Bill Clinton named chairman of NCC

September 9, 2008 9:52:52 AM PDT
History is repeating itself. Bill Clinton is replacing George H.W. Bush.

Not in the White House, as he did in 1992.

This time, President Clinton is succeeding the elder Bush as Chairman of the Center's Board of Trustees.

The NCC made the announcement Tuesday.

Clinton will begin his term as Chair on January 1, 2009. The first President Bush has served as Chairman since January 2007 and will end his second term on December 31, 2008.

"President Clinton's steadfast vision for a better and brighter future, ongoing dedication to the principles of liberty established by the Constitution and his years of public service spent in the pursuit of helping to form a more perfect union speak to the essence of the Center's mission," said NCC President Joe Torsella. "President Clinton's agreement to serve as Chair firmly establishes the highest standard of national leadership for the Center. In just our fifth year, we have achieved a standard that will ensure that the Center continues to thrive and endure for as long as the document it honors."

Clinton's relationship with the NCC dates back to 1997.

Torsella and then-Mayor Edward G. Rendell had the opportunity to speak to Clinton about the plans for the Center during a presidential visit to Philadelphia. Cliinton was the keynote speaker when the Center broke ground on Constitution Day, September 17, 2000. During the event, President Clinton was one of many that signed a ceremonial steel beam marking the beginning of construction.

In addition, Clinton and his wife, Senator Hillary Clinton, served on the Center's National Honorary Committee, along with all living former Presidents and their wives, since the inception of that committee in 1996.

President Clinton visited the National Constitution Center once again for a book signing in conjunction with the publication of his autobiography, My Life, in 2004, and returned in March 2006 when he gave a keynote address during the National Youth Leadership Council meeting. Seven months later, on October 5, 2006, Clinton took center stage at the Center when he was awarded the 2006 Liberty Medal with President George H. W. Bush for their Tsunami and Katrina Fund efforts.

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