PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 10, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was honored by the National Constitution Center this evening with the 2013 Liberty Medal. Clinton was recognized with the prestigious award for her lifelong career in public service and her ongoing advocacy efforts on behalf of women and girls around the globe.
ABC News Anchor and Correspondent Elizabeth Vargas hosted the live event, which included live presentations by:
- Governor Jeb Bush, chairman of the National Constitution Center Board of Trustees
- University of Pennsylvania President, National Constitution Center Board Member, and Chair, Liberty Medal Selection Committee Dr. Amy Gutmann
- No Labels Co-Founder Mark McKinnon
- Journalist and Human Rights Advocate Roxana Saberi
- National Constitution President and CEO Jeffrey Rosen
A combination of 50 performers from the Bright Hope Baptist Community Singers of Philadelphia and the Princeton Girlchoir performed "I Believe I Can Fly" at the start of the ceremony. The choirs were joined by Washington, D.C.-based saxophonist Brian Lenair, who has performed with Billy Paul, Al Jarreau, Grover Washington Jr., Peabo Bryson, and George Benson.
The ceremony also featured a performance of "Save Me" by popular singer-songwriter Aimee Mann, who was accompanied by guitarist Ted Leo.
Appearing in video tributes throughout the ceremony were former British Prime Minister and previous Liberty Medal recipient Tony Blair; Queen of Jordan Rania Al Abdullah; tennis legend Billie Jean King; actors Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen; lifelong friends Betsy Johnson Ebeling, Bonnie Klehr, and Ernie Ricketts; Wellesley classmates Lynn Gasden, Janet Hill, ABC News Political Commentator Cokie Roberts, and Connie Hoenk Shapiro; Anne-Marie Slaughter, Princeton University professor and former Director of Policy Planning for the U.S. State Department; Melanne Verveer, United States Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues and former Chief of Staff to Clinton during her time as First Lady; politician Marjorie Margolies; Ugandan Ministry of Internal Affairs and Clinton Global Initiative member Agnes Igoye; Vjosa Osmani, Kosovo Parliament member; Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett; and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.
Also appearing in video tribute during the ceremony were Liberty Medal 2013 sponsors Ira M. Lubert, chairman and co-founder of Independence Capital Partners; Daniel K. Fitzpatrick, Citizens Bank President and CEO for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware; and William R. Sasso, Esq., chairman of Stradley Ronon Stevens and Young, LLP.
Action News Anchorman Jim Gardner hosted the live broadcast of the ceremony on WPVI-TV/6abc.
About the 2013 Liberty Medal Recipient
Hillary Rodham Clinton served as the 67th Secretary of State of the United States from January 21, 2009, until February 1, 2013, after nearly four decades in public service as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and Senator. She is recognized as a champion of human rights, democracy, and opportunities for women and girls around the world.
As First Lady, she advocated for universal, affordable health care and led bipartisan efforts to improve the adoption and foster care systems, reduce teen pregnancy, and establish the Children's Health Insurance Program and Early Head Start.
In 2000, Clinton became the first First Lady elected to the Senate. She worked across party lines to expand economic opportunity and access to health care, including for wounded service members, veterans, and members of the National Guard and Reserves. After September 11, 2001, she helped secure more than $20 billion for the rebuilding of New York City and fought for the health needs of first responders.
In 2007 and 2008, Clinton made her historic campaign for President, winning 18 million votes and more primaries and delegates than any woman had before. As Secretary of State, Clinton demonstrated that women's rights and human rights are vital to the security, stability, and prosperity of all nations. She spearheaded progress on national security challenges, from reasserting the United States as a Pacific power and imposing sanctions on Iran and North Korea to responding to the Arab Awakening and negotiating a ceasefire in the Middle East. Her "smart power" approach to foreign policy repositioned American diplomacy for the 21st century with new tools, technologies, and partners.
Today, through the Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, Clinton works to improve global health, strengthen economies, and protect the environment by fostering partnerships among businesses, governments, nongovernmental organizations, and citizens.
About the Liberty Medal
The Liberty Medal was established in 1988 to commemorate the bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution. Given annually, the medal honors men and women of courage and conviction who strive to secure the blessings of liberty to people around the globe. For more information, visit constititutioncenter.org/libertymedal.
About the National Constitution Center
The National Constitution Center is the Museum of We the People, bringing the extraordinary story of the United States Constitution to life for visitors of all ages. Located on Independence Mall in Historic Philadelphia—the birthplace of the Constitution—the museum illuminates American democracy and inspires active citizenship through hundreds of interactive exhibits, films, and rare artifacts; must-see feature exhibitions; the internationally acclaimed, 360-degree theatrical performance Freedom Rising; and the iconic Signers' Hall, where visitors can sign the Constitution alongside 42 life-size, bronze statues of the Founding Fathers. As America's Town Hall, the National Constitution Center engages diverse, distinguished leaders of government, public policy, journalism, and scholarship in timely public discussions and debates. The museum also houses the Annenberg Center for Education and Outreach, the national headquarters for constitutional education, which offers cutting-edge civic learning resources both onsite and online. Join us as we celebrate our 10-year anniversary in 2013. For more information, call 215-409-6700 or visit constitutioncenter.org.
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SOURCE National Constitution Center