Le Prix Charbonnier

The Prix Charbonnier, the Federation of Alliances Françaises USA’s most prestigious award, was created in 1991 to recognize M. Daniel Charbonnier of San Francisco, a past President of the Federation, who exemplified all of the best qualities of this organization. The purpose of the Prix Charbonnier, to be given from time to time as appropriate at the Federation’s Annual Meeting and Convention, is to recognize persons of national stature and reputation whose vocation or avocation has promoted French language and culture in a manner consistent with the goals and purpose of the Federation. The recipient need not be a member of an Alliance Française. A committee established by the Board of Directors of the Federation nominates the candidate for the Prix Charbonnier.

2018 Prix Charbonnier: Dr. Matthew Naylor
President and CEO, National WWI Museum and Memorial

Dr. Matthew Naylor is the President and CEO of the National WWI Museum and Memorial. A native of Australia, where he earned a Ph.D. from Curtin University, Dr. Naylor began his tenure at the Museum and Memorial in June 2013 and has more than 25 years of leadership in the nonprofit arena.

Under Dr. Naylor’s leadership, the Museum and Memorial has achieved unprecedented success, breaking records for attendance, educational/community event participants, website traffic and media/social media impressions. Dr. Naylor has facilitated the establishment of dozens of institutional partnerships across the world. The National World War I Museum and Memorial presented its first outdoor exhibit in Europe and select U.S. cities, underwent construction for additional exhibit space, and hosted national observance ceremonies commemorating the centennial anniversary of U.S. entry into World War I. In 2015, Naylor was appointed as a Commissioner the United States World War I Centennial Commission.

France and French institutions play important roles in the Museum and Memorial programs and joint projects. At the Commemoration of the 100-year anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I, Dr. Naylor welcomed Ambassador Gérard Araud and other dignitaries from the French Embassy, including Defense Attaché Major General Vincent Cousin and Senior Counselor Nicholas Pillerel, as well as the Deputé Mayor of Meaux Jean-Francois Copé, among many others. The Museum and Memorial hosts numerous French programs, exhibits, and theater work. These have included screenings, lectures and readings, many of which are in partnership with the Alliance Française de Kansas City. The Museum and Memorial also features French films in partnership with the Alliance Française.

In 2017, the Museum and Memorial exhibited Vive l’Amérique: French Children Welcome Their American Ally, featuring drawings and essays from Le Vieux Montmartre Historical Society. The Museum and Memorial partnered with Académie Lafayette (Kansas City), Collège Jeanne d’Arc (Carcassonne) and Collège Saint-Bernard (Bayonne) to respond through text and image to the same prompts given to French children 100 years ago. The project was a Time Magazine online feature in 2017. In May 2018, in partnership with Académie Lafayette, the Museum and Memorial sponsored two students’ visits to France.

Dr. Naylor travels annually to France to meet with peers regarding collaboration. In August of this year, he attended 100-year commemorative events at Amiens. In January 2018, he attended meetings in France on the commemoration of the Versailles Agreement. In October of last year, he visited the Musée de la Grande Guerre in Meaux and the Verdun Memorial to discuss possible future partnerships.

The Alliance Française of Kansas City is grateful for its ongoing partnership with the Museum and Memorial, recognizing the value and importance of promoting our respective missions in the heartland of the Kansas City region and beyond. It is truly fitting that we should commemorate the important relationship between the United States and France here, during the centennial of the war to end all wars, at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The shadow left by the Great War left still impacts our lives today. Special thanks to the efforts of Dr. Matthew Naylor and the entire staff of the National WWI Museum and Memorial, for doing important work here to both remember and tell the enduring story of the Great War.

Prix Charbonnier Recipients

(with year & convention location)
2018 (Kansas City)


Dr. Matthew Naylor
President & CEO
National WWI Museum and Memorial
2017 (New Orleans)

Mitch Landrieu

Mayor of New Orleans
2016 (Minneapolis)

Hubert Joly

Chairman & CEO of Best Buy
2015 (San Francisco)

Jacques Pépin

Chef & Cookbook Author
2014 (Washington DC)

Stephen Breyer

Associate Justice
2013 (Chicago)

Patricia Wells

Cookbook Author
2012 (Providence)

David McCollough

2011 (Louisville)

Patrice Courtaban

Chief Operating Officer
2010 (New Orleans)
Comte Gilbert de Pusy de La Fayette
2009 (Chicago)

Remi (Ratatouille)

Brad Bird, Pixar Pictures
2008 (Naples)

Louis Kyle

France Today & France Amérique
2007 (Milwaukee)

Jane Robert

Past President
Federation of Alliances Françaises
2006 (St. Louis)

Ambassador Jean-David Levitte

French Ambassador to the United States
2005 (San Francisco)

M. Howard Leach

American Ambassador to France
2004 (Washington DC)

M. Pierre Cardin

Groupe Pierre Cardin
2003 (Boston)

M. André Cointreau · Président

Le Cordon Bleu
2003 (Boston)
Mme Hedwige Cointreau de Bouteville
President of Pierre Deux
2002 (Paris)
Mr. John H. F. Haskell, Jr.
President of French Institute/Alliance Française of New York
2001 (Albuquerque)
M. Jean-Louis Turlin
President of French Press · France Amérique
Mme Anne Prah-Perochon
Editor in Chief  of French Press · France Today
Mme Marie Galanti
Directrice de la Publication · French Press · Journal Français
1999 (Washington DC)
Mr. David M. Thoms
Past President of the Federation & French Community Philanthropist
Mrs. Eleanor Reynolds Morse
Past President of the Federation
Founder, Salvador Dali Art Museum
1998 (Atlanta)


M. Pierre Howard
French Cultural Promotion
1996 (Miami)


Mr. Malcolm Wiseheart
French Cultural Philanthropist
1992 (Chicago)
Mr. John H. Bryan
President,  Sara Lee Inc.
1992 (Chicago)


Mrs. Eleanor Wood-Prince
French Community Philanthropist
1991 (Washington DC)
Mrs. Julia Child
International Chef & Cookbook Author