Portsmouth’s First Citizen

For 83 years, the citizens of Portsmouth have honored an individual for his or her contributions to the community by naming that individual Portsmouth’s First Citizen. Portsmouth’s First Citizens are individuals who embody the spirit of citizenship through service to the community for the sole purpose of and in the spirit of giving. This spirit is evidenced by an individual’s civic, charitable, and religious contributions to fellow citizens, the Portsmouth and Hampton Roads communities, the state and country without remuneration and over and above the pursuit of one’s chosen vocation.

The Portsmouth Service League will hold a banquet honoring the recipient at the Renaissance Portsmouth Hotel on April 26, 2018.

Sponsorship information is available here.

Each year the public is encouraged to submit nominations for the award and a First Citizen Committee, comprised of the former First Citizens, makes a final selection. The nominating period for the 2017 First Citizen of Portsmouth closed on December 31, 2017. 



Recent First Citizens of Portsmouth

  Mr. John G. Hatcher, Jr., 2016 First Citizen of Portsmouth








 Lynn Mapp Wiggins, 2015 First Citizen of Portsmouth

  Richard Kendrick Huneycutt, 2014 First Citizen of Portsmouth


  Richard E.H. Wentz, 2013 First Citizen of Portsmouth










W. Carroll and Gloria M. Creecy, 2012 First Citizens of Portsmouth




Portsmouth's First Citizen









Cdr R. Malcolm Fortson III, USN (Ret.), 2011 First Citizen of Portsmouth 



Former Portsmouth First Citizens

Past Portsmouth First Citizen Honorees

  • *The Hon. Norman R. Hamilton-1932
  • *John A. Morris-1939
  • *Edward W. Maupin, Jr.-1940
  • *The Rt. Rev. Msgr. F. Harold Nott-1941
  • *Frank D. Lawrence-1942
  • *RADM Felix X. Gygax, USN-1943
  • *George T. McLean-1944
  • *Thomas Alva Willett-1945
  • *The Hon. Lawrence W. I’Anson-1946
  • *Leslie T. Fox-1947
  • *Sol Fass-1948
  • *Maywood O. Lawrence-1949
  • *Abner B. Hill-1950
  • *The Hon. Porter Hardy, Jr.-1951
  • *Lewis C. Warren-1952
  • *The Rev. Ernest K. Emurian-1953
  • *J. Roy Rodman-1954
  • *O.B. Woolridge-1955
  • *Harry A. Hunt-1956
  • *The Rt. Rev. William A. Brown-1957
  • *Arthur J. Lancaster-1958
  • *Fred Beazley-1959
  • *Arthur Lee Cherry-1960
  • *Richard F. Wood-1961
  • *Russell Mills Cox, M.D.-1962
  • *George T. Ewell-1963
  • *Lester Lloyd Knight-1964
  • *John Tydings Nix-1965
  • *Wilfred Fleming Magann-1966
  • *Dr. Robert Monroe Campbell-1967
  • *The Hon. John Ashton MacKenzie-1968
  • E. Saunders Early, Jr.-1969
  • *Robert Murdaugh Reed-1970
  • *Mearl A. Kise, Ph. D.-1971
  • *Paul Curtis Stokley-1972
  • *The Hon. Richard J. Davis-1973
  • Herbert K. Bangel-1974
  • *P. Stockton Fleming-1975
  • *Emily Nichols Spong-1976
  • *Frank Langley Kirby-1977
  • *George Delman Eastes-1978
  • *Daniel W. Duncan Ph. D.-1979
  • *Robert William Wentz, Jr.,-1980
  • *RADM Jamie Adair, USN, Ret.-1981
  • *Emile S. Sayegh, M.D.-1982
  • *Peter Eustis-1983
  • Bradford L. Cherry-1984
  • *John Paul Conwell Hanbury-1985
  • *J. Herbert Simpson-1986
  • Anne Hyde Long-1987
  • W. Ashton Lewis-1988
  • P. Ward Robinett, Jr.,-1989
  • *Arthur J. Lancaster, Jr.-1990
  • Herbert A. Haneman, Jr.-1991
  • The Hon. Morton V. Whitlow-1992
  • Maury Wise Cooke-1993
  • Zelma Goodman Rivin-1994
  • Junius H. Williams, Jr.-1995
  • *J. Hunter Brantley, Jr.-1996
  • *Ernest F. Hardee-1997
  • Horace S. Savage, Jr.-1998
  • G. Robert Aston, Jr.-1999
  • David R. Tynch-2000
  • Michael J. Blachman-2001
  • Diane Pomeroy Griffin-2002
  • R. Scott Morgan-2003
  • Nancy Glisson Wren-2004
  • *Arthur A. Kirk, M.D.-2005
  • William H. Kline, Jr.-2006
  • *James W. Holley, III-2007
  • *Albert J. Taylor-2008
  • Donald W. Comer, Jr-2009
  • Robert T. Williams-2010
  • CDR R. Malcolm Fortson, III-2011
  • W. Carroll and Gloria M. Creecy-2012
  • Richard E. H. Wentz-2013
  • Richard K. Huneycutt-2014
  • Lynn Mapp Wiggins-2015
  • John G. Hatcher, Jr.-2016