2016 Statesmanship Awards Dinner


The 19th Annual Statesmanship Awards Dinner: Recognizing Those who Support our Nation’s Heroes took place on on August 14, 2016 at the historic Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C.  Among 400 VIP guests, including current and former Members of Congress, ambassadors, corporate representatives, and administration officials,  the U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress (FMC) presented former Member from Georgia, Senator Max Cleland, (D-GA, 1997-2003) with the Statesmanship Award, the Navy SEAL Foundation with the Civic Statesmanship Award, and the Veterans to Technicians Program, Audi of America, Inc. with the Corporate Statesmanship Award.

The US Association of Former Members of Congress was proud to recognize these organizations and individuals who have shown a true commitment to our nation’s armed forces, veterans, and military families.

FMC is incredibly proud of our 2016 Statesmanship Award recipients and are honored that through our 19th Annual Statesmanship Awards Dinner, we were able to pay tribute to their incredibly important work.

Photos from the 2016 Statesmanship Awards Dinner are available here. Video coverage of the event is available on Vimeo.  For information from previous dinners, please click here.

Our 2016 Awardees


Former United States Senator from Georgia, Max Cleland has been a distinguished public servant for nearly 50 years.

In 1965, Cleland entered into active duty in the Army as a Second Lieutenant. Two years later, he volunteered for duty in the Vietnam War where he was later promoted to Captain. He was awarded both the Bronze Star for meritorious service and the Silver Star for gallantry in action after he was seriously wounded. Upon his return, Cleland was elected to the Georgia Senate where he was the youngest member of that body at the time. In 1975, he was appointed to the staff of the U.S. Senate Veterans Affairs Committee and two years later President Jimmy Carter appointed him to head the Veterans Administration. As the youngest administrator and first Vietnam veteran to hold this position, Cleland created the Vet Center counseling program, among many other accomplishments. He served as the Secretary of State of Georgia from 1982 to 1996. Cleland joined the U.S. Senate in 1996. He served on the Senate Armed Services Committee and was a forceful advocate for a strong national defense and for veterans. Because of Cleland’s efforts, service members who choose not to use their GI bill educational benefits can now pass those benefits on to their children. Cleland was appointed to the 9-11 Commission in 2002, to study the circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and to recommend safeguards against future attacks. While a member of the Commission, Cleland served as an adjunct professor at American University and in 2003, was appointed to be a member of the Board of Directors for the Export- Import Bank of the United States where he stayed for three and a half years. Most recently, in 2009, President Obama appointed Cleland as Secretary of the American Battle Monuments Commission, managing 25 cemeteries overseas where fallen American troops from World War I and World War II are honored.

  Navy SEAL Foundation was the recipient of our Civic Statesmanship Award.

 PrintThe Navy SEAL Foundation’s mission is to provide immediate and ongoing support and assistance to the Naval Special Warfare (NSW) community, their families, and the families of the fallen, as well as wounded and transitioning NSW veterans. U.S. Navy SEALs have been in sustained combat for over 13 years, performing hazardous work in unforgiving environments at an unrelenting pace. SEALs are currently deployed in over 35 countries across the globe and spend up to 270 days each year in harm’s way. The Navy SEAL Foundation stands behind these warriors and their families by delivering comprehensive, world-class programs that specifically address the community’s unique needs. Like the community they serve, the Foundation is an organization committed to excellence.

 Audi of America, Inc. was the recipient of our Corporate Statesmanship Award.


Audi of America developed the Veterans to Technicians Program to address one of the most important challenges facing returning military services members: finding high quality employment that translates a veteran’s skills into a satisfying and fulfilling career. The Veterans to Technicians Program trains former military personnel to become service technicians, service consultants, shop foremen and parts specialist in dealership across the country. Audi recognizes that veterans are ideal employees for Audi dealerships because they bring the skills, experience, maturity, integrity and work ethic to Audi’s growing market. With 255 of the 283 Audi dealerships offering the Audi Veterans to Technicians program, service members from all branches of the military have been trained and employed since the program launched in 2013. This program is just one of many veterans-oriented projects initiated by Audi’s parent company, the VW Group of America.


We wish to thank all of the following 2016 Sponsors whose generosity supports our many programs that teach about representative democracy, builds bridges between current Members of Congress and their peers overseas, and helps to strengthen the legislative branches of emerging democracies.

2016 Sponsors

Presenting – $50,000


Benefactor – $25,000


The Embassy of Japan



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Patron – $15,000




Supporter – $6,000

AARP · Aflac · Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
· American Gas Association · APCO Worldwide · Bipartisan Policy Center · Business Roundtable · CALIBRE Systems, Inc. · Capital Bank, N.A. · Congressional Federal Credit Union · The Hon. James and Carmen Courter · Dawson & Associates, Inc. · Deloitte · DLA Piper · The Flemming Foundation · The Embassy of France · The Hon. Martin Frost · General Electric · Huawei Technologies  ·Huntington Ingalls Industries · Barbara Kennelly Associates · SIFMA · Southern Company · Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO) · Truth In Government 


The Hon. Richard Baker
· The Hon. Allen Ertel · The Hon. Dennis Hertel  · The Hon. Amory Houghton, Jr. · The Hon. Tom Petri · Secretary Donald Rumsfeld · Turner Foundation, Inc.