatest All-Time Athlete in 1992 and was named Mississippi’s Most Popular Athlete of the Century. In 1971, Archie was the second player chosen in the NFL draft—the number one draft choice of the New Orleans Saints. While in pro football, he received the Byron “Whizzer” White Humanitarian Award, the Bart Starr Humanitarian Award, and the Spirit of Good Sports Award from the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. Archie recently received one of the highest honors in football, the Gold Medal Award, presented by the National Football Foundation, which has gone to seven Presidents, Admirals and Generals, corporate CEOs, and other distinguished Americans.

Archie Manning

Susan Hess

Susan Hess has been an active and dedicated volunteer in the New Orleans community all of her adult life. Along with enjoying a successful professional career in the film and video industry, she’s served on or been an officer on the boards of many local organizations, including the University of New Orleans Foundation, the Louisiana Nature and Science Center, the LA/SPCA, the Trust for Public Land, the Jewish Endowment Foundation, the National Urban League, the Girl Scouts of America, Tulane Hillel, the National Council of Jewish Women, and the Longue Vue Foundation.  She also founded the Louisiana Association of Film and Video Professionals, and was appointed by Governor Edwin Edwards to serve on the Louisiana Film Commission.  When The National D-Day Museum was born, Susan became a Board Trustee.  She was also the creator and first chair of the institution’s annual Victory Ball. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Susan became a member of Women of the Storm and One Greater New Orleans with the goal of Rebuilding New Orleans. Some of the honors conferred on Susan include the UNO Chancellor’s Medallion for Distinguished Service and the UNO Alumnus of the Year Award. She received the Weiss Award from the National Conference for Community and Justice. She was also selected as a Role Model by the Young Leadership Council, as a YWCA Role Model, and as a recipient of the Prix d’Elegance Award. In 2014, Susan was recognized by New Orleans Magazine as one of its Female Achievers. Most recently, she served as President of the Board of City Park, and worked hard to make the park—which had been devastated by Hurricane Katrina—into a world-class New Orleans icon.

Susan Hess

SILVER SERVICE MEDALLION RECIPIENTS

 

The president of The National WWII Museum awards the Silver Service Medallion to veterans and those with a direct connection to World War II who have served our country with distinction and continue to lead by example.

2018 Silver Service Medallion Recipients

Lieutenant General Victor “Brute” Krulak

Lieutenant General Victor “Brute” Krulak served 34 years in the US Marine Corps. Early in his career, he was stationed as an observer in Shanghai during the Second Sino-Japanese War and noticed a ramp-bowed landing boat that was being used by the Japanese. He took photos of the boat, built a model of its design, and discussed it later with boatbuilder and Higgins Industries owner and founder Andrew Jackson Higgins. Higgins incorporated Second Lieutenant Krulak’s notes into the design of the Landing Craft, Vehicle, Personnel (LCVP) or Higgins Boat, which was critical in the Normandy Landings and amphibious assaults in the Pacific. During World War II, Lieutenant General Krulak served as Commander of the 2nd Parachute Battalion, 1st Marine Amphibious Corps. Krulak was highly decorated throughout his military service, and received the Navy Cross, Navy Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with 2 Award Stars and Valor Device, Bronze Star with “V” Device, and a Purple Heart, among many other awards. After his retirement from the Marine Corps in 1968, Krulak worked for Copley Newspapers, including serving as President of Copley News Service and Vice President of Copley Press. He was also active in many community organizations and served as President and Trustee of the Zoological Society of San Diego. He wrote a number of books, including the history of the Marine Corps, First to Fight. Krulak died in 2008, and was survived by his three sons—retired Marine Corps Commandant General Charles Krulak; Reverend Victor Krulak, Commander Navy Chaplain Corps; and Reverend William Krulak, Colonel United States Marine Corps (Reserves)—four grandchildren, and 10 great-grandchildren.

General Charles C. Krulak

General Charles C. Krulak served 35 years in the US Marine Corps. His last position was as Commandant of the Marine Corps and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He commanded a platoon and two rifle companies during two tours of duty in Vietnam and then held a variety of command and staff positions. During his military service, Krulak was awarded the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star Medal, three Bronze Star Medals with Combat “V,” two Purple Heart medals, the Meritorious Service Medal, the French Legion d’Honneur Commandeur rank, and many other decorations and medals. Upon his retirement from the Marine Corps, Krulak joined MBNA America Bank as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MBNA Europe Bank, Ltd. After four years, he returned to the United States and served as Vice Chairman, MBNA America Bank as Head of Corporate Development, Mergers and Acquisitions until 2005. Following his career with MBNA, Krulak joined several corporate boards and the boards of two professional sports teams: the Cleveland Browns and Aston Villa Football Club, an English Premier League soccer team in the United Kingdom. In addition, he is an advisor to the Center for Naval Analysis, Human Rights First, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and serves on US Israel Education Association’s (USIEA) Board of Directors to help bring attention to the need for peace in the Middle East. Krulak is also a member of the board of directors for the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham and The Altamont School, also in Birmingham. Furthermore, he is an active speaker at various national and local events and has published numerous articles related to education and human trafficking. Krulak and his wife of 53 years, Zandi, have two sons and five grandchildren.

Bernice “Bee” Falk Haydu

For most of her life, Bernice “Bee” Falk Haydu has been a champion of the WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots), the first women to fly military aircraft in the US Army Air Force during World War II. Haydu went through the seven-month training program and was on track to fly B-25s in the war until the WASP were disbanded in December 1944, prior to the war’s end. Later, as President of the WASP organization from 1975 to 1978, she led the fight in Congress to acknowledge the WASP as veterans of World War II, as had been promised. She won—President Jimmy Carter signed a bill in November 1977 recognizing WASP as WWII veterans. Haydu’s passion for flying continued even after the WASP run ended, and she went on to become a flight instructor, owner of a Cessna dealership, and even part owner of a flight school. She and her late husband, Joseph Haydu—also a pilot—continued to fly into their late 70s and owned 28 different types of planes. Haydu is a member of the Aviation Hall of Fame and her original WASP uniform is on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC. In 2009, she witnessed President Barack Obama sign a bill into law awarding the WASP the Congressional Gold Medal. Haydu was awarded the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award by the FAA in 2014 and an Honorary Doctorate Degree by the Vaughn College of Aeronautics in Flushing, New York, in May of 2015. She is also the author of Letters Home: 1944-1945, based on letters she wrote home about her WASP experiences during World War II that her mother saved.

Bernice Haydu

THE BILLY MICHAL STUDENT LEADERSHIP AWARD

 

The National WWII Museum is pleased to present the Billy Michal Student Leadership Award, given annually to one student from each state and the District of Columbia who demonstrates the American Spirit in his or her community.

 

The Museum is currently taking nominations from across the country for these awards. Nominees should have a strong record of volunteerism, school and/or community activism, or implementing creative solutions to recognized problems. Selected awardees will be flown (along with a chaperone) to New Orleans to participate in the Museum's American Spirit Awards celebration, Thursday, . Once there, they will:

  • Tour The National WWII Museum, including behind-the-scenes explorations of the Museum’s exhibits and collections.
  • Meet, befriend, and share ideas with their co-awardees from across the country.
  • Meet with American Spirit Award recipients for a Q&A session.
  • Participate in leadership-building activities.
  • Take a tour of the historic French Quarter.
  • Be featured on the Museum’s American Spirit Award website.
  • Attend a special luncheon banquet where they will receive their awards.
  • Represent their state at the American Spirit Awards gala.

HELP US SELECT THE RECIPIENTS OF THE 2018 BILLY MICHAL STUDENT LEADERSHIP AWARD

Do you know a student in 8th to 12th grade from your state who demonstrates the values of leadership, teamwork, tolerance, creativity, and perseverance with a strong record for volunteerism, activism, or implementing creative solutions to recognized problems? Nominate them for the Billy Michal Student Leadership Award.

Nominate a student!

Nominations must be received by Friday, March 2, 2018.

Nomination criteria: Nominees currently must be from 8th to 12th grade; only individual students can be nominated, not groups; students may be in public, private, parochial, or home school in the United States; nominees must commit to traveling to New Orleans (with a chaperone, all expenses paid) June 7 – 9, 2018; awardees will be selected based on their demonstrated commitment to making a positive contribution to their school, community, country, and/or the world; only fully completed nominations will be eligible for consideration.

 

Featured Chefs

Napoleon House

Executive Chef Chris Montero

Passed Hors d’Oeuvres

Chris Montero
Ralph Brennan Restaurant Group

Executive Pastry Chef Brett Gauthier

Bread and Butter Service

Brett Gauthier
Ralph’s on the Park

Executive Chef Chip Flanagan

First Course

Chip Flanagan
Brennan’s

Executive Chef Slade Rushing

Second Course

Slade Rushing
Red Fish Grill

Executive Chef Austin Kirzner

Dessert

Austin Kirzner

Entertainment

The Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards

TABLE SPONSOR LEVELS & TICKET PRICING

EXCLUSIVE RECOGNITION BENEFITS

 

American Spirit Awards Sponsors and Patrons are recognized on all printed materials, including event invitation, event program, event web page, the 2018 Annual Donor Wall and Annual Report.

 

SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

$30,000.00 Veteran Sponsor

**Ten (10) tickets purchased for American Spirit Awards plus a donation to allow a veteran and his/her guest to attend American Spirit Awards (2 tickets)

Sponsor package includes: 

  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Photo opportunity for two (2) couples (purchaser) at the 2018 American Spirit Awards Gala with inclusion in post-event marketing materials (when available)
  • ¼-page ad in the American Spirit Awards program with personalized editorial tribute to a veteran of the purchaser’s choosing

** Tickets supported by Veteran Sponsors will be allocated to local veteran organizations.

PURCHASE

$30,000.00 Friend of Awardee

Ten (10) tickets purchased for American Spirit Awards 

Sponsor package includes: 

  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Photo opportunity for two (2) couples at the 2018 American Spirit Awards Gala with inclusion in post-event marketing materials (when available)
  • ¼-page ad in the American Spirit Awards program with personalized editorial tribute to your desired awardee

PURCHASE

$25,000.00 Supporter

Ten (10) tickets purchased for American Spirit Awards

Sponsor package includes: 

  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Photo opportunity for two (2) couples at the 2018 American Spirit Awards Gala with inclusion in post-event marketing materials (when available)
  • 2019 Normandy Academy Scholar Sponsor

PURCHASE

$20,000.00 Benefactor

Ten (10) tickets purchased for American Spirit Awards 

Sponsor package includes: 

  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Admittance to the American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • Photo opportunity for one (1) couple at the 2018 American Spirit Awards Gala with inclusion in post-event marketing materials (when available)
  • 2019 Summer Residential Program Scholar Sponsor

PURCHASE

$15,000.00 Friend

Ten (10) tickets purchased for American Spirit Awards

 Includes admittance to:

  • The American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)

PURCHASE

$2,500 Veteran Supporter

**Donation to allow a WWII Veteran and one guest to attend American Spirit Awards 

Includes admittance to: 

  • The American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)

** Tickets supported by Veteran Supporters will be allocated to local veteran organizations.

PURCHASE

PATRON OPPORTUNITIES

$1,500 Individual Patron Ticket

Includes admittance to: 

  • The American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)

PURCHASE


$1000 Member Patron Ticket

ACTIVE MEMBERSHIP REQUIRED

Includes admittance to: 

  • The American Spirit Awards Patron Reception (Thursday, June 7, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Luncheon and Leadership Forum (Friday, June 8, 2018)
  • The American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)

PURCHASE


$750 Individual Gala Ticket

Includes admittance to The American Spirit Awards Gala (Friday, June 8, 2018)

PURCHASE


DONOR OPPORTUNITY

I am unable to attend, but wish to make a contribution on behalf of the American Spirit Awards education fund.

DONATE

Proceeds from the American Spirit Awards will support educational programming at The National WWII Museum—including the ongoing development of classroom materials and professional-development opportunities for teachers in schools across the country, as well as online experiences that bring the Museum and its resources to students around the world.

For more information, contact our Fundraising Events staff at 504-528-1944 x 334 or email Ellen.Buckley@nationalww2museum.org.

2018 AMERICAN SPIRIT AWARDS SPONSORS

Presenting Sponsor

 

Official Hotel Sponsor

 

windsor court


The medallions for the American Spirit Awards honorees were provided by Bennett Awards