On Tuesday, the White House’s East Room will be filled with the sounds of music and the glow of the arts as President Joe Biden honors this year’s recipients of the National Humanities Medals and National Medals of Arts. First Lady Jill Biden will also attend the ceremony, adding to the elegance of the affair.
The National Medal of Arts and the National Humanities Medal are prestigious honors bestowed by the United States Government, recognizing individuals, groups, and organizations that have made significant contributions to the arts and humanities in America. These awards highlight excellence and dedication to the advancement of culture in America.
Among the 2021 recipients of the National Humanities Medal are names like Richard Blanco, Johnnetta Betsch Cole, Walter Isaacson, Earl Lewis, Henrietta Mann, Ann Patchett, Bryan Stevenson, and Amy Tan, who have all made significant contributions to society through their unique work in the humanities. These honorees have expanded the boundaries of American culture, educated and challenged generations of students, and honored the rich history of Native American culture.
The National Medal of Arts, the highest award given to artists, arts patrons, and groups, will also be presented to several individuals who have made significant contributions to American culture, including Judith Francisca Baca, Fred Eychaner, Jose Feliciano, Mindy Kaling, Gladys Knight, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Antonio Martorell-Cardona, Joan Shigekawa, Bruce Springsteen, Vera Wang, The Billie Holiday Theatre, and The International Association of Blacks in Dance.
Their work in architecture, music, television, comedy, and art has inspired millions of people and built bridges across the United States.
President Biden’s presentation of the National Humanities Medal is not new, as he previously awarded Sir Elton John with the medal during a White House event in September 2022 called “A Night When Hope and History Rhyme.”
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