WASHINGTON, March 27, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- General Martin Dempsey, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will speak at the Military Child of the Year® Award Gala on April 10, Operation Homefront announced today. The event recognizes the top military child from each of the five military services.
Adding star power to the Washington, D.C. gala with a keynote address will be legendary musician, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Bret Michaels. Having grown up as a military child himself, Michaels is a supporter of Operation Homefront and recently visited wounded warriors at Operation Homefront Village in San Antonio.
Mike Emanuel, chief congressional correspondent for Fox News Channel, will emcee the dinner and award portion of the evening event. During his tenure at Fox News, Emanuel has provided live coverage of several national and international stories, including the 2005 Iraqi elections, the execution of former dictator Saddam Hussein, and several tours of Afghanistan.
"We're excited to have a great program and some outstanding Americans to salute these five amazing military kids," said Jim Knotts, President & CEO of Operation Homefront. "The Military Child of the Year® Award honors the resiliency and service to country of our youngest heroes. These children thrive in the face of the challenges of military life with grace and courage, and use that experience to become leaders in their communities."
2014 is the sixth year that Operation Homefront has presented the Military Child of the Year® Awards. The five awardees will receive $5,000 each and will be flown with a parent or guardian to our nation's capital for the special recognition ceremony. The awards will be presented by senior leaders of each branch of service. From a pool of nearly 1,000 nominees, each award recipient was chosen by a committee including active-duty and retired military personnel, spouses of senior military leaders, veteran service organization leaders, teachers, and community members.
The five award recipients for 2014 are Kenzie Hall, 16, of Temecula, Calif. representing the Army; Michael-Logan Burke Jordan, 15, of Kailua, Hawaii representing the Marine Corps; Ryan Patrick Curtin, 18, of Corpus Christi, Texas representing the Navy; Gage Alan Dabin, 18, of Anchorage, Alaska representing the Air Force; and Juanita Lindsay Collins, 17, of Clearwater, Fla. representing the Coast Guard.
About Operation Homefront: A national nonprofit, Operation Homefront leads more than 2,500 volunteers with nationwide presence who provide emergency and other financial assistance to the families of service members and wounded warriors. Operation Homefront has provided assistance to thousands of military families since its inception in 2002. Recognized for superior performance by leading independent charity watchdog groups, nationally, 93 percent of total donations to Operation Homefront go directly to programs that provide support to our military families. For more information, go to www.OperationHomefront.net.
About Bret Michaels
Legendary singer/songwriter, Bret Michaels, has sold over 32 million records worldwide, is a reality TV superstar with some of the highest rated reality shows in history as well as a lifelong type 1 diabetic. An entrepreneur, Michaels has created the multi-million dollar selling Pets Rock Collection with PetSmart, launched his own line of custom guitars and created "Bret's Blend, Diet Trop A Rocka" which is a number one selling beverage for Dr. Pepper/Snapple Group. Michaels, personally and through his Life Rocks Foundation has helped raise millions of dollars for charity and makes donations to not only diabetes awareness and research but to such causes as childhood cancer, PetSmart Charities, Operation Homefront, Fealgood Foundation and more. His talent, business acumen and natural candor have solidified him as "a cultural touchdown" in the words of former Viacom CEO Judy McGrath and made him one of the most sought after performers, keeping him on the road for each of the last 10 years, for nearly 300 live performances, speaking engagements, charitable concerts and private engagements yearly. For more information: www.bretmichaels.com
SOURCE Operation Homefront