The Independence Harry S. Truman Award Commission has chosen Sen. Patrick Leahy as the 2022 Harry S. Truman Public Service Award recipient and Steven Potter has been awarded the Special Recognition Award. There will not be a formal presentation ceremony this year. A video announcement is available below.
The Harry S. Truman Award, established in 1974 by the City of Independence, is presented annually to an outstanding American citizen who best typifies and possesses the qualities of dedication, industry, ability, honesty, and integrity that distinguished President Harry S. Truman.
“Sen. Leahy’s passion for our Country has created a lasting impact we will see for decades to come,” Mayor Rory Rowland said. “His role as Chairman of the Appropriations Committee and longstanding work on human rights and the judiciary have not only shaped policies here in the United States but around the globe. We are honored to add him to the long list of outstanding award winners for the Harry S. Truman Public Service Award.”
Sen. Leahy is the 48th recipient of this National Honor and will join the elite list of honorees which includes: former presidents Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford and Bill Clinton; World War II veteran and U.S. Senator Robert J. Dole; veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars; former U. S. Senators Jack Danforth and John McCain; as well as patriotic women Coretta Scott King, Margaret Truman Daniel, Mother Clara Hale and Mary Jean Eisenhower, University of California President and former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, former Sen. Claire McCaskill; and most recently Sen. Roy Blunt.
Sen. Leahy was first elected to the United States Senate in 1974. And at 34, he was the youngest U.S. Senator ever to be elected from the state of Vermont. Senator Leahy is currently the president pro tempore of the United States Senate and the Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. He is the senior-most member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and of the Senate Agriculture Committee. Leahy is also a Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on State Department, Foreign Operations and Related Programs. He ranks first in seniority in the Senate.
Over his 48-year career in the Senate, Sen. Leahy has been active in human rights issues, leading U.S. office holders in the international campaign against the production, export, and use of anti-personnel landmines. Following the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, he led the Senate’s negotiation on the 2001 anti-terrorism bill, the USA Patriot Act.
Sen. Leahy has been married to Marcelle Pomerleau Leahy since 1962. They have a daughter, two sons, and five grandchildren. You can read Sen. Leahy’s full biography here.
This year’s Special Recognition Award was given to Mid-Continent Public Library Chief Executive Officer Steven Potter as he retires after 34 years with the library system and 12 years as its leader.