2013 Marks 50th Anniversary of President Kennedy’s Establishment of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
the country music icon.
The Presidential Medal of Freedom
is the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who
have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or
national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural
or other significant public or private endeavors. The awards will be
presented at the White House later this year.
This year marks the 50th Anniversary of the Executive Order signed by
President John F. Kennedy establishing the Presidential Medal of
Freedom, as well as the first ceremony bestowing the honor on an
inaugural class of 31 recipients. Since that time, more than 500
exceptional individuals from all corners of society have been awarded
the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
President Obama said, “The Presidential Medal of Freedom goes to men
and women who have dedicated their own lives to enriching ours. This
year’s honorees have been blessed with extraordinary talent, but what
sets them apart is their gift for sharing that talent with the world. It
will be my honor to present them with a token of our nation’s