Broadway Producer Wendy Federman Receives Ellis Island Medal Of Honor
The Ellis Island Honors Society (EIHS) has announced the recipients of the 34th Ellis Island Medals of Honor. This annual medal is awarded to 100 Americans, both native-born and naturalized, whose accomplishments in their field and inspired service to our nation are worthy of commendation. The Ellis Island Medals of Honor recognizes individuals who have made it their mission to share with those less fortunate their wealth of knowledge, indomitable courage, boundless compassion, unique talents and selfless generosity. They do so while acknowledging their debt to their ethnic heritage as they uphold the ideals and spirit of America.
On May 11th, eight-time Tony Award winning Broadway theatre and film producer Wendy Federman, recording artist Paula Abdul, CNN correspondent Sanjay Gupta, Executive Director of the U.N. World Food Programme David Beasley, IBM CEO Ginni Rometty, former Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, The Coca-Cola Company Chairman Muhtar Kent, Morgan Stanley Chairman and CEO John Mack, Mastercard President and CEO Ajay Banga, Marilyn Carlson Nelson of the Carlson Company, philanthropic investor Clara Wu Tsai, and composer of Ellis Island: The Dream of America, Peter Boyer, were among the 2019 honorees. They, along with other accomplished Americans, gathered in Ellis Island's Great Hall, the original registry room which served as the gateway for 12 million immigrants to the U.S., for the annual Ellis Island Medals of Honor black-tie gala where they received and celebrated their award in the light of the Statue of Liberty.
Wendy Federman is an eight-time Tony Award winning theatre and film producer. She has also received an Olivier Award, seven Drama Desk Awards, ten Outer Critics Circle Awards, and eleven Drama League Awards for many of her nearly 80 co-productions. For this Broadway season, Wendy was nominated for six Tony Awards. She was recognized for own extraordinary professional career and the inspiration she provides for others. In addition, she was honored for her commitment to the theater arts and the generosity of her time in her many philanthropic causes related to her profession. Wendy has spent countless hours throughout her career mentoring aspiring producers, actors and writers. She has been a continuous source of support and encouragement to interns and creative students of the arts providing advice and guidance enabling them to begin their own successful careers.
Wendy is a proud member of the John F. Kennedy Center's National Committee for the Performing Arts whose mission is to fulfill President Kennedy's vision by producing and presenting the greatest examples of music, dance, and theater; supporting artists in the creation of new work; and serving the nation as a leader in arts education. In addition, Wendy has served as a trustee on several significant Boards, including: Foundation for Gender Equality, Bergen Performing Arts Center, Gilda's Club Northern New Jersey, MCC Theater and Penguin Repertory Theater. Wendy is the chair of the Nominating Committee and also serves as co-chair of the annual Chita Rivera Awards event which celebrates the superb achievements of the top dancers and choreographers on Broadway and in film. "I am deeply honored to be a recipient of this distinguished award and will proudly and wholeheartedly continue to support and celebrate diversity in the arts."
This year's distinguished medalists hail from a range of industries and backgrounds. While some were recognized for a lifetime of achievements, others were being celebrated for their visionary leadership into the 21st century. From tech executives to members of local and U.S. government, to influencers in the entertainment and sports industry, each 2019 medalist has shown conviction and passion in ensuring that our nation's diversity is embraced.
"To be a success in America, you must be daring, bold and determined. Those qualities describe the immigrants who risk everything for the chance to come here to follow their dreams. America is the land of opportunity and no one should let that opportunity pass them by." said Nasser J. Kazeminy, Chairman of EIHS. "Many of our Medalists have a special familial relationship with Ellis Island. Others arrived more recently, in more modern ways. But they all recognize the symbolism of this hallowed ground. It is the birthplace of the American Dream."
Since the Medal was founded in 1986, EIHS has honored distinguished and diverse Americans including: seven presidents of the United States, Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, Gen. Colin Powell, Gen. Frank Grass, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Dempsey, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and Secretaries of State Madeline Albright, Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton. Notable Americans include Nobel Prize Laurates Elie Wiesel and Malala Yousafzai, Bob Hope, Muhammad Ali, Frank Sinatra, Rosa Parks, former Apple CEO John Sculley, former PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi, HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Sen. John McCain, Muhammad Ali and American icon Lee Iacocca, just to name a few. All have distinguished themselves through their significant personal, professional, philanthropic and humanitarian contributions to this country. The Ellis Island Medals of Honor ranks among the nation's most renowned awards. The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have officially recognized the Ellis Island Medals of Honor, and each year the recipients are listed in the Congressional Record.
To see the full list of 2019 recipients, please visit: www.EIHonors.org