The award is presented by West Point's Association of Graduates to those whose service in the national interest reflects the academy's motto of "Duty, Honor, Country." Past recipients include Dwight D. Eisenhower, Bob Hope and Tom Brokaw and Robert Mueller. Last year's recipient was Leon Panetta.
Before her retirement in 2012, Dunwoody led and ran Army Materiel Command, the largest global logistics command in the Army.
The award is named for Col. Sylvanus Thayer, a revered early leader of the academy.