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AMVETS to present award of excellence to Hagerstown veteran, civic leader

April 04, 2008|By MARLO BARNHART

Peter G. Callas will be presented Saturday with the AMVETS A. Leo Anderson Memorial Free State Award of Excellence during a ceremony at Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City, Md.

A native of Hagerstown, Callas joined the U.S. Navy during World War II and served in the South Pacific. From 1951 to '52, Callas served in the Korean War. He received service and combat medals.

Callas is a life member of the VFW Post 1936, American Legion Post 211, a charter member of the Joint Veterans Council of Washington County, AMVETS Post 10 and the new Korean Veterans Antietam Chapter 312.

Elected to the Washington County Board of Education in 1987, Callas was later elected delegate from District 2B, Washington County. He served as delegation chairman at the Maryland General Assembly for eight years.

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During 16 years as an elected official, Callas never missed a meeting, work session or a vote.

A graduate of Hagerstown High School, Callas, 82, earned degrees from Western Maryland College, Columbia University Teachers College and George Washington University, where he received a doctorate in school administration.

Active in veterans' organizations and for veterans' rights, Callas was tapped for this award "in recognition of his forthright contributions to his community and state, steadfast devotion to the demanding needs and interest of Maryland veterans ... and his intense dedication to the cherished ideals of American Freedoms," according to a prepared release.

Callas has been the driving force behind the Joint Veterans Council project to bring the Glenn Miller Orchestra to The Maryland Theatre on May 27, having raised more than $11,000 from local businesses.

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