View national convention floor agenda

The American Legion's 98th national convention will be held Aug. 26-Sept. 1 in Cincinnati at the Duke Energy Convention Center. The following tentative schedule of events will be held in Exhibit Hall A, first floor of the convention center.

Tuesday, Aug. 30

8:00 a.m.


8:30 a.m.

Call to order by American Legion National Commander Dale Barnett (Georgia)

Advancement of colors by Harrisburg Post 472 of Houston

National anthem by Larry Gatlin

Invocation by acting National Chaplain Randy Cash (North Carolina)

Pledge of allegiance by National Sergeant-at-Arms Daniel L. Zimmerman (Georgia)

POW/MIA Empty Chair Ceremony by National Security Commission Chairman G. Michael Schlee (Maryland) and National Security Vice Chairman E. C. Toppin (North Carolina)

Preamble to The American Legion Constitution by National Commander Dale Barnett

8:45 a.m.

Opening ceremony by Larry Gatlin

Musical selection Larry Gatlin

The American Legion youth program champions (Joshua Wasilewski of Belmont, Vt., 2015 American Legion Baseball All-Academic Team captain; Anighya Crocker of Springfield, Tenn., 2016 Boys Nation president; Jacob Kelly of Cottage Grove, Wis., 2016 Eagle Scout of the Year;

Taylor Gibson of Salem, Ore., 2016 Junior Shooting Sports precision champion; Emma Thompson of Freeport, Ill., 2016 Junior Shooting Sports sporter champion; and Benjamin Crosby of Burlington, Wash., 2016 National Oratorical Contest winner.

Spirit of Service Awards presented by Medal of Honor recipient Hershel W. “Woody” Williams and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph F. Dunford

To: U.S. Navy Cpl. Bryce T. Wolford; U.S. Navy P02 Levetina S. King; U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. David M. Jenks; U.S. Air Force Staff Sg.t Russell H. Taylor III; Air National Guard Igor A. Karlov; and U.S. Coast Guard PO2 Geneva L. Cornelius

9:45 a.m

Address by Gen. Joseph F. Dunford, Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman

10:05 a.m.

Introduction of Sharon Conatser, American Legion Auxiliary national president

10:10 a.m

Address by MoH recipient Hershel W. “Woody” Williams

10:25 a.m

Distinguished Service Medal to Third U. S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard)

10:45 a.m

Greetings by Kevin Collier, Sons of The American Legion past national commander

10:50 a.m.

Presentation to National Commander Dale Barnett by The American Legion Riders

Donations to Legacy Fund

11:30 a.m.

Chapel of Four Chaplains Legion of Honor Bronze Medallion to National Commander Dale Barnett and National Vice Commanders George E. Cushing (Arizona), Jimmy F. Lane (Arkansas), John W. Hargreaves (Maine), Alan A. Davis, Sr. (Minnesota) and David L. Gough (Wisconsin). Presentation by Bron Mogenis, Chapel of Four Chaplains Foundation trustee

11:40 a.m.

Certificate of appreciation to H. C. “Ted” Kelley (Pennsylvania), national chaplain

Accepting: Ronald F. Conley (Pennsylvania), past national commander

Certificate of appreciation to Tierian "Randy" Cash (North Carolina), acting national chaplain

11:45 a.m.

Welcome Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, (video greetings)

Congressman Steve Chabot, R-Ohio

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley

James W. Campbell, 2015-16 Department of Ohio commander

James C. Morris, president The American Legion National Convention Corp. of Ohio

12:35 p.m.


Brian Phoenix, past Dominion president Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada

Dave Flannigan, Dominion President The Royal Canadian Legion

Terry Whittles, national chairman The Royal British Legion

Lee, Wen Chung, Deputy Minister Veterans Affairs Commission, Republic of China

Mike Tomme, president General National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution

1:25 p.m.

Special presentation Summit for Soldiers Co-founder C. Michael Fairman, and by Richard Amaroso, Allen Diamond, Steve Downey, Andrew Oakes, Anna Pelino and Dietrich Stallsworth

1:30 p.m.

National Commander Dale Barnett report to convention

1:45 p.m.

Presentation Greg D. Carmichael, president and CEO Fifth Third Bank

1:50 p.m.

Call for convention Daniel S. Wheeler (Virginia), national adjutant

2:05 p.m.

Report of credentials and rules

2:20 p.m.

Report of finance

2:35 p.m.

Philip B. Onderdonk, Jr. Religious Liberty Award Kelly Shackelford, President and CEO First Liberty Institute

2:50 p.m.

Report of Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation Health Administration National Cemetery Veterans Benefits Announcement of Winning Department - William F. Lenker National Service Trophy

3:50 p.m.

Salute to colors


Wednesday, Aug. 31

8:00 a.m.


8:30 a.m.

Call to order National Commander Dale Barnett

Salute to colors

Invocation Tierian (Randy) Cash (North Carolina), acting national chaplain

Pledge of allegiance Daniel L. Zimmerman (Georgia), national sergeant-at-arms

8:35 a.m.

Address CSM Robert Winzenried, U.S. Army (Ret.) Military Affairs Relationship Director, USAA

8:45 a.m.

2016 National Law Enforcement Officer of Year to: David J. Mahon, Effingham County Sheriff’s Office of Effingham, Ill.

2016 National Firefighter of Year to: Matt Brown, Lakeland Fire Department of Lakeland, Fla.

9:00 a.m.

The American Legion Patriot Award to: Bernard L. Marie

9:05 a.m.

Presentation – French Legion of Honor by Vincent Floreani – Consul General of France

9:20 a.m.

Address by Robert A. McDonald, Department of Veterans Affairs secretary

9:40 a.m.

Employer of Year Award for Hiring Veterans, large category to New York Shipping Association, Inc., Edison, N.J.

Disabled Veterans Outreach Program Specialist of the Year Award to Dwight A. Butler of Fayetteville, N.C.

9:50 a.m.

Report of Veterans Employment & Education (Employment and Veterans Preference, Veterans Education, Other Benefits and Homelessness)

11:05 a.m.

Daniel J. O’Connor Americanism Trophy

11:10 a.m.

Report of Americanism (Frank N. Belgrano Jr. Trophy; Ralph T. O’Neil Education Trophy; Children & Youth Garland Murphy Award; Legacy Award; Collection of donations to The American Legion Child Welfare Foundation)

11:50 a.m.

Address by Michael B. Surbaugh, Chief Scout Executive of Boy Scouts of America

12:05 p.m.

National Commander’s Media and Communications Award to ESPN of Bristol, Conn.

12:20 p.m.

Plaque to the City of Baltimore for the 2015 National Convention by Past National Commander Michael D. Helm (Nebraska) and Patricia McCoy, Department of Maryland commander

12:30 p.m.

Address by Hillary Clinton, Democrat candidate for president

1:30 p.m.

Report of National Security (aerospace; conventional armed forces; foreign relations; law and order and homeland security; military benefits and quality of life; National Guard and reserve forces; unconventional forces and intelligence)

Collection of donations to Operation Comfort Warriors

2:45 p.m.

Report of Constitutional amendments

3:15 p.m.

Report of Internal Affairs (membership and other internal matters)

3:30 p.m.

Department membership awards

Collection of donations to the National Emergency Fund

4:45 p.m.

Salute to colors


Thursday, Sept. 1

8:00 a.m.

Call to order by National Commander Dale Barnett

Salute to colors

Invocation by Tierian "Randy" Cash (North Carolina), acting national chaplain

Pledge of allegiance by Daniel L. Zimmerman (Georgia), national sergeant-at-arms

8:05 a.m.

Report of Legislation

8:20 a.m.

The American Legion Fourth Estate Award

Broadcast category to WXIA-TV Atlanta

Online category to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Print category to Marine Corps Times of Springfield, Va.

9:00 a.m.

Address by Donald Trump – Republican candidate for president

10:00 a.m.

Presentation by Soldiers Wish

10:10 a.m.

Special presentations

10:30 a.m.

Presentation of plaque and colors to outgoing National Commander Dale Barnett by Past National Commanders Robert S. Turner and Daniel Dellinger

12:00 p.m.

Special order of business

Election of national officers, national commander

Administering the Oath of Office to the national commander

Acceptance speech by newly elected national commander

Election of five national vice commanders

Installation of national vice commanders

Presentation of colors to newly elected American Legion national commander

Response by newly elected American Legion national commander

Presentation of newly elected American Legion Auxiliary national president

Presentation of newly elected Sons of The American Legion national commander

Unfinished business


Retirement of colors




Watch for gavel-to-gavel live stream coverage of the floor action.