United States Presidential Scholars Convene to Celebrate 50th Anniversary

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On June 20-23, 2014, U. S. Presidential Scholars alumni, who have received our nation's highest academic honor for high school seniors, will gather in Washington, DC, to celebrate the program's 50th anniversary. The U.S. Presidential Scholars program, established by Lyndon Johnson in 1964, has honored more than 6,000 of our nation's young men and women for their achievement, leadership, and community service.

On June 20-23, 2014, U. S. Presidential Scholars alumni and their honored guests will gather at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, DC, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the U. S. Presidential Scholars program. The Scholar alumni, who earned the highest academic award any U. S. high school student can receive, were honored between 1964 and 2013.

Speakers and panelists for the 50th Anniversary Summit are past Presidential Scholars who have achieved national and international recognition for their achievements. The program includes journalists, performing artists, business leaders, scientists, bestselling authors, economists, attorneys, and politicians—notably Pulitzer Prize winner Eugene Robinson, civil rights pioneer Martha Bergmark, geoscientist and National Academy of Sciences member Richard Alley, Hollywood actor Leonard Earl Howze, renowned neuroscientist Anya Hurlbert, and Wall Street innovator Sallie Krawcheck.

In addition to a full day of speakers and panels, the four-day event also features a reception at the US Botanic Garden; the Presidential Medallion Ceremony for 2014 Scholars; and a performance at the Kennedy Center given by the 2014 Arts Scholars.

The Summit is the Scholars’ first national reunion event. It coincides with the release of the 180-page book, 50 Years of U. S. Presidential Scholars: In Pursuit of Excellence. The book chronicles the program’s origins, features interviews and biographies of notable alumni, and describes current alumni activities. “I think of Presidential Scholars as the most quintessentially American of all scholastic honorees, with a diversity of recipients that might make Walt Whitman proud,” says the publication’s editor, John Knox, a professor at the University of Georgia. “[This book] is our story, told comprehensively for the first time, told in words, pictures, and statistics that largely come from the Scholars themselves.”

The Summit, working under the theme “Lessons from the Past: Challenges for the Future,” will draw past Scholars from their teens into their sixties into a discussion of their association’s past accomplishments, present potential, and future objectives. During the gathering, Scholars will discuss ways in which they can best serve as a resource for their communities, their nation, and the world. Says Alumni Association President Brian Abrams, “Together, we can be much more than talented individuals. Together, we can build things. Together we can realize the promise and potential of the honor that President Johnson created 50 years ago.”


The U.S. Presidential Scholars program was created in 1964 by executive order of President Lyndon Johnson, and it has been continued by every president since. Its objective is to promote excellence in education and achievement in America by recognizing high school seniors who have distinguished themselves in intellectual pursuits and leadership. Since 1978, performing artists, visual artists, and musicians have also been honored as Presidential Scholars. Since 1983, Scholars have recognized the teachers who have been the most influential in their lives.

Over the last fifty years, more than 6,000 men and women from all states and all walks of life have been named U.S. Presidential Scholars. They were selected through consideration of multiple criteria: learning potential, school record, extracurricular and community activities, innovation, creativity, and more.

Scholar alumni include 59 Rhodes Scholars, 43 Marshall Scholars, a U.S. Poet Laureate, a governor, an ambassador, and a Miss America.

For More Information:

50 Years of Presidential Scholars: In Pursuit of Excellence http://issuu.com/faircountmedia/docs/psp50

2014 Presidential Scholars Named http://www2.ed.gov/programs/psp/index.html

Qualified members of the media are invited. For registration information, please contact:

Contact Name: India Carney
Phone: 347 756 0793
E-mail: icarney(at)live(dot)com


Contact Name: Ernest Baker
Phone: 305 607 9239
E-mail: ernest(dot)felton(at)gmail(dot)com

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Faith Brynie
U. S. Presidential Scholars Alumni Association
+1 (406) 837-5170
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