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    John McCain (1999)

    Two U.S. Senators who reached across the aisle to join forces in a bi-partisan effort to reform the way political campaigns are financed were the recipients of the 1999 Profile in Courage Award. Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona and Democratic Senator Russell Feingold of Wisconsin were honored for seeking to address their respective party’s...

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    James Florio (1993)

    On May 30, 1990, under Governor Florio's leadership, New Jersey passed the strictest gun control law in the nation, banning the sale and severely restricting the possession of assault weapons in the state. The action was a significant legislative victory for Florio, who was then engaged in a public and political battle over his reforms to the state...

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    Kica Matos 2005

    When 38-year-old Kica Matos became Executive Director of JUNTA for Progressive Action, she accepted the leadership of the oldest Latino community service organization in New Haven, Connecticut. But prior to her arrival, JUNTA had fallen into disrepair, even as New Haven’s Latino population surged in number and need. In a few short years, Ms. Matos ...

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    NAVY Seals

    The United States Navy's Sea, Air, and Land Teams, commonly known as Navy SEALs, were established by President John F. Kennedy in 1962 as a small, elite maritime military force to conduct Unconventional Warfare. They carry out the types of clandestine, small-unit, high-impact missions that large forces with high-profile platforms (such as ships,...

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    Cindy Watson (2004)

    Shortly after she was elected to the North Carolina House of Representatives in 1995, Cindy Watson heard from a group of citizens who complained that waste and stench from area hog farms were causing asthma in children and contaminating water wells with E. coli bacteria. Industrial hog production was her district's biggest business and a huge pa...

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    Vietnam

    After World War II, the French tried to re-establish colonial control over Vietnam, the most strategic of the three states of formerly French-governed Indochina (Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos). Following the defeat of the French, Vietnam was partitioned by the Geneva Accord of 1954 into Communist North Vietnam and South Vietnam, which was non-Commu...

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    Michael Synar (1995)

    In his sixteen years as a U.S. Congressman from Oklahoma, Michael L. Synar distinguished himself for his unwavering commitment to serve the public interest, no matter how powerful the foe or great the political risk. As a leader of the anti-smoking forces in Congress, Synar introduced legislation to restrict advertising of tobacco products and to i...

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    Luke Ravenstahl 2011

    In 2003, at the age of 23, Luke Ravenstahl became the youngest person ever elected to the Pittsburgh City Council. In 2005, he became City Council president, and ten months later, after the untimely death of then-mayor Bob O’Connor, Ravenstahl was sworn in as Pittsburgh’s 58th mayor. He was 26 years old, and Pittsburgh was on the brink of bankruptc...

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    Robert Ford (2012)

    Robert S. Ford began serving a recess appointment as the U.S. Ambassador to Syria in January  2011; his appointment was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in October 2011. He is the first  American ambassador posted to Damascus since 2005, when the U.S. withdrew its diplomatic presence amid tensions over the Iraq war, human rights complaints, and the ...

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    Patrick Murphy 2009

    Patrick J. Murphy, 36, became the first Iraq war veteran to serve in the U.S. Congress when he was elected to the House of Representatives in 2006. Since his election, Murphy has become a leader in the debate on Iraq and Afghanistan, and on military and veterans policy. In his first month in Congress, he introduced legislation calling for the respo...

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