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James Taylor, Gloria Estefan Among Presidential Medal Of Freedom Recipients For 2015


WASHINGTON D.C. (CelebrityAccess) — Barbra Streisand, Stephen Sondheim, James Taylor and Gloria and Emilio Estefan are among the 17 recipients announced to receive of this year’s Presidential Medal of Freedom. The medals will be presented by President Obama during a ceremony at the White House on November 24th.

Other 2015 recipients for the prestigious medal include veterans activist Bonnie Carroll, director Steven Spielberg, former Rep. Lee Hamilton, NASA mathematician Katherine G. Johnson, baseball star Willie Mays, Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), conductor Itzhak Perlman and former EPA administrator William Ruckelshaus.

Posthumous honors will go to Shirley Chisholm, the first African American woman elected to Congress; baseball legend Yogi Berra; Indian rights activist Billy Frank Jr. and human rights activist Minoru Yasui.

In a statement, President Obama said: “From public servants who helped us meet defining challenges of our time to artists who expanded our imaginations, from leaders who have made our union more perfect to athletes who have inspired millions of fans, these men and women have enriched our lives and helped define our shared experience as Americans.”

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the White House’s highest civilian honor and is awarded 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. Previous winners include Meryl Street, Stevie Wonder, Van Cliburn, B.B. King, Bob Dylan and Plácido Domingo among others. – Staff Writers