The American Legion – Department of Texas

About Texas Boys State

Calendar of Events

Event Date
Registration Begins Jan. 2, 2018 Apply
Registration Ends/Wait list begins May 4, 2018
Boys State 2018 June 10 - June 15 Itinerary
Apply Now

What is Boys Nation?

During the Boys State week two outstanding representatives from each of 48 Boys States are called upon to represent their state at American Legion Boys Nation in Washington, DC. It is here that the young leaders, who had excelled at their respective Boys States, are introduced to the structure and function of the federal government as Boys Nation Senators.

These youthful lawmakers caucus at the beginning of the session, organize into committees, and conduct hearings on bills submitted by delegates to the program. The Boys Nation Senators are instructed on the proper method of handling bills according to the rules of the United States Senate. Actual participation in the political process is highlighted throughout the week to include the organization of party conventions and the nomination and election of a Boys Nation President and Vice President.

The week of government training in the Nation's Capitol combines lectures and forums with visits to federal agencies, institutions, memorials and historical spots in and around Washington. During a visit to Capitol Hill, Boys Nation Senators meet with elected officials from their home states.

Boys Nation visits several historic and governmental sites in and around the Washington, DC area. Included are field trips to Arlington National Cemetery, the monuments and memorials on the National Mall, and a solemn ceremony of laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The students also participate in private tours of the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Capitol and the White House.

Since its beginning in 1946, Boys Nation has seen many of its graduates elected to public offices which include the Presidency of the United States, the United States Congress, as state governors and as state legislators. Many others became inspired to actively work for the campaigns of individuals seeking public office.

Two delegates will represent Texas Boys State at the American Legion Boys Nation program in Washington, DC. Senior staff members nominate candidates based on:

  • general knowledge
  • motivation
  • leadership
  • adaptability to stress
  • oral and written communication
  • personal qualities
  • priorities
  • courtesy, and
  • human relations

The Boys Nation selection committee interviews the nominees and selects two primary delegates to attend the July conference, as well as two back-up delegates in the event the primary delegates cannot attend.

Boys Nation Senators

Presidents

Year President City
1952 Howard W. Norton Fort Worth
1961 Jefferson J. Jarvis Fort Worth
1966 Gray H. Miller Houston
1967 Alan L. Keyes San Antonio
1984 John Michael Verde Hamshire
1992 David Henderson San Antonio
1993 Daryl D. Collins Spring
1998 Kevin Sladek San Marcos
2000 Justin Chapa Arlington

Vice Presidents

Year Vice President City
1947 Roy Lee Dunn Borger
1956 Gerald A. Mays Dallas
1959 Herbert L. Wade Harlingen
1963 Jack W. Hanks, Jr. Midland
2002 Geoffrey Ellis San Antonio
2014 Louis Lombardo Arlington