The Council of 1000 Award and Fundraising Gala is a tradition that was started with the inception of the German-American Heritage Foundation of the USA® (GAHF). It is the signature event of our Foundation.

During our Council of 1000 Gala, every year since 1987, GAHF has recognized outstanding leadership and achievements by an American of German-speaking ancestry in business, the arts, education, science, politics and society through Distinguished German-American of the Year Award™.

On October 29, 2015 GAHF celebrated its 29th Annual Council of 1,000 Award and Fundraising Gala honoring Doug Oberhelman, Chairman & CEO of Caterpillar as the 2015 Distinguished German­American of the Year™. In attendance were distinguished Mrs. Huberta von Voss­Wittig, wife of the Ambassador of Germany;Eric Spiegel, President of Siemens USA; Ambassador Susan Schwab, former Trade Representative; Mr. Michael E. Heidemann, Chairman of the Management Board of Zeppelin;Mr. Ron De Feo, Chairman and CEO of Terex Corporation. Mr. Oberhelman accepted the award and delivered a heartfelt message. The event was greatly orchestrated by the Gala Committee, chaired by Werner Hein.


  • Zeppelin Cat
  • Terex
  • Siemens
  • Omega World Travel
  • Mayer Brown
  • Hilton
  • ExxonMobil
  • German School Washington
  • DHL
  • DB Schenker
  • Allianz
  • AHK


    NameCity & State 
    Mr. Malcolm O’Hagan & Mrs. Virginia O’HaganChevy Chase, MD
    Mr. Hardy von Auenmüller & Mrs. Gudrun von AuenmüllerPhiladelphia, PA
    Mr. Bern Deichmann* & Mrs. Joan DeichmannMt. Bethel, PA Distinguished German-American of the Year™ 2014
    Mr. Frederick H.W. HansenRidgewood, NY
    Mr. Werner Hein & Mrs. Marleen HeinWashington, DC
    Dr. John M. Manoyan, Mrs. Susan King Manoyan, Mrs. CarolJean Siegert KingSan Francisco, CA
    Mr. Helge Wehmeier* & Mrs. Erika WehmeierSewickley, PADistinguished German-American of the Year™ 2014
    Mrs. Wendy Evans Wurlitzer & Mr. Bruce EvansGlen Allen, VA
    Mr. Albert Wurz* & Mrs. Jane WurzDoylestown, PADistinguished German-American of the Year™ 2004

    To support GAHF go here

    you can also send a check to German-American Heritage Foundation

    719 6th Street NW, Washington, DC 20001
    or contact Christine Yang at 202 4675000 or yang@gahmusa.org