American Spirit Awards Logo
American Spirit Awards Logo

Welcome to the 2021
American Spirit Awards

Hancock Whitney Logo

A celebration dedicated to honoring those who inspire others through their own acts of courage, sacrifice, initiative and generosity—particularly in the areas of leadership, service to country or community, and education.

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Have questions? Give us a call at 504-274-1293

2021 American Spirit Award Recipients

Major Richard L. Duchossois USA, (Ret.)

Major Richard L. Duchossois USA, (Ret.)

WWII Veteran, Entrepreneur, and Philanthropist.

Photo Credit: Linda M. Barrett, photographer
Henry Louis Gates, Jr., PhD

Henry Louis Gates, Jr., PhD

Celebrated Literary Scholar, Journalist, and Cultural Critic

Doris Kearns Goodwin, PhD

Doris Kearns Goodwin, PhD

Presidential Historian and Best-Selling Author.

Photo Credit: Annie Leibovitz, photographer
Victor Davis Hanson, PhD

Victor Davis Hanson, PhD

Renowned WWII and Military Historian

The Honorable Henry A. Kissinger

The Honorable Henry A. Kissinger

WWII Veteran and 56th Secretary of State

Photo Credit: Annie Leibovitz, photographer

The 2021 American Spirit Award Medallion Recipients

Captain Daniel K. Fordice III USA, (Ret.)

Captain Daniel K. Fordice III USA, (Ret.)

Avid Aviator and Veteran Advocate

Katherine Johnson

Katherine Johnson, Posthumously (1918-2020)

Groundbreaking NASA Mathematicians.

Photo Credit: Annie Leibovitz, photographer
Anne Levy

Anne Levy

Holocaust Survivor, Educator, and Activist

Major General Angela Salinas, USMC (Ret.)

Major General Angela Salinas, USMC (Ret.)

First Latina General in the US Marine Corps

The 2021 American Spirit Award Silver Service Medallion Recipients

Lieutenant Rose Bayuk, USANC (Ret.), Posthumously (1915-2021)

Lieutenant Rose Bayuk, USANC (Ret.), Posthumously (1915-2021)

Transatlantic WWII Army Nurse

Johnnie A. Jones, Sr., USA (RET.)

Johnnie A. Jones, Sr., USA (RET.)

Decorated WWII Veteran and Civil Rights Attorney

Major John Luckadoo, USAF (Ret.)

Major John Luckadoo, USAF (Ret.)

WWII Aviator and Home Front Heroes Advocate

The Billy Michal Student Leadership Award

The Billy Michal Student Leadership Award is given annually to one student from each state and the District of Columbia who demonstrates the American spirit in his or her community. Through this award, The National WWII Museum promotes these values to students nationwide and honors those who exemplify them.


Special Thanks to our 2021 American Spirit Award Sponsors

Presented By

Supporting Sponsor

  • Sylvie Légère and Todd Ricketts

Spirit Sponsors

  • Freeport-McMoRan
  • The Richard Adkerson Family Foundation

20th Anniversary

  • In Honor of Richard L. Duchossois from his Proud and Loving Children

Friend of Awardee

  • Madlyn and Paul Hilliard in Honor of Richard L. Duchossois
  • Kathy and Joe Sanderson
  • Stephens

Event Production

  • Atherton Pictures
  • DB Productions


  • Airbus Americas
  • Kevin G. Clifford and Michele T. Reynoir
  • Tom and Kathy Lanctot
  • Latter & Blum, Inc.
  • Matilda Geddings Gray Foundation


  • Ducommum
  • Adrea D. Heebe
  • Mr. and Mrs. Henry A. Leander
  • Liskow & Lewis
  • Priddy Family Foundation
  • Julie and Wyatt Rockefeller
  • Christina and Terry Schopfer
  • Carl and Peggy Sewell
  • Mr. Robert V. Siebel
  • Phyllis M. Taylor


  • AT&T
  • Crown Family Philanthropies
  • Lockton Companies
  • Lupo Family Charitable Fund


  • Mr. & Mrs. Lawrence E. Bathgate, II
  • Sue and Rusty Burnett
  • Data Axle
  • Len & Fleur Harlan in honor of David Nierenberg and The Magnificent Seven
  • The Newell & Bettie Graham Foundation
  • Jimmy and Lillian Maurin
  • The John J. McArdle III & Joan Creamer McArdle Foundation
  • Jones Walker, LLP
  • Jane and Ron Olson
  • Vernon Brinson Charitable Fund

Veteran Supporters

  • Ronald Bell
  • Bourgeois Bennett LLC
  • Mr. William C. Buck
  • Cim-Tek Filtration
  • Jenny Elkins
  • Louis and Judy Freeman
  • Mr. and Mrs. William H. Hines
  • David B. Kahn
  • Mr. Ben A. Martinez, Jr.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Markham R. McKnight
  • David Menard, DVM
  • Morris Family Foundation
  • Joyce and Sidney Pulitzer
  • Pixie and Jimmy Reiss
  • Frank and Paulette Stewart
  • Mr. Hershel W. Williams


  • Anderson ZurMuehlen & Co.,P.C.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Bailey
  • Paul Barletta
  • Gigi Becker
  • Margaret Becker
  • Dr. Jim and Mary Blakely, Friends of Lucky Luckadoo
  • John A. Brennan
  • Dorothy Clyne
  • Senator Bob Dole
  • Rear Admiral and Mrs. Philip A. Dur USN (Ret.)
  • Lisa Becker Edmundson
  • John and Nikki Elmendorf
  • Pam Davis Friedler
  • Barry P. Gossett
  • Duane Helwig
  • William and Susan Hess
  • Jennifer N. Pritzker Revocable Trust
  • Joey and Maggie Kellum
  • Patricia Ann Krebs
  • LTC (Ret) John Kuttruff and Cynthia Pazos
  • The Honorable and Mrs. Robert L. Livingston
  • Nicholas J. Lynn
  • Adair and Dee Margo
  • Tom Martin
  • Mark and Mindy Mayer
  • Mr. Herbert Miller
  • Lawrence Myers
  • John Nicklow
  • David Nierenberg
  • The Colleen & Sam Nunn Family Foundation
  • Phylway Construction LLC in honor of Dan Fordice
  • Joyce and Sidney Pulitzer
  • Ed Tatum and Darla Roark
  • Lori and Bobby Savoie
  • Eduardo Rodriguez
  • Harry Scher
  • ThirtyNorth Investments, LLC
  • Karen Walk Geisert
  • Gov Christine Todd Whitman
  • Jack York

Special thanks to Bennett Awards for providing the medallions for American Spirit Award honorees.

Having Trouble?
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What’s the date/ time of the program?


The ceremony begins at 7:00 p.m. (CT) on Friday, June 18, with a pre-show countdown starting at 6:30 p.m. (CT). If you are outside of the US central time zone, convert the event’s start time using the World Clock Tool.

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Some time before the start of the event, please take the time to review system requirements, and check your internet speed. If you are having trouble accessing the portal on the day of the event, you will be able to call us at 504-274-1293 for assistance.

How do I watch


Starting at 6:30 p.m. on June 18, visit to join the pre-show countdown. If you have any technical questions during the program, the help line at 504-274-1293 will be able to assist you.

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First, try a hard refresh of the page. To do so, click the refresh button (often found near your browser's address bar). If that doesn't work, call the support line at 504-274-1293.

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Have questions? Give us a call at 504-274-1293