New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu has been named the 2018 winner of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award for his leadership in removing four Confederate monuments in the city.
The John F. Kennedy Library Foundation announced Tuesday that in addition to taking the monuments down, Landrieu offered "clear and compassionate reflections on the moment and its place in history."
"Mayor Landrieu turned a difficult and divisive issue into an opportunity to reflect on our nation’s history and to recommit ourselves to our founding principles of equality and justice. The Mayor explained what the monuments represent — a dark chapter in our history that should neither be forgotten, misunderstood nor glorified," said President Kennedy's grandson, Jack Schlossberg. "In a year marked by continued racial injustice, in a moment of misguided national leadership and heightened division, Mayor Landrieu’s courage stands out brightly as an affirmative step in the right direction. President Kennedy believed that at its best, politics was a noble profession — Mayor Landrieu is living proof of that bold proposition."
Schlossberg is scheduled to present the award at a ceremony on May 20 at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston.
The award has been presented annually since 1989 to public servants who have made courageous decisions of conscience without regard for the personal or professional consequences. It is named for Kennedy's 1957 Pulitzer Prize-winning book, "Profiles in Courage."