The Forty & Eight  Charitable Veterans Since 1920

501(c)(19) non profit, tax exempt

40&8 National Headquarters; 777 N. Meridian Street; Indianapolis, IN 46204-1170

317 634-1804 ~ ~


Contact: M. Anich


40&8 Veterans to Recognize Former VA Secretary Dr. James Peake in Rochester, NY


INDIANAPOLIS  August 01, 2009     The national headquarters of the Forty et Eight veterans organization will present its 2009 Americanism Award to The Honorable James B. Peake, MD, at the Forty et Eight’s 90th annual national convention, to be held at the Radisson Hotel-Rochester Riverside, in Rochester, New York, September 8-12, 2009.

The Forty & Eight’s national commander, Chef de Chemin de Fer Ted Lang, said of Peake, “He is a soldier, physician, humanitarian, and statesman.  Our 2009 Americanism award recognizes Dr. Peake’s lifetime of exceptional and heroic service to our nation.”

A 1966 graduate of West Point, James Peake was awarded the Silver Star and two Purple Hearts while serving as an officer with 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam.  While recovering from his wounds, Peake was accepted to Cornell University Medical College and thereafter had a distinguished career in Army Medicine.  From 2000 to 2004, Dr. Peake served as Surgeon General of the Army, rising to the rank of Lieutenant General.

From 2004 to 2006, Dr. Peake was the Chief Operating Officer of Project HOPE, a non-profit health foundation that coordinated volunteer medical efforts aboard U. S. Navy hospital ships that responded to the tsunami in Indonesia and the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.

On December 14, 2007, the United States Senate unanimously confirmed Dr. James Peake as the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

President George W. Bush said, “Dr. Peake takes office at a critical moment… Our nation is at war, and many new veterans are leaving the battlefield and entering the VA system.”  Senators from all sides praised Secretary Peake.

James B. Peake was the first physician and the first military general to serve as VA secretary.  He strove to make long term improvements within the VA.  Peake said his focus was to make the VA “veteran-centric”, where medicine is a team effort and where “all the modalities come together” to provide optimum care to “the whole patient”.

The Forty et Eight’s national adjutant, Correspondant National Bernie Sampson, lauded Secretary Peake, saying Peake had “shed his blood for America in combat and then went on to heal America’s war veterans... we are delighted to have Lieutenant General Peake speak at our Promenade Nationale (national convention), as our Americanism honoree, this coming September in Rochester, New York.”

The Forty & Eight is an honor society of American veterans founded in 1920, with a long and charitable history of fighting childhood disease, funding nursing scholarships and other chartable and patriotic endeavors.

For more information regarding the Forty & Eight’s national convention in Rochester, please contact Rene Vanmulem at (585) 586-6986 or


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