The Honorable Mark T. Esper, Secretary of Defense, will receive the Andrew J. Goodpaster Award from the George C. Marshall Foundation at a dinner at the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, Virginia, on Tuesday, December 1, 2020. Secretary Esper will be recognized for his distinguished career and his many contributions to our nation. He has overseen a rebuilding of our national defense capabilities and been a strong advocate for both military preparedness and our brave men and women in uniform.
In 2008, the Goodpaster Award was established to honor the life and service of General Andrew J. Goodpaster, a longtime trustee and chairman of the Foundation, a champion of the Marshall legacy, an American hero, and an extraordinary public servant. The Goodpaster Award is presented to American heroes in a variety of fields who, like General Goodpaster, have exhibited great courage, selfless service, patriotism and leadership in their lives and careers.
A native of Uniontown, Pennsylvania, upon completion of Ranger and Pathfinder training, he served in the 101st Airborne Division and participated in the 1990–91 Gulf War with the “Screaming Eagles.” He later commanded a Rifle Company in the 3-325 Airborne Battalion Combat Team in Vicenza, Italy. He retired from the U.S. Army in 2007 after spending 10 years on active duty and 11 years in the National Guard and Army Reserve.