December 8, 2021
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On December 7, the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) hosted its virtual 2021 Tribute Celebration honoring champions and leaders working to build a better, safer, and healthier world.
The virtual celebration featured tributes to and conversations with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Senator Todd Young (R-IN), and a bipartisan group of U.S. Mayors from across the country – including USGLC's Co-Chair Mayor Steve Benjamin – who are leading voices of how America's global leadership strengthens our communities.
Celebration Chair, the Rt. Hon. David Miliband of the International Rescue and U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield led the tribute to Secretary-General Guterres for his leadership at the helm of the United Nations. The Secretary-General was interviewed by 2020 Tribute Honoree, UNCIEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore.
Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), Senator Mike Braun (R-IN), and Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Mayor Joyce Craig (Manchester, NH), and Mayor Chris Jensen (Nobleville, IN) joined the tributes to Senators Shaheen and Young for their championing of America’s diplomacy and development programs. USGLC Co-Chairs Selina Jackson of Procter & Gamble and Sean Callahan of Catholic Relief Services also joined with tributes to the Senators.
Senator Norm Coleman and Mayor Mike Bloomberg joined the tribute to Mayor Benjamin and nearly 100 U.S. Mayors. "Let’s face it, mayors across the country are on the frontlines every day, addressing global issues that are now kitchen table issues – from the pandemic to our economy – that matter to their constituents,” said Liz Schrayer, President and CEO of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition. “They uniquely understand that America simply can’t ignore what happens outside our borders."
Mayors on the program included Bryan Barnett (Rochester Hills, MI), Paige Cognetti (Scranton, PA) Michelle De La Isla (Topeka, KS), Kent Guinn(Ocala, FL), Kenneth Miyagishima (Las Cruces, NM), Christina Muryn(Findlay, OH), David Ortega (Scottsdale, AZ), and Nan Whaley (Dayton, OH).
"Mayors across America are stepping up, knowing that diplomacy and development are essential to the health, safety, and economic interests of every American family. It’s exciting to recognize them," added Schrayer.
The USGLC also paid tribute to the life and legacy of General Colin Powell– who served as USGLC’s Honorary Chair for 16 years – with tributes from past USGLC honorees, Secretaries Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice, General Anthony Zinni, and Admiral James Stavridis.
Highlights from the 2021 Tribute Celebration:
Secretary Madeleine Albright (USGLC National Advisory Council)
Tribute to Colin Powell: “He understood that America's strength comes from being able to use other tools… that our assistance made a difference – USAID – understanding that America needed to have a larger role in the world.”
Secretary Condoleezza Rice (USGLC National Advisory Council)
In Tribute to Collin Powell: “When he left government, he continued to build those very strong instruments, including this Global Leadership Coalition, because he also recognized that American leadership wasn't just what the government did, but it was what civil society did as well. And so, he believed in the complete package in promoting American interests and American values.”
General Anthony Zinni (Co-Chair, USGLC National Security Advisory Council)
Tribute to Colin Powell: “His legacy will be this soldier statesman, because he truly filled that role as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, rose to the highest position in uniform, and then as Secretary of State, the highest position as a diplomat.”
Admiral James Stavridis (Co-Chair, USGLC National Security Advisory Council)
Tribute to Colin Powell: “When I was a student at National War College, he talked with real humility and a genuine sense that the military can't do it all. We have got to have our partners from State Department, we've got to have our partners from USAID. And that resonated with me as a young commander, and I carried it with me through my entire career.”
Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) (2021 Honoree)
“When we're talking about a virus like COVID, borders don't mean anything. And that unless we get everyone in the world vaccinated, or at least the majority of people, there's still that threat of mutation, which we're seeing now with the Omicron variant… USGLC makes a huge difference in terms of policies that you advocate and a commitment to what's happening in the world… It is very humbling to think about being able to be here at this moment right now and try and have an impact on everything that's happening in the world.”
Senator Todd Young (R-IN) (2021 Honoree)
“When it comes to our foreign policy especially, we want more than a measure of stability; we want our actions to have some predictability to them. That instills confidence from both adversaries and friends in what our future direction will be, which we typically want. And you're only going to get that sort of stability when you're working across the aisle in a bipartisan fashion on many of these foreign affairs issues.”
Selina Jackson, Proctor & Gamble (USGLC Co-Chair)
“Senator Shaheen has built a powerful reputation as a fierce advocate for women and girls both at home and abroad. And she has always prioritized working across the aisle to get things done.”
Sean Callahan, Catholic Relief Services (USGLC Co-Chair)
“Senator Young has been a force for bipartisanship, to modernize US foreign assistance and strengthen its impact and to ensure America can compete and win on the global stage.”
Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin (USGLC Co-Chair, 2021 Honoree)
“Speaking on behalf of all my brother and sister mayors all across this country, the Global Statesman Tribute to us all and this recognition of our work means so very much… Not a day goes by that mayors across this country aren’t engaged with our elected leaders in Washington. We’re hosting events with our fellow citizens, talking about the importance of diplomacy and development and… we're speaking out.”
Senator Norm Coleman (USGLC Co-Chair)
“The USGLC has brought together nearly 100 mayors – bipartisan, diverse from the Heartland, to the Sunbelt, from coast to coast, representing rural, urban and every type of community in between – who believe deeply that America's global leadership starts at home. And that small strategic investments and development and diplomacy abroad can have impact on the health, security, and economy of the cities and the people that they lead.”
Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Bloomberg Philanthropies
“Many thanks to the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition for your great work. And congratulations to all of tonight's very deserving honorees, especially one of America's most dynamic and effective mayors, my good friend, Steve Benjamin. Steve, thank you for your friendship and partnership.”
UN Secretary-General António Guterres (2021 Honoree)
“America is essential to the US. It is not only our main contributor, but it is the biggest power in the world. And so, the American influence is largely the leverage of the United Nations, when we try to reach a peace agreement, when we try to address human rights concerns, when we try to promote more equal development in different parts of the world… I believe the UN is an important instrument for the values that are the values of the US democracy.”
Rt. Hon. David Miliband, International Rescue Committee (Celebration Chair)
“There could be no more fitting honoree than António Guterres tonight. The world is safer and stronger thanks to U.S. leadership, and the world is safer and stronger thanks to the leadership of António Guterres.”
U.S. Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas Greenfield
“Mr. Secretary General, we value your partnership with the United States tremendously. Throughout your career, you have focused on the humanitarian needs of people around the world. Now, it is an honor to work with you each and every day to take on some of the world's biggest challenges from COVID-19 to climate change to protecting and promoting human rights everywhere.”
Liz Schrayer, U.S. Global Leadership Coalition
“I want to thank everyone who made this evening possible: USGLC’s board of directors – led by Sean Callahan, Selina Jackson, Senator Norm Coleman, and of course our honorary mayor, Steve Benjamin – our Celebration Chair David Miliband, and all of our sponsors… a special shout out to our Advisory Councils, our State Advisory Committees, and all of our advocates from around the country, to our friends from Capitol Hill, the executive branch, and beyond.”
The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (www.usglc.org) is a broad-based influential network of 500 businesses and NGOs; national security and foreign policy experts; and business, faith-based, academic, military, and community leaders in all 50 states who support strategic investments to elevate development and diplomacy alongside defense in order to build a better, safer world.