WASHINGTON, April 14, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's 2015 National Tribute Dinner on April 15 which will bring together over 1,000 Museum supporters from around the country. Judge Thomas Buergenthal and Nuremberg prosecutor Benjamin Ferencz will receive the Museum's highest honor, the Elie Wiesel Award, at the event.
A vital part of it leadership programs, the Museum's work with the FBI dates to 2000 when new agents began participating in Law Enforcement and Society: Lessons of the Holocaust at the Museum. The program explores the critical role law enforcement plays in safeguarding democratic values and was developed by the Museum and Anti-Defamation League. Originally created in 1999 for the Washington DC, Metropolitan Police Department, at the behest of then-department Chief Charles Ramsey, the program now works with law enforcement agencies nationwide and around the globe.
Officials with the Drug Enforcement Agency, the State Department, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, other local and national agencies, and members of the judiciary, all now participate in Law Enforcement and Society. In total, more than 95,000 officers and 14,000 members of the judiciary have received training.
"Holocaust history is so instructive on what can happen when the power of the state is abused," says Museum Director Sara J. Bloomfield. "Our partnerships with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies reminds them of the vital role they play in ensuring individual liberty and preserving our democratic society. We are honored to have Director Comey speak about the program's importance."
The Elie Wiesel Award
At each year's National Tribute Dinner, the Museum presents its highest award to prominent individuals who embody the Museum's mission of building a world where people confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. This year's recipients are Judge Thomas Buergenthal and Benjamin Ferencz who were instrumental in building the post-Holocaust legal framework that holds perpetrators of genocide and mass atrocities accountable for their acts.
Judge Buergenthal, one of the youngest survivors of Auschwitz, brings a unique perspective to his lifelong commitment to international and human rights law. He helped established the principle that regimes must be held accountable for state-sponsored human rights violations. Mr. Ferencz, the last surviving prosecutor of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, has dedicated his career to replacing "the rule of force with the rule of law." Having tried perpetrators of the world's worst crime, he has sought to ensure justice for the victims of genocide and mass atrocities.
"This year's award recipients exemplify Elie Wiesel's conviction that 'one person of integrity can make a difference,'" said Museum Director Bloomfield. "After the Holocaust, Judge Buergenthal and Benjamin Ferencz devoted themselves with extraordinary passion to the pursuit of justice for survivors of the Holocaust and victims of other genocides. Their legacies serve as a warning to perpetrators and an assurance to victims that these crimes will not go unpunished."
Established in 2011, the Elie Wiesel Award is named in honor of its inaugural recipient, Nobel Peace Laureate and Museum Founding Chairman Elie Wiesel. Engraved on the award are words from Elie Wiesel's Nobel speech, "One person of integrity can make a difference."
The Museum's National Tribute Dinner will be held on Wednesday, April 15 at 6:30 p.m., in Washington, DC, at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park as part of the Museum's annual Days of Remembrance events. The event chairs are Marcy and Neil Cohen.
The National Tribute Dinner supports the Museum's campaign, Never Again: What You Do Matters. The $540 million campaign will allow the Museum to make critical investments to keep Holocaust memory alive as a relevant force for change—inspiring people worldwide to confront hate, prevent genocide and promote human dignity.
A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires leaders and citizens worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by generous donors. For more information, visit www.ushmm.org.
MEDIA: All media interested in attending the event should contact Kristy Buechner at (202) 314-1754 or [email protected].
SOURCE United States Holocaust Memorial Museum