Media Advisory Smithsonian to Welcome New Citizens, Honor Ralph Lauren at June 17 Ceremony

June 12, 2014

WHAT: The Smithsonian's National Museum of American History will host a special naturalization
               ceremony and presentation of the James Smithson Bicentennial Medal to Ralph Lauren with
               keynote remarks by former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

WHEN:  Tuesday, June 17,
                10:30 a.m. (Media Arrival: 9:00 a.m. to 9:55 a.m. Doors will close at 10:00 a.m.)

WHERE: Flag Hall
                 National Museum of American History
                 14th Street and Constitution Avenue N.W.
                 Note: Press Entrance is at Madison Drive, between 12th and 14th streets
                 (Check with the Communications Office at (202) 633-3129 to verify Press Access)

WHO:     Wayne Clough, Secretary, Smithsonian
                John Gray, director, National Museum of American History
                Hillary Rodham Clinton, former U.S. Secretary of State
                Ralph Lauren, chairman and CEO, Ralph Lauren Corp.
                Jeh Johnson, Secretary, Department of Homeland Secretary
                Rendell Jones, acting deputy director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
                Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska)

During a naturalization ceremony in which 15 candidates will become U.S. citizens, the Smithsonian will present Ralph Lauren with the James Smithson Bicentennial Medal. The medal recognizes Lauren’s lifetime contributions to American entrepreneurship, artistry and creativity. In addition, Lauren played a critical leadership role in helping preserve the Star-Spangled Banner as part of the “Save America’s Treasures” initiative established by Hillary Rodham Clinton when she served as First Lady.

The naturalization ceremony is in partnership with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency. During the ceremony, 15 applicants representing 15 countries—in honor of the 15-star, 15-stripe flag—will receive certificates of naturalization and will recite the Pledge of Allegiance led by Sen. Lisa Murkowski.

Clinton will deliver keynote remarks, followed by the medal presentation by Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough. Nashville-based Della Mae, a bluegrass-influenced rock band who served as cultural ambassadors for the State Department during Clinton’s tenure, will perform.