Lloyd Hand, Luci Baines Johnson, David Rubenstein, Lynda Johnson Robb, and Cappy McGarr. By Daniel Swartz.

Five Former Presidents Thank David M. Rubenstein For His Generosity to the Nation

Nov 09, 2017

LBJ Foundation Honors Rubenstein with the Prestigious LBJ Liberty & Justice for All Award

WASHINGTON, November 8, 2017 – All five former U.S. presidents surprised philanthropist David M. Rubenstein with a video tribute thanking him for helping to preserve the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Declaration of Independence, and many other treasures of American history. The LBJ Foundation awarded Rubenstein with its most prestigious prize, the LBJ Liberty & Justice for All Award, for his "patriotic philanthropy." At the Nov. 8 event at the National Archives, Rubenstein was shown a video tribute featuring all five living ex-presidents: President Barack Obama, President George W. Bush, President Bill Clinton, President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush, and President Jimmy Carter.

President Obama said:
"Hi David. I’m proud, like so many others, to call you a friend, and grateful for the gifts that you’ve left to future generations of Americans. From the unique vantage point of the White House, my family and I could watch the Washington Monument be restored after an earthquake, and the Museum of African American History and Culture rise nearby, both from a restored National Mall, all efforts that your patriotic patronage made possible.... Congratulations on being honored with the LBJ Liberty & Justice for All Award. It is richly deserved."

President George H. W. Bush said:
"David, you’ve saved some of the most important artifacts of American history, like the Magna Carta, the Declaration of Independence… Thank you, Ruby, and America thanks you for all you’ve done."

First Lady Barbara Bush added:
"...And you didn’t hide them away in your private gallery. You let the American people see them, and be moved by them."

"David Rubenstein has distinguished himself as one of the most grateful and generous Americans of our generation. He embodies the beliefs that President Johnson held dear—that our mission in public service is to serve man and provide opportunity to all," said Larry Temple, chairman of the LBJ Foundation.

ABC News political commentator Cokie Roberts served as Master of Ceremonies at the event, and Ambassador Lloyd Hand and Cappy McGarr were event chairs. Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives, thanked Rubenstein at the event for his generosity. Colin Powell, Ken Burns, and Sharon Rockefeller also appeared on the tribute video to Rubenstein.

David M. Rubenstein
In 1987, Rubenstein co-founded The Carlyle Group. Today, Carlyle is one of the world's largest private equity firms, managing $170 billion from 31 offices around the world. His success has enabled him to donate generously to public schools, universities, hospitals, museums, and zoos and to help preserve and enhance iconic American landmarks including the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Monticello, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and the National Archives—where Rubenstein was honored. A fierce champion of American history, Rubenstein has donated precious copies of historical documents to the Archives and Smithsonian Museums, including the Declaration of Independence, Magna Carta, Emancipation Proclamation, and the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery.

LBJ Liberty & Justice for All Award
The LBJ Liberty & Justice for All Award honors the vision of Lyndon Baines Johnson's presidency and the transformative laws that gave it life: a belief that every citizen should share in the benefits and blessings of the privileges and protections that lie at the heart of the American dream. President Johnson envisioned, and devoted his life to creating, a nation of justice and liberty, where everyone had the opportunity to rise, and those in need would not fail. His legislative achievements shaped the next half century of our national history, and his legacy endures to benefit future generations of Americans – the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Fair Housing Act of 1968, Head Start, Medicare, Medicaid, Job Corps, the Clean Air Act, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Humanities, and many more. The LBJ Foundation created the award to recognize and honor individuals who, in their own unique way, have expanded the opportunities for all of our citizens and carried forward the legacy of President Johnson. Previous recipients include President Jimmy Carter, President George H. W. Bush, Rep. John Lewis, Rep. John Dingell, Sen. Carl Levin, Rep. James Clyburn, and former Attorney General Eric Holder.  Proceeds from the event will benefit the LBJ Washington Center and its immersive graduate program - creating the leaders of tomorrow. 

LBJ Foundation
The LBJ Foundation is a nonprofit organization created by President and Mrs. Johnson to support the LBJ Presidential Library and the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin. The foundation provides support to the library that enhances quality programming, expands educational outreach and exhibits, and administers grants for researchers and scholars. The foundation supports the LBJ School in the outstanding education that it provides its graduate students in public policy and governmental affairs, community outreach, and the exploration of global initiatives. One looks to the past and the other to the future, providing an ongoing legacy for President Johnson's vision for our nation.

LBJ School of Public Affairs Washington Center
The LBJ School of Public Affairs, among the top graduate schools in the nation, created the LBJ Washington Center to prepare a new generation of national leaders. The center provides a platform for elevating the LBJ School and The University of Texas in policy discourse at the national level. 

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