Steven Spielberg to receive 2009 Liberty Medal

MUMBAI: The National Constitution Center’s 2009 Liberty Medal will be awarded to filmmaker and humanitarian Steven Spielberg for his artistic and personal commitment to the preservation of human rights. Through his award-winning films, Spielberg has presented stories of the struggle and triumph of humanity over tyranny, informing and inspiring millions to better understand the abiding call of liberty. Spielberg has also dedicated himself to gathering and archiving the testimonies of survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust, ensuring future generations will never forget the tragedy of liberty lost. The public Liberty Medal ceremony will take place on Thursday, 8 October, 2009, at the National Constitution Center on Independence Mall in Historic Philadelphia.

"The Founding Fathers called upon each of us to serve as active participants in our democracy. Through his work in film and philanthropy, Steven Spielberg has heeded that call by reminding us of the power each of us has to make a difference," said National Constitution Center president and chief executive officer Linda E. Johnson.

This year’s Liberty Medal will be presented to Spielberg by, National Constitution Center chairman president William J. Clinton who said, "Continuing in the National Constitution Center’s rich tradition of honoring distinguished leaders who have shown a commitment to change through action, we have once again chosen a highly deserving champion of freedom. I look forward to bestowing this award on my friend Steven Spielberg."

"It will be a great pleasure for me to receive this award," said Spielberg. "I am thrilled to be honored by my dear friend, president Clinton, and to be recognized by an organization unprecedented in its devotion to the most relevant and significant document in our nation’s history. It’s truly humbling to be added to the distinguished list of past recipients, a group of men and women whom I admire deeply for their commitment to educating the world about the importance of freedom and the blessings of liberty."

"As we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Liberty Medal, it is fitting that we have chosen a recipient whose work resonates with people of all ages and cultures, encouraging thoughtful recognition of what it means to stand up for freedom," said governor Edward G. Rendell.