Membership 101

Welcome to American Legion Post 1111! You may have become a member by an invitation of a current member, or by answering a solicitation in the U.S. mail, or online. Or maybe you were contacted during a local membership drive. Regardless of how you were signed up, we appreciate your membership.

When will I recieve my membership card?

Each new or transferring member has to be voted on at the monthly membership meeting. Post 1111's Legion Membership meeting is on the 3rd Monday of each month at 7 p.m.. Once your membership is approved the Adjutant will process your membership and send out your membership card in the mail. If you don't receive your membership card in a timely manner please feel free to contact the Post Adjutant (the membership chairperson) to make your inquiry.

With membership card in hand, now what?

The first point we would make is that The American Legion is a volunteer organization, run by volunteers who are people, and people come in many different ethnic backgrounds, colors, shapes, past ex- periences, and ideas. These people have a common thread in that they want to help their fellow veterans and community in some way, and none of them are perfect.

The second point is that not all Legion posts are the same. Some are bigger than others, some participate in one of 22 American Legion programs, or more. Some are small and do many things, but some that are considered bigger might not participate in any American Legion programs. Some posts seem to run like a well-oiled machine, some struggle to turn the key to the ON position, and most are somewhere in between. Each post is a small community, and like communities, they are different.

Not every Legion post owns a building; in Michigan, we have about a 50-50 split on posts that own a building and those that do not. A building is not required; it is a form of revenue generation for that local Legion. Some have a club liquor license, and some do not. Those without buildings meet in local restaurants, other veteran service organization buildings, or a community center. A few Legion posts own businesses; for example, American Legion Post 106 in Grayling owns a bowling alley that is open to the public. American Legion Post 90 in Lake Linden, owns the Lakes Lounge and Off Shore Restaurant, open to the public, they are the place to go when visiting Lake Linden.

Each post is independently operated but must adhere to the Constitution and Bylaws of the post, department and national organization.

What post do I belong?

Have a look at your membership card, it says it right on the top of the card. Please note, if you do a google search for a post number, be sure to indicate the state as Post No. 1111 in not unique to the Legion; each department might have Post No. 1111 and a Google search might return multiple options.

What do membership dues cover?

When you pay your membership dues to the post, not all of the dues stays with the post. The post transmits $39.50 to the department headquarters per member, and department transmits $18.00 per member to the national head- quarters.

Unlike other non-profit organizations we are a membership organization. Our membership dues pay for the majority of the day-to-day operations of the organization. Whereas, other non-profits, must raise money for the operations and their programs.

When The American Legion holds fundraisers for specific purposes 95% to 100% of the funds raised can go directly to the cause and not to administrative fees for the cause.

Five ways your membership dues support veterans and their families.

1. TAL Legislative efforts at the department and national levels support veteran and mil- itary issues being dicussed in State Capitols and the U.S. Congress.

2. TAL Department of Michigan employees 19 accredited veteran service officers, and more than 15 accredited veteran service officers in Washington, D.C. to represent Veterans receive the benfits they have earned from the U.S. Department of Veterans Administra- tion.

3. The Temporary Financial Assitance program gives direct assistance to veterans in need.

4. Administration of youth programs to promote good citizenship and learning.

5. The Legion give thousands of dollars away in scholorships each year to America’s youth.

Where did the number for post 1111 originate from?

Any member The charter members of the post wanted the post to be known as "Eleven Eleven" because Veterans Day is November 11th (11/11). The first word is VETERANS - the misson of this post is to support VETERANS, the community, and its members. The number of the post will always remind us what the mission of our post is.

Where did the name of American Legion "Stars and Stripes" Post 1111 orignate from?

Post 1111's name is "Stars and Stripes" to remind our community and membership that our post is filled with patriots. It is our duty to help bridge the gap between the commuity and the post to instill a sense of patriotism.

Where should you start?

There are steps you can take to learn more about your post. No two posts are the same, nor are the programs they focus on. Some posts have bingo halls, some focus on social functions, some don't even have a physical building yet are still very active.

The first step is to go to a post meeting also known as a membership meeting and observe. Introduce yourself and meet the officers of the post. CLICK HERE to review the Post By-laws, Constituiton, and Standing Rules.

Secondly, we would recommend meeting with the post commander and post adjutant before or after a membership meeting to ask them questions. Consider the following questions:

• What programs of The American Legion does the post participate?

• How does the post engage their local community to promote Americanism, patrio- tism, and veteran advocacy? They might have an honor guard, baseball team, or a school program.

• What kind of volunteer opportunities does the post offer to members?

• When are your membership meetings? What other meetings does the post have?

Lastly, Take The American Legion Basic Course

Truly knowing an organization takes time but TAL has resources to help you learn more. As a member, you may go to and take the free basic course of instruction. This program will give you a brief history of The American Legion, ex- plain the four pillars, and programs. From start to finish the course takes about three hours to complete, but it does not need to be completed in one sitting. You may start and stop at any time, then return to re- sume where you left off. After completing the course, you will receive an electronic certificate of completion.

American Legion Publications

TAL has over 200 brochures, manuals, speeches, and studies available on their website for download and purchase. Visit You should be receiving your monthly Legion maga- zine, and eight times a year the MI Legionnaire.

What is a post meeting and why should I attend?

As a member you can attend your post meeting, also known as a membership meeting, and have a vote on the porgrams Post 1111 supoports and how it functions. Local posts are authorized delegates to the annual Annual Department Convention (the State level convention), to go and vote on behalf of Post 1111. Annual Departmet Convetntuon is where decisions are made that effect the entire state organization and it is also where the state officers are elected.

What is a district meeting and why should I attend?

The meeting referred to in this section is the meeting of the organizational level immediately above the post level, where the officers wear the blue and white cap. The district meeting is the largest Legion meeting the average Legionnaire ever attends. Not all of our Legionnaires attend department conventions, and an even smaller percentage attend national conventions. Therefore, the district meeting becomes primarily the one opportunity the average Legionnaire will gain a better understanding what is happening from the top down as it is the districts job to pass information down to the post level.

What is a delegate?

By definition a delegate is a person sent or authorized to represent others, in particular an elected representative sent to a conference.

Visit our training page to view a short clip explaining a post delegate.

Each post is allotted a number of delegates each year based on the number of members they have. *see break down here. For this example we will say Post 1111 has 5 delegates for our post based on our membership numbers. Post 1111 will elect 5 individuals to be a delegate to represent Post 1111 and vote on matters presented at conferences/conventions on behalf of the post. Post 1111 also elects 5 alternate delegates to go in place of a delegate that may no longer be able to attend.

The delegates for Post 1111 who attend conferences/conventions are the voice of the post at the district level. The 5 elected delegates who attend the conference/convention are expected to attend what the Department of Michigan calls a District Caucus. This meeting is where all the posts in the districts meet and vote on behalf of their respective post for items of business such as elections of a state commander.

The District Commander is required to attend what the Department of Michigan calls the D.E.C meeting or the Department Executive Committee meeting. This portion of the conference/convention is where all the committee reports are given and items of business are conducted just as in a post or district meeting. The District Commander then casts the vote on behalf of the district at these meetings.

If a roll-call vote is required, meaning each district is called by number, the District Commander will cast the vote of the district at the time he or she is called upon.

What is a convention committee delegate?

By definition a delegate is a person sent or authorized to represent others, in particular an elected representative sent to a conference.

Each Convention Committee needs at least nine delegates to attend their meeting for a quorum. In order to be a convention committee delegate the individual must to be listed on the Post 1111 delegate sheet sent into department 30 days prior to conference/convention.

Committee delegates will recieve a delegate card from the District Adjutant. These delegates are to attend the Department Committee meeting they are assigned to (turn in thier blue delegate card) and then report back at the District Cacus information from the committee meeting.

What are the Post Officer position titles?

Post Officer position titles:

  • Commander

  • Adjutant

  • Finance Officer

  • Senior Vice Commander

  • Junior Vice Commander

  • Judge Advocate

  • Historian

  • Sgt-at-Arms

  • Chaplain

These are basic positions a post can have, although the only required officer positions that need to be filled at Post 1111 are the commander, adjutant, judge advoate, and finance officer positons.

If you would like to view a job guideline for each postion please [CLICK HERE]

Any member in good standing may run for a position. Nominations in April and elections are held in May.

Districts have similar positions at their level.

What is the Membership Year? Why do I receive re- newal notices?

Let’s see if we can explain this with little confusion. The organizations fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30. The American Legion’s goal is to have a 100% membership renewal by December 31 of each year for the next year completed. Meaning, they begin asking members to renew on July 1 for the following years membership. For example, starting July 1, 2020, you will be asked to renew your membership for the 2021 membership year even if you joined or renewed in January, February, or another month before July 1.

Please note your membership technically is not considered expired until December 31 of the membership year on your card.

First renewal notices go out the end of June or the first part of July. Members who have not renewed by mid-September will receive another renewal no- tice; the same goes for mid-October, mid-December, mid-February, and lastly mid-April.

I renewed at my post before one of those months, but still received a renewal notice, why?

When you renew with the post, the post adjutant, or member in charge of members, must send your membership information into department headquarters. Department must then transmit that information to the national headquarters. If the membership from the post was not sent on time for the department to forward on to national, then you will receive another notice. Your first contact should be to your post adjutant to determine if they had sent your membership in on time.

Avoid the renewal notice, starting July 1st just renew online at:

What is the official uniform of The American Legion?

According to Resolution No. 46, passed in spring 1965 by the National Executive Committee, “A Legionnaire is considered to be in uniform if wearing an official American Legion Cap.”

Caps are available at Emblem Sales. Visit them online at:

In the standing rules for Post 1111 ARTICLE IV - SUGGESTED DRESS CODE a suggested dress code for the Post can be found.

Legion Cap Ettiqute .pdf

Can I visit other posts?

Yes, Michigan is home to many posts located in great locations. A recent State of Michigan law was changed allowing any American Legion member to visit any American Legion Post in Michigan and be served by their club license.

If you are traveling look up local Legion Posts and plan a visit.

Visit to find posts at your destination.

Why do I need to take my discharge papers when transferring, when I am already a member?

The local post you belong to oversees their own membership. It is up to them to verify your status as a war-time era veteran. They have the right to deny or accept a member transfer, the membership card is not 100% verification to them that you qualify to be a member of The American Legion.

I don’t have time to volunteer how can I help?

No worries, just paying your membership dues each year provides support to thousands of veterans each year, by supporting the organization that teams with those veterans to battle the struggles they may be experiencing each day. When you carry a current membership card, if anyone asks you, if you support veterans, your response is easy. “YES, I do; I am a Legionnaire.

What are the meetings of the American Legion Department of Michigan?

The fiscal year of the department is July 1 to June 30 of each year. The depart- ment convention is held towards the end of June; this is the departments annual meeting of the membership. Business is conducted through the committees as- signed, and the delegates who attend. Delegates (Legion members), will vote on recommended constitutional amendments, resolutions, and will vote for the next years department officers.

Between annual conventions, the Department Constitution and Bylaws gives powers to the Department Executive Committee to oversee the department. They are required to meet at least five times during the year. Their first meeting occurs immediately following the annual convention. The second meeting of the DEC is generally held in July or just before the National Membership Workshop. The third meeting occurs at the Department Fall Conference, the fourth at the Department Winter Meeting, and the fifth just before the opening of the annual convention.

The Department Fall Conference and the Winter Meeting are events held by the department to gather department committees together to plan and execute pro- grams. Schools of instruction are held at these meetings to help Legion posts with their local programs and promote their missions.

Who can attend meetings of the American Legion Department of Michigan?

Any member in good standing may attend any meeting of the department. Guests are always welcome in the committee meetings. It is up to the chairman if questions or comments will be taken from the guests. Registartion is required.

Who may apply for a Department Committee?

Any member who is good standing may apply to be appointed to a department committee. Each year the new department commander appoints members to fill vacancies on committees and appoints chairperson for each committee. Applications may be found on the department website under forms.

Can I transfer my membership to another Post?

Yes, you can. As stated earlier each post is its own small community; some do more than others. If you find that your current post does not do what you think they should, we want to en- courage you to visit other posts in your area. Visit several, ask questions, find a better fit for you and your participation. Transferring to a different post is easy. Take your membership card and your discharge papers (DD-214) to the new post and tell them you would like to transfer to them. The post adjutant or membership chairman will fill out a Member Data Form to facilitate the transfer.

What is Emblem Sales?

The American Legion headquarters over the years has provided products to help American Legion Posts promote and function. Their product line grows each year, and they are one of the top-selling companies of U.S. Flags in the country.

They offer American Legion Family inspired clothing items, military branch specific items, post items, and much more. The American Legion Flag & Emblem division is self-sustaining, and part of the profits made are used to support the programs of The American Legion.

Visit their website at emblem.legion. org to order a catalog or shop online.

My post number is 0225, where is that post located?

American Legion Post 0225 is what we call a “holding post” or the “department post.” If you signed up for The American Legion through a solicitation in the mail, or online, then you were placed in Post 225 by the National organization automatically. The Post does not have a brick and mortar building and it does not have memberhsip meetings. Sometimes you will hear it referred to as the "Ghost Post". At times local posts will reach out to members of the 225 Post to ask you to transfer into their Legion family. It's recommend you visit local area posts and transfer into one. American Legion Post 1111 is always welcoming new family members.