SPRINGFIELD – As Illinois celebrates the 205th birthday of Abraham Lincoln, Governor Pat Quinn today announced this year’s recipients of the Order of Lincoln, the state’s highest honor for professional achievement and public service.
“This recognition is the highest award the state of Illinois can bestow on its most distinguished citizens, either by birth or residence, who have brought honor to the state by their achievements,” Governor Quinn said. “They have made the world a better place, and it is our privilege to honor them. President Lincoln would be proud.”
This year’s recipients are:
John A. Canning, Jr., the co-founder and current Chairman of Madison Dearborn Partners, one of the largest private equity investment firms in the nation. He has served as Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Chairman of the Field Museum, Co-chairman of the Big Shoulders Fund, Chairman of the Museum of Science and Industry and Chairman of the Economic Club of Chicago.
Michael Krzyzewski, a Chicago native and the Head Coach of Duke University’s men’s basketball team, which attained four national championships under his leadership. “Coach K” has also served with distinction as head coach of the men’s basketball team for the U.S. Olympic Team.
Newton N. Minow, one of the nation’s foremost attorneys and former Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, who in 1961 told the National Association of Broadcasters: “When television is good, nothing – not the theater, not the magazines or newspapers – nothing is better. But when television is bad, nothing is worse.” It can be “a vast wasteland,” he famously declared.
Bernard Rands and Augusta Read Thomas, a husband and wife team who are each internationally celebrated composers. Thomas is a professor at the University of Chicago and from 1997 to 2006 served as Composer-in-Residence for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, which commissioned seven major compositions during her tenure. Her double concerto for flute, violin and orchestra was a finalist for the 2007 Pulitzer Price in Music. Her husband, Bernard Rands, is Professor Emeritus of music at Harvard University and was Composer-in-Residence for the Philadelphia Orchestra from 1989 to 1995. His work Canti del Sole, premiered by Paul Sperry, Zubin Mehta and the New York Philharmonic, won the 1984 Pulitzer Price in Music.
The Reverend Donald Senior, C.P., a world class theologian, for 23 years the President of the Catholic Theological Union, the nation’s largest Roman Catholic graduate school of ministry. He was also general editor of the acclaimed Catholic Study Bible, Editor-in-Chief of the journal The Bible Today, and co-editor of the New Interpreters Study Bible, widely used across the entire Christian family of churches.
Glenn F. Tilton, Chairman of Midwest for J.P. Morgan Chase and former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of United Airlines, where he led the company through a $23 billion restructuring, returning it to profitability and successfully completing its merger with Continental Airlines. He serves on a wide range of corporate, civic and charitable boards in Chicago and across the nation.
The Order of Lincoln will be presented at the 50th Annual Convocation of the Lincoln Academy of Illinois at the Field Museum of Chicago on Saturday evening, May 3, 2014. It will be followed by a gala reception and dinner being co-chaired by James J. O’Connor and Ellen O’Connor. Funds raised at the dinner will be used to provide Abraham Lincoln Civic Engagement Scholarships to one student from each of Illinois’ 56 four year colleges and universities and to one student representing the State’s community colleges. These students are chosen by their college presidents on the basis of academic achievement and community service.
The ceremony and short interviews with the honorees will be converted into a PBS documentary to be shown on all PBS stations across the Land of Lincoln later in the year.