Denzel Washington and Simone Biles will soon have another award for their shelves.
The two-time Oscar and Tony winner and the four-time Olympic gold medalist are among the 17 individuals chosen this year to receive the nation’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The White House announced this year’s honorees on Friday. The medals will be awarded at a White House ceremony on Thursday, July 7.
This year’s other winners include soccer star and equal pay advocate Megan Rapinoe. Posthumous honorees include Sen. John McCain, the late AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.
Incidentally, President Joe Biden is the first president to award the medals after already receiving one himself. Former President Barack Obama presented the medal to Biden in 2017, who was then serving as vice president.
Other honorees include civil rights advocate and former U.S. Ambassador Raúl Yzaguirre, civil rights attorney Fred Gray and Sandra Lindsay, a nurse who became the first American to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
“These 17 Americans demonstrate the power of possibilities and embody the soul of the nation — hard work, perseverance and faith,” the White House said.
“They have overcome significant obstacles to achieve impressive accomplishments in the arts and sciences, dedicated their lives to advocating for the most vulnerable among us, and acted with bravery to drive change in their communities — and across the world — while blazing trails for generations to come.”
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