Sunday, August 7, 2022

Presidential Medal of Freedom Awarded to Biles, McCain, Giffords, Jobs

WASHINGTON ( Associated Press) – President Joe Biden will present the country’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, to 17 people, including actor Denzel Washington, gymnast Simone Biles and the late John McCain, the Arizona Republican with whom Biden in the USA served. Senate.

Biden will also acknowledge Sandra Lindsay, the New York City nurse who rolled up her sleeve on live television in December 2020 to receive the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine pumped into an arm in the United States, the White House said Friday announced.

Biden’s honors list, which the White House first shared with The Associated Press, includes living and deceased honors from the worlds of Hollywood, sports, politics, the military, academia and advocacy for civil rights and social justice.

LOOK MORE: WATCH: Obama awards VP Joe Biden the Presidential Medal of Freedom

The Democratic president will present the medals at the White House next week.

Biden himself is a medal recipient. President Barack Obama honored Biden’s civil service as a longtime U.S. senator and vice president by awarding him a presidential medal of freedom in January 2017, a week before they left office.

The award winners who will receive medals from Biden “have overcome significant obstacles to achieving impressive achievements in the arts and sciences, dedicated their lives to advocating for the most vulnerable among us, and have acted boldly to change their communities and across the to drive all over the world. world, while routes for generations to come, ”the White House said.

The honor is reserved for people who have made exemplary contributions to the prosperity, values ​​or security of the United States, world peace or other important common public or private efforts, the White House said.

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Biles is the most decorated American gymnast in history and has won 32 Olympic and World Championships medals. She is an outspoken advocate for issues that are very personal to her, including athletes’ mental health, children in foster care and victims of sexual assault.

Lindsay became a proponent of COVID-19 vaccinations after receiving the first dose in the US

McCain, who died of brain cancer in 2018, spent more than five years in captivity in Vietnam while serving in the U.S. Navy. He later represented Arizona in both houses of Congress and was the Republican presidential nominee in 2008. Biden said McCain is a “dear friend” and “a hero.”

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Washington is a double Oscar-winning actor, director and producer. He also has a Tony Award, two Golden Globes and the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award. He is a longtime spokesman for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

The other 13 medal recipients are:

– Sister Simone Campbell. Campbell is a member of the Sister of Social Service and a former executive director of NETWORK, a Catholic organization for social justice. She is a proponent of economic justice, reviewing the U.S. immigration system and health care policies.

– Julieta Garcia. A former president of the University of Texas at Brownsville, Garcia, was the first Latina to become a college president, the White House said. She was named one of the country’s best university presidents by Time magazine.

– Gabrielle Giffords. A former member of the Arizona House of Representatives, the Democrat, founded Giffords, an organization dedicated to ending gun violence. She was shot in the head during a founding event in Tucson in January 2011 and was seriously injured.

– Fred Gray. Gray was one of the first black members of the Alabama legislature after reconstruction. He was a prominent civil rights lawyer representing Rosa Parks, the NAACP and Martin Luther King Jr.

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– Steve Jobs. Jobs was the co-founder, CEO and chairman of Apple Inc. He passed away in 2011.

– Father Alexander Karloutsos. Karloutsos is the assistant to Archbishop Demetrios of America. The White House said Karloutsos had consulted several U.S. presidents.

– Khizr Khan. An Pakistani immigrant, Khan’s army officer son, was killed in Iraq. Khan gained national prominence and became a target of Donald Trump’s anger after speaking at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

– Diane Nash. Nash, a founding member of the Student Violent Coordinating Committee, has organized some of the most important 20th-century civil rights campaigns and worked with King.

– Megan Rapinoe. The Olympic gold medalist and two-time Women’s World Cup soccer champion is captain of the OL Reign in the National Women’s Soccer League. She is a prominent proponent of gender pay equality, racial justice and LGBTQI + rights that have appeared in Biden’s White House.

– Alan Simpson. The retired U.S. senator from Wyoming served with Biden and was a prominent supporter of campaign finance reform, responsible governance, and marital equality.

– Richard Trumka. Trumka was president of the AFL-CIO for more than a decade with 12.5 million members at the time of his death in August 2021. He was a former president of the United Mine Workers.

– Wilma Vaught. A Brigadier General, Vaught is one of the most decorated women in American military history, breaking gender barriers as she rose through the ranks. When Vaught retired in 1985, she was one of only seven female generals in the military.

– Raúl Yzaguirre. Yzaguirre, a civil rights lawyer, was president and chief executive of La Raza National Council for 30 years. He served as U.S. ambassador to the Dominican Republic under Obama.

Nation World News Desk
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