Danielle Mitterrand, then First Lady of France, was honored with the Foundation’s first Humanitarian Award on March 30, 1989 for her passionate and courageous defense of victims of evil and misfortune. During World War II, as a teenager, she was a liaison agent in the French Resistance and cared for the wounded in the underground in Burgundy. At the Liberation she was decorated with the Medaille de la Resistance. Mme. Mitterand created a Foundation: France-Libertes, in support of the poor, the uneducated and the helpless, with special attention to the education of the young.
The Humanitarian Award Dinner was held at The Library & Museum of the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Participants in the program included Odetta and the Metropolitan String Ensemble, as well as Jose Ferrer, George Hearn, Liv Ullman and Joseph Wiseman, who performed a scene from Elie Wiesel's "The Trial of God."