Some of the names were incredibly familiar to almost all Americans: Muhammad Ali, Elizabeth Taylor, Hank Aaron. Others are well known in their worlds, but perhaps not the country at large. Juan Andrade, an educator and advocate in the Latino community. Sister Carol Coston, a nun who has dedicated her life to the poor. Helen Rodriguez-Trias, a pediatrician who has worked tirelessly to improve access to health care.
Most often cited in his remarks, though, were feats of courage and commitment in the areas of civil rights and integration -- in fact, nearly half the individuals honored were cited in those areas. From Ruby Bridges, who integrated the Louisiana public schools as a 6- year-old, to [Fred Shuttlesworth], who withstood the bombing of his own home in Birmingham during the civil rights movement, to Aaron, whose feats were performed on a baseball diamond, [Clinton] repeatedly cited those who had "broken down barriers."
The other award winners: Don Cameron, executive director of the National Education Association and founding co-chairman of the CEO Forum on Education and Technology; Archibald Cox, who served as special prosecutor during Watergate; biophysicist Charles DeLisi, the first government scientist to outline the feasibility and goals of the Human Genome Project; civil rights lawyer Jack Greenberg, who argued [Ron Brown] v. Board of Education; David Ho, HIV/AIDS researcher and activist; journalist Anthony Lewis; civil rights lawyer Constance Baker Motley; Edward Roybal, founder of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus; former senator Warren Rudman; Eli J. Segal, founder of AmeriCorps; John F. Seiberling, environmentalist and former member of Congress; the late John Sengstacke, publisher of the Chicago Defender; Marion Wiesel, human rights activist; and Patrisha Wright, an activist for the rights of the disabled.
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