Colby Award Winners

This year's winners of the prestigious Colby award are a ground-breaking biography of Admiral Francis Du Pont and the riveting real-life account of the making of a Marine officer.

Lincoln's Tragic Admiral book jacketLincoln's Tragic Admiral

Lincoln's Tragic Admiral: The Life of Samuel Francis Du Pont (University of Virginia Press 2005) by Kevin J. Weddle is both the biography of one of the Civil War's most underrated military figures and a compelling history of the naval side of the war. Du Pont's contributions to the making of the modern U.S. Navy included his advocacy of steam power and the transformation of the Navy from wood to iron ships, in spite of the disastrous consequences of the attack on Charleston. Weddle reveals that Du Pont embodied the very best that America has produced in her officers and commanders. A professor and Deputy Dean of Academics at the United States Army War College, Weddle is an active duty Army colonel and holds a Ph.D. in history from Princeton University.

One Bullet Away book jacketOne Bullet Away

In One Bullet Away: The Making of a Marine Officer (Houghton Mifflin 2005), Marine Captain Nathaniel Fick traces his rise to become a member of one of America’s elite fighting units, sharing his own experiences in a way that is both inspiring and chilling. From training and service in the First Recon Battalion to the front lines of the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, this is an exceptionally frank and straightforward account of the challenges facing our armed forces today. Fick's work centers on conflict that often pits the principles learned in training against the hard reality of 21st Century combat. A Dartmouth graduate, Fick is pursuing a dual-degree program at Harvard's Business School and the Kennedy School of Government.

The Colby Award

Named for the late Ambassador and former CIA Director William E. Colby, the Colby Award recognizes a first work of fiction or non-fiction that has made a significant contribution to the public's understanding of intelligence operations, military history or international affairs. The Award will be presented on behalf of the members of the Colby Circle by co-founder Carlo D'Este and Colby’s son, Paul Colby, on April 4, 2006 at Norwich University, the nation’s oldest private military college, in Northfield, Vermont.

The William E. Colby Military Writers' Symposium

The William E. Colby Military Writers’ Symposium is held each April at Norwich University. A separate program is presented in January at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. Founded at Norwich in 1996, the Symposium has brought over eighty of the country's top authors, historians, journalists and filmmakers together to participate in open forums, lectures and classroom sessions.

Now in its 11th season, this year's residency is entitled "Ways of War" and will be held April 3-5, 2006. Joining the Colby Award recipients will be: Pradeep Barua, Max Boot, Brian Linn, John A. Lynn, John H. Morrow, Jr., David L. Robbins, Barry Strauss and James Jay Carafano will moderate the Public Session in historic Plumley Armory.

Members of the Colby Circle include such notables as: Co-founders D'Este and W.E.B. Griffin, Lewis Sorley, Philip Caputo, Winston Groom, Elizabeth Norman, Ed Ruggero, Tom Clancy, Stephen Coonts, Mark Bowden, Fred Chiaventone, Joseph Galloway, Williamson Murray, James Bradley, Frank Sesno, H.R. McMaster, John Katzenbach, James Bradley and Marvin Kalb.

For more information on the William E. Colby Military Writers' Symposium at Norwich University, contact the Norwich Program Director, Dr. Reina Pennington, Center for the Study of War and Peace, Department of History and Political Science Norwich University, 158 Harmon Drive, Northfield, VT 05663.