Proceedings, Debates of the U.S. Congress
TRIBUTE TO THE 2016 ELLIS ISLAND MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS
(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 [www.gpo.gov] TRIBUTE TO THE 2016 ELLIS ISLAND MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS ______ 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, PhD. 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. ____________________