Gailey, Lawton receive humorous "Nebraska Admiral" award

Amanda Gailey, Courtney Lawton and the presenting admiral
Photo credit: Amanda Gailey
Fri, 01/12/2018 - 09:46

Two members of the English Department, Associate Professor Amanda Gailey and Ph.D. candidate Courtney Lawton, were awarded Nebraska's highest civic honor, the Nebraska Admiral award. The award, which humorously bestows rank in a nonexistent Nebraska Navy, recognizes contributions to the state and is given by Governor Pete Ricketts based on nominations from the public.

Professor Gailey was nominated for her work as “a tireless advocate for social justice and for the rights of free speech and privacy that are enshrined in our Constitution” as well as being “a strong advocate for Nebraska’s university system.” Lawton was nominated for promoting free speech and advocating Nebraska values.

Since its inception in 1932, commissions in the Nebraska Navy have been given to prominent citizens both inside and outside the state. Anyone can be nominated as long as they have "contributed in some way to the state, promote the Good Life in Nebraska, and warrant recognition as determined by the Governor" [source].

Admiral certificate awarded to Amanda Gailey; full text below
Admiral certificate awarded to Courtney Lawton; full text below

The award certificate reads:

“Admiral; The Great Navy of the State of Nebraska; Too All Who Shall See These Presents, greetings.

“Know ye, that reposing special trust and confidence in the Patriotism, valor, fidelity, and abilities of [recipient] and knowing you to be a good person and a loyal friend and counselor I have nominated and do appoint you an Admiral in the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska. You are therefore called to diligently discharge the duties of Admiral by doing and performing all manner of things thereto belonging. And I do strictly charge and require all officers, seamen, tadpoles and goldfish under your command to be obedient to your orders as Admiral—and you are to observe and follow, from time to time, such directions as you shall receive, according to the rules and discipline of the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska. This commission to continue in force during the period of your good behavior, and the pleasure of the Chief Admiral of the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska.

“Given under my hand, in the City of Lincoln, State of Nebraska this 5th day of January 2018 in the year of our Lord, [signed] Pete Ricketts, Governor.”