The Distinguished Graduate Award
The Distinguished Graduate Award (DGA) is to be given to graduates of the United States Military Academy whose character, distinguished service, and stature draw wholesome comparison to the qualities for which West Point strives, in keeping with its motto: “Duty, Honor, Country.”
List of Recipients
Factors to be considered in selecting individuals as Distinguished Graduates include accomplishments, contributions to the greater good, and other actions that favorably reflect the principles upon which West Point was founded as well as the excellence, spirit, integrity, and character that it seeks to ingrain in graduates.
International graduates should be judged using the same criteria, but in the context of service to their own nation or the international community. They should have served and contributed at home in a manner that has enhanced the reputation of West Point and has encouraged partnerships between the United States and their country. To ensure equitable and appropriate consideration, international nominees will not displace US graduates who would otherwise be selected, but rather be additive to the total selected.
For the Distinguished Graduate Award, the following guidelines apply with respect to nominations:
- Only Societies or Classes, not individuals, may nominate candidates for the Distinguished Graduate Award.
- Societies and Classes may not nominate more than two candidates for the Distinguished Graduate Award in a given year, and if they nominate two candidates, the Societies and Classes must rank-order their nominees.
A nomination must adhere to the following format, or it will be returned to the nominator for revision and resubmission:
- It shall take the form of a letter to the Chairman of the Distinguished Graduate Award Committee. After identifying the nominee, the letter shall continue with a narrative of the nominee’s life and accomplishments that makes clear to the reader the way in which these draw wholesome comparison to the qualities for which West Point strives, in keeping with its motto: "Duty, Honor, Country.”
- The nominating letter shall not be longer than three pages of single-spaced typescript, and if the Society or Class is proposing two candidates, each nominating letter must specify whether the candidate is the Society’s or Class’ first choice or second choice.
- Any endorsements of the nomination that either accompany it or that arrive separately shall be confined to a single page.
Letters should be addressed as follows:
Distinguished Graduate Award Committee
c/o Linda Giacoio
West Point Association of Graduates
698 Mills Road
West Point, New York 10996
The Award will not be given to individuals who occupy, or are candidates for, elective office, or who are still on active duty. The individuals selected for the Distinguished Graduate Award must agree to accept the Award at West Point.