Local representation at DAR’s 131st Continental Congress held in D.C.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — More than 4,000 members of the Daughters of the American Revolution gathered in the nation’s capital for their 131st Continental Congress, the service organization’s annual meeting.

Local attendees of the week-long convention held June 29 through July 3 were Nancy Valles, past chapter regent, and Vickie Joseph, chapter secretary and past chapter, both members of the Fort Steuben Chapter based in Steubenville.

Projected to draw the largest attendance in the organization’s history, the convention consisted of business sessions, committee meetings and social functions, in addition to formal evening ceremonies that honored national award winners and featured keynote speakers.

This year’s convention was the first in-person gathering in three years, after the 2020 and 2021 editions were conducted virtually due to the pandemic.

Wednesday’s opening night ceremony speakers included U.S. Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro, who was honored with the DAR Americanism Medal, and philanthropist/business leader David Rubenstein, who was presented the DAR Medal of Honor.

Friday’s historic preservation night ceremony honored, among others, David S. Ferriero, who served as the 10th archivist of the United States before his retirement, and the Saturday national defense night ceremony featured keynote remarks by Robert Dalessandro, deputy secretary of the American Battle Monuments Commission.

Other national awards were presented throughout the week to outstanding honorees exhibiting excellence in historic preservation, education and patriotism.

While at congress, the Fort Steuben Chapter was recognized for having several national winners in Junior American Citizens committee contests.

“I am both proud and excited to welcome our members back to our DAR headquarters, especially so that they may experience the grandeur of DAR Constitution Hall following its massive $15 million restoration,” commented DAR President Gen. Denise Doring VanBuren.

“We have so much to celebrate, with more than 35,000 new members welcomed and 14 million hours of community service provided since we last gathered for our congress in person back in 2019,” VanBuren said. “It is a pleasure to see our members return to our complex and to our nation’s capital for the first time in three years. We will together rejoice in our vibrant mission of service, fulfilling our joyful obligations to the memory of our ancestors.”

The DAR Continental Congress is a time-honored annual event that has been held in Washington, D.C., since the organization’s founding. Members from across the country and around the world gather at the DAR National Headquarters to report on the year’s work, honor outstanding award recipients, plan future initiatives and reconnect with friends.

The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution was founded in 1890 to promote historic preservation, education and patriotism. Its members are descended from the patriots who won American independence during the Revolutionary War. With nearly 190,000 members in approximately 3,000 chapters worldwide, DAR is one of the world’s largest and most active service organizations

To learn more about the organization’s work, visitwww.DAR.org.


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