The Texas Commandery held its Annual Banquet on 24 February 2018, at the Briar Club in Houston. This was the 32nd year that the Commandery has recognized the leadership of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz by presenting an award in his memory. The 2017 award recipient was ADM William H. McRaven, Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command.
Captain Carter Conlin, Chairman of the Nimitz Award Committee, introduced Captain Dave Burr, who gave the background for the award, followed by Captain Conlin giving the qualifications of the recipient. Captain Conlin cited five significant points in the career of Admiral McRaven leading to his appointment to four-star admiral and as the ninth Commander of the United States Special Operations Command and then his being charged by then CIA Director, Leon Panetta, to organize and oversee Operation Neptune, the Special Ops raid that led to the death of Osama bin Laden on 2 May 2011.
Admiral McRaven was unable to accept the award in person. However, he had prepared a brief video in which he expressed his deep appreciation and honor in being presented with the award.
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. Admiral Nimitz’s outstanding leadership qualities are examples of those qualities for which the Texas Commandery was chartered. Admiral Nimitz, a native Texan born in Fredericksburg, Texas, was elected to the New York Commandery of the Naval Order on 15 September 1947.
Submitted by Carter Conlin