CHEYENNE – Operation Homefront, the national nonprofit that builds strong, stable, and secure military families, is now accepting nominations for the 2019 Military Child of the Year® Awards, as well as applications for the 2019 Military Child of the Year® Award for Innovation. Military Child of the Year® is the nation’s premier celebration of the achievements of military children. Nominations are open through December 5, and all awards will be presented at a recognition gala April 18, 2019 in the nation’s capital.
The annual awards will recognize seven outstanding young people ages 13 to 18 who are legal dependents of a service member or military retiree. Six Military Child of the Year® recipients will represent a branch of the armed forces — the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard — demonstrating resiliency, leadership, and achievement during their parents’ military service. The seventh award is the Military Child of the Year® Award for Innovation presented by global technology and consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton. This award goes to a military child who has designed a bold and creative solution to address a local, regional, or global challenge.
“Operation Homefront’s Military Child of the Year® Awards recognize the extraordinary young people in military families who serve alongside their parents and excel while facing the pressures and uncertainties associated with military life,” said Brig. Gen. (ret.) John I. Pray Jr., President and CEO of Operation Homefront. “As we have seen for the past decade of awards ceremonies we have hosted, military kids are known for having a strong inner compass that guides them to lead, to volunteer, and to serve others and their communities. I encourage those in the military community and beyond to consider nominating a military child for this national level recognition of exceptional service.”
To nominate a child for the award, visit www.militarychildoftheyear.org and click the Nominations tab. Nomination fields include when and how long a parent has deployed, number of family moves, Gold Star Family or Exceptional Family Member Program status, whether a parent is a wounded service member, nominee’s volunteerism, and five short answers as to why the nominee is deserving.
All seven Military Child of the Year® Award recipients will be flown with a parent or guardian to Washington, D.C., and recognized at the April 18 gala, where they will receive $10,000 each and a laptop computer. The recipient of the Military Child of the Year® Award for Innovation will also receive donated business expertise in bringing their creative solution to market.
Recipients of the 2018 Military Child of the Year® Award:
• Experienced a change of station a combined 29 times;
• Lived through 225 months of deployments; and
• Have logged almost 3,000 volunteer hours in the 12 months before their nominations.
Previous recipients remember their Military Child of the Year® Award as both an honor and an amazing experience.
“Working hard to be extremely involved can be difficult because oftentimes I would question whether or not it was all worth it. When I found out I won, I was in awe. It gave me a realization that hard work does really pay off. It was an opportunity and moment I will never forget,” said 2018 National Guard Military Child of the Year® Aaron Hall of Coarsegold, Calif.
The 2018 Coast Guard Military Child of the Year®, Roark Corson of Virginia Beach, Va., said, “I was both honored and humbled to receive such a prestigious award, and extremely proud to represent the resilient and resourceful military dependents across the world.”
For more information about the Military Child of the Year® nomination process, visit www.militarychildoftheyear.org.