CHICAGO, May 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation will honor President Bill Clinton, the 42nd President of the United States, with the prestigious 2013 Lincoln Leadership Prize, an annual prize recognizing a lifetime of service in the spirit of 16th President Abraham Lincoln. More than 600 civic, philanthropic and business leaders will gather at a special event this evening to celebrate President Clinton and his accomplishments.
The Lincoln Leadership Prize is intended to honor outstanding individuals who manifest an unwavering commitment to the defining principles of democracy and have committed to a lifetime of service in the spirit of President Lincoln. 2013 marks the first time the prize has been awarded to a former president of the United States. This year's prize is particularly momentous as the nation commemorates the 150th anniversary of two historic moments in President Lincoln's leadership – the Emancipation Proclamation and the Gettysburg Address.
"We are very pleased to present President Clinton with this year's Lincoln Leadership Prize for his continued leadership and the momentous mark he's left on this country and around the world through his lifetime of public service," said Wayne W. Whalen, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation. "The Lincoln Leadership Prize event is significant not only because it recognizes outstanding 21st century leaders, but also because of the tremendous fundraising support it generates for the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum – ensuring President Lincoln's legacy is preserved for future generations to learn and grow in the Lincoln tradition."
Held at the Hilton Chicago at 6:30 pm this evening, the event is the primary vehicle to provide funding for the educational and cultural programming of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. Tonight's event is expected to raise nearly $1 million, the highest amount in the Foundation's history.
Linda Johnson Rice, chairman of Johnson Publishing Co, will present President Clinton with a replica of the historic "The Right Hand of Lincoln" sculpture, which is a representation of President Lincoln's humility and strength.
The evening's speaking program will include remarks by Linda Johnson Rice, chairman of Johnson Publishing Co., Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation's CEO Dr. Carla Knorowski and Board Chairman Wayne Whalen, as well as AT&T Illinois President Paul La Schiazza, representing AT&T as the event presenting sponsor.
Additionally, a special portrait of President Clinton created by local Chicago artist William Chambers that was commissioned for the Library and Museum will hang amongst the portraits of President Lincoln and previous Prize recipients.
The Lincoln Leadership Prize has been awarded since 2006. Previous honorees include former Polish President Lech Walesa, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Astronaut James A. Lovell Jr., and the late television journalist Tim Russert.
About the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation
The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation supports the educational and cultural programming of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum; fosters Lincoln scholarship through the acquisition and publication of documentary materials relating to Lincoln and his era; and promotes a greater appreciation of history through exhibits, conferences, publications, online services, and other activities designed to promote historical literacy.
SOURCE The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation