Latest NOUS Awards

Annual NOUS Awards

In furtherance of its mission, the Naval Order presents annual awards.

  • The Admiral George Dewey Award to one eminently outstanding senior civilian

  • The Distinguished Sea Service Award to one eminently outstanding Sea Services officer of pay grade 0-7 or above shortly after retirement

  • The RADM Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Naval Literature to the author of a published book of particular merit

  • The three US Naval Academy midshipmen scoring the highest in competitive examinations on national and international political science issues

  • The outstanding graduate of the Chief of Naval Air Training Command Flight Officer program

  • The outstanding midshipmen and cadets at the New York State Merchant Marine Academy, California State Maritime Academy and Naval ROTC programs at various Universities

  • To the Outstanding Junior Officer Instructor at the US Coast Guard Academy

  • The Nimitz Leadership Award to a notable leader of the U. S. sea services in a particular field of endeavor, for a particular achievement, or for past accomplishments

  • US Naval Academy Division of Humanities and Social Sciences awards the three midshipmen from the Academy who have written the best essay on current national or international affairs


Who is Eligible for Our Awards?

George Dewey Award

Any United States civilian eligible for Regular membership in the Naval Order, whose record for service sets him/her apart among his/her peers, is deemed eligible for the “Admiral of the Navy George Dewey Award.” The period of eligibility is not an issue for this award. It is assumed that the awardee will make every effort to accept this award in person. Each local Commandery may submit the name of only one candidate for consideration each year. Each submission shall be accompanied by a brief biographical sketch which will be circulated for voting purposes.

Distinguished Sea Service Award

At its Centennial Congress in 1990 the Naval Order established a Distinguished Sea Service Award (DSSA) to each year honor a recently retired US Naval Officer who, over a total career, so distinguished himself and the Naval Services, that he should be singled out as one who stands "First Among Firsts."

Rear Admiral Thurston J. James Memorial Award

The Naval Flight Officer student achieving the highest overall flight and academic grades during the preceding calendar year as determined by the Chief of Naval Air Training (CNATRA).

Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Naval Literature

The Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Naval Literature is administered and presented by the New York Commandery of the Naval Order of the United States. The finalists and winner are selected by a distinguished committee of members of the New York Commandery. Books may be recommended for consideration by members of the Naval Order of the United States but must be nominated for Committee consideration by a Companion of the New York Commandery. There are detailed and stringent standards that must be met by the author and the work and the Committee follows set guidelines in considering the nominees. The prize is named for the late Rear Admiral Samuel Eliot Morison, a Harvard University history professor widely considered to be America’s most distinguished naval historian. For more information, email the New York Commandery at

US Coast Guard Academy Junior Instructor Award

Annually since 1989, the Naval Order of the United States, in cooperation with the Superintendent of the Academy, sponsors the Coast Guard Academy Junior Officer Award to recognize the exceptional personal, professional and academic leadership, and commitment to learning exhibited by a junior officer of the rotating faculty.  The presentation is made at the Academy’s Convocation Ceremony when the entire Corps of Cadets assemble with Academy faculty and staff, guests, and friends to begin the new academic year.  This award is most distinctive because the recipient is chosen by the Corps of Cadets.

The Nimitz Leadership Award (Texas Commandery)

Since 1986, the Texas Commandery has recognized the leadership of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz by presenting an award in his memory. Admiral Nimitz’s outstanding leadership qualities are examples of those qualities for which the Texas Commandery was chartered. The Nimitz Leadership Award is presented annually to a notable leader of the U. S. sea services in a particular field of endeavor, for a particular achievement, or for past accomplishments that cover more than one year of service.  Any member of the Texas Commandery can nominate a candidate for the award.  The final selection is made by the Nimitz Leadership Award Committee.


Past Award Honorees

Past George Dewey Award Honorees

Past Distinguished Sea Service Award Honorees

Past Samuel Eliot Morison Award for Naval Literature Honorees

Past Rear Admiral Thurston J. James Memorial Award Honorees

  • 2015 LTJG Phong Nguyen USN

  • 2013 LTJG Andrea R. Kaltenbach

  • 2010 LTJG Adam “Oompa” Jackson

  • 2009 Lieutenant Junior Grade Michael A. McLaughlin

  • 2008 Capt. Edward Holtz, USM

  • 2007 LTJG Erik Halvorson

Past US Coast Guard Academy Junior Instructor Award Honorees

  • 2018 LT Dana Dougherty, USCG

  • 2017 LT Patrick T. Plummer, USCG

  • 2016 LT Tyler E. Kelley, USCG

  • 2015 LT Sean A. Munnis, USCG

  • 2014 LT Emily M. Gibbons, USCG

  • 2013 LT Andrew Halvorson, USCG

  • 2012 LT Tom S. Crowley, USCG

  • 2011 LCDR Brian J. McSorley, USCG

  • 2010 LT Nicole M. Tesoniero, USCG

  • 2009 LCDR Maurice D. Murphy, USCG

  • 2008 LT James J. Smith, USCG

  • 2007 LT Thomas W. Denucci, USCG

  • 2006 LCDR John C. Dettleff, USCG

  • 2005 LCDR Michael E. Senecal, USCG

  • 2004 LCDR Wayne Mackenzie, USCG

  • 2003 LCDR Glenn M. Sulmasy, USCG

  • 2002 LCDR Timothy J. Cimpaglio, USCG

  • 2001 LCDR Jonathan D. Heller, USCG

  • 2000 LCDR John C. O’Connor, USCG

  • 1999 LT Eric P. Kowack, USCG

  • 1998 LT Todd Garlin, USCG

  • 1997 LCDR David J. Martin, USCG

  • 1996 LT Michael R. Hicks, USCG

  • 1995 LT Eric C. Jones, USCG

  • 1994 LT Thomas Kowenhoven, USCG

  • 1993 LT Paul E. Deveau, USCG

  • 1992 LTJG John C. O’Connor, USCG

  • 1991 LCDR Patrick T. Kelly, USCG

  • 1990 LT Thomas F. Atkin, USCG

  • 1989 LT Robert R. Albright, II, USCG

Past Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz Leadership Award Honorees

  • 2017 ADM William H. McRaven, USN, Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command

  • 2016 CAPT Norman “Dusty” Kleiss, Navy Cross/DFC Midway Dive Bombers

  • 2015 ADM Patrick M. Walsh, Vice Chief of Naval Operations, Commander U. S. Pacific Fleet

  • 2014 VADM David B. Robinson, Cdr., Naval Surface Forces, U. S. Pacific Fleet

  • 2013 RADM James A. Watson, IV, USCG, President/COO ABS, American Division

  • 2012 VADM Albert H. Konetzni, Jr., Deputy Commander U. S. Fleet Forces Command and U. S. Atlantic Fleet

  • 2011 RADM W. W. Pickavance, Jr., Superintendent, Texas Maritime Academy

  • 2010 RADM Clay W. G. Fulcher, NASA Space Flight Scientist

  • 2009 Gordon R. England, DEPSECDEF & SECNAV

  • 2008 CAPT Carter B. Conlin, Commander General, Naval Order of the U. S.

  • 2007 ADM Robert E. Kramek, Commandant, U. S. Coast Guard

  • 2006 GEN M. W. Hagee, Commandant, U. S. Marine Corps

  • 2005 BGEN D. L. Hill, Texas Air National Guard & Flying Tiger

  • 2004 RADM L. A. Hopkins, Battle of Midway

  • 2003 MGEN J. E. Livingston, USMC, Medal of Honor

  • 2002 VADM James B. Stockdale, Medal of Honor

  • 2001 B. R. Inman, Director of Naval Intelligence

  • 2000 LT T. R. Norris, Medal of Honor

  • 1999 CAPT D. C. Leestma, Astronaut

  • 1998 CAPT Carl V. Ragsdale, Commander Emeritus, Texas Commandery

  • 1997 ADM R. J. Kelly, CINCPAC

  • 1996 ADM J. A. Lyons, Jr., CINCPAC

  • 1995 BGEN R. E. Gale, USMC, Medal of Honor

  • 1994 LT M. E. Thornton, Medal of Honor

  • 1993 CAPT J. W. Young, Astronaut Space Medal of Honor

  • 1992 CDR H. L. Buell, Carrier Aviation Pioneer

  • 1991 COL M. Paige, USMC, Medal of Honor

  • 1990 RADM J. C. Lemoyne, Special Warfare Pioneer

  • 1989 RADM J. D. Ramage, Carrier Aviation Pioneer

  • 1988 RADM S. D. Griggs, Astronaut

  • 1987 RADM F. N. Smith, Chief of Naval Reserve

  • 1986 John F. Lehman, SECNAV

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