Obama Lauds Medal of Freedom Recipients

Stan Musial receives his Medal of Freedom on  February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Getty/ Alex Wong)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial is presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama during an East Room event at the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal, the highest honor awarded to civilians, to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Stan Musial receives his Medal of Freedom on February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Getty/ Alex Wong)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents The International Organization on Arts and Disability founder Jean Kennedy Smith with the 2010 Medal of Freedom that he presented in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in human rights, sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to co-founder the Natural Resources Defense Council John Adams during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. Adams co-founded the Natural Resources Defense Council in 1970. Adams served as Executive Director and, later, as president of the nonprofit environmental advocacy group until 2006. His tenure is unparalleled by the leader of any other environmental organization. Rolling Stone writes: “If the planet has a lawyer, it’s John Adams.” AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama (L) presents the 2010 Medal of Freedom to American artist Jasper Johns on Feburary 15, 2011 at the White House in Washington, DC. The Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor and is 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. AFP PHOTO / Tim Sloan (Photo credit should read TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to president emeritus of the AFL-CIO John Sweeney during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to civil rights activist Sylvia Mendez during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. Mendez is a civil rights activist of Mexican and Puerto Rican descent. As an eight-year-old, her parents attempted to enroll Mendez in an all-white school in their community, but were denied entry at and were told to go to the school for Mexican children. Her father and other parents sued and prevailed. The Mendez v. Westminster case was a landmark decision in the civil rights movement against segregation. Mendez currently travels around the country giving speeches on the value of a good education. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (R) embraces Libby Little with the 2010 Medal of Freedom on behalf of her husband, Tom Little, an optometrist who was murdered by the Taliban in 2010 in Badakhshan, Afghanistan, during a presentation ceremony in East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial the 2010 Medal of Freedom as Basketball Hall of Fame member and human rights activist Bill Russell (R) applauds in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial is presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama during an East Room event at the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal, the highest honor awarded to civilians, to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial is presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama during an East Room event at the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal, the highest honor awarded to civilians, to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial is presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama during an East Room event at the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal, the highest honor awarded to civilians, to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (R) embraces Libby Little with the 2010 Medal of Freedom on behalf of her husband, Tom Little, an optometrist who was murdered by the Taliban in 2010 in Badakhshan, Afghanistan, during a presentation ceremony in East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents AFL-CIO President Emeritus John Sweeney with the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (C) applauds for the 2010 Medal of Freedom receipients, including (L-R) Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial, Basketball Hall of Fame member Bill Russell and AFL-CIO President Emeritus John Sweeney in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in human rights, sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama holds one of the 2010 Medalsl of Freedom that he presented in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in human rights, sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents cellist and cultural ambassador Yo Yo Ma with the 2010 Medal of Freedom in East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to founder of the non-profit organization VSA Jean Kennedy Smith during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to cellist Yo-Yo Ma, during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. Yo-Yo Ma is considered the world’s greatest living cellist, recognized as a prodigy since the age of five whose celebrity transcends the world of classical music. Born in Paris, Ma was a child prodigy who went on to study with Leonard Rose in New York. He made his Carnegie Hall debut at age nine. He was the recipient of the Avery Fisher Prize in 1978, and, in 1991, Harvard awarded him an honorary doctorate in music. He serves as Artistic Director of the Silk Road Project, and has won sixteen Grammy awards. He is known especially for his interpretations of Bach and Beethoven, and for his ability to play many different styles of music, including tango and bluegrass. He serves on the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama (R) presents the 2010 Medal of Freedom to Bill Russell (R), NBA Hall of Famer and civil rights activist on Feburary 15, 2011 at the White House in Washington, DC. The Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor and is 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. AFP PHOTO / Tim Sloan (Photo credit should read TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to cellist Yo-Yo Ma, during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
US President Barack Obama awards the 2010 Medal of Freedom to US Congressman John Lewis, D-Ga, during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, DC, February 15, 2011. Lewis is an American hero and a giant of the Civil Rights Movement. He served as chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), helped to organize the first lunch-counter sit-in in 1959 at the age of 19, and was the youngest speaker at the 1963 March on Washington. In May 1961, he participated in the initial Freedom Ride, during which he endured violent attacks in Rock Hill, South Carolina, and Montgomery, Alabama. In 1964, he helped to coordinate the Mississippi Freedom Project, and, in 1965, he led the Selma-to-Montgomery march to petition for voting rights where marchers were brutally confronted in an incident that became known as “Bloody Sunday.” Eight days later, President Johnson addressed a joint session of Congress, condemned the violence in Selma, and called for passage of the Voting Rights Act, which was enacted within months. Since 1987, John Lewis has continued his service to the nation as the U.S. Representative for Georgia’s 5th District, which encompasses all of Atlanta. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: Investor Warren Buffett (L) is presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama during an East Room event at the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal, the highest honor awarded to civilians, to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents investor, industrialist and philanthropist Warren Buffett with the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: Former U.S. President George H. W. Bush (L) is presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama during an East Room event at the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal, the highest honor awarded to civilians, to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents former U.S. President George H.W. Bush with the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents artist Jasper Johns with the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (R) kisses poet and author Maya Angelou after giving her the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents Basetball Hall of Fame member and human rights advocate Bill Russell the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents Baseball Hall of Fame member Stan Musial the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
President Obama Honors Medal Of Freedom Recipients
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 15: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents Basetball Hall of Fame mamber and human rights advocate Bill Russell the 2010 Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House February 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. Obama presented the medal to twelve pioneers in sports, labor, politics and arts. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
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