American Legion Auxiliary
Department of Delaware
2015 Boys and Girls State Governors
Liam O’Connor from Caesar Rodney High School
Emily Whaley from Sussex Tech High School
Dover, Delaware – The American Legion and the American Legion Auxiliary Boys State and Girls State Programs were held at Wesley College in Dover, Delaware. Over two hundred junior high school boys and girls, came to study local, county and state government processes in the nonpartisan political learning experience. Every spring, the American Legion and the American Legion Auxiliary hold separate programs to provide approximately 25,000 youths with this hands-on educational opportunity designed to instruct tomorrow’s leaders in the privileges and duties of responsible citizenship.
Delegates receive special instruction in parliamentary procedures and organize themselves into two mock political parties. The young men and women then campaign, hold rallies, debate and ultimately vote to elect county and state officials. Once elected to office, delegates are sworn in and perform their prescribed duties. Citizens not elected to office are given appointments the Delaware’s House of Representatives and the Senate. Including President pro-temp ore and Speaker of the House. All “elected State Officers” get the opportunity to visit and shadow the office of their positions counter-part to view “a day in the life” as well as share their viewpoints with these Officials. The Delaware Boys and Girls State Programs are honored that our elected State Officials are willing and able to share this life long experience with our Citizens.
Two outstanding citizens, known as “senators”, are selected from each program to travel to Washington, DC in July to represent Delaware. This premier leadership conference – Boys Nation and Girls Nation – is designed to provide practical insight into the working of government, to install a sense of pride and loyalty in America and to create friendships and memories that last a lifetime.
A key component of these programs involves mock senate sessions complete with caucusing and debating of bills that range in topic from personal to political interests. Campaigns are held to elect party officials, a vice president and a Nation president.
In addition to their legislative forums, the senators hear distinguished guest speakers and visit the Pentagon, Arlington National Cemetery, the White House and other memorials in the Washington, DC area. Their visit to Capitol Hill includes meetings with their respective senators and representatives and the opportunity to meet the President of the United States.
“These programs are a once in a lifetime opportunity for young people across our nation”, said Lisamarie McCarley, American Legion Auxiliary Department of Delaware’s Americanism Chairman. “After attending their local State Programs and then onto our National Program, they come back to their communities filled with pride in themselves and work to assist their local communities. They come back with an understanding of how things work that they might not have had – not all of them go into politics but they come back and get involved in programs that will better their communities.”
Founded in 1919, the American Legion Auxiliary is the world’s largest women patriotic service organization. With a membership of nearly 800,000, local units have a strong presence in more than 9,500 communities nationwide. The ALA’s mission is to support The American Legion and to honor the sacrifice of those who serve by enhancing the lives of our veterans, military, and their families, both at home and abroad.
For God and country, we advocate for veterans, educate our citizens, mentor youth, and promote patriotism, good citizenship, peace and security.