(Extensions of Remarks - November 30, 2016)

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[Congressional Record Volume 162, Number 171 (Wednesday, November 30, 2016)]
[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E1544]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []



                         HON. CHARLES B. RANGEL

                              of new york

                    in the house of representatives

                      Wednesday, November 30, 2016

  Mr. RANGEL. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to congratulate the 2016 
recipients of the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
  Presented annually by the National Ethnic Coalition of 
Organizations--NECO, the Ellis Island Medals of Honor pay tribute to 
our Nation's immigrant heritage, as well as individual achievement. The 
Medals are awarded to U.S. citizens from diverse ethnic backgrounds who 
exemplify outstanding qualities in both their personal and professional 
lives, while continuing to preserve the richness of their particular 
heritage and culture. We honor these outstanding individuals because 
the important work they do today, creates a better world for all of us 
tomorrow. 2016 marks NECO's 30th anniversary. This momentous occasion 
was celebrated with a patriotic ceremony on Ellis Island and a re-
commitment by the leaders of the organization to their mission of 
honoring diversity, fostering tolerance and promoting religious and 
racial unity across America.
  Since the Medals' founding, more than 2,500 American citizens have 
received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, including six American 
Presidents, United States Senators, Congressmen, Nobel Laureates, 
athletes, artists, clergy, and military leaders. This Medal is not 
about material success, nor is it about the politics of immigration; it 
is about the people who have committed themselves to this nation, 
embraced the opportunities America has to offer, and most importantly, 
who have used those opportunities to not only better their own lives 
but make a difference in our country and in the lives of its people.
  Citizens of the United States hail from every nation known to man. 
The iconic metaphor of this nation as a veritable melting pot of 
cultures continues to ring true, and it is this diversity that adds to 
the unique richness of American life. It is the key to why America is 
the most innovative, progressive and forward thinking country in the 
world. The Ellis Island Medals of Honor not only celebrate select 
individuals but also the pluralism and democracy that enabled our 
forebearers to celebrate their cultural identities while still 
embracing the American way of life. This award serves to remind us all 
that with hard work and perseverance anyone can still achieve the 
American dream. In addition, by honoring these remarkable Americans, we 
honor all who share their origins and we acknowledge the contributions 
they have made to America. I commend NECO and its Board of Directors 
headed by my good friend, Nasser J. Kazeminy, for honoring these truly 
outstanding individuals for their tireless efforts to foster dialogue 
and build bridges between different ethnic groups, as well as to 
promote unity and a sense of common purpose in our nation.
  Mr. Speaker, I ask all of my colleagues to join me in recognizihg the 
good works of NECO and in congratulating all of the 2016 recipients of 
the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. I also include in the Record the names 
of this year's recipients.

              2016 ellis island medal of honor recipients

       Mustafa K. Abadan FAIA, Bahram Akradi, Dr. Fariba Etemadi-
     Nejad Alamdari, George C. Albano, Mark O. Asperilla, MD, 
     Edward Avedisian, George A. Bannayan, MD, Dr. Rekha Bhandari, 
     David C. Bohnett, VADM Raquel Cruz Bono, MD, Stephen 
     Briganti, Rinaldo S. Brutoco, Barbara Peterson Burwell, John 
     Campion, Ms. Teresa Carlson, Commissioner Patrick Carroll, 
     Stephen J. Cassidy, Gen. Martin E. Dempsey (Ret.), Wendy 
     Diamond, General Ann Dunwoody, Kamran Elahian, Reverend Kail 
     C. Ellis, SA, PhD, Bill Evans, Tamsen Fadal, Hamed Faridi, 
       Omid Farokhzad, M.D., VADM James Gordon Foggo, Paul G. 
     Gaffney II VADM (Ret.), Garo S. Garibian, MD, Augie Garrido, 
     FBI Special Agent Stephen Gaudin, Colonel Peter T. Green III, 
     Timothy Haahs, PE, AIA, Leroy Hood, M.D., Ph.D., Appo K. 
     Jabarian, Hon. Richard A. Jones, Brigadier General Paul J. 
     Kennedy, Mehmood Khan, MD, Prerna Mona Khanna, MD, MPH, FACP, 
     FACPM, FACOEM, Gissou R. Kian, George Spiros Kleris, MD, PhD, 
     Vreij Kolandjian, Jerry Kyser, Joshua Laird, Padma Lakshmi, 
     Risa J. Lavizzo-Mourey, MD, Mr. Hyung Ro Lee, Dr. Devorah 
     Lieberman, Dr. Ajay Lodha, Asad M. Madni, PhD, DSc(H), 
     ScD(H), DEng(H).
       The Hon. Rosario Marin-Former US Treasurer, Eileen C. 
     McDonnell, Captain Thomas S. Morkan, Robert Muzikowski, 
     Alexander Navab, Dr. Chrysostomos L. Nikias, Ronald K. Noble, 
     Thomas J. O'Donnell, Dr. Tony Orlando, Andrew F. Ortiz, JD, 
     MPA, Carl Peterson, Charles Pinajian, Shervin Pishevar, 
     Vincent F. Pitta, Esq., Lori Pollock, Jean Lenti Ponsetto, 
     Issam Raad, MD, FACP, FIDSA, FSHEA, Daniel Ritchie, Kaitlin 
     Roig-DeBellis, M.A. Ed, DHL, Peter Salovey, Ph.D., Akkaraju 
     V.N. Sarma, MD, PhD, FAAFP, Michael H. Saudino, Sr, Edward H. 
     Schauder, Esq., Major General Errol Schwartz.
       Andrew Sieja, Major General John K. Singlaub (Ret.), Dr. 
     Massih Tayebi, I. Lorraine Thomas, Edward Tom, Alice (Ali) 
     Torre, Commissioner Benjamin Tucker, Mike Utley, Emmanuel E. 
     Velivasakis, PE, FASCE, Jeanette Sarkisian Wagner, John C. 
     Wobensmith, Doreen Wohl, Ambassador R. James Woolsey, Arthur 
     William Zeckendorf.

          international ellis island medal of honor recipients

       Anthony von Mandl, Bedriska v. Mandl, Bill S. Hansson, PhD.