Former Ambassador Crocker to receive Thayer Award

October 1st, 2020 | News and Features
Six-time U.S. Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker will receive the prestigious West Point Association of Graduates Thayer Award in a closed ceremony hosted by the U.S. Military Academy today. The Corps of Cadets will conduct a parade in his honor at 5 p.m., on the Plain, prior to the award presentation dinner. Courtesy Photo

By West Point Media Relations

WEST POINT, N.Y.—Six-time U.S. Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker will receive the prestigious West Point Association of Graduates Thayer Award in a closed ceremony hosted by the U.S. Military Academy today. The Corps of Cadets will conduct a parade in his honor at 5 p.m., on the Plain, prior to the award presentation dinner.
Crocker served a total of 14 years as a U.S. Ambassador in six countries for four presidential administrations. In September 2004, President George W. Bush conferred on him the diplomatic rank of Career Ambassador, the highest rank in the Foreign Service, equivalent to a four-star officer in the military.
“I’ve had the privilege of serving with many West Point graduates during my career and understand the values to which they dedicated their lives,” Ambassador Crocker said. “I am truly humbled to receive an award reflecting these values.”
A native of Spokane, Washington, he attended Whitman College in Walla Walla where he received a Bachelor of Arts in English literature in 1971 and was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity.
Crocker is the recipient of numerous awards and honors. He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award, in 2009. He is also a recipient of the Presidential Distinguished and Meritorious Service Awards, a two-time recipient of the Secretary of State’s Distinguished Service Award as well as the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Civilian Service.
He also holds the State Department’s Distinguished Honor Award, Award for Valor, three Superior Honor Awards and the American Foreign Service Association Rivkin Award.
Crocker is currently a Diplomat in Residence at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School.
The Thayer Award, established in honor of Col. Sylvanus Thayer, “Father of the Military Academy,” is presented to an outstanding citizen whose service and accomplishments in the national interest exemplify the military academy’s motto, “Duty, Honor, Country.” The Association of Graduates has presented the award annually since 1958.
Past recipients of the Thayer Award include Dwight D. Eisenhower, Douglas MacArthur, Bob Hope, Neil Armstrong, Barbara Jordon, Walter Cronkite, Tom Brokaw, Colin Powell, Madeleine Albright, Henry Kissinger and former President George W. Bush.
Last year’s recipient was Ann Dunwoody.