The New York Council hosted its 114th Anniversary Dinner
on April 19 in the Model Room of
the storied New York Yacht Club,
surrounded by maritime and naval
models and yacht half hulls.
The lively affair, with nearly
200 attendees, honored four distinguished Americans in the city
where the Navy League was founded in 1902 with the support of
Theodore Roosevelt, according to
a report from retired Navy Capt.
Sally McElwreath, a member of the
council’s Advisory Committee.
The dinner pays tribute to those
who have significantly contributed
to the nation and supported the
Navy League’s efforts on behalf
of the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps,
Coast Guard and U.S.-flag Merchant
Marine. Distinguished honorees and
their awards included Adm. Cecil
D. Haney, commander, U.S. Strategic Command, who
received the council’s Distinguished Service Award;
Maurice R. Greenberg, chairman and chief executive officer, C.V. Starr & Co. Inc., who received the RADM J. Robert
Lunney Patriot’s Award; Dr. J. Phillip London, executive
chairman and chairman of the board, CACI International
Inc., who received the Leadership in Technology Award;
and Stuart Parker, chief executive officer of United
Services Automobile Association (USAA), who received
the Leadership in Military Support Award. Retired Vice
Adm. John Bird, senior vice president of Military Affairs
for USAA, accepted the award for Parker, who could not
be present, according to McElwreath’s report.
Mistress of Ceremonies for the evening was Lea
Gabrielle, former U.S. Navy F- 18 fighter pilot and
intelligence operator, now Fox News correspondent.
Among those attending the dinner was Navy League
National President Skip Witunski, who was “welcomed
home” by New York Council President Theodore T.
Mason to the Navy League’s birthplace.
The audience included corporate sponsors, uniformed personnel from the sea services, Navy Leaguers
and their guests.
The evening began with a welcome by Mason, the
dinner’s host. He briefed attendees on the many pro-
grams of the New York Council, including extensive
youth initiatives such as the Naval Sea Cadet Corps, the
Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (NJROTC)
and Young Marines; hosting thousands of sea service per-
sonnel each year, including those participating in New
York City Fleet Week; and continuation of the council’s
acclaimed lecture series on the “New Ways of War.”
The council also recognizes outstanding leadership
and academic excellence to NROTC midshipmen at the
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and State University of
New York Maritime College; continues its Sailor of the
Quarter and Sailor of the Year program with the U.S.
Coast Guard Station New York; and hosts an annual
reception for the Naval War College Naval Command
College program officers.
In his keynote speech, Haney stressed the importance of mentoring, and discussed his journey to the
Navy and the important mentors he had.
“I did not make this journey alone,” he said. “I
hope this short glimpse of my life story will reinforce
the importance of helping and mentoring others.
114th New York Council Dinner
Honors Military, Industry Leaders
By PETER ATKINSON, Deputy Editor
WWW.SEAPOWERMAGAZINE.ORG 46 SEAPOWER / JUNE 2016
The Model Room of the New York Yacht Club was the site of the New York
Council’s 114th Anniversary Dinner. Adm. Cecil D. Haney, commander, U.S.
Strategic Command, was the keynote speaker at the dinner, at which four
individuals, including himself, were honored for their service and leadership.