Tag: John F. Kennedy

Barack Obama Named Recipient of 2017 John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award

Barack Obama (photo via nbcnews.com)

article by Associated Press via nbcnews.com

Former President Barack Obama was named the 2017 winner of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award on Thursday for carrying on his fellow Democrat’s legacy.

“President Kennedy called on a new generation of Americans to give their talents to the service of the country,” Kennedy’s daughter, Caroline Kennedy, said in a statement. “With exceptional dignity and courage, President Obama has carried that torch into our own time, providing young people of all backgrounds with an example they can emulate in their own lives.”

Caroline Kennedy and her son, Jack Schlossberg, will present Obama with the award May 7 at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston. Obama tweeted he is “humbled” by the recognition.

The award is presented annually by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation to public servants who have made courageous decisions of conscience without regard for the personal or professional consequences. It is named for Kennedy’s 1957 Pulitzer Prize-winning book, “Profiles in Courage.” The book tells the stories of eight U.S. senators who risked their careers by taking principled stands for unpopular positions.

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President Obama Honors Oprah, Clinton with Freedom Medal

Obama and Oprah

WASHINGTON (AP) —President Barack Obama opened a day of tributes to former President John F. Kennedy on Wednesday by bestowing the Presidential Medal of Freedom on prominent Americans, 50 years after Kennedy was assassinated weeks short of the medal’s first award ceremony.  Obama presented the medal — the highest award the U.S. gives a civilian — to entertainer Oprah Winfrey, former President Bill Clinton, and leaders from the worlds of sports, entertainment, science and public service. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Steven Spielberg were among those gathered in the East Room of the White House to watch the ceremony.

“Today, we salute fierce competitors who became true champions,” Obama said, pausing to speak in personal terms about each of the recipients and their contributions to society.

The ceremony marks the start of a day honoring Kennedy’s legacy two days before the nation pauses to remember the 50th anniversary of his assassination. Later, Obama will pay a visit to the eternal flame that marks John F. Kennedy’s gravesite. He’ll be joined by first lady Michelle Obama and the Clintons at the ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.  Turning to the former White House inhabitant, Obama said that Bill Clinton’s presidency had been only the start of his work to improve the world, crediting his post-presidency humanitarian works as helping to save or improve the lives of hundreds of millions around the world.

“I’m grateful, Bill, as well, for the advice and counsel that you’ve offered me, on and off the golf course,” Obama said to chuckles. “And most importantly, for your lifesaving work around the world, which represents what’s the very best in America.”  Obama said the late Sally Ride, the first American woman in space, didn’t just break the stratospheric glass ceiling, “she blasted right through it.”

“Young girls need to see role models, she said. You can’t be what you can’t see,” Obama said. “Today our daughters, including Malia and Sasha, can set their sights a little bit higher because Sally Ride showed them the way.”

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Obama Observes 50th Anniversary of Equal Pay Act

President Barack ObamaWASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is calling attention to the 50th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act that aimed to eliminate gender wage disparities, making the case for strengthening the law that President John F. Kennedy signed in 1963.

Obama, speaking to an audience almost entirely of women, says women continue to be paid less than men. He says: “This is the 21st century. It’s time to close that gap.”

The event’s focus on women’s pay comes during a week when Obama is paying special attention to Democratic constituent groups. On Tuesday he will speak at the White House in support of an overhaul of immigration laws. He will be fundraising for the Democrats on Wednesday. On Thursday he will observe LGBT Pride Month with remarks at the White House.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press via thegrio.com