Former President George W. Bush, Laura Bush named recipients of 2018 Liberty Medal
The former first couple are being honored for their commitment to veterans through the work of the George W. Bush Institute.
Former President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura, were named Thursday to be recipients of the 30th annual Liberty Medal for their commitment to veterans.
The National Constitution Center, which administers the $100,000 award, said it will be presented to the couple at a ceremony on Nov. 11, Veterans Day.
In announcing that the Bushes would receive the medal, the center noted the work of the Military Service Initiative within the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas, Texas.
The institute, the center said, "honors the service and sacrifice of all post-9/11 veterans by ensuring they and their families make successful transitions to civilian life, specifically in addressing the challenges of employment and overcoming the invisible wounds of war."
The former first couple will donate the $100,000 that comes with the medal to "A Charge to Keep," the campaign that endows the work of the George W. Bush Institute and its Military Service Initiative.
"Our democracy depends upon the embrace of high ideals and civic responsibility, and there's no finer example of citizenship than our veterans," Bush, who served from 2001 to 2009, said in statement. "Laura and I are honored to dedicate this award from the National Constitution Center to the men and women who have defended and upheld the rights and freedoms enshrined in our Constitution."
Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, praised the Bushes in a statement, saying, "Their tireless work on behalf of those who serve our country and defend our Constitution is inspiring."
Established in 1988 to commemorate the bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution, the Liberty Medal is awarded annually to honor "men and women of courage and conviction who strive to secure the blessings of liberty to people around the globe," the center said.
Recent recipients of the Liberty Medal include U.S. Sen. John McCain (R., Ariz.); U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D., Ga.); the Dalai Lama; Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai; Hillary Rodham Clinton; and Muhammad Ali.