Local Auxiliary Unit 53 Wins American Legion Auxiliary National President's Award for Excellence

  • INDIANAPOLIS—8/30/12—

    American Legion Auxiliary Johnson-Nicoles-Kuhlman-Olson Unit 53 in Eau Claire, Wisc., was one of only five units to receive the National President’s Award for Excellence from American Legion Auxiliary National President Kris Nelson. Awards were presented Aug. 30 at the American Legion Auxiliary’s 92nd National Convention in Indianapolis.

    The National President’s Award for Excellence is presented annually to American Legion Auxiliary units that represent the “best of the best” in planning and implementation of the American Legion Auxiliary’s mission. Recipients are selected based on applications that address the unit’s achievements in Auxiliary national goals and objectives in at least three Auxiliary programs.

    Unit 53’s motto this year was “Actions speak louder than words.” They put that motto into action with a variety of projects:

    • They created a workshop called “Making Connections Women to Women,” which partnered the department of Wisconsin with the VA Center and focused on issues like mental illness and substance abuse in homeless veterans.
    • They promoted and assisted with events that helped both male and female homeless veterans. For example they…
      • Partnered with their VA and provided supplies and business suites to ready veterans for job interviews.
      • Served a Christmas meal for homeless veterans and gifted them stockings filled with toiletries and personal care items.
      • Worked with Gold Star Mothers to create backpacks filled with paper, pens, envelopes and stamps and delivered them to the VA Center.
      • Held a “Holiday Stand Down for Women Veterans” where they collected clothing, personal items, non-perishable food, household items and bed linens.
    • They served homebound veterans and veterans living in nursing by writing letter and sending cards on holidays, and by providing local nursing homes with poppies to be placed on the food tray of every veteran on Memorial Day.
    • Unit 53 supported the “Camo Quilt Project” by completing 216 Camo Quilts and volunteering almost 2,000 hours. They also had local school children write thank you notes to veterans and included them with each quilt as a surprise for the recipient.
    • In honor of the work they did with the “Camo Quilt Project,” Unit 53 received a certificate and United States flag from the Air Force. The flag was flown over Afghanistan on January 9, 2012.
    • The women of Unit 53 finished the year having volunteered nearly 1000 hours, $5,000 and collecting more than $6,000 in in-kind donations.


    Founded in 1919, the American Legion Auxiliary is the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization. With a membership of nearly 800,000, local American Legion Auxiliary units have a strong presence in more than 9,000 communities nationwide. The American Legion Auxiliary’s mission to serve veterans, the military and their families is carried out through its hundreds of outreach programs delivered by its members, volunteers and National Headquarters.



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