HomeAAPI ActorsMichelle Yeoh to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

Michelle Yeoh to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

Actress Michelle Yeoh is among this year’s recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the White House announced Friday, saying: “Yeoh continues to shatter stereotypes and enrich American culture.”

Nineteen awardees are to be honored Friday evening, spanning the fields of activism, politics, science, sports, culture, and the arts. They include civil rights icon Medgar Evers, who is to receive the medal posthumously; Opal Lee, an educator and activist who helped make Juneteenth a national holiday; former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi; and Teresa Romero, president of the United Farm Workers Union.

“The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made exemplary contributions to the prosperity, values, or security of the United States, world peace, or other significant societal, public or private endeavors,” the White House said.

Yeoh is the first Asian to win the Best Actress Oscar.

The list of awardees also includes from the world of politics: former Vice President Al Gore, former Majority Whip James Clyburn, Sen. John Kerry, Sen. Elizabeth Dole, the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg, and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Also among the awardees: renowned civil rights activist Clarence Jones; Native American Olympian Jim Thorpe, Father Greg Boyle, founder and director of Homeboy Industries, a gang-intervention and rehabilitation program in Los Angeles; Judy Shepard, co-founder of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, created in honor of her son who was murdered in a notorious anti-gay hate crime; astronaut Ellen Ochoa; astronomer Jane Rigby; journalist Phil Donahue; and swimmer Katie Ledecky.

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  1. Does the Biden administration realize that Michelle Yeoh is Malaysian, not American? Were there no Asian AMERICANS who “enriches American culture” worthy of this recognition?


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