Sons of The American Legion

Detachment of New Jersey

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A Message from the Commander

2 days ago

On Monday, March 16th at 8pm our world changed. For the past two weeks we have had to adjust our lives to deal with our current health situation. I don’t think any of us ever expected to have to live through this experience, but we are and we will persevere. First and foremost, keep yourself, your families and your extended families as healthy as possible.

I am requesting that each of us do a minimum of one “Buddy Check” call a day. Do not count talking to the same person twice in one week. You may want to reach out to someone you normally wouldn’t call; it could mean something special to that person as we all cope with adjusting to this new life-style. IF you know of someone who has the Corona Virus and is in need of help to get supplies, start making phone calls to members in other areas to see if they can get supplies that you can’t. We are all in this together. Chaplain Nick WIngler is also available for support and concerns if you need to talk.

Although our “busy season” has been cut short with activities and events that we typically run, we still have to keep moving ahead with those activities we can still maintain.

Detachment Officers and Committee Chairmen:
Have your reports to the Adjutant, Tom Marsden, by Friday, April 10. I would like you to also send copies or a similar update to our SALute Editor, Gary Crawford by then as well.

Squadron Commanders:
We still have to bolster our membership, so I am also requesting all Commanders to take their list of unpaid members and give each of their officers a portion of their list of members, along with their phone numbers, to contact. Approach those phone calls with a “buddy check” mindset—see how your member is doing and feeling. When you remind them that they need to pay their dues you could emphasize that we are still running our programs.

Detachment Vice Commanders:
Keep in constant touch with your Squadron Commanders and see if they need assistance with anything. Remind them that CSR reports are due “soon”, applications for awards such as Son of The Year, Young Citizen’s Award and the Ernie Wilson, Jr. Memorial Scholarship are on-line and can be filled out and sent in. We are also still collecting donations for our programs:
Veterans: Commander’s Project, VA and R and Veteran Homelessness Clothing Drive.
Children: CWF, COTA, and Special Olympics.
Remind them that they can still make donations and give them the contact information they need.

One of my main concerns going into our Convention is the state of our finances. Finance Chairman Carl Albern, Jr. has worked diligently with his committee and Finance Officer Dave Page to get this straightened out. There is a Finance Committee Conference Call slated for Sunday, April 5 at 12pm. We are looking at revamping the existing allocations as well as a potential $5.00 increase in dues, as $3.00 is needed for National and a raise of $2.00 for the state.

I have increased the number of DECs from 8 to 15, but not everyone has filed their paperwork. I do not see the need for me to call you since you volunteered to step up. If you are having a problem getting your signatures, contact me for assistance. Please get that paperwork into the Adjutant ASAP; your input and votes will be needed shortly. If you don’t comply you are putting your own county at a disadvantage.

Looking ahead:
Not knowing where we will be in regards to health regulations and social distancing could affect our Convention, I am looking to accumulate and assess ideas for alternatives to having a physical convention for a meeting in June. If we wind up shifting our Convention to another date, then we won’t have to worry about this; I just want us to be prepared.
One idea I am thinking about is having a meeting in a chat room on the internet. I don’t believe a conference call by telephone would work as efficiently and would be harder to manage with the amount of personnel that would be involved. I can easily set up a free chat room or look into purchasing a different kind with audio capabilities.
I welcome any and all ideas for assessment. Please email me your thoughts.
Please by safe, continue conducting yourselves in a health-conscious manner and be patient. We will get through this.

For God and Country,

Matthew C. Thalasinos
Sons of The American Legion
Detachment of New Jersey

SAL College 2020

February 12, 2020

SAL College will take place on April 18th, 2020 at the National Guard Training Center in Sea Girt, NJ. The applications for both the Basic and Advanced Classes can be found on the forms page on the Detachment website. If you are interested in learning more about the organization, these are worthwhile classes to take. The Basic class details the structure of the S.A.L., and explains many of the programs they support in detail. The Advanced class gives instruction on organization, time management, and leadership, and teaches attendees ways to be a better officer in the organization. The deadline to submit your application is April 3, 2020.

Commander's Mid-Year Report

January 16, 2020

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and is refreshed as we enter the second half of our terms. I have met a lot of good, dedicated people from our entire American Legion Family just by going out and visiting posts and attending events throughout our counties. I'm extremely pleased at what our squadrons are doing; you should be proud of what you do as well.
I want to share some of my thoughts, and progress with you; please read below:


My main priority coming into this term was to improve our communications structure; we were only operating at a level of a little over 33% efficiency for the amount of DECs in the state. We should be at 67% once the paperwork for those that have stepped up to assume their county DEC position is filed. I am working diligently by traveling throughout the state to recruit the remainder. IF you live in a county that does not have a DEC and are interested in the position, please contact me as soon as possible.

The other problem we have is that the amount of Sons of The American Legion County Executive Councils also started this year at the 33% mark. Once the DECs are in place the opportunity to form more county organizations increases as well.


We are working in conjunction with the entire American Legion Family to improve our veteran care facilities in many ways at Paramus, Vet Haven's North, Vineland, Menlo Park and Doyle's Cemetery. The project goal is in the neighborhood of $115,000. Our goal is to contribute $25,000. Please consider donating to the reason why we're here and help support our parent organization in helping them.


We are a little over half-way through this year's term and we are lagging behind in membership. Regional Membership Revitalization calls are being set-up to follow the regional Mentoring sessions set up by Committee Chairman PDC Bob Phillips, Jr. Our first Mentoring/Membership date is Saturday, January 18, 2019 at Pemberton Post 294. The Mentoring session will be from 10 am to 12 pm, followed by the Membership Revitalization Calls Session from 12 to 1. I look forward to helping individuals needing help and those squadrons who need assistance with their membership. I would like us to go out to lunch together afterwards.


Committee Chairman PDC Pat Gallagher has reported that the next Detachment Veteran's Affairs event is Saturday, January 25 at Menlo Park. Report time is 1:30. Please come out, support and interact with our veterans.


I am seeking candidates for review for a Performing Arts Award and Civil Service Awards. If you know a teacher, fireman or policeman that goes"above and beyond" in their profession please contact me at

I've been having a lot of fun and meeting many good people and am looking forward to the second half of my term.

Hopefully I'll see you in my travels!

For God and Country,

Matthew C. Thalasinos, Commander

Sons of The American Legion

Detachment of New Jersey


Detachment of NJ Commander
Detachment Commander
Matthew Thalasinos
Currently 1062 of 9892 members for 2020 membership year.
Upcoming Meetings
April 11, 2020 at 9:30am
Regular Detachment Meeting
Trenton War Memorial

June 11, 2020 at 8:00am
Annual Detachment Convention
Wildwood Convention Center, Wildwood, NJ

June 12, 2020 at 8:00am
Annual Detachment Convention
Wildwood Convention Center, Wildwood, NJ

Squadron and County Events
No upcoming events