The Naval Order of the United States, which was founded in 1890 and bills itself the oldest American military society of its kind, is holding its National Congress at the Intercontinental Hotel in New Orleans this week.

The event began Wednesday and concludes Friday.

Two awards will be presented. Retired Adm. Jim Stavridis, who served as supreme allied commander of NATO and commander of the U.S. Southern Command, will receive the Distinguished Sea Service Award. In addition, Frederick Smith, the founder and CEO of FedEx, will receive the Admiral of the Navy George Dewey Award.

The event will feature two panels of speakers, including the three commanders of local sea service branches — the Coast Guard, Marines and Navy.

Former Capt. Kiem Do, of the South Vietnamese Navy, will talk about his role in helping to evacuate more than 30,000 troops and others after America withdrew from Vietnam in 1975.

The Naval Order aims to promote and preserve U.S. sea service history.

For information, contact Gary Bair at (504) 391-0667 or