Membership: Eagle Incentive winners

The Commander Dellinger Eagle Award was awarded to the top department in each Big Twelve category showing the largest percentage of membership growth between the 55 and and 100 percent target dates.
An eagle was also presented to a national vice commander whose region displayed the highest percentage of membership gain during the same period.

Douglas W. Wooddell of Aurora, Colo., The American Legion’s Western region national vice commander, was awarded the seventh eagle.

The Big Tweleve category eagle winners:
Cateogry I – 100,000 or more members: Florida
Cateogry II – 65,000 - 99,999 members: Texas
Cateogry III – 40,0000 - 64,999 members: Arizona
Cateogry IV – 25,000 - 39,999 members: Washington
Cateogry V – 10,000 - 24,999 members: New Mexico
Cateogry VI – 9,999 - or less members: Alaska



  1. My Fellow Legionnaires, For several years now resolutions have been submitted requesting amendment of the eligibility requirements for membership to include anyone wearing the uniform of our Nation; to date none have been passed. However, leadership rather than sitting down and discussing this issue simply dictates that such an amendment is impossible. When I researched this subject before writing my resolution, which by the way was voted down by my District without a logical reason, I found that the following were reasons given by leadership for not passing mine and similar resolutions: 1. Leadership’s Dictate: “Congress sets the dates of eligibility and will not allow them to be changed.” My Reply: Having spoken with my Congressman he assured me this is not in fact the case. The American Legion itself sets the dates and Congress would sign-off on any dates presented. 2. Leadership’s Dictate: Changing the dates would require that our existing by-laws be re-written along with our Charter. My Reply: The re-writing of these two documents is not an impossibility anything written by man can be changed by man. An excellent example of such change is the VFW which now allows military personnel that have received “eminent danger pay” membership in the VFW. Was it not necessary for them to change their by-laws and charter? 3. Leadership’s Dictate: “We are the most powerful veteran’s organization and Congress does not wish to see us anymore powerful.” My Reply: Can’t argue this one, guess we are the most powerful veteran’s organization, and I would assume that in a court-of- law this one would be referred to as “hearsay.” 4. Leadership’s Dictate; The most recent reason given at our Fourth-District conference is that “our wartime exemption status” would be jeopardized. My Reply: Ah so, this last reason seems to indicate that “money” is the main concern, rather than the recognition of the men and women in uniform who serve at our enemy’s pleasure. True leadership should work side-by-side with its constituent’s, if any of the aforementioned statements are indeed true then sitting with membership, not just officers, and discussing the issue would seem a more productive format to follow. Simply taking a negative approach and informing membership to discontinue any similar resolutions is not the way to solve the problem. This last statement is basically what I was told at our last District conference. Many within our membership are combat-veterans, former CEO’s, retired Generals, intelligent, educated people who should not be treated like high school freshmen. An open forum followed by a vote on the issue would seem to be more appropriate. Let’s put our cards on the table, are any or all of the aforementioned leadership statements true? I am certain if membership were to be given truthful and logical reasons why the passing of said resolution is not possible, we would then understand and discontinue pursuing any further action on the issue. Let us get this issue settled for once and for all! Our Nation’s enemies provoke our military utilizing every act of war possible during periods of “undeclared war,” knowing full-well that we would not declare war over said incidents; periods during which real people die. Our military are targets wherever they serve not knowing when our enemies will strike again. They earn their right to membership in our organization. Incidentally, a couple of months ago I wrote an article and submitted it to our magazine explaining how my resolution was written, but have not seen it in print, hmmm? Come on membership give me some comments on what I have written here, am I way off base? God Bless America, Frank P. Dorchak Jr. Post 219 Malone, NY
  2. First of all Membership is everyones business. It starts from the top. District Commanders needs to put a membership committee in place. I recommend starting with the District level and have a District Membership Chairman that will do a great job. The chairman needs to get County Commanders on board. County Commanders need to be more proactive in membership putting a solid plan in place with the help of the District Chairman and bring their plan to all the Post Commanders. Post Commanders need to be even more proactive in establishing programs that will attract Veterans to bring them into the Post. This is a solid way to pick up membership. It works.
  3. We are having trouble getting Veterans to join our post. Also having trouble getting members to help with our projects. What can we do?
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