The Foundation for the National Archives Names Philanthropist David M. Rubenstein as Recipient of 2011 Records of Achievement Award

Jul 28, 2011, 15:37 ET from Foundation for the National Archives

Caroline Kennedy, Edwin Schlossberg to Chair Gala and Award Ceremony in November 2011

WASHINGTON, July 28, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Foundation for the National Archives will present its eighth annual Records of Achievement Award to philanthropist David M. Rubenstein, whose generous loan of Magna Carta to the National Archives has allowed millions of visitors to view the landmark British document that inspired the Founding Fathers who wrote the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.

Rubenstein, who also will be acknowledged for his generous loans of historic documents to other institutions and for his passion in sharing the history of America with the public, will receive the award at the Foundation's annual Gala at the National Archives in Washington, DC on Wednesday, November 2.

Caroline Kennedy, daughter of President John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Kennedy, and her husband Edwin Schlossberg will chair the black-tie event, which includes an elegant dinner in the Rotunda Galleries, just steps from the original Charters of Freedom.

"We are thrilled to bestow the prestigious 2011 Records of Achievement Award upon David, who has become a strong and committed partner of the National Archives and our Foundation," said Foundation for the National Archives Chairman and President Ken Lore. "We look forward to acknowledging and celebrating his enthusiastic support for civics education and his advocacy for the use of original documents to educate so many about our American journey."

The Records of Achievement Award, the Foundation's highest honor, is the annual tribute to an individual whose work has cultivated a broader national awareness of the history and identity of the United States. The honoree's accomplishments reflect the Foundation's mission: to elevate the stories found in the billions of documents, photographs, maps, films, and recordings in the Archives' holdings in a manner that fosters a fuller understanding of the American experience. Recipients of the Records of Achievement Award help educate, enrich, and even inspire a deeper appreciation of the country, its democratic ideals, and the rich heritage of its people by increasing awareness of the importance of original records as the primary sources of history.

Previous recipients of the award include: Tom Brokaw, Brian Lamb and C-SPAN, the late John Hope Franklin, Annette Gordon-Reed, James McPherson, Ken Burns and David McCullough.

Rubenstein, a native of Baltimore, is co-founder and managing director of The Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager. In addition to his loan of Magna Carta to the National Archives, he has lent a signed copy of the Emancipation Proclamation to the White House, a rare copy of the Declaration of Independence to the State Department, and the first official map of the United States published after the Revolution to the Library of Congress.

"The National Archives and the American people owe David Rubenstein a great debt of gratitude for acquiring the 1297 Magna Carta. The document was at risk of not only leaving the National Archives, but of leaving the country when Mr. Rubenstein purchased it at auction in 2007 and returned it to display at the Archives," said Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero. "I am pleased to join the Foundation in congratulating him on this well-deserved award."

As the foundation of English law, Magna Carta, "The Great Charter," established that no one – not even the king – is above the law. It inspired America's Founding Fathers to articulate individual rights and liberties when they wrote the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. But while Magna Carta is a charter of ancient liberties "given and granted" by a king to his subjects, the U.S. Constitution established a government by the people.

Rubenstein also is funding a state-of-the-art re-encasement of Magna Carta to preserve it for future generations. The document eventually will be featured in a new permanent exhibition gallery at the National Archives Building, focusing on Americans' continual efforts to perfect liberty and democracy. A new exhibit case will incorporate an interactive display allowing visitors to view the document in English, translated from the original Latin.

A magna cum laude graduate of Duke, Rubenstein graduated in 1973 from The University of Chicago Law School, where he was an editor of the Law Review. After practicing law in New York, he served from 1975-76 as Chief Counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Constitutional Amendments. From 1977-81, during the Carter Administration, Rubenstein was Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy. After his White House service, he practiced law at a private firm in Washington, and then co-founded The Carlyle Group in 1987.

In addition to his work with the National Archives, Rubenstein is chairman of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, a regent of the Smithsonian Institution and on the board of Directors or Trustees of Duke University, Johns Hopkins University, University of Chicago, the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Johns Hopkins Medicine, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Institute for Advanced Study, the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the American Academy in Berlin, and Ford's Theater.

About the Foundation for the National Archives

The Foundation for the National Archives is an independent nonprofit that serves as the National Archives' private-sector partner in the creation of and ongoing support of the National Archives Experience, which includes permanent exhibits, educational programs, traveling exhibits, special events and film screenings, and historical/records-related products, publications, and media. The Foundation helps the public understand the importance of the holdings of the National Archives by presenting the depth and diversity of the records through award-winning, interactive educational exhibits and programs. It generates financial and creative support for the National Archives Experience from individuals, foundations, and corporations who share a belief in the importance of innovative civics education.

About the National Archives Experience

The National Archives Experience, created by the National Archives in partnership with the Foundation for the National Archives, has transformed the visitor experience at the National Archives' Washington, DC building, and includes a renovated Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom, the award-winning Public Vaults permanent interactive exhibition, the William G. McGowan Theater, the Lawrence F. O'Brien Gallery for special exhibits, the Boeing Learning Center, and the Digital Vaults online exhibit. These components make the rich resources of the National Archives accessible to Americans nationwide.

SOURCE Foundation for the National Archives