||Michael A. Blum
National Executive Director
Marine Corps League
Michael A. Blum was selected as the National Executive Director of the Marine Corps League on 13 September 2004. Mike enlisted in the Marine Corps in December 1960. Upon completion of Recruit Training at MCRD San Diego, he was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines at Camp Pendleton. In October 1962, the Battalion boarded ship and sailed for Cuba in response to the “Cuban Missile Crisis”. After spending two months at sea off of Cuba, they returned to the States and then boarded ship for Okinawa. He went on to serve in Japan, Korea, the Philippines and Vietnam.
Upon return to the States in 1964, he was assigned to Quantico then to Marine Corps Supply Activity, Philadelphia. He received an Honorable Discharge in June 1965, with the rank of Corporal. While on Active Duty, Mike earned the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (Cuba), Vietnam Service Medal w/bronze star, Korean Defense Service Medal and the Republic of Vietnam Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon.
Mike joined the Baltimore Detachment, Marine Corps League, in 1993 and served as Detachment Adjutant, Junior Vice-Commandant, Senior Vice-Commandant and three (3) tours as Detachment Commandant. He served at the state level as Adjutant, Junior Vice-Commandant, Senior Vice Commandant and Commandant of the Department of Maryland. He also served as Mideast Division Adjutant, Assistant Division Vice Commandant and National Vice Commandant, Mideast Division. He has served on the National Bylaws Committee and the National Budget and Finance Committee. In August 2003, Mike was elected National Judge Advocate for the Marine Corps League. He also served as Assistant National Comptroller as well as serving on the National Board of Trustees. Mike has been awarded the Marine Corps League’s Distinguished Citizens Medal – Gold w/4 Gold stars for service “Above and Beyond” the principles upon which the Marine Corps League was founded. Mike was named Marine of the Year for the Department of Maryland in 2005.
In 1998, Mike started the Maryland Marine Corps Coordinating Council, an umbrella organization of Marine Corps related organizations throughout Maryland. He served as President of that organization from its inception. He also served on the Maryland Joint Veterans Committee, having been elected as the Treasurer. In addition to the Marine Corps League, Mike is a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion, the 1st Marine Division Association and the 3rd Marine Division Association. In 1992, Mike was appointed to the Selective Service System (Draft Board) where he served for nearly 20 years as Chairman of Board 50-2 in Maryland. He has received a Governors Citation for his dedication to the needs of veterans and their families, a Leadership Award from the VA Maryland Health Care System as well as recognition from Charlotte Hall Veterans Home. Mike also served on the Board of Directors of the Arlington, Virginia Chamber of Commerce and the YMCA in Maryland as well as serving as an advisor to the Arlington County School system. In addition, he has lectured on Leadership and Management Skills to such organizations as the State Department of Mental Health in Maryland. Mike served three terms as Chairman of the National Marine Corps Council and currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Council. He also serves as Treasurer of the Military Coalition, representing 5.5 Million Veterans as well as serving on the National Veterans Day Committee. Mike currently serves as Chairman of the National Advisory Committee leading the effort to re-designate the Department of the Navy as the Department of the Navy and Marine Corps.
Mike spent nearly forty years in the business world, where he started as a Management Trainee and worked as a Department Store Buyer, Merchandise Manager, Operations Manager and was a Vice President and General Manager for the Hecht’s Division of May Department Stores (now Macy’s). He retired from Hecht’s in November 2004 and immediately came out of retirement to become the National Executive Director (C.O.O.) of the Marine Corps League. In August 2010, he was elected as an Honorary Past National Commandant of the League. He is only the 16th Marine to be so honored since 1937.
In late March 2003, Mike began visiting Marines at Bethesda Naval Hospital who had been wounded or injured in Operation Iraqi Freedom. As a result of these visits and the recognition of a need to provide support for those wounded on the battlefield as well as their families he started the Marine Corps League’s “Marines Helping Wounded Marines” program in Maryland, then turned the program over to the new Department Commandant and the Department Chaplain. A year later, Mike put the mechanics in place for the League to adopt the “Wounded Marines” program as a national program with support from all over the country.
Mike enjoys boating and fishing as well as shooting with his Detachment’s Pistol Team and Rifle Team. He and his wife Sandra have three (3) sons and two (2) granddaughters and have been married for more than 50 years.