Brookline Residents Michael and Kitty Dukakis to be recognized by US Holocaust Memorial Museum
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum will hold its annual Boston Dinner on October 3, 2012, at the InterContinental Boston Hotel, which will serve as the kickoff to a series of events in the region celebrating the Museum’s upcoming 20th anniversary. The dinner will recognize the contributions of former Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis and his wife Kitty, a longtime member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, for the work they have done in support of the Museum. The Boston Dinner will also feature a keynote address from Clemantine Wamariya, a survivor of the Rwandan Genocide. She was appointed by President Obama at the age of 23, as the youngest person ever to be appointed to the board of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council.
Since its inception, the Museum has inspired citizens and leaders worldwide to think and act differently by confronting hatred, preventing genocide, and promoting human dignity, which is the reason the Museum has designated Never Again – What You Do Matters as the 20th anniversary theme. The lessons of the Holocaust demonstrate that individual actions can overcome that kind of indifference to hate, and that every generation must commit itself to confronting that indifference.
Massachusetts has been the source of many leaders who have paved the way for the Museum’s existence, which opened its doors in 1993. The Dukakis’ were among influential early supporters of the Museum. Kitty Dukakis was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to the President’s Commission on the Holocaust in 1978 and she then became a founding member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum; she currently serves on the Museum’s Committee of Conscience, the Museum’s genocide prevention program.
Honorary co-chairs for the 2012 Boston Dinner are Governor William F. Weld, former member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, and Barbara and Steve Grossman. Sara and Leonard Aronson and Robert Beal are serving as co-chairs of the dinner.
Keynote speaker, Clemantine Wamariya, was six years old when the genocide began in 1994 when she and her older sister escaped to Burundi from the horrors within the country. By 2000, they traveled to the United States gaining asylum where they began to live the rest of their lives without their family. In 2006, Clemantine won Oprah Winfrey’s National High School Essay Contest and was brought on the show where she and her sister were reunited with their family. Clemantine attends Yale University and is now an outspoken advocate against genocide.
About the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Federal support guarantees the Museum’s permanent place on the National Mall, and its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by generous donors. For more information, visit www.ushmm.org