10 Memorable Moments on the Bush Institute's 5th Anniversary

Today marks the George W. Bush Institute's 5th Anniversary. Here's a look at 10 memorable moments since the Bush Institute's...

Today marks the George W. Bush Institute's 5th Anniversary. Here's a look at 10 memorable moments since the Bush Institute's launch:

Dedication Ceremony – On April 25, 2013, the Bush Center hosted all five living presidents of the United States, dignitaries, heads of state, former Bush Administration officials, and supporters of the Bush Center from around the world for the Dedication Ceremony. The event marked the formal opening of the Bush Institute's offices at the Bush Center.

Launch of AREL – In 2010, the Bush Institute announced the launch of its first policy initiative, the Alliance to Reform Education Leadership, known as AREL. As Mrs. Bush said, “We wanted education to be the first of the four policy areas that we worked on because we think it’s so important. There is an urgency about what we’re doing – there should always be an urgency.” Through AREL, the Bush Institute partnered with 28 programs in 15 states and the District of Columbia that prepared more than 700 aspiring principals in 2013.

The Dalai Lama Visits – In May 2011, the Bush Institute welcomed His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The Tibetan spiritual leader presented President George W. Bush with an early draft of the 1963 Tibetan Constitution, which became the “founding document” of the Bush Institute’s Freedom Collection. The Freedom Collection is a physical and online archive that features artifacts, documentaries, and discussions with democratic dissidents who have been instrumental in advancing freedom.

The First Class of Women’s Initiative Fellows – The Bush Institute welcomed its inaugural class of Women’s Initiative Fellows, 13 Egyptian women, in 2012. Mrs. Bush was joined by the Fellows at the New York Stock Exchange to ring the opening bell. The Fellowship is designed to enhance the leadership skills of women around the world, and Fellows build leadership skills during the program that they can share with their colleagues and friends, thereby broadening the women’s network. The second Fellowship began in March 2013 and was comprised of 19 Egyptian women, and the 2014 Fellowship began in March 2014 and consists of 17 Tunisian women.

Liberty and Leadership Forum – In 2014, the Liberty and Leadership Forum welcomed its inaugural class from Burma (also known as Myanmar). The program equips young leaders with the knowledge and skills they need to lead in countries where transitions to democracy are occurring. It uses a curriculum focused on the principles of liberal democracy and economic freedom, lessons from other democratic transitions, and practical leadership skills.

Presidential Leadership Scholars Announcement – In September, President Bush was joined by President Clinton in Washington D.C. to announce the launch of the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program, an exciting collaboration between their presidential centers as well as the centers of President George H.W. Bush and President Lyndon B. Johnson.  The program will help develop civic leaders using presidential case studies and featuring alumni from the four administrations and faculty from the affiliated universities. The inaugural class will be selected by the end of the year.

Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon Launch – In September 2011, the Bush Institute, along with the United States Government through the U.S. Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), Susan G. Komen®, and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), launched Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon. It is the leading public-private partnership aimed at catalyzing the global community to reduce deaths from cervical and breast cancer in sub-Saharan Africa by raising awareness of these diseases and increasing access to quality services to detect and treat them. In Zambia alone, more than 98,900 women have been screened for cervical cancer since 2012. PRRR operates in Zambia, Botswana, and Tanzania, and has recently expanded to Ethiopia and Namibia. President and Mrs. Bush have traveled to each country and refurbished cervical cancer clinics in Zambia.

Inaugural Team 43 Sports Events – In April 2011, President Bush hosted the inaugural W100K, a 100-kilmometer mountain bike ride, with U.S. servicemen and women who were seriously wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan. In October that same year, President Bush hosted the first Warrior Open golf tournament at Las Colinas Country Club near Dallas. Team 43 Sports honor our veterans, recognize military support organizations, and offer unique competitive events for some of our Nation’s bravest warriors. Both events take place annually now.

African First Ladies Summit – The Bush Institute, in partnership with ExxonMobil, convened an African First Ladies Summit, Investing in Women: Strengthening Africa, in July 2013 in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. This year, the Bush Institute, along with the Office of the First Lady and the U.S. Department of State, continued the commitment with a day-long forum focused on the impact of investments in education, health, and public-private partnerships in Washington, D.C. as part of the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit. The Bush Institute’s First Ladies Initiative engages and supports First Ladies from around the world to effectively use their unique platforms.

Naturalization Ceremony – The Bush Institute honored America's immigrant heritage with an official immigration naturalization ceremony in the Bush Center’s Freedom Hall in 2013.  Before America's new citizens took the oath of allegiance to the United States and received their certifications of naturalization, President Bush delivered remarks welcoming them as citizens and noting the important contributions of immigrants to our society and economy. The event also coincided with the release of Growth and Immigration: A Handbook of Vital Immigration and Economic Growth Statistics, an overview of the current immigrant presence in America.