James Bryant Conant has played a major role in advancing the welfare of the United States in peace and in war for almost half a century, and his endeavors are as vigorous today as they have been in the past. He served as an officer in the Army Chemical Warfare Service in World War I, then became Professor of Chemistry and later President of Harvard University. During World War II, as Chairman of the National Defense Research Committee and Deputy Director of the Office of
Scientific Research and Development, he played an important role in initiating the Manhattan Project that developed the Atomic Bomb; later he was a key figure in the success of that project. After the war, he served as a member of the General Advisory Committee of the Atomic Energy Commission, as United States High Commissioner for Germany, and as United States Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany. For a number of years now, he has been the foremost authority on education in America and in the world. As scientist, educator, and statesman, this distinguished citizen has long served the United States and the world unstintingly in the highest positions of responsibility and influence.
Through his long and dedicated duty to his country, Dr. Conant has greatly enhanced its honor and its strength. Accordingly, the 1965 Sylvanus Thayer Medal is hereby awarded by the Association of Graduates of the United States Military Academy to James Bryant Conant.