WASHINGTON, Feb. 27, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Georgetown University President John J. DeGioia will present U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, with the Timothy S. Healy, S.J. Award for exemplary public service on February 28, at 7:00 pm in the Rafik Hariri Building. A graduate of Georgetown's School of Foreign Service and Law Center, Senator Durbin has devoted his life to the core Jesuit value of service to others. He is the author of landmark legislation to ban smoking on commercial airline flights, lead sponsor of the Dream Act to provide a path for citizenship for children brought to the United States without proper documentation and a leader on issues from medical research to HIV/Aids prevention to environmental protections to prison reform.
"We are deeply honored and proud to recognize Senator Dick Durbin, a fighter for the rights of citizens in his home state of Illinois, across America and around the world," said Bill Reynolds, executive director of the Georgetown University Alumni Association. "A true humanitarian, Senator Durbin has lived the Georgetown mission to educate men and women to serve others."
"I am humbled to be in the company of so many who have spent their lives in the service of others," said Senator Durbin. "Father Pedro Arrupe challenged all alumni of Jesuit schools to engage in the struggle for justice on behalf of the most vulnerable in our society. I have tried to meet that challenge during my time in office and am honored to be recognized by my fellow Georgetown alumni."
Respected Immigration and Health Care Leader
Senator Dick Durbin has represented Illinois in the Senate for three decades, preceded by 14 years in the House. Every two years since 2005, his Democratic colleagues have re-elected him to serve as Senate Democratic Whip, the second highest ranking position in the caucus. Durbin is a member of the Senate Judiciary, Appropriations, and Rules Committees and is the Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Immigration and the Appropriations Committee's Defense Subcommittee. He has authored groundbreaking health care, immigration and gun-control legislation.
Dreamer and Georgetown Alumnae Cristina Velasquez to Introduce Conversation
Cristina Velasquez and her mother, Ingrid, fled from Venezuela for political reasons when she was just six years old. Last year, Senator Durbin shared Cristina's story with colleagues in remarks on the Senate floor. Cristina graduated at the top of her class, served in student government and continuously volunteered in her community to help peers through a tutoring program. She graduated from Georgetown University in 2017 and has been selected to join Teach for America this summer. She will share her powerful story and introduce a conversation between Senator Durbin and Walsh School of Foreign Service Dean Joel Hellman following presentation of the award.
The Timothy S. Healy, S.J. Award for Exemplary Service
The Timothy S. Healy, S.J. Award is named for the 46th President of Georgetown University (1976-1989). Established in 1996 by the Georgetown University Alumni Association, this award is conferred upon Georgetown alumni who have rendered outstanding and exemplary service to his/her profession or community in support of humanitarian causes. Recent award winners include:
- 2017 - Senator George Mitchell (L'61, H'89) -- U.S. Special Envoy for Middle East Peace from January 2009 to May 2011. Distinguished career in public service spanning 15 years, including six years as Senate Majority Leader. Among his many accomplishments, Senator Mitchell served as the Independent Chairman of the Northern Ireland Peace Talks.
- 2015 - Dr. Dikembe Mutombo (I'91, H'10) -- Legendary basketball player and humanitarian. Named an NBA All-Star eight times and NBA Defensive Player of the Year four times. Chairman and President of the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation (DMF) which strives to improve the health, education and quality of life for the people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
- 2012 - The Hon. Mark R. Dybul, M.D. (C'85, M'92, H'08) -- Ambassador Mark R. Dybul is director of Georgetown's Center for Global Health and a Distinguished Scholar at Georgetown Law's O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law. Ambassador Dybul served as the U.S. Global AIDS coordinator and led the implementation of President Bush's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief —the largest international health initiative in history for a single disease.
- 2009 - President William Jefferson Clinton (F'68, H'80) -- The 42nd President of the United States, led the U.S. to the longest economic expansion in American history and established the Clinton Foundation to improve global health and help address the effects of climate change.
- 1997 - Sadako Ogata (MA'53, H'13) -- Japanese academic, diplomat, author, administrator, and professor. She is widely known as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) from 1991 to 2000 and Chairman of the UNICEF Executive Board.
About the Walsh School of Foreign Service
SOURCE Georgetown University Alumni Association