Military News

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

National Defense University Foundation Announces 2009 Service Heroes

Five Unsung Heroes to Be Honored at the American Patriot Award Gala

November 11, 2009—The National Defense University Foundation (NDUF) announced today five military heroes who will accept the American Patriot Award on behalf of their services along with General David Petraeus, USA, at the American Patriot Award Gala. The event, one of Washington, D.C.’s most prestigious galas, will be held on Friday, November 13, 2009, in the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center. Gala program participants include honoree General David Petraeus, USA, General Ann Dunwoody, USA, and General John Rogers Galvin, USA (Ret). Grammy nominated jazz saxophonist Ski Johnson will perform live.

The 2009 gala will honor and pay tribute to this year's American Patriot Award recipients: General Petraeus, Commander of U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) and the Men and Women of CENTCOM. The American Patriot Award Gala supports the National Defense University (NDU) and its crucial mission of educating national security leaders. Students of NDU are the next generation of ambassadors, national and international military commanders, and civilian defense industry leaders – patriots who have committed their lives to furthering the security of our nation and the world.

The five service members will receive honors before a crowd of more than 600 guests, including senior Administration officials, Members of Congress, senior military officials, Ambassadors, and corporate and community leaders.

CSM Rocky Shapla, USA
CSM Rocky Shapla will be honored for his more than 40 years of service with the Army, which he began with the 1st and 2nd ACR in Germany. In 1975, he was promoted and served as 1st Sergeant for the 398 and 399 company units in the 100 Division. After completing Sergeant Major Academy in 1997, he was appointed as a CSM at Armor Battalion at Ft. Knox. His overseas tours include Germany with the 1st and 2nd Armored Cavalry, a tasking by CJCS as CSM of Eagle Base in Bosnia, and a mobilization as Victory Base CSM in Baghdad Iraq, where he sustained an injury. He is currently recovering at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.

CDR Stephen Hall, USN
CDR Hall will be honored for his leadership of the Brigade EWO in CENTCOM, where he assumed the responsibilities and requirements as a Naval Officer in support of the U.S. Army. His support and leadership lead to better Electronic Warfare training, management, and execution, increasing the safety of operations of Army and Marine Units forward deployed in theatre.

GYSGT Josue Magana, USMC
GYSGT Magana will be honored for his dedication to the service. From 2002 to 2004, he was a Primary Marksmanship Instructor with Weapons Field Training Battalion at Camp Pendleton. In 2004, he was reassigned to Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines and deployed to Fallujah Iraq. While in Iraq, he was wounded in action and spent the next year recovering from his injuries. In 2006, he laterally moved into the Marine Corps Community Service field. In 2008, he received orders to Marine Barracks Washington. Presently, Magana is preparing to deploy to Afghanistan in January 2010.

Tech. Sgt. Timothy R. Evans, USAF
Tech. Sgt. Evans will be honored for his service to others. Evans manages the daily operations of eight MWD Teams and a MWD Trainer. In addition to his daily supervisory duties, he is responsible for the establishment and oversight of all training ensuring Department of Defense certification requirements are met and maintained by each Military Working Dog Team. He recently received recognition as the 11th Mission Support Group 2008 NCO of the Year and Air Force District of Washington’s 2008 Colonel Billy Jack Carter award recipient.

LCDR Holly Harrison, USCG
LCDR Harrison will be honored for her leadership while in command of the Aquidneck. Harrison received orders to the Northern Arabian Gulf (NAG) to take part in Operation Iraqi Freedom; she became the first woman to command a Coast Guard vessel in a combat zone. Under Harrison’s command, the cutter and its dedicated crew conducted innumerable search and rescue, maritime interdiction, convoy and combat-related operations. In July 2003, Harrison received the Bronze Star medal; she was the first female member of the U.S. Coast Guard to receive this distinguished award.

“As true heroes among us, these five remarkable service members epitomize the concept of ‘service above self’ by representing the values of courage, sacrifice, and patriotism,” said Walter Stadtler, Ambassador (Ret), President and CEO, National Defense University Foundation. “Their actions are an inspiration to Americans everywhere.”

The five service members and nearly two-dozen others from each of the five services are hosted at the gala through the generosity of the supporters of the “Sponsor a Patriot” Program. This program brings our everyday service “Patriots” to be recognized and to share in the celebration of patriotism. For more information on this program, please visit www.NDUFoundation.org/sponsorapatriot.

The National Defense University Foundation, Inc. was established in 1982 to support and enhance the mission and goals of the National Defense University through promoting excellence and innovation in education by nurturing high standards of scholarship, leadership and professionalism.

The National Defense University is the country’s preeminent institution for military, diplomatic and civilian national security education, research and outreach. It is the only university providing a common educational experience for all the various professional communities engaged in national security. The main campus is located at Fort McNair in Washington, D.C.

For more information on the American Patriot Award and the Gala, please visit our websites at www.americanpatriotaward.org and www.NDUFoundation.org , or contact Nancy Miller at 202/685-2527, email: millern@nduf.org.

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