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Speaker's Bureau 

Presentations now available virtually!

Are you looking for a program for your civic organization, special-interest group, or community event? Our staff is available to deliver presentations about the history of the United States Navy’s Enlisted Sailor. 

  • As a federal museum, all programs are free of charge.
  • We ask that requesting organizations have a minimum of 5 people in attendance. 
  • All presentations are approximately 45 minutes in length and are delivered with an accompanying PowerPoint slideshow.
  • The museum speaker comes equipped with an iPad and adapters. Requesting entities are asked to have a TV with HDMI input or a projector and screen. Speakers are comfortable speaking without a microphone but are happy to use one if needed. 
  • In-person presentations are available within a 50-mile radius of the National Museum of the American Sailor. Destinations greater than 50 miles are welcome to request a virtual program.
  • Virtual presentations can be held via the museum's Microsoft Teams or the interested group's own video communication account (i.e. Zoom).

To learn more about the program guidelines and to schedule a Speaker’s Bureau event for your group, please complete the Speaker's Bureau Presentation Request Form and return to the museum. If you have questions about the program, please contact the Museum at or (847) 688-3154.


Available Presentations:

A Day That Will Live in Infamy: The Attack on Pearl Harbor

The shocking attack and major defeat at Pearl Harbor lead was the catalyst for the emergence of a new and determined naval fleet. This presentation will examine events leading up to the attack, how sailors and nurses responded, as well as the aftermath and legacy of the attack that is considered the Navy’s greatest defeat.

The Battle of Midway

Known as the Navy's greatest victory, the three-day Battle of Midway effectively turned the tide of the War in the Pacific. This presentation gives an overview of the decisive battle and explores the far-reaching impact of American victory. 

The Skies Above Great Lakes

"The Skies Above Great Lakes" is a presentation about the Naval Aviation History at Naval Station Great Lakes. This discussion begins by informing on how the Navy became involved with aviation. We then address Great Lakes' association with Naval Aviation during both World Wars and conclude with the wider regions efforts to advance Naval Aviation during World War II. 

Brick by Brick: A History of Naval Station Great Lakes

"Brick by Brick" explores the history of Naval Station Great Lakes, from its founding in 1911 through two world wars, the development of modern warfare technology and its current role as the home of Recruit Training Command, the U.S. Navy's only boot camp.

Chow Down: Navy Food Through the Years - New!

Ask any sailors about their time in the Navy and one of the first things they mention is the food. Sometimes good, sometimes bad – what a sailor eats is an integral part of his or her life. Throughout the Navy’s over 200-year history, sailors’ food changed dramatically. Discover how innovations like canning and refrigeration affected the quality of Navy food and get inspired by some classic Navy recipes with this Speaker’s Bureau program.

The Golden Thirteen

In 1944, sixteen African American sailors arrived at Great Lakes for a groundbreaking officers’ training course. Thirteen of those men would become the first African American commissioned officers in Navy history. In this program, we explore the experiences of the Golden Thirteen at Great Lakes, their time in the fleet, and the lasting legacy of these pioneers.

Good Old Goats: A History of U.S. Navy Chiefs - New!

For enlisted sailors, making chief is one of the most revered days in a sailor’s career. Chiefs are recognized for exemplary technical expertise within their rating, superior administrative skills, and strong leadership ability. Most importantly, chiefs bridge the gap between officers and enlisted personnel, acting as supervisors as well as advocates for their Sailors. In this presentation we’ll discover how the chief grade was created and the important role that chiefs play in the United States Navy.

Great Lakes, Great Women 

"Great Lakes, Great Women" explores the significant contributions of women to Naval Station Great Lakes from its opening in 1911 through the present. This presentation highlights over twenty women who broke legal and civic barriers in the fight for inclusion, equality, and recognition within the United States Navy.

Great White Fleet - New!

Between December 1907 and February 1909, the world's largest naval force circumnavigated the globe on a goodwill voyage. This demonstration of the United States' "New Navy" brought American sailors up close and personal with people all over the world and showcased America's rise to world power status.

Who’s Who in the Navy? The Navy Rate and Rating System - New!

Boatswain’s Mate Second Class? BM2? Chevrons? Crows? What does all of this even mean? To outsiders, how the United States Navy organizes its enlisted sailors can be very confusing. The United States Navy’s enlisted rank and rate system is unique among the armed services. This lecture explores the historical roots of how Navy sailors are organized hierarchically (their rate) and the various occupational tasks they perform (their rating).

The Inky Sea: Tattoos and the Navy

Naval history is rich in the culture and tradition of tattoos. Tattoos have been a part of the Navy for centuries and each one tells a story. Sailors get them for different reasons, at different places on their bodies, and done in different styles. In this presentation, we will discuss the ways in which tattoos and Navy culture intertwine, how they are part of Navy traditions, and view the many styles of Navy tattoos.


Published: Thu Apr 18 15:38:37 EDT 2024