Earlier this week, McCain Institute Senior Director for Leadership Programs and Arizona State University Senior Advisor for Leadership Initiatives Lieutenant General (Ret.) Ben Freakley was awarded the Citizen Service Award by Voices for National Service. Lt. Gen. Freakley was honored for “investing in the civic health of our nation through support of national service.” Voices for National Service is a coalition of national and local service programs that has worked to create and expand federally-supported service opportunities in America.

Watch Lt. Gen. Freakley accept the Citizen Service Award here:

The Voices for National Service’s Friends of National Service Awards dinner also honored Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) with the inaugural John S. McCain Service to Country Award. Belief in public and national service was one of Senator McCain’s core values, and in 2003, he spoke of the importance of national service groups:

 “…Due to my close contact with and exposure to AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and many other volunteer organizations around this nation, I’ve come to believe that it’s the very essence of patriotism, because I believe the essence of patriotism  is service to a cause greater than one’s self-interests.”

Lastly, as the Friends of National Service Awards dinner began, a video message from Institute Board of Trustees Chair Cindy McCain played to congratulate all of this year’s award recipients including Senator Coons and Lt. Gen. Freakley.

Watch Cindy McCain’s video message here: