President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India en-route to the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., Sept. 30, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Obama and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi visit the Martin Luther King Memorial
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden pose for photographs with members of law enforcement during a ceremony to honor the 2014 National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO) TOP COPS in East Room of the White House
White House: President Obama And Vice President Biden Honor America’s TOP COPS
This afternoon, the President and Vice President welcomed America’s “TOP COPS” – some of our nation’s best law enforcement officials – to the White House to honor their remarkable service and sacrifice. The TOP COPS are chosen each year by the National Association of Police Organizations, after being nominated by their fellow officers for their notable service during the previous calendar year. And as the President explained, all of today’s honorees – officers, detectives, patrolmen, special agents, and troopers – shared one thing in common:
When the moment came – when the shooting started, or a bomb went off, or a hostage was taken, or a child screamed for help – they did not hesitate. They went into action. They ran toward the danger – not away from it. And they risked their lives to save the lives of others. Vice President Biden echoed these comments in his own remarks, saying that the act of putting on the police shield each morning is, in and of itself, “an act of bravery.”
President Barack Obama poses for a photograph with Brayden Gero, 9, and his father, Boston Police officer Jarrod Gero
Star Tribune: Obama Honors 2014 Top Cops; Says America Owes A Debt To Those Who Put Themselves In Danger
The United States owes a debt to the police officers who put themselves in danger to protect the nation, President Barack Obama said Monday as he honored the nation’s top police officers at the White House. In a ceremony in the East Room, Obama praised the recipients of 2014 National Association of Police Organizations TOP COPS. Obama said when the moment came, the officers didn’t hesitate to take action, but instead ran toward danger.
“The 53 officers, detectives, patrolmen, special agents, and troopers that we celebrate today are America’s finest, the best of the best,” Obama said. Some of the officers honored helped respond to the Boston Marathon bombing or the shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. Obama said some sustained injuries or lost friends and partners in the call of duty.
First Lady Michelle Obama presents a 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service to Mystic Aquarium, of Mystic, Conn., represented by Justin Richard, far left, and aquarium President and CEO Stephen Coan, during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House. The National Medal is the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries for service to the community.
North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, represented by museum Director Emlyn Koster, and Molly Paul, of Raleigh, N.C.,
Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn, New York, represented by Chidi Duke, and Library President Scott Medbury
Chicago Public Library Commissioner Brian Bannon (C) and community member Chris Force
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis President and CEO Jeffrey Patchen, holds the museum’s 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service as Spencer Hahn, who had a stroke in-utero, whistles by his mother Erica Hahn and First Lady Michelle Obama
Star Tribune: Michelle Obama Honors 10 Outstanding Museums And Libraries, Including In Her Chicago Hometown
Museums and libraries are playing an important role in a country that is aiming to provide a top-flight education to its children, Michelle Obama said Thursday as she helped honor 10 institutions from across the U.S. for outstanding community service. “Welcome to a little museum that we like to call the White House,” she said to open an East Room ceremony where she handed representatives of each institution a wooden frame that held their medal and a certificate.
The first lady said the institutions’ programs “help us expand our horizon and connect us to with the rest of the world.” She highlighted such offerings as summer expeditions to excavate dinosaur bones alongside professional paleontologists and opportunities to learn marine biology through the feeding and training of beluga whales. “The work that you do in the summers and throughout the year, quite frankly, is filling a crucial role for our country as we strive to give our young people a world-class education,” Mrs. Obama said.
First Lady Michelle Obama recognizes singer Ruslana Lyzhychko, a leader of Ukraine‘s Maidan movement for democratic reform, as she was awarded with the US Secretary of State’s International Women of Courage Award 2014 during a ceremony at the State Department in Washington DC, March 4
During the terrorist occupation of northern Mali, Fatimata Touré channeled her 22 years of experience advocating for women’s health rights to fight resolutely against countless acts of gender-based violence. When extremists attacked the hospital in Gao, she assisted victims in relocating and finding much needed safety and care. As the conflict ensued, Mme. Touré provided counseling and shelter for victims of rape and forced-marriage and publicly denounced perpetrators of gender-based violence. Her actions drew threats from the extremists and, even as her own home was under assault, Mme. Touré hid beneath her bed and used her mobile phone to continue documenting acts of violence against women. Her limitless courage ensured that victims received medical care and that the abuse they suffered was not forgotten during the conflict. As the current head of the Regional Forum on Reconciliation and Peace in Gao, she continues advocating for justice and women’s rights.
Laxmi was 16 when an acquaintance threw acid on her face while she waited at a bus stop, disfiguring her permanently. Her attacker, a friend’s 32-year old brother, planned to use the acid to destroy Laxmi’s face after she refused to respond to his romantic advances. Many acid attack victims never return to normal life: they often go to great lengths to hide their disfigurement, many forgo education or employment rather than appear in public, and suicide is not uncommon. But Laxmi did not hide.
She became the standard-bearer in India for the movement to end acid attacks. She made repeated appearances on national television, gathered 27,000 signatures for a petition to curb acid sales, and took her cause to the Indian Supreme Court. Laxmi’s petition led the Supreme Court to order the Indian central and state governments to regulate immediately the sale of acid, and the Parliament to make prosecutions of acid attacks easier to pursue. Much is left to be done, and Laxmi continues to advocate on behalf of acid attack victims throughout India for increased compensation, effective prosecution and prevention of acid attacks, and rehabilitation of survivors.