Michael Jordan, Diana Ross + More To Receive Presidential Medal Of Freedom

Lenny Kravitz, Grace Jones, Lauryn Hill, Lion Babe, Thundercat, SZA & More Rock The Afropunk Festival 2015 in Brooklyn, NY.

Outgoing President Barack Obama has announced the recipients of the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom. The award is the highest civilian award, along with the Congressional Gold Medal, given by the United States. The award, originally titled the Medal of Freedom, was established by President Truman to recognize civilian service during World War 2. The award took it's current name in 1963. Interestingly, you can receive the award more than once as former Sectary of State Colin Powell did.

The full list of this year's esteemed recipients, twenty-one in total, are: Michael Jordan, Diana Ross, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Elouise Cobell (posthumous), Ellen DeGeneres, Robert De Niro, Richard Garwin, Bill and Melinda Gates, Frank Gehry, Margaret H. Hamilton,Tom Hanks, Grace Hopper (posthumous), Maya Lin, Lorne Michaels, Newt Minow, Eduardo Padrón, Robert Redford, Vin Scully, Bruce Springsteen, and Cicely Tyson.

In a statement made on the White House's website President Obama said:

"The Presidential Medal of Freedom is not just our nation's highest civilian honor - it's a tribute to the idea that all of us, no matter where we come from, have the opportunity to change this country for the better.  From scientists, philanthropists, and public servants to activists, athletes, and artists, these 21 individuals have helped push America forward, inspiring millions of people around the world along the way."

The award ceremony will take place at the White House on Tuesday, November 22nd. If you weren't invited to the ceremony, it's all good. The event will be live streamed. You can watch it here.

H/T: Fader

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