Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield
U.S. Representative to the United Nations
New York, New York
October 21, 2021
Thank you so much for this tremendous honor. It is overwhelming and humbling to be inducted this year among such outstanding leaders and luminaries. In particular, what a surreal honor to be inducted alongside one of my own heroes, Harriet Tubman. Her life and works, in no uncertain terms, paved the way for mine.
When you consider the diverse group joining the Hall of Fame today – from a founding father to a veteran astronaut, a pioneering congresswoman to a museum maestro, a lifesaving codebreaker to a longtime IRS commissioner – you see how many ways there are to serve your country. I’ve had the great privilege of serving the United States for over 35 years, first through the foreign service and now as U.S. Ambassador to the UN. The dedicated people being inducted today are one reason why I have been so proud to represent America to the world.
As I join this Hall of Fame, I want to use it as a reminder of why we do this work – why we serve. We would all do well to remind ourselves constantly of the connections between our work and the way it serves everyday people. It is the privilege of a lifetime to serve my country. In my long career, I have worked for eight presidents, from President Carter to President Biden. And we are all here to serve the American people and the world’s most vulnerable. Every meeting, every vote, every negotiation, every policy push is about them and on their behalf. To me, that is what it means to be a public servant, and I am so honored to be recognized here today as one.