Thursday, November 17, 2016

Hillary Clinton Urges Supporters to 'Stay Engaged' in First Speech Since Election

PSC Announces New York’s Approval of Sale of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant

Albany - The New York State Public Service Commission (Commission) today announced approval of the sale of the James A. FitzPatrick nuclear power plant in Scriba to Exelon Corporation. The transfer will facilitate the continued operation of the carbon-neutral plant as a bridge to a renewable energy future without the need for imported fossil fuels such as fracked gas and oil from out of state or for the restarting of coal plants to supply energy demand from across the state. Today's action also better enables the State to reach its 40 percent by 2030 carbon reduction goals and supports the Clean Energy Standard, the most comprehensive and ambitious plan in the state’s history to fight climate change, reduce harmful air pollution, and ensure a diverse and reliable energy supply at affordable prices for all New Yorkers.
“Our finding today is that the public will be well-served by the transfer of ownership of FitzPatrick,” said Commission Chair Audrey Zibelman. “Exelon has an excellent track record as the owner of nuclear power plants, and we fully expect it will operate FitzPatrick in a safe and reliable fashion.”
The Clean Energy Standard obtains zero-emissions credits from upstate nuclear power plants to ensure that critical progress on greenhouse gas emissions reductions is sustained as the state works toward achieving its goal to generate 50 percent of New York’s electricity from renewable energy sources like wind and solar by 2030. Maintaining zero-emission nuclear power is a critical element to achieving New York’s ambitious climate goals. Were Fitzpatrick to close, carbon emissions in New York will increase by more than 31 million metric tons during the next two years, resulting in public health and other societal costs of at least $1.4 billion according to studies conducted by the Brattle Group.
Under the terms of the agreement, Entergy Corporation will transfer Fitzpatrick's operating license to Exelon for $110 million. If the other regulatory approvals are obtained and the transaction closes, Entergy would then transfer the plant to Exelon.
The 838-megawatt Oswego County facility, currently owned by Entergy, provides enough carbon-free electricity to power more than 800,000 average-sized homes. Keeping the emissions-free plant operational will avoid three million tons of carbon emissions annually – representing about 10 percent of the state's carbon savings.

FitzPatrick’s continued operation is essential to New York’s nation-leading efforts to power the state with 50 percent renewable energy by 2030. The power plant employs approximately 600 highly-skilled, well-paid workers, and contributes about $500 million per year in regional economic activity. FitzPatrick also accounts for $17.3 million in local property taxes supporting critical services to local governments and schools.
Final transaction closure is dependent upon regulatory review and approval by federal agencies, including the US Department of Justice, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2017.

Exelon operates two other nuclear energy facilities in upstate New York: R.E. Ginna and Nine Mile Point, the latter of which is near FitzPatrick. Together, Exelon’s two upstate plants provide carbon-free electricity to more than 2.5 million homes and businesses while employing more than 1,500 full-time staff.
As a result of Governor Cuomo’s Clean Energy Standard, Exelon will reinvest millions back into the nuclear units, including upwards of $500 million in operations, integration and refueling expenditures for the upstate plants in spring of 2017, all of which will have a positive impact across the state. Exelon has committed to refueling FitzPatrick in January 2017.
The Clean Energy Standard builds on the progress made under New York’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) and is a central component of Reforming the Energy Vision, Governor Cuomo’s strategy to fight climate change and grow New York’s economy by building a cleaner, more resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers. Under the RPS, 65 large scale renewable energy projects have been developed around the state, adding approximately 2,000 megawatts of renewable capacity to the New York energy market, with additional projects expected soon under the final phase of the RPS program.
Today’s decision may be obtained by going to the Commission Documents section of the Commission’s Web site at and entering Case Number 16-E-0472 in the input box labeled "Search for Case/Matter Number". Many libraries offer free Internet access. Commission documents may also be obtained from the Commission’s Files Office, 14th floor, Three Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12223 (518-474-2500). 
Source: Public Service Commission

Governor Cuomo Responds to Recent Incidents of Bias and Discrimination

The following statement was submitted today by the Governor's press office. 

“New York and this nation were founded on the premise that we are all created equal. In the weeks that have followed the election, that promise has rung hollow for too many New Yorkers and Americans.

“Hate crimes have spiked across the country and this state has not been spared. Last night, fliers glorifying the KKK were found distributed on cars in Patchogue. This morning, a swastika was discovered on the B train in Manhattan. These are just the latest incidents. My administration has launched a number of investigations into hate crimes targeting minorities and immigrants.

“I call on all public officials, of all parties, and indeed, all people everywhere, to denounce and repudiate these expressions, and to pledge to punish to the full extent of the law anyone engaged in such acts. To remain silent is to engage in a dangerous new permissiveness that threatens our American way.

“Let me be very clear: These acts of hate and intolerance go against everything New York stands for. We have welcomed generations of immigrants with open arms. This state will continue that proud legacy – we will not turn our backs and we will not let this heated rhetoric divide us. We will stand strong united in the face of intolerance and show the world that we are one people, one family, and one New York.”

Earlier this week, Governor Cuomo launched a toll-free hotline to report incidents of bias and discrimination. The hotline marks another step forward in state’s efforts to protect New Yorkers, and allow those who are victims prejudice to file a complaint with the Division of Human Rights.

Residents who have experienced bias-motivated threats, harassment or discrimination are encouraged to call DHR’s toll-free hotline at (888) 392-3644 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday - Friday. If you want to report a crime or fear for your safety, call 911 immediately.

Department of Civil Service Announces Correction Officer Trainee Exam

The New York State Department of Civil Service today announced new exams for Correction Officer Trainee and Correction Officer Trainee (Spanish Language), scheduled to be held on February 11, 2017.

Trainee positions are available in Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) correctional facilities statewide. Interested candidates must complete and submit an exam application by December 20, 2016. To view the exam announcement and apply online, visit:

“The Department of Civil Service is committed to working with DOCCS and other agencies throughout the State to ensure that they have the right people for the right job at the right time,” said Acting Civil Service Commissioner Lola W. Brabham. “I encourage all interested candidates to take the Correction Officer exam and explore a rewarding career in public safety with New York State.”

“The Civil Service examination for the position of Correction Officer offers a tremendous opportunity for those New Yorkers who meet the qualifications to pursue a valuable career and join a growing family of diverse state residents who safeguard their State,” said Acting DOCCS Commissioner Anthony J. Annucci. 

“The distinction of holding the title of Correction Officer is a time honored and noble one that comes with a sense of pride and satisfaction in knowing that the citizens of New York State have entrusted you to serve and protect their families and the community.”

Individuals appointed to a Correction Officer Trainee position will be required to participate and complete all requirements of a year-long traineeship program.

Correction Officers are responsible for the custody and security, as well as the safety and well-being, of criminal offenders in New York State Correctional Facilities. Duties include supervising the movement and activities of inmates, maintaining order within the facility, and advising inmates of the rules and regulations governing the operation of the facility, among other security related activities.

The hiring rate for a Correction Officer Trainee is $40,590, with an increase to $42,695 after six months. Upon successful completion of the training program and a one-year probationary period, the annual salary will increase to $48,889.

At the time of the appointment, candidates must be a United States citizen and a New York State resident at least 21 years of age. In addition, the candidate must be a high school graduate or have a high school equivalency diploma, and have no previous felony convictions.

The New York State Department of Civil Service is the principal human resources provider for the Executive Branch of State Government, serving approximately 150,000 employees. The Department provides examination services and supports civil service administration to 70 State and 95 municipal agencies. Since 2011, the Department has administered more than 20,000 exams to 750,000 State and local candidates.

The Department also administers the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) for State and local government employees, retirees and their families. This comprehensive health insurance benefits program is one of the largest public employer health insurance programs in the nation, covering 1.2 million lives. 

Source: NYS Department of Civil Service

President Obama Joint News Conference with German Chancellor Merkel

President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel hold a joint news conference following a bilateral meeting in Berlin. This is the president’s final foreign trip of his term. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

James Clapper Testifies on Capitol Hill After Submitting Resignation

James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, formally announced his resignation during a House Intelligence Committee hearing, saying he submitted his letter and the resignation will be effective at noon on January 20, 2017. Director Clapper testified alongside the Deputy Defense Secretary and the Defense Under Secretary for Intelligence about the role the intelligence community plays in supporting the Defense Department. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Christian Science Monitor Breakfast with Senator Bernie Sanders

Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) spoke to reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast about the 2016 election results, Donald Trump’s presidency, and the Democratic Party. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

House Speaker Weekly Briefing

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) holds his weekly briefing with reporters on Capitol Hill ahead of the Thanksgiving Day recess.  

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Source: C-SPAN

House Minority Leader Weekly Briefing

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks to reporters about her own future and her party’s legislative agenda in the lame-duck session. She also looks ahead to the 115th Congress and the Trump presidency.

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Politics in Action: S. 3110

S. 3110 - American Energy and Conservation Act of 2016
(Sen. Cassidy, R-LA, and five cosponsors)

The Administration strongly opposes S. 3110, the American Energy and Conservation Act.  The bill would, among other things, change existing revenue sharing laws to increase the amount that certain States and counties would receive from energy production on Federal lands and waters, thereby reducing the fair return on the development of these minerals to taxpayers across the country for their shared resources.  S. 3110 would have significant and long-term costs to the Federal Treasury.

The Department of the Interior, which oversees the development of about 23 percent of domestic energy supplies collects, on average, over $10 billion annually from the development of Federal minerals, including fossil and renewable energy resources.  Various statutes govern how these revenues are allocated depending on the resource type and location.  About half of the Federal revenue from onshore energy development is shared with States or counties, with the remainder deposited in the Treasury, where it offsets annual appropriations or otherwise contributes to deficit reduction.  The majority of revenue generated from offshore energy leases on the Federal Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) goes to the Treasury, while a portion goes to fund important Federal conservation programs through contributions to the Land and Water Conservation Fund and the Historic Preservation Fund.  Through the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act of 2006 (GOMESA), the amount of OCS revenue allocated to revenue sharing payments to nearby States and counties is already set to increase dramatically in fiscal year 2018.

The Administration takes seriously its responsibility to the public for the stewardship of the Nation's energy resources and public assets that generate royalty revenue from Federal leases.  It remains committed to ensuring that American taxpayers receive a fair return from the sale of public resources owned by all Americans.  That is why the President's 2017 Budget proposes to redirect future GOMESA revenue sharing payments to the dual objectives of reducing the deficit and enhancing the resilience of coastal communities nationwide to the impacts of climate change.  In contrast, the provisions of S. 3110 would ultimately reduce the fair return on the development of these minerals to taxpayers across the country for their shared resources, would result in reductions of billions of dollars in deposits to the Treasury, and would add significantly to the Federal deficit.  

If the President were presented with S. 3110, his senior advisors would recommend he veto the bill

Source: Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget

Hollywood & Race: Birth of A Nation

This video was published on YouTube on April 11, 2015. 

In the climax of the movie, the Klan rides to the rescue of the white families, and then prevents African-Americans from voting in the next election, thus preserving white supremacy. 

Source: MUHistory

Trailblazers in Black History: Admiral Michelle J. Howard

Michelle Janine Howard is a United States Navy admiral who currently serves as the commander of U.S. Naval Forces Europe while she concurrently serving as the commander of U.S. Naval Forces Africa and commander of Allied Joint Force Command Naples

She previously served as the 38th Vice Chief of Naval Operations. She assumed her current assignment on June 7, 2016.

Howard has achieved many historical firsts throughout her naval career. She was the first African-American woman to command a U.S. Navy ship, the USS Rushmore, and the first to achieve three star rank. 

In 2006, she was selected for the rank of rear admiral (lower half), making her the first admiral selected from the U.S. Naval Academy class of 1982 and the first female graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy selected for flag rank. 

On July 1, 2014, Howard became the first woman to become a four-star admiral. As Vice Chief of Naval Operations, which she began that same day, she is the first African-American and the first woman to hold that post. 

Additional information is available here

Source: Wikipedia

Philando Castile Family Pleased With Charges Against Officer

Valerie Castile spoke briefly about the charges filed against officer Jeronimo Yanez in the shooting death of her son. Castile says she now wants the public to stay calm and let the judicial process play out.

Cosby Fails Again in Bid to Get Sex Assault Case Tossed

A Pennsylvania judge has once again refused to dismiss sexual assault charges against Bill Cosby — and also ruled that accusers who want to take the stand do not have to undergo competency hearings.

Montgomery County Judge Steven O'Neil said he has not yet made a decision on another key matter: whether prosecutors can use a deposition Cosby gave in a civil case, in which he talked about giving women Qualuudes for sex, during the criminal trial. 

Cosby is charged with drugging and molesting Andrea Constand at his Pennsylvania home in 2004 — the only criminal case stemming from dozens of claims of sexual misconduct that have surfaced in the last year and a half. He has denied any wrongdoing. 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: NBC News 

Students Walk Out in Day of Protest Against Trump Immigration Plans

Students at New York and New Jersey universities walked out of class Wednesday in protest over president-elect Donald Trump's stated immigration plans, and other demonstrations were held in Florida and California in a day of action organizers titled with the hashtag "sanctuary campus."

A Facebook page for the movement calls on students to "commit to putting our bodies between Trump and our undocumented students."

Some of the protests were organized by Movimiento Cosecha, which calls for "permanent protection, dignity and respect for the immigrant community."

Trump campaigned heavily on immigration "reforms," and has pledged to deport undocumented immigrants — although he has appeared to have softened his tone somewhat since winning the election.

"It's just nice to see solidarity, and I think people are wondering what they can do and what's the next step and how we can become a nation that's proud of its diversity and not divided because of it," New York University law student Sarika Arya told NBC New York

Click here for the full article.

Trump Immigration Adviser Kris Kobach Wrote the Book on Muslim Registry

The man who helped write the book on creating a federal Muslim registry in the name of national security, now has Donald Trump's ear as a top member of his transition team.

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, a policy wonk with a reputation for handcrafting the legal means to political ends, says he has a plan to help Trump pull off some of his most contentious campaign promises.

Trump has explored a variety of methods to vet potential terror threats, targeting specifically Muslims by proposing outright travel bans or creating a federal database of all people in the United States who practice Islam. 

Click here for the full article.

Who is Jared Kushner? Donald Trump's Son-in-Law Could Play a Key Role

$3 Million in Environmental Justice Commmunity Impact Grants Available

A total of $3 million in Environmental Justice Community Impact Grants is now available to mitigate environmental and public health threats in low-income and minority communities. This funding was included in the expanded Environmental Protection Fund, part of Governor Cuomo's aggressive Environmental Justice initiative, in this year’s State Budget. More than $3 million will be distributed to communities around the state, the most ever offered in a single grant round in the decade-long existence of the initiative. 

"These grants empower residents to address the environmental concerns that directly affect where they live, and during the last 10 years, remarkable progress has been made one neighborhood at a time," Governor Cuomo said. "With this major increase in funding, we will expand the reach of the program to combat this inequality and address environmental justice concerns in even more communities across New York."

The Community Impact Grants are administered through the Department of Environmental Conservation’s Office of Environmental Justice. Since the program's launch in 2006, the Department of Environmental Conservation has distributed more than $4 million for 121 Environmental Justice projects statewide. 

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul announced today’s record Environmental Justice funding at the New York City Sustainable Development & Collaborative Governance Conference.

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said, "Governor Cuomo has prioritized lifting up all communities across the state through strategic investments in every region,” who announced today’s record Environmental Justice funding. By focusing on environmental and public health projects, these grants will directly impact vulnerable New Yorkers and improve their quality of life."

Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, "Supporting community based efforts to improve environmental quality and protect public health is essential, and I’m proud of the accomplishments we’ve achieved over the past decade of this program. The increased EPF funding provided this year will further enhance, and jumpstart new, projects in many EJ communities across the state, and I look forward to continuing to grow this important program in the years ahead."

Not-for-profit community-based organizations are eligible to apply for Community Impact Grants to work on projects that address environmental and public health concerns of the residents in the impacted neighborhood. Organizations are required to have their primary office located in the affected community, serve residents in one city, town or borough and have a total annual revenue less than $3,000,000.

Organizations can request up to $50,000. Projects must address a community’s exposure to multiple harms and risks and include a research component that will be used to expand the knowledge of the affected community. Previous projects awarded by the Department of Environmental Conservation have included citizen science, water/air quality monitoring, urban farming, alternative energy projects, curriculum development, green infrastructure installation and more. A complete list of previous projects and winners is available here

All applicants are required to register and prequalify in the Grants Gateway before applying for a Community Impact Grant. This is a web-based grants management tool used to improve the way grants are administered by the state. Once registered and prequalified, organizations can then apply for the grant in the Grants Gateway. Instructions and application are available here.

The Department of Environmental Conservation's Office of Environmental Justice will host a webinar on November 30 at 1:30 p.m. to educate organizations on the grants process and answer any questions they may have. Register for the webinar here.

The deadline to submit an application for the Environmental Justice Community Impact Grant is January 31 at 3 p.m. For a complete list of guidelines more information, contact the Department of Environmental Conservation's Office of Environmental Justice at 866.229.0497, or 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Bildt: It's the End of the West as We Know It

"Russia will try to explore what they can achieve with President Trump," says the former Swedish Foreign Minister. "The danger," he says, is Moscow overplays its hand.
Source: CNN

This Teen Uses Clay to Fight ISIS

17-year-old Nenous Thabit stands up to ISIS by making copies of sculptures destroyed by the militant group.
Source: CNN

Citizens Too Scared to Leave Aleppo

Thousands of citizens are trapped in rebel held areas of east Aleppo. CNN's Jomana Karadsheh reports.

Source: CNN

Trump Set to Meet with Japan's Prime Minister

President-elect Donald Trump is scheduled to meet with Japan's Prime Minister Shinzō Abe. CNN's Andrew Stevens reports.

Source: CNN

Refugees Find Solace with the 'Fugees'

Top 10 CNN Hero Luma Mufleh started a soccer team for refugees that grew into a school for refugee children to receive a formal education.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Veep Talk: President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine

Vice President Biden spoke by phone today with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. The two leaders underscored the importance of full implementation of the Minsk agreements, and President Poroshenko previewed Ukrainian preparations for the upcoming EU-Ukraine Summit in Brussels on November 24. The leaders expressed hope that the summit would provide a positive signal of support for the Ukrainian people. The leaders also discussed Ukraine's reform trajectory and emphasized the need for continued swift progress, including on steps needed to secure Ukraine's next tranche of IMF funding. 

Source: The White House, Office of the Vice President

President Obama Names Recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom


WASHINGTON, DC – Today, President Barack Obama named 21 recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors. The awards will be presented at the White House on November 22.

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."

This event will be streamed live at:

The following individuals will be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom:

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the National Basketball Association’s all-time leading scorer who helped lead the Los Angeles Lakers to five championships and the Milwaukee Bucks to another. During his career, Abdul-Jabbar was a six-time NBA Most Valuable Player and a 19-time NBA All-Star. Before joining the NBA, he was a star player at UCLA, leading the Bruins to three consecutive championships. In addition to his legendary basketball career, Abdul-Jabbar has been an outspoken advocate for social justice.

Elouise Cobell (posthumous)
Elouise Cobell was a Blackfeet Tribal community leader and an advocate for Native American self-determination and financial independence.  She used her expertise in accounting to champion a lawsuit that resulted in a historic settlement, restoring tribal homelands to her beloved Blackfeet Nation and many other tribes, and in so doing, inspired a new generation of Native Americans to fight for the rights of others.  Cobell helped found the Native American Bank, served as director of the Native American Community Development Corporation, and inspired Native American women to seek leadership roles in their communities.

Ellen DeGeneres
Ellen DeGeneres is an award-winning comedian who has hosted her popular daytime talk show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, since 2003 with her trademarked humor, humility, and optimism. In 2003 Ellen lent her voice to a forgetful but unforgettable little fish named Dory in Finding Nemo. She reprised her role again in 2016 with the hugely successful Finding Dory. Ellen also hosted the Academy Awards twice, in 2007 and 2014. In 1997, after coming out herself, DeGeneres made TV history when her character on Ellen revealed she was a lesbian. In her work and in her life, she has been a passionate advocate for equality and fairness.

Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro has brought to life some of the most memorable roles in American film during a career that spans five decades. His first major film roles were in the sports drama Bang the Drum Slowly and Martin Scorsese's crime film Mean Streets.  He is a seven-time Academy Award nominee and two-time Oscar winner, and is also a Kennedy Center honoree. 

Richard Garwin
Richard Garwin is a polymath physicist who earned a Ph.D. under Enrico Fermi at age 21 and subsequently made pioneering contributions to U.S. defense and intelligence technologies, low-temperature and nuclear physics, detection of gravitational radiation, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computer systems, laser printing, and nuclear arms control and nonproliferation. He directed Applied Research at IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center and taught at the University of Chicago, Columbia University, and Harvard University. The author of 500 technical papers and a winner of the National Medal of Science, Garwin holds 47 U.S. patents, and has advised numerous administrations. 

Bill and Melinda Gates
Bill and Melinda Gates established the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2000 to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, the foundation focuses on improving people's health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, the mission is to ensure that all people—especially those with the fewest resources—have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life. The Gates Foundation has provided more than $36 billion in grants since its inception.

Frank Gehry
Frank Gehry is one of the world’s leading architects, whose works have helped define contemporary architecture. His best-known buildings include the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, the Dancing House in Prague, and the Guggenheim Museum building in Bilbao, Spain. 

Margaret H. Hamilton
Margaret H. Hamilton led the team that created the on-board flight software for NASA's Apollo command modules and lunar modules. A mathematician and computer scientist who started her own software company, Hamilton co-created the concepts of asynchronous software, priority scheduling, and human-in-the-loop decision capability, which set the foundation for modern, ultra-reliable software design and engineering. 

Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks is one of the Nation’s finest actors and filmmakers. He has been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role five times, and received the award for his work in Philadelphia and Forrest Gump.  Those roles and countless others, including in Apollo 13, Saving Private Ryan, and Cast Away, have left an indelible mark on American film. Off screen, as an advocate, Hanks has advocated for social and environmental justice, and for our veterans and their families. 

Grace Hopper (posthumous)
Rear Admiral Grace Hopper, known as “Amazing Grace” and “the first lady of software,” was at the forefront of computers and programming development from the 1940s through the 1980s. Hopper’s work helped make coding languages more practical and accessible, and she created the first compiler, which translates source code from one language into another.  She taught mathematics as an associate professor at Vassar College before joining the United States Naval Reserve as a lieutenant (junior grade) during World War II, where she became one of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer and began her lifelong leadership role in the field of computer science.

Michael Jordan
Michael Jordan is one of the greatest athletes of all time. Jordan played 15 seasons in the NBA for the Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards; he is currently a principal owner and chairman of the Charlotte Hornets.  During his career, he won six championships, five Most Valuable Player awards, and appeared in 14 All-Star games.

Maya Lin
Maya Lin is an artist and designer who is known for her work in sculpture and landscape art. She designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. and since then has pursued a celebrated career in both art and architecture.  A committed environmentalist, Lin is currently working on a multi-sited artwork/memorial, What is Missing? bringing awareness to the planet's loss of habitat and biodiversity.

Lorne Michaels
Lorne Michaels is a producer and screenwriter, best known for creating and producing Saturday Night Live, which has run continuously for more than 40 years. In addition, Michaels has also produced The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Seth Meyers, and 30 Rock, among other popular, award-winning shows. He has won 13 Emmy Awards over the course of his lengthy career.

Newt Minow
Newt Minow is an attorney with a long and distinguished career in public life. After serving in the U.S. Army during World War II, Minow served as a Supreme Court clerk and counsel to the Governor of Illinois. In 1961, President Kennedy selected Minow, then 34, to serve as Chairman of the Federal Communications Committee (FCC), where he helped shape the future of American television and was a vigorous advocate for broadcasting that promoted the public interest. In the five decades since leaving the FCC, Minow has maintained a prominent private law practice while devoting himself to numerous public and charitable causes. 

Eduardo Padrón
Eduardo Padrón is the President of Miami Dade College (MDC), one of the largest institutions of higher education in the United States. During his more than four decade career, President Padrón has been a national voice for access and inclusion. He has worked to ensure all students have access to high quality, affordable education. He has championed innovative teaching and learning strategies making MDC a national model of excellence.

Robert Redford
Robert Redford is an actor, director, producer, businessman, and environmentalist. In 1981, he founded the Sundance Institute to advance the work of independent filmmakers and storytellers throughout the world, including through its annual Sundance Film Festival. He has received an Academy Award for Best Director and for Lifetime Achievement.  Redford has directed or starred in numerous motion pictures, including The Candidate, All the President's Men, Quiz Show, and A River Runs Through It.  

Diana Ross
Diana Ross has had an iconic career spanning more than 50 years within the entertainment industry in music, film, television, theater, and fashion. Diana Ross is an Academy Award nominee, inductee into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and recipient of the Grammy Awards highest honor, the Lifetime Achievement Award. Ross was a recipient of the 2007 Kennedy Center Honors.  Diana Ross’s greatest legacy is her five wonderful children.

Vin Scully
Vin Scully is a broadcaster who, for 67 seasons, was the voice of the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers.  In Southern California, where generations of fans have grown up listening to Dodger baseball, Scully's voice is known as the "soundtrack to summer."  In 1988, he was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.  Scully's signature voice brought to life key moments in baseball history, including perfect games by Sandy Koufax and Don Larsen, Kirk Gibson's home run in the 1988 World Series, and Hank Aaron's record-breaking 715th home run.

Bruce Springsteen
Bruce Springsteen is a singer, songwriter, and bandleader.  More than five decades ago, he bought a guitar and learned how to make it talk.  Since then, the stories he has told, in lyrics and epic live concert performances, have helped shape American music and have challenged us to realize the American dream.  Springsteen is a Kennedy Center honoree and he and the E Street Band he leads have each been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.   

Cicely Tyson
Cicely Tyson has performed on the stage, on television, and on the silver screen.  She has won two Emmy Awards and a Tony Award, and is known for her performances in Sounder, The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, and The Help.  In 2013, she returned to the stage with The Trip to the Bountiful, and was awarded the Tony Award for best leading actress.  Tyson received the Kennedy Center Honors in 2015. 

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary