NDU Special Observances Calendar


The Department of Defense (DOD) celebrates eight ethnic observances annually in support of Joint Congressional Resolution, Presidential Proclamation, and achievements of all groups that comprise the society of the United States. Since 1968, the Department of Defense (DOD) has supported ethnic observances through the development of local programs of recognition and many diverse activities. Activities are designed to enhance cross-cultural awareness and promote harmony among all military members, their families, and the civilian work force. These activities are extensions of the equal opportunity education and training objectives. They are set aside to recognize the achievements and contributions made by members of specific minority groups, women, and individuals with disability in our society. The focus of the observance should be directed towards encouraging interaction and not just recognition. 

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month.





2022 Theme / Link to DoD Official Memo

Martin Luther King Jr.'s Birthday

17 January 2022

Public Law 98-144

Remember! Celebrate! Act! A Day On, Not a Day Off!

National African American/Black History Month

1-28 February 2022

Public Law 99-244

Black Health and Wellness

Women’s History Month

1-31 March 2022

Public Law 100-9

Women Providing Healing, Promoting Hope

Sexual Assault Awareness Month

1-30 April 2022

DoD Directive 6495.01

STEP FORWARD. Prevent. Report. Advocate

Holocaust Remembrance Day

Days of Remembrance

28 April 2022

24 April - 1 May 2022

Public Law 96-388

Determination, Hope & Honor

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

1-31 May 2022

Title 36, U.S. Code, Section 102

Advancing Leaders Through Collaboration

Pride Month



1-30 June 2022

Pride at the Pentagon: 7 June, 0930

Presidential proclamation (historically published the beginning of June)

2022 Presidential Proclamation

All Together: Pride at the Pentagon Event (via DVIDS)

Women’s Equality Day



26 August 2022

Joint Resolution of Congress, 1971 and Presidential Proclamation

Follow Your Yellow Brick Road


National Hispanic Heritage Month



15 September-15 October 2022

Title 36, U.S. Code, Section 126

Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Nation

National Disability Employment Awareness Month



1-31 October 2022

Title 36, U.S. Code, Section 121

Disability: Part of the Equity Equation

National American Indian Heritage Month



1-30 November 2022

Public Law 102-188, Executive Order 13270 and Presidential Proclamation



PLEASE NOTE: NDU lists only observances established by law, bill, or resolution of Congress or DoD Directive or Instruction. Organizations are reminded that special observances are conducted to recognize the continuous achievements of all Americans to American culture and to increase awareness, mutual respect, and understanding. They are designed to enhance cross-cultural and cross-gender awareness and promote harmony among all military members, their families, and the DOD civilian workforce. For more information about DoD special observance, please visit https://www.defenseculture.mil/