Established in 1951, the Minuteman Award is the highest award presented to a Compatriot for service rendered to the National Society. Qualifying service includes five years of distinguished service at the National level, three years in a National elective office and as a Committee or Task Force Chairman/Vice Chairman. The award is given to a maximum of six recipients each year, and recipients may receive the award only once. The President General presents the award during the Minuteman Ceremony at each Annual Congress.
The medal depicts a Minuteman holding a rifle with a plow in the background. On the reverse is inscribed “Highest Award of the National Society Sons of the American Revolution”. The first Minuteman Award was presented to former president General Benjamin H. Powell of Texas at the 1952 Congress. As of 2015, 389 Compatriots have been recognized with the Minuteman Award. Three San Diego Chapter members have received the Minuteman Award.
Compatriot Carl Lamb received the award at the 2000 Congress in Boston, MA. His patriot ancestor was Captain John Dickey, Virginia Militia. He became a SAR member on July 31, 1974. Carl was born in Sterling, CO on August 8, 1921, and served in the U.S. Navy as a pilot from 1942 to 1968 when he retired as a Lieutenant Commander. Compatriot Lamb served as a Past National Trustee of the California Society was actively involved in planning the 1989 San Francisco Congress and the 1999 San Diego Congress. He was a First Line Signer of over 70 new members, organized two California Chapters and was instrumental in reactivating four other Chapters. He served on the National Membership, Genealogy, and Medal and Awards Committees. He attended 17 Congresses and 38 meetings of the National Trustees.
In 2005, Travis E. Spears became the second San Diego Chapter Minuteman Awardee. His patriot ancestor was Private Samuel Spears in Colonel Richardson’s Regiment of the Virginia Continental Line. Travis was born in Checotah, OK on August 19, 1934, and served as a Navy Corpsman with the Marines during the Korean War. Compatriot Spears became a member of SAR on November 29, 1990. His service at the National SAR level included Vice-President General for the Western District and National Trustee of the California Society. Additionally he served on the Chaplains, Library, C.A.R., Membership, and George Washington Fund Distribution Committees, and as the Chairman of the Korean War Commemoration Committee. Travis was also a George Washington Fellow.
In 2010, Stanley W. De Long became the third San Diego Chapter Minuteman Awardee. At the Minuteman Awards ceremony, he was escorted to the dais by Charles R. Lampman, USN (ret.). His patriot ancestor was Private Jonathan Morgan in the Morris County, NJ Militia. He was born in Urbana, IL on April 20, 1938. Compatriot De Long enlisted in the U.S. Navy in September 1957 and served as a Corpsman with the Marines. Later, he served in the Naval Reserve while attending seminary. He then returned to active duty as a Navy Chaplain and retired as a Commander in July 1995 with a total 38 years of Navy service including 25 years of active duty and 13 years of Naval Reserve service.
Compatriot De Long served as the NSSAR Chaplain General in 2006 and 2007, as well as planning and presenting memorial services at several Annual Congresses. Compatriot De Long attended a total of nine Congresses and 12 Leadership Meetings. His other service includes Vice President General-Western District and National Trustee of the California Society, and as the Chairman or Vice Chairman of the Chaplains, Flag, Veterans, and Knight Essay Committees. Compatriot De Long was the first-line signer for four new SAR members, is a George Washington Fellow and a contributor to the Center for Advancing America’s Heritage.