Rick Atkinson

Rick Atkinson is the bestselling author of An Army at Dawn (winner of the Pulitzer Prize for history), The Day of Battle, The Guns at Last Light, The Long Gray Line, In the Company of Soldiers and Crusade. Other awards include a Pulitzer Prize for journalism, the George Polk Award and the Pritzker Military Library Literature Award. Atkinson holds a Master of Arts degree in English literature from the University of Chicago and was formerly a staff writer and senior editor at The Washington Post. He currently sits on the Museum's "Presidential Counselors" advisory board.

Donald Miller

Donald L. Miller is the John Henry MacCracken Professor of History at Lafayette College. He has appeared in numerous PBS and the History Channel programs, including A Biography of America on PBS. He is the author of eight books, including the prize-winning City of the Century: The Epic of Chicago and The Making of America, The Story of World War II and D-Days in the Pacific. Miller's book Masters of the Air: America's Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany was recently selected to serve as the primary source for HBO's newest World War II miniseries. He currently sits on the Museum's "Presidential Counselors" advisory board.

James D. Hornfischer

The author of Neptune's Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal and two other critically acclaimed books on WWII naval history, James D. Hornfischer has appeared on The History Channel, FOX News Channel's War Stories with Oliver North and C-SPAN's BookTV.

Richard B. Frank

Esteemed writer Richard B. Frank is the author of Guadalcanal, MacArthur, and Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire, which has been called one of the six best books in English about World War II.

Douglas Porch

Douglas Porch has been a guest lecturer at the Marine Corps University, a professor of strategy at the Naval War College and is currently distinguished professor and former chair of the Department of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School. He is the author of Hitler's Mediterranean Gamble: The North African and the Mediterranean Campaigns in World War II and Counterinsurgency: Exposing the Myths of the New Way of War.

Symposium: December 4

Hosted in the American Sector Atrium and Stage Door Canteen at The National WWII Museum

  • 8:00 am – 9:00 am

    Breakfast Reception

  • 9:00 pm – 9:10 am

    Welcoming Remarks

  • 9:10 am – 10:30 am Situation and Strategy


    The German Defenses of Normandy Dr. Rob Citino

    Operation NEPTUNE: Getting them to the Beaches Dr. Craig Symonds

  • 10:45  am – 12:05 pm Assault from the Air


    Dick Winters and the Day of Days Col. Cole Kingseed

    La Fiere: The Costliest Small Unit Action in US Army History Col. Keith Nightingale

  • 12:05 pm – 1:40 pm Lunch Session


    Utah vs. Omaha: Difference in Aerial Bombardment Darren Moran

  • 1:55 pm – 3:15 pm Battling for the Beaches


    The 29th at Omaha Joe Balkoski

    The Dead and Those About to Die: The 1st ID at Omaha Dr. John McManus

  • 3:30 pm – 4:55 pm Wrapping Up D-Day


    The Combat Performance of Belligerents in Normandy Antony Beevor

    Symposium Roundtable: Featuring all Speakers

  • 4:55 pm – 5:00 pm

    Closing Remarks and Dismissal to Conference Opening Reception

Thursday, December 4

Hosted in US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center at The National WWII Museum

  • 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

    Registration at the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

    Museum Open to Registrants

  • 12:00 pm – 9:00 pm

    Shuttle Rotations from Hyatt to Museum

  • 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

    Opening Reception at the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

  • 6:00 pm – 6:10 pm

    Opening Remarks and Introduction Dr. Nick Mueller

  • 6:15 pm – 7:15 pm

    Beyond All Boundaries: America Projecting Power in a World War Rick Atkinson

  • 7:15 pm – 8:15 pm

    Book Signing

  • 9:00 pm

    Shuttle service concludes with last run leaving Museum for Hyatt

Friday, December 5

All sessions hosted at Hyatt Regency New Orleans Hotel

  • 7:00 am – 8:00 am

    Continental Breakfast in the Hospitality Room

  • 8:00 am – 9:25 am The Unsung Heroes of D-Day: The Bomber Boys and a Bodyguard of Lies

    Introduction Dr. Nick Mueller

    Oral History Showcase: Masters of the Air

    Sacrifice in the Skies Dr. Donald Miller

    D-Day Espionage TBD

  • 9:25 am – 9:55 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 9:55 am – 11:00 am June 4, 1944: Mark Clark's Rush to Rome

    Introduction Rick Atkinson

    Oral History Showcase: Liberating the Eternal City

    June 4, 1944: Mark Clark's Rush to Rome Dr. Douglas Porch

  • 11:00 am – 11:30 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room; Lunch

  • 11:30 am – 1:00 pm Breaching Hitler's Atlantic Wall

    Introduction TBD

    Oral History Showcase: The Longest Day in Their Own Words

    The First 100 Yards: Storming the Beaches Joe Balkoski

    From the Beaches to the Bocage and the Breakout Antony Beevor

  • 1:00 pm – 1:30 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm Stalin's Revenge

    Introduction Dr. Reina Pennington

    Operation BAGRATION and the Annihilation of Army Group Center Dr. Rob Citino

    While the Allies Watched and Waited: The Warsaw Uprising Alexandra Richie

  • 3:00 pm – 3:25 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 3:25 pm – 4:50 pm"Hell is Upon Us": The Marianas

    Introduction Richard Frank

    Oral History Showcase: Japanese Desperation and Annihilation

    Pacific Blitzkrieg: The Marianas Campaign Lt. Col. Sharon Lacey

    Revenge For Pearl Harbor: The Marianas Turkey Shoot Jim Hornfischer

  • 4:50 pm – 5:15 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 5:15 pm – 6:15 pmThe Surge in Their Own Words: Veterans Panel

    Moderator — Joe Balkoski

    American Veteran – Dr. Harold Baumgarten, 29th Infantry Division, Omaha Beach
    British Veteran – Richard Sadler, Royal Marine, Juno Beach
    Canadian Veteran – TBD
    German Veteran – TBD

  • 6:15 pm – 7:30 pm Meet the Speakers Reception presented by World War II Magazine and Weider History Group

Saturday, December 6

All sessions hosted at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans Hotel

  • 7:00 am – 8:00 am

    Continental Breakfast in the Hospitality Room

  • 8:00 am – 9:25 am High Tide in the CBI

    Introduction Richard Frank

    Oral History Showcase: Fighting in Mainland Asia

    Kohima-Imphal TBD

    Ichi Go: Absorbing Japan's Final Thrust Dr. Hans van der Ven

  • 9:25 am – 9:50 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 9:50 am – 10:55 am Germany and Japan, July 1944: Dissension from Within

    Introduction Dr. Gunter Bischof

    Valkyrie and the Fall of Tojo Dr. Gerhard Weinberg

  • 10:55 am – 11:30 am

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 11:30 am – 12:35 pm Destroying the Village to Save It: The Battle of Normandy

    Introduction Dr. Nick Mueller

    Unintended Consequences of the Allies' Success TBD

  • 12:35 pm – 1:00 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room; Lunch

  • 1:00 pm – 2:25 pm A Few Good Men: The Clash of Ike's Generals

    Introduction Dr. Rob Citino

    Oral History Showcase: Stalling in September

    Failure of a Bold Plan: Monty and MARKET-GARDEN Col. Roger Cirillo

    Stalling Victory at the Rhine? Eisenhower vs. Devers Scott Wheeler

  • 2:25 pm – 2:55 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 2:55 pm – 4:20 pm The Return to the Philippines: MacArthur's and Halsey's Blunders

    Introduction Dr. Allan Millett

    Oral History Showcase: We Have Returned

    The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors Jim Hornfischer

    Disrupting MacArthur's Timetable Richard Frank

  • 4:20 pm – 4:45 pm

    Break and Book Signing in the Hospitality Room

  • 4:45 pm – 5:45 pm Conference Wrap-Up Panel

    Moderator — Dr. Mark Stoler

    Panelists Richard Frank

  • 5:45 pm – 7:15 pm

    Book Signing and Shuttle Rotations from Hyatt to Museum

  • 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm : Closing Banquet presented by The Advocate

    Featuring the George P. Shultz Forum on World Affairs

  • 9:30 pm – 11:00 pm

    Shuttle Rotations from Museum to Hyatt


US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

The National WWII Museum
945 Magazine Street New Orleans, LA 70130

The World War II years were a time when the freedom of the world hung in the balance. Americans answered the call to protect that freedom with 16 million men and women serving in uniform and an untold number of citizens of all ages doing their part on the Home Front. It is their contributions we honor in the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center.

Exhibits and interactive experiences paint the picture of a nation mobilized for war — those who answered the call of service and those who supported our fighting forces by producing planes, ships, tanks, and other vital machinery in unprecedented numbers.

This is the story of America at war — on land, in the air, and at sea — told in a way that will fully engage the senses, the mind, and the heart.

Headquarters Hotel

Hyatt Regency New Orleans
601 Loyola Avenue New Orleans, Louisiana 70113

Hyatt Regency New Orleans re-opened on October 19, 2011, following a $275 million redesign and revitalization and features 1,193 guest rooms and suites, 200,000 square feet of meeting and event space, expansive food and beverage offerings, and unprecedented service. With dramatic design that complements the uniqueness of New Orleans, all of the hotel’s interiors, including the lobby, restaurants, meeting spaces, and guest rooms, were revitalized and the exterior was transformed, paying special attention to the new entrance on Loyola Avenue. The hotel’s new, innovative design makes it the ideal urban destination for business and leisure travelers.

Highlights of the hotel’s expansive culinary offerings include 8 Block Kitchen & Bar, a full service restaurant and bar; Vitascope Hall, a media bar outfitted with 42 flat-screen TVs; Starbucks; Lagniappe Exchange; a 24-hour fresh market; Whole Hog Café; and Pizza Consegna.

Located downtown on Loyola Avenue, the AAA Four Diamond hotel is adjacent to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome and anchors the vibrant Sports and Entertainment District. Hyatt Regency New Orleans borders the new Medical District, the Arts & Entertainment District, and is just blocks from the French Quarter, Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, and the Mississippi Riverfront. The new Loyola Avenue Streetcar line stops in front of the hotel, connecting guests to all the city has to offer.

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