Greetings fellow Leaguers,

I am happy to announce that those who attended the 2021 National Convention have made it back safely and in good health, which might be considered a miracle by some!

Overall, the event was a great success. Those of us who attended were able to reconnect with some old friends while meeting plenty of new ones as well. From some of the conversations I with fellow outof-state Leaguers, the Dept of NJ is well established amongst National and quite reputable, a direct effect by the large amount of participation we, as a Department, have within National, again made our successfully communicated and corroborated with other Leaguers from all over the nation.

Here is a synopsis of the National Convention in Springfield, Il last week:

  1. An election was held amongst the delegates present for the position of National Judge Advocate. The candidates were Phil Zamora from the Dept of Michigan and Robert Ziltz from
    the Dept of Pennsylvania. The results were 6,854 votes cast for Phil Zamora and 4,302 votes cast for Robert Ziltz. The Department of NJ had a total of 56 delegates and 795 votes. The Dept
    was the second largest holder of votes, with the Dept of PA having the most, 63 delegates and 1,538. As voted upon and approved at our mini-convention last month, I had casted all 795 votes for Phil Zamora.

  2. Elections for our National Officers and the Executive Board (Division Vice Commandants and Asst. Vice Commandants) were held with the following results:
    • Commandant – Johnny Baker
    • Sr. Vice Commandant – Warren Buffet
    • Jr. Vice Commandant – TJ Morgan
    • Judge Advocate – Phil Zamora
    • Jr. Past National Commandant – Dennis Tobin


  3. Our very own Department Sr. Vice Commandant, Michael Waluk, was elected as Vice Commandant for the Northeast Division, and Tom Wortman of the Dept of New York was elected as Asst. Vice Commandant for the Northeast Division.

  4. The Department of NJ received a Meritorious Unit Commendation from the outgoing National Commandant, Dennis Tobin. Effective August 9, 2021, all members of the Department of New
    Jersey are hereby authorized to wear the National Meritorious Unit Commendation ribbon, which can be purchased at the National Headquarters’ Ship Store https://the-semper-fistore.myshopify.com/collections/medals-ribbons/products/m09bar; or the appropriate star upon your existing ribbon if applicable.

  5. A total of eleven (11) detachments received the National Jr. Vice Commandant’s Citation for having exceeding previous membership levels during the period of July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.

    J.J. Gardner #199
    PFC D. Giordano #200
    Passaic County #202
    Semper Fidelis #204
    Semper Marine #205
    Air, Land & Sea #710
    PFC Vincent M. Frassetto #796
    Hunterdon County Bulldogs #927
    NJ MCRD #1284
    Jersey Shore Leathernecks #1313
    Jersey Shore Marines #1319


    Congratulations to all of these detachments for an outstanding effort with your memberships. If your detachment is not listed above, lets make some team-inspired efforts to increase your membership totals, so all 35 detachments will be the recipient of this citation at the 99th National Convention in Daytona Beach, Florida. Those citations will be handed out at our next Department Meeting scheduled for Sunday, September 19th.

  6. I attended the Commandants’ Council hosted by then-National Sr. Vice Commandant Johnny Baker, during which we topics such as Implementation of the ATLAS database and revised Transmittal Report; and current concerns regarding membership.

  7. National J.A. T.J. Morgan discussed during his report that National is seeing way too many Article 900 hearings, and urged that Detachments (and Departments) seriously attempt to mediate these matters. Failure to do so only costs the detachments and National large amounts of funding that are associated with the costs of holding official hearings. Most of the 70+ hearings held over the past year dealt with petty personality conflicts amongst members.

  8. MCL Chief Operating Officer Bob Borka read a citation drafted to the President of the United States and Congress requesting that State Honors be bestowed upon the last World War II living recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor upon that person’s passing. That veteran is Hershel W. Williams. A motion was made to approve the sending of this citation. Naturally, it passed unanimously without argument.

  9. At the last National Convention in 2019, the chairman of the Marine Youth Foundation issued a challenge to all detachments of the League. The challenge was for each detachment to donate $100 to the MYF. That challenge resulted with about 68 detachments fulfilling the request. If, all detachments of the league were to send in a $100 donation, it would raise enough revenue for the MYF to successfully operate.

  10. The 2022 Mid-Winter Conference is scheduled for February 24 – 26, 2022 at the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside Hotel located at 777 Waterside Drive, Norfolk, VA 23510. Information pertaining to the conference can be found on National’s website https://web.mcleaguelibrary.org/events.

  11. The 2021 Modern Day Marine is scheduled for September 21-23, 2021, hosted by MCL & MCA at MCB Quantico, VA.

  12. Upcoming National Conventions:2022 National Convention at Daytona, FL

    • All is scheduled for August 15 – 22, 2022
    • Daytona Hilton
    • 850 Rooms will be available
    • Reservations become open on Monday, August 16, 2021 at 0800.
    • Reservations will not become available at overflow hotel until Convention Committee makes that decision.
    • (800) 774-1500 / CODE: MCL22
    • Rates – $127 + 6% sales tax per night
    • Parking – $20 per day with possibility of us getting a lower rate if none at all.


    2023 National Convention
    • There were two final contenders who had bid for hosting the 2023 National Convention, which will be the 100th anniversary for MCL.
    • Albany, NY and Oklahoma City, OK were the two finalists.
    • Winning bid was Oklahoma City, OK:
        − Omni Oklahoma City Hotel – 100 W. Oklahoma City Blvd
        − $165.48 inclusive of taxes if not using parking
        − $175.48 inclusive of taxes and parking fees.
        − Pet friendly but with addition deposit required.
        − 10 minutes from Will Rogers World Airport
        − Twin Fountains RV Park located 15 minutes away from the hotel.
        − New hotel having opened in 2021.
        − Exterior pool on roof with spa.

  13. PNC Report: (PNC Wendell Webb)
    • 6 past pnc + current nc attending.
    • Body voted to move PNC funds to the Morgan Stanley
    • Recommended that MCL do more to reach out to women marines and get them into leadership positions.

  14. Public Relations:• The convention was broadcasted live via Facebook, which yielded the following results:
        − 34606 videos were viewed
        − 41545 pics were viewed
        − 71k watching the convention live or in follow up
  15. Mike “Mac” McNamara gave a presentation entitled “Post-Traumatic Winning.” He hosts a podcast called “All Marines Radio.” Mac’s presentation was nothing short of outstanding, focusing on a positive approach towards recognizing and handling trauma, regardless of the source of that trauma.

  16. Former Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps Harold Overstreet was present during Friday’s business meeting and attended the banquet dinner Friday Night. The guest speaker at the Friday night banquet was  Major General Jason Q. Bohm, Commanding General, Marine Corps Recruiting Command.

In closing, I had an excellent time attending and learned so much more about the MCL. I highly advise everyone to make an attempt to attend a National Convention so you can experience it for yourself. I thank my fellow officers and staff members who attended and congratulate all from the Department and elsewhere who earned special honors and recognition at the convention. I can say with confidence that the Department of New Jersey is a foundational component of the League, not only because of our strength in membership numbers but the efforts of many from within the Department.

Semper Fidelis,
John Cleary
Commandant
Dept of NJ – MCL

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Contact the Department of New Jersey MCL