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Stern Alumnus John Poindexter Honored with Presidential Unit Citation

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On October 20, NYU Stern alumnus John Poindexter (MBA ’71 & PhD ’76), along with 86 veterans of the troop he commanded, was honored with the Presidential Unit Citation by President Obama in recognition for their actions four decades ago in the Republic of Vietnam. The ceremony, held in the White House Rose Garden, recognized their exemplary service and personal sacrifice. Poindexter spent the last seven years focused on obtaining recognition for his troop.

The citation recognizes Troop A, First Squadron, 11th Armored Combat Regiment of the U.S. Army – the troop that Poindexter led as captain at age 25 – for its “extraordinary heroism and conspicuous gallantry on March 26, 1970, when it volunteered to rescue an American infantry company surrounded on the Cambodian border by an overwhelming enemy force. The determined enemy had resisted hours of aerial and artillery bombardment and was expected to destroy or capture the 100 American infantrymen within hours,” according to a press release issued by the White House Office of the Press Secretary.

The Presidential Unit Citation, one of the rarest honors bestowed for bravery in battle, is awarded to units of the Armed Forces of the United States and its allies for extraordinary heroism in action against an armed enemy on or after December 7, 1941. The unit must display such gallantry, determination, and esprit de corps in accomplishing its mission under extremely difficult and hazardous conditions so as to set it apart from and above other units participating in the same campaign, according to the official White House press release.

John Poindexter is the founder, chairman, and CEO of J.B. Poindexter & Co., the world’s largest maker of truck bodies and supplies companies such as Ryder, Penske, UPS, and FedEx.