The National World War II Museum honored those who inspire others through acts of courage, sacrifice, initiative and generosity in the areas of leadership, service to country or community and education at the “American Spirit Awards” gala. This year’s American Spirit Medallion recipients were Dr. Norman Francis and Governor William Winter. Silver Service Medallion recipients were Jerry Yellin, Lt. Col. Richard E. Cole and Betty Reid Soskin.

Museum President and CEO Dr. Nick Mueller and Board Chair Jim Courter led the evening, which paid special tribute to the honorees while highlighting the museum’s educational initiatives. Co-Chairs for the event were John and Ann Hairston, Bob and Sheryl Merrick and Pete and Gayle Wilson.

Prior to the gala, guests mingled with the honorees in the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center. The awards presentation and seated dinner featured a specially crafted three-course menu by chef Donald Link. After the awards ceremony, guests were treated to dessert and dancing in American Sector Restaurant + Bar and BB’s Stage Door Canteen. The Victory Belles and The Vic-Tones performed throughout the program, and MoJeaux entertained at the after party, which included dancing and dessert.

Proceeds support educational programming at the museum, which includes the ongoing development of classroom materials and professional development opportunities for school teachers and online experiences that bring the Museum and its research resources to students around the world. Approximately 400 patrons attended.


What: “American Spirit Awards,” benefiting The National World War II Museum
When: Friday, June 10
Where: The National World War II Museum