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Congresswoman Clarke’s Statement on Presidential Medal of Freedom Award for the Honorable Shirley Chisholm

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on the announcement that the Honorable Shirley Chisholm will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom Award. Congresswoman Chisholm represented Brooklyn in the United States House of Representatives from 1969 to 1983.

“Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, a woman of high distinction and profound conviction, remains an inspiration to me and to all individuals who want to create positive change in our civil society. I am honored to represent the Congressional District she represented from 1969 to 1983. Born in Brooklyn to a father from Guyana and a mother from Barbados, Congresswoman Chisholm entered public service as an early childhood education administrator. After she was elected to Congress in 1968, she used the authority of her experience to create nutrition assistance programs, expand health care services for parents and children, increase the minimum wage, support the veterans of our Armed Forces, and provide opportunities for women in college, graduate school, and collegiate and professional sports with the enactment of Title IX. In 1972, Congresswoman Chisolm, a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., and a founder of the Congressional Black Caucus, entered the campaign for the Democratic Party’s nomination for President, when there had never been a woman candidate for President in the Democratic Party or an African-American candidate in either the Democratic Party or the Republican Party. Let us find inspiration in her courage, as we honor her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom Award.”

Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, a member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade, the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, the Committee on Ethics and the Committee of Small Business in the House of Representatives, proudly represents Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, Park Slope, Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.