President Barack Obama presented the 2009 National Humanities Medals to eight Americans for their outstanding achievements in history, literature, cultural philanthropy, and museum leadership. Elie Wiesel was awarded for “his unwavering commitment to preserving the memory of the Holocaust and its victims. He has fostered compassion and understanding through his writing, his leadership, and his relentless advocacy for human rights.”
The medals, first awarded in 1989, were presented during a ceremony in the East Wing of the White House. After the ceremony, the medalists and their families and friends joined the President and First Lady Michelle Obama in a reception in their honor.
-Washington D.C., February 25th, 2010