Wynton honored as State Department’s Culture Connect Ambassador

At a special U.S. Department of State ceremony December 13, Secretary of State Colin Powell honored 13 celebrities in the arts and sports who serve as the Department’s CultureConnect ambassadors, reaching out to young people around the world. The CultureConnect program, created by Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Patricia S. Harrison, recruits men and women acclaimed in their fields who are willing to contribute their time and talent on behalf of youth.

Those honored at the ceremony include: dancer and choreographer Debbie Allen; opera singer Denyce Graves; architect Daniel Libeskind, designer of the new World Trade Center site in New York; Michael Kaiser, president of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington; cellist Yo-Yo Ma; jazz trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis; Frank McCourt, teacher and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Angela’s Ashes; photographer Joel Meyerowitz, whose exhibit of post-9/11 images from the World Trade Center has toured the world; actress Doris Roberts, an Emmy award winner for her role in the popular television series Everybody Loves Raymond; actor, director and producer Ron Silver; and singer Mary Wilson, an original member of the famous Motown group, the Supremes.

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