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Executive Director's Remarks

Fall 2019

Aloha Kākou Tailhookers,

After such an incredibly successful Hook ‘19 where the Tailhook Association (THA) broke all previous year participation records, your Tailhook Educational Foundation (TEF) is thrilled to report 2019 is shaping up to transcend all previous annual donation records as well.   Your participation this year’s Hook ‘19 supporting TOPGUN’S 50th anniversary exceeded even the attendance and the atmosphere at the 2011 Centennial symposium and, your support to TEF set another record.  Hook ’19 was remarkable shipmates – our thanks to all of you who participated in its success.

Your Hook ’19 donations surpassed $60,000 fully funding the new perennial TOPGUN Scholarship.  This latest scholarship will yield $3,000 per year to a deserving student in perpetuity.  Congratulations to you all for this record achievement.  On behalf of all of us here at Tailhook, please accept our sincere gratitude for your munificent support at the Tailhook 2019 symposium.
Those attending Hook ’19 also had the opportunity to meet a previous TEF scholarship recipient.  In 2008, Morgan Maynard was awarded a TEF grant while attending Auburn University.  Her father Charles “Chaz” Maynard was a Naval Aviator who received his pilot wings in September of 1980.  After graduating, Morgan also earned her wings of gold and joined the fleet flying MH-60 Helicopters.  She’s currently an instructor pilot in HT-8 at Whiting Field, Florida.  Your continued support to Tailhook through our Educational Foundation for over 25 years made it possible for Lieutenant Morgan Maynard to achieve this goal. 
Additionally this year, your contributions provided TEF with $316,000 in scholarship funds setting another record.  This level of funding enabled us to award 105 scholarships in averaging over $3,000 per grant to incredible young Naval Aviation legacy students.  To read about these 2019 superstars and review the scholarships and their donors, we invite you to visit our web pages.  
But 2019 is not yet over.  We have one final opportunity to surpass all the records you already set in 2019 including Hook ’19 records;  TEF’s end of year donation (EOY) campaign.  You all can expect a letter from your Tailhook Educational Foundation Board Chairman, Rear Admiral J.J. Quinn USN(Ret) this November.  This letter will provide you with details on this year’s EOY fund raising campaign as well as information on the myriad of ways you can top-off your generous support to the TEF in 2019.   We look forward to your EOY patronage as TEF closes out the 2019 Airplan with one final donation record.  

Again, many mahalos to the Tailhook staff, both Boards of Directors and Officers, our Industry partners, the Nugget Casino and Resort, Global Exposition Services (GES) and their teams, and most importantly, to you - our members and unwavering supporters.  All of you made Hook 2019 such a decisive success.  

The Tailhook Association and the Tailhook Educational Foundation are a team, we are your Tailhook wingmen flying in combat spread to support you.  Thank you all for your support.  We look forward to seeing you all at Hook 2020.

Holiday Blessings to you all.




Rodger Welch
Captain USN(Ret) 
Executive Director
Tailhook Educational Foundation 

About The TEF

The Tailhook Educational Foundation (TEF) is a charitable nonprofit California corporation created in February 1992. The Foundation's charter is "to educate the nation's public with regard to the history and present day activities of the United States Navy carrier aviation and its importance to our country's national security."


The main activities of the Foundation are:

To support the Tailhook Association

To distribute The Hook magazine to schools throughout the nation at no cost to the schools

To provide scholarships to qualified applicants

To support U.S Navy and Naval Aviation leadership

TEF Scholarships

TEF’s minimum scholarship is $2,500 per grant per year. Funding TEF scholarships is achieved either annually or perennially.

Perennial Scholarships

​A perennial scholarship is funded by providing TEF with at least $50,000 either in a lump-sum donation, or using a payment over time option*.

​A $50,000 TEF Scholarship portfolio yields a $2,500 grant for your named scholarship per year in perpetuity*.

Sponsors funding perennial scholarships can add funds to their portfolio whenever they chose, donating any amount they chose.​ Each donation to an existing perennial scholarship portfolio increases the annual grant yield for that scholarship from that year on.

​Several of TEF’s original $50,000 perennial scholarship portfolios now exceed $100,000, all yielding at least $5,000 in an annual grant.

Annual Pass-through scholarships

An annual or “pass-through” scholarship is funded by providing TEF a payment of $2,500 or more each year to sponsor your named scholarship that year.

Pass through scholarship donations can also be for more than $2,500, and they can change each year by donating more than $2,500. 

TEF’s current pass through scholarships range I amount awarded from $2,500 to $15,000.

TEF awards over 100 scholarships annually ranging from $2,500 to $15,000 per year. A number of our annual scholarships are awarded to students pursuing STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math) curriculum. All TEF grants assist Naval Aviation legacy undergraduate students obtain a higher education.

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Scholarship Eligibility

To qualify for a Tailhook Educational Foundation scholarship, an individual must graduate from high school and be the natural, step, or adopted child or grandchild of a current or former (U.S. Navy / U.S. Marine Corps / U.S. Coast Guard) Naval Aviator, Naval Flight Officer, or Naval Aircrewman. Also eligible are individuals or children/grandchildren of individuals who are serving or have served on board a U.S. Navy Aircraft Carrier. Eligible applicants must also be accepted for undergraduate enrollment at an accredited college. 

Applications are available on 15 December and due back at TEF headquarters by 01 March each year.

Scholarship Timeline


9696 Business Park Ave. 

San Diego, CA 92131-1643

The Tailhook Association is a 501(c)(7) non-profit organization 

The Tailhook Educational Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation

CFC Campaign Number: 10251

TAX ID: 33-0487778 


Magazine Deadlines

Spring: 15 February
Summer: 15 May
Fall: 15 August

Winter: 15 November





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