West Point Grad News

Happy Founders Day!

Happy Founders Day!West Point's role in our nation's history dates back to the Revolutionary War, when both sides realized the strategic importance of the commanding plateau on the west bank of the Hudson River. General George Washington considered West Point to be the most important strategic position in America. Washington personally selected Thaddeus Kosciuszko, one of the heroes of Saratoga, to design the fortifications for West Point in 1778, and Washington transferred his headquarters to West Point in 1779. Continental soldiers built forts, batteries and redoubts and extended a 150-ton iron chain across the Hudson to control river traffic. Fortress West Point was never captured by the British, despite Benedict Arnold's treason. West Point is the oldest continuously occupied military post in America.

Several soldiers and legislators, including Washington, Knox, Hamilton and John Adams, desiring to eliminate America's wartime reliance on foreign engineers and artillerists, urged the creation of an institution devoted to the arts and sciences of warfare. On 16 March 1802, Thomas Jefferson signed the document that founded the United States Military Academy. It read, “that the said corps, when so organized, shall be stationed at West Point in the state of New York and shall constitute a military academy.”

Schenck '88 Joins BOD for GWHCC

James Schenck '88PenFed Credit Union President and CEO James Schenck has joined the Board of Directors of the Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. "I personally have accepted the mission of the Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to facilitate the success of Latino and other minority-owned businesses and the communities they serve”, said James Schenck. Schenck joins the 10-member Board of Directors led by Chairman Margarita Dilone, President, Crystal Insurance. Schenck will serve a four-year term.

"We're so proud to welcome James Schenck to the GWHCC board," said Nicole Quiroga, President and CEO of the Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. "We feel this addition reflects our commitment to diversify our board and believe PenFed's mission aligns with the mission of our chamber. James' steadfastness to serve enables us to widen our reach, extend our network, and increase our impact."

Schenck also serves on the boards of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Carriage Services, Lasermax Defense, the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce, and the Northern Virginia Technology Council. A graduate of Harvard Business School, Schenck flew Blackhawk helicopters in Korea. While in the military, Schenck served on the Army Staff in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans and was later selected to serve as a Special Assistant to the Secretary of the Army. He received the Legion of Merit for his contribution to the Army by overseeing the creation of the $453 million Army University Access Online educational initiative. He remains an active advocate on behalf of military and veterans' issues nationwide. Read More

COL(R) Wilkerson '73, DO, Receives AAOS Humanitarian Award

COL-R Wilkerson '73 Receives AAOS Humanitarian AwardRick D. Wilkerson, DO is the recipient of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) 2018 Humanitarian Award. Dr. Wilkerson was honored at the Academy's 2018 Annual Meeting for his nearly three decades of work serving underserved populations around the globe. The Humanitarian Award recognizes living fellows, international and emeritus members of the Academy who have distinguished themselves through outstanding musculoskeletal-related humanitarian activities in the United States or abroad.

In addition to being a skilled orthopaedic surgeon, Dr. Wilkerson is passionate about helping countries develop and improve their orthopaedic capabilities, and he knew that with his experience, resources, and determination he could make an enormous impact on peoples' lives. His global humanitarian pursuits have taken him to more than 14 countries such as Haiti, Iraq, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya and Uganda. His colleagues credit his West Point education and military medical experience as a key factor for the special instincts and skill set required to thrive in environments of war, hostile governments or natural disasters.

Dr. Wilkerson has been greatly involved with Health Volunteers Oversees (HVO) and the International Medical Corps. Among his many accomplishments, Dr. Wilkerson has made annual trips to Iraq, initiating a total knee replacement (TKA) program for Iraqi residents, leading to more than 1,500 TKAs performed. He also sponsored eight Iraqi orthopaedic surgeons in his private practice for postgraduate training. During their time in the U.S., these surgeons lived with Dr. Wilkerson and his family. As a result of his commitment, Dr. Wilkerson was named honorary professor of orthopaedic surgery at the University of Basrah in Iraq. Read More

Photo: Doctor Wilkerson (right) with Dr. William Maloney President of the AAOS

Renfro '54 Honored at Lacrosse Officials Winter Meeting

Dick Renfro '54 honored at Bluegrass Lacrosse Officials Winter Meeting 2018The Dick Renfro Distinguished Official Award “Exemplify the highest standards of sportsmanship, ethical conduct and moral character”. Named in honor of Dick Renfro who in the early 1990’s was the only USILOA trained and approved Lacrosse Official and Trainer in Kentucky. Dick was the original instructor for Lacrosse Officials in Kentucky and was instrumental in providing the guidance for the Organization which became BLOA. Dick played at Army 1951 thru 1953, and became an Assistant Coach in 1954.

While his career serving his country took him to many areas of the US and around the world, Dick was able to continue with his passion for lacrosse as an Official in the North East: New York; South West: Texas; overseas in England; returning to the North East and finally settling in Kentucky in early 1989. Dick officiated many levels from High School to NCAA as well as the International World Lacrosse Games in England in 1978.

This award seeks to recognize and honor officials who have a distinguished record of excellence and integrity on the field, leadership in BLOA, and a commitment to work for the growth of Boy’s Lacrosse. All of the Characteristics exemplified by Dick Renfro. This Award is Recognizing Dick for his instrumental help in getting Lacrosse Officiating in Kentucky off the ground. It is with Honor we present to Dick Renfro the original Julip Cup that will be used as the trophy to honor the future recipients.

WPAOG Announces 2018 Distinguished Graduate Award Recipients

The West Point Association of Graduates (WPAOG) has named the 2018 recipients of the Distinguished Graduate Award. This annual award is bestowed upon those West Point graduates whose character, distinguished service and stature draw wholesome comparison to the qualities for which West Point strives, in keeping with its motto: "Duty, Honor, Country."

The awards will be presented in a ceremony at West Point on May 22, 2018.

The 2018 Distinguished Graduate Award Recipients are:

Dana G. Mead '57
Thomas C. Barron '65
Larry R. Jordan '68
William S. Wallace '69
Sloan D. Gibson '75
Douglas E. Lute '75

Fath '90 Named President of the Somers Point BOE

Todd Fath '90Todd Fath is the new president of the Somers Point Board of Education. He was chosen to lead the district by Atlantic County Executive Superintendent of Schools Richard Stepura. Fath is serving his third year on the board, and is field engineer for Linde LLC, an industrial gas and engineering company. Read More

Capofari '72 Receives the Morgenthau Award

Paul Capofari '72 Chief Assistant District Attorney Paul Capofari has been given the prestigious Morgenthau Award for his devotion to justice and public safety. "His years of military service in the U.S. Army were instrumental in helping my administration to establish the borough's first dedicated Veterans Court part, which has flourished under his leadership and allowed his fellow veterans to connect with much-needed resources," McMahon added.

As an assistant district attorney, Capofari was a major consistent of multiple pivotal cases, including prosecuting various homicides, members of a prominent cocaine drug ring, and was lead counsel in a 2003 multi-defendant state prosecution of Ronell Wilson - who assassinated two undercover police officers, and who was ultimately convicted in federal court, according to a press release from the Office of the District Attorney.

Capofari's 19-year career included assignments in the Investigations Bureau, the Criminal Court Bureau as a deputy bureau chief, and as the chief of the Supreme Court Bureau, where he offered his experience and knowledge while supervising ADAs in the prosecution of felony offenders. Capofari's tenure ended in 2012, but he was asked by McMahon to join his new administration as chief assistant district attorney in 2016. Read More