Comedian Jon Stewart will be awarded the the 2013 Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) Civilian Service Award in November at the IAVA Heroes Gala in New York.
“Stewart has been a great friend to the veteran community,” reads a release about the event. “In recent months, ‘The Daily Show’ has extensively covered the VA disability claims backlog, shining a spotlight on veterans and their struggles waiting for decisions on their claims.”
IAVA will also honor former U.S. Army Staff Sgt. and Medal of Honor recipient Salvatore Giunta with the 2013 IAVA Veterans Leadership Award.
“Every year, we look forward to the Heroes Gala, where we come together to celebrate and support the New Greatest Generation,” said Jim Hirschmann, who chairs IAVA’s Board of Directors. “We are extremely excited to honor Staff Sgt. Sal Giunta for his remarkable service to our country, and Jon Stewart for his steadfast commitment to new veterans.”
Past Heroes Gala honorees, performers and attendees include Stephen Colbert, host of Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report,” ABC’s Bob Woodruff, Fox News anchor Bill Hemmer, singer Norah Jones, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, New York City Police Department Commissioner Raymond Kelly, Super Bowl Champion Coach Bill Cowher, cartoonist Garry Trudeau, and MSNBC’s Willie Geist.
The IAVA describes itself as the country’s first and largest nonpartisan, nonprofit organization representing Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, with nearly 270,000 member veterans and civilian supporters across the country.