Campus News

George Mitchell '54 to Be Honored with Common Wealth Award

Story posted March 25, 2002

George Mitchell '54 is among five distinguished individuals being honored with the 2002 Common Wealth Award. The PNC Financial Service Group presents these awards annually to individuals who have enriched and advanced humanity through their exceptional lifetime achievements.

PNC Bank, Delaware, trustee of the awards for 23 years, will present a shared prize of $250,000 to the honorees at a black-tie ceremony at the Hotel du Pont in Wilmington Saturday, April 20.

Mitchell, former U.S. Senate majority leader and peace mediator for Northern Ireland and the Middle East, is being honored in the area of Government.

Other 2002 honorees are Julie Andrews, world-renowned performer whose stardom spans movies, theater, television and concert hall, for Dramatic Arts; Carlos Fuentes, Mexico's preeminent writer of fiction and political commentary and a leading cultural force in modern Latin America, for Literature; Dr. Lonnie Thompson and Dr. Ellen Mosley-Thompson, researchers who have tracked Earth's ancient climate history and global warming, for Science and Invention; and Fred Rogers, children's television icon, creator and host of the critically acclaimed Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, for Mass Communications.

"The 2002 Common Wealth honorees have left indelible marks on modern culture," said Calvert A. Morgan Jr., chairman, president and CEO, PNC Bank. "They have educated, entertained and inspired generations of people the world over. PNC applauds their uncommon abilities and outstanding achievements."

The Common Wealth Awards were first presented in 1979 to reward and encourage the best of human performance. Since that time, 138 honorees of international renown have received more than $2 million in cash prizes conferred by the awards.

Among past winners are Matilda White Riley H'72, Bowdoin’s Daniel B. Fayerweather Professor of Political Economy and Sociology Emerita, and Research Professor in Sociology (honorary), who received the award in 1984 in the area of Sociology; and documentarian Ken Burns H’91, who was honored in 1996 in Mass Communications.

Other past winners include such distinguished individuals as Laurence Olivier, Tennessee Williams, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Henry Kissinger, Robert Penn Warren, Eudora Welty, Saul Bellow, Walter Cronkite, David Brinkley, Ted Turner, Desmond Tutu, Jonas Salk, Jeane Kirkpatrick, Lowell Thomas, Jane Goodall, and Michael DeBakey.

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