The BEYA Stars and Stripes Dinner honors active and retired African American admirals, generals, and members of the Senior Executive Service at the BEYA STEM Conference, held in February during Black History Month.

This Black History Month Tribute to the nation’s warriors is one of the popular events at the BEYA STEM Conference, attracting Fortune 500 CEO’s, service chiefs, and senior Department of Defense leaders.

Each year the host of the BEYA Stars and Stripes Dinner alternates between the Air Force, Army, Navy, Marine Corps, National Guard, and the Coast Guard. The National Guard of the United States, part of the reserve components of the United States Armed Forces, will be the featured service in 2017.

The goal of BEYA Stars and Stripes is to promote excellence in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The 2016 program will feature many events, including the Veterans Transition Initiative, CEO Roundtable, professional seminars and a STEM career fair. STEM students in high school, undergraduate, and graduate tracks will attend as well as interns, professionals, and executives.

BEYA Stars and Stripes founding fathers are retired admirals and generals from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. (L-R) Navy vice admiral Walter J. Davis; Army general Johnnie Wilson; Army Lt. Gen. Joe N. Ballard; Albert J. Edmonds, Lt. Gen. US Air Force; Navy vice adm. Anthony L. Winns; Marine Corps general Walter Gaskin; Army major general Ronald L. Johnson; William A. Brown Sr., SES-5 retired; and Rear Adm. Stephen W. Rochon, former director of the Executive Residence and White House Chief Usher.

The National Guard is a reserve military force, composed of National Guard military members or units of each state and the territories of Guam, of the Virgin Islands, and of Puerto Rico, as well as of the District of Columbia, for a total of 54 separate organizations.

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