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NAA Names James Schenck as 2024 Whitman Recipient

PenFed CEO Honored for Work With Veterans Groups, Students

The National Aeronautic Association has announced that James Schenck of PenFed Credit Union will be the 2024 recipient of the Bruce Whitman Memorial Trophy.

Schenck is recognized for his "selfless humanitarian and dedication to commemorating, celebrating, and advocating for the impact and heritage of America's military veterans", according to the NAA citation. His selection follows the pattern of the Whitman Memorial Trophy, established in 2019 when the award was first given posthumously to its namesake. Since then, the NAA has sought to find those who shine brightest in the field of aeronautical volunteering and philanthropy, whether that comes by helping up downtrodden aviators or bootstrapping the next generation of fliers. Schenck has already been recognized by more than a few groups for his work, gaining note from HillVets, the Association of the United States Army's John W. Dixon Award, the National Military Family Association's Military Family Champion Award, the Canine Companions for Independence's Hearts and Heroes Award, and the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce's Lifetime Service Award.

"Deeply impacted by the failed Iranian Hostage Rescue mission on April 24, 1980, when 8 American servicemembers lost their lives, I have been steadfast from that date forward in my commitment to our men and women who serve," said Schenck. "I am forever proud of my military service as an Army Aviator, and for the millions of other veterans who have worn the uniform of our nation. We can never do enough for the men and women and their families who keep us free. I am honored to receive this prestigious award from the National Aeronautic Association."

As PenFed CEO he has continually donated "up to 2% of the organization's net income annually to over 200 military charities", even bringing in more than $55 million for veteran causes through the PenFed Foundation. The company sponsored the first graduating class of the Red Tail Flight Academy.



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