National Memorial Day Concert

Backstage at the National Memorial Day Concert

The Production Team

The National Memorial Day Concert is brought to the screen by hundreds of dedicated professionals, working to ensure a meaningful and memorable experience for honorees, performers, audience members and viewers at home.

Executive Producer Jerry Colbert and Producer Michael Colbert have assembled a production team that features the top Hollywood talent behind some of television’s most prestigious entertainment award shows. The team includes Walter C. Miller, Emmy Award-winning producer whose credits include the Grammy Awards and Country Music Association Awards; and Paul Miller, award-winning director whose credits include the Country Music Association Awards and Saturday Night Live.

Jerry Colbert 

Jerry Colbert is the executive producer and founder of two of television’s longest-running and multi-award winning live programs that commemorate America’s most important holidays. A Capitol Fourth, our country’s biggest birthday party, celebrated its 30th anniversary and was the highest-rated program in primetime on PBS for the 2012-2013 season. The National Memorial Day Concert has become the nation’s premier tribute to our men and women in uniform in its 25 years on air and in the 2012-2013 season was the No. 3 top-rated program in prime time on PBS. Colbert also served as executive producer of the National Salute to Veterans that aired on PBS Nov. 11, 2012. In addition to his annual work on these events, Colbert has produced many films such as Mr. Justice Brennan; Sister Adrian, the Mother Teresa of Scranton; The Regulators: Our Invisible Government; and H.R. 6161: An Act of Congress. Colbert previously served as deputy director of the Center for Understanding Media in New York. 

Michael Colbert 

A principal in Capital Concerts for nearly twenty years, Executive Vice President Michael Colbert directs the organization year-round in addition to serving as producer for the National Memorial Day Concert and A Capitol Fourth. He also served as executive eroducer of the National Salute to Veterans that aired on PBS Nov. 11, 2012. Colbert is the primary liaison with the over 20 government and non-governmental Washington agencies and organizations that contribute to the shows, and directs the hundreds of television professionals who participate annually. With more than 25 years of experience, Colbert's credits include major national television specials on CBS, Fox, PBS and Comedy Central in locations ranging from Washington, D.C. and New York to Los Angeles and Nashville. He has also produced a wide range of major corporate events.

Walter C. Miller

Producer, Walter C. Miller is recognized as America’s leading live director and producer with credits including television’s top award shows, such as the Grammy Awards, Country Music Awards, People’s Choice Awards, Tony Awards, American Comedy Awards, Emmy Awards, Daytime Emmy Awards and Golden Globe Awards. In 1999, he won an Emmy for producing the Tony Awards. For Liberty Weekend: Americana Music Concert, Miller received the Directors Guild of America Award for outstanding director. He has won additional Emmys for S’Wonderful, S’Marvelous, S’Gershwin, a special with Jack Lemmon and Fred Astaire and Annie, The Women In A Life Of A Man. His live musical concert credits include Concert of the Americas with Frank Sinatra in addition to A Capitol Fourth and the National Memorial Day Concert.

Paul Miller 

Paul Miller has been directing television since 1982, with credits including three seasons as director of Saturday Night Live and four as director of In Living Color. He has received four Emmy nominations, and won in 1999 for directing the Tony Awards, and again in 2010 for directing ABC News’ coverage of the Inauguration of President Barack Obama. He has also been nominated twice by the Directors Guild of America in the musical/variety category and won for directing the Tony Awards. In addition, Miller has directed the Country Music Awards for the last 15 years as well as CMA Christmas for three years. Paul has also directed An American Celebration at Ford’s Theater multiple times. Other credits include directing the December 2011 and 2012 broadcasts on NBC of the American Giving Awards, a celebrity tribute to community heroes. On Jul. 4, 1993, Paul teamed professionally with his father, Walter C. Miller, for A Capitol Fourth and has since directed both this and the National Memorial Day Concert. He is a partner in RickMill Productions, a Hollywood-based entertainment company that has produced numerous series for Comedy Central as well as specials for HBO and Showtime. This season, Miller produced and directed Off Their Rockers starring Betty White for NBC.

Barr Weissman

Barr Weissman has produced and edited the documentary segments for the National Memorial Day Concert since 1998. Weissman edited, and helped produce, several independent documentaries including Mr. Justice Brennan and the Academy Award-winning film The Stonecarvers. He has directed and edited biographical films for the Kennedy Center Honors, including films on The Who, Mel Brooks and Bruce Springsteen. In addition, he has produced and edited documentaries for Discovery Channel, National Geographic, NBC, PBS, among others. His work has been recognized by the Emmys, received awards at film festivals worldwide, and been screened at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Weissman’s most recent film, The Secret To A Happy Ending, has screened at film festivals and theaters world-wide and received 4 stars from Rolling Stone. A native Washingtonian, Weissman produced and independently distributed two critically acclaimed documentaries about the city - Home: The Langston Terrace Dwellings and A View From The Street: The Art Of Lily Spandorf.

Celia Straus 

Celia Straus has received a number of nominations and awards for her work as a writer for local PBS programming including The Man Who Loved the Stars, starring Ossie Davis; Give and Take, winner of the Action for Children’s Television award and National Emmy nominee; and Tax Whys, winner of the Gold Ohio State Award. She has garnered Cine Golden Eagles, and industrial film festival gold and silver awards as script-writer for the American Red Cross, Agency for Instructional Television, USDA, Discovery, National Trust for Historic Preservation and MPT, among others. She was the writer and co-producer of the annual national broadcast of the Thomas Jefferson Awards for Public Service and served as co-writer and producer for the full length documentary Broke, the American Dream which premiered on the Documentary Channel. Over the past decade, she has worked with numerous veterans service organizations and written the book Hidden Battles on Unseen Fronts, Stories of American Soldiers with PTSD and TBI. Her trilogy on spiritual parenting included the national best seller, Prayers On My Pillow.


The National Memorial Day Concert and A Capitol Fourth have become American traditions that have consistently ranked among the highest rated programs on PBS over the past decade. The extraordinary talent of the production team has insured these holiday specials have been honored with over 70 awards including the New York Film Festival award, the Telly award, the Golden Cine award, the Videographer award, the National Education Association award, the Aurora award, the Christopher award, the Communicator’s award, the AXIEM award, the Omni award and the Writers Guild of America award.