A new generation of leaders came to Indianapolis from 35 departments (states) of The American Legion. The 55 students of the National American Legion College honed their leadership, team building, communications and mentoring skills to pass the intensive course. They received diplomas from National Commander James Koutz during a ceremony held here this morning.
Members of the class completed the six-day crash course of the nation’s largest veterans organization that saw them lay a solid foundation for Legion post revitalization in a variety of geographical settings to include a rural area, the inner city, suburban communities, a metropolitan area and a cyber post. They were also provided the instruction and tools to construct resolutions for American Legion activities at their respective posts for presentation at a mock district meeting.
Commencement took place this morning at The American Legion national headquarters.
The National American Legion College is designed to reinforce a volunteer’s leadership, management and communication skills. This helps prepare young members of The American Legion to lead the nation’s largest wartime veterans organization on the local and state level. The importance of mentorship for both other members and special groups in the community was a central point to several of the activities for the class.
“Your journey is just beginning. Now you must take this new found knowledge back to your post, district and department and pass this on to others.” American Legion National Commander James Koutz told the graduating class.

Members of the class included:

Full Name City Department Post
Jeremy B. Blevins Madison Alabama 229
Keith A. Brown Surprise Arizona 62
Dr. Roland J. L'Heureux Apache Junction Arizona 27
Dennis E. Radcliffe Montebello California 496
Harry M. Woods San Diego California 255
Terri L. Shelefontiuk Lakewood Colorado 178
Thomas Florez Sugar City Colorado 94
Allen G. Lott Groton Connecticut 114
Thomas P. Wood Southington Connecticut 2
Terrence S. Briggs The Villages Florida 347
Michael J. Seidel The Villages Florida 347
Deborah S. Kessler Savannah Georgia 135
Michelle M. Aaron Peoria Illinois 979
Erik J. Gerischer Milan Illinois 1166
Michael D. Vance Girard Illinois 554
Gail A. Galich Highland Indiana 180
Buzz T. Smith Speedway Indiana 102
Alvin C. Miller Wellman Iowa 427
James H. Peterson Gowrie Iowa 431
Clark E. Conaway Richmond Kansas 414
Toni N. Cory Edmonton Kentucky 65
James A. Lish Leitchfield Kentucky 81
James A. Jackson Lake Charles Louisiana 1
Russell E. Wrede Lisbon Falls Maine 66
Mark A. Sutton Eaton Rapids Michigan 32
James E. Wallace Pinckney Michigan 419
Gayle L. Langan Sainte Genevieve Missouri 150
George Blackard Billings Montana 117
David W. Salak Omaha Nebraska 374
Jennifer L. Salak Omaha Nebraska 374
Yvette L. Weigold North Las Vegas Nevada 51
Lisa Buck-Rogers Enfield New Hampshire 22
Daniel S. Yoder Milton New Hampshire 6
Joseph S. Imperato Clifton New Jersey 8
Donald R. Harrison Albuquerque New Mexico 95
Dwayne S. Fleming Albuquerque New Mexico 99
Jerome L. Rice Bronx New York 1871
Stanley B. Grela Waterloo New York 435
Norman L. Mullinax Lenoir North Carolina 29
David A. Johnson West Fargo North Dakota 2
Keegan D. Hodges Redmond Oregon 125
Phyllis P. York LaPine Oregon 45
Angel O. Narvaez Carolina Puerto Rico 129
Michael W. Reed Riverside Rhode Island 10
John E. Harper Watertown South Dakota 17
Leroy L. McCaul, Jr. Lexington Tennessee 243
Kimberly A. Biggerstaff Spring Texas 305
David M. Stein Stafford Virginia 290
Gail F. Porter Port Orchard Washington 30
James R. Lohr, II Pullman Washington 52
Brian Tolstyka Martinsburg West Virginia 14
Daniel J. Seehafer Beaver Dam Wisconsin 157
Mary C. Lloyd Stoughton Wisconsin 59
Charles W. Graybiel Indianapolis Indiana 212
Bridget A. Robinson Georgia, Auxiliary 251

Mentors for the 2012 National American Legion College included Pierre Harper of Post 1780 in Buffalo, New York; Debra Brooks of Post 356 in Azle, Texas; Dean Tuttle of Post 21 in Rogersville, Tennessee; David Riley, Sr., of Post 24 in Rome, New York; and Kenneth Orrock of Post 22 in Rapid City, South Dakota.