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American Pride: Poems Honoring America and Her Patriots! by David G. Bancroft

 

Yogi Berra
Yogi Berra spent over 40 years as a professional baseball catcher, manager, and coach. Widely regarded as one of the greatest catchers in baseball history, Berra was an 18-time All-Star and 10-time World Series Champion who was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972. Berra, a lifelong ambassador for inclusion in sports, put his professional career on hold to join the Navy during World War II, where he fought with Allied forces on D-Day and eventually earned a Purple Heart.

Bonnie Carroll
Bonnie Carroll is a life-long public servant who has devoted her life to caring for our military and veterans. After her husband, Brigadier General Tom Carroll, died in an Army C-12 plane crash in 1992, Carroll founded the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), which provides comprehensive support to those impacted by the death of their military hero, bringing healing comfort and compassionate care to the living legacies of our nation's service and sacrifice.

Shirley Chisholm
Shirley Chisholm made history in 1968 by becoming the first African-American woman elected to Congress, beginning the first of seven terms in the House of Representatives. In 1969 she became one of the founding members of what would become the Congressional Black Caucus. She also made history becoming the first major-party African-American female candidate to make a bid for the U.S. presidency. She was a champion of minority education and employment opportunities throughout her tenure in Congress.

Emilio Estefan
Emilio Estefan is a passionate and visionary music producer, entrepreneur, author, and songwriter who has won nineteen Grammy Awards and influenced a generation of artists. As the founding member of the Miami Sound Machine, and later through a decades-long career producing and shaping the work of countless stars, Estefan has helped popularize Latin music around the world. He has received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Gloria Estefan
Gloria Estefan is a singer, songwriter, actor, and entrepreneur who introduced Latin music to a global audience. The Cuban-American lead singer of the Miami Sound Machine has had chart-topping hits such as “Conga,” “Rhythm is Gonna Get You,” and “Anything for You.” Estefan has won seven Grammy Awards and is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 100 million records worldwide. Estefan became one of the first mainstream Hispanic artists to crossover between English and Spanish language music.

Billy Frank, Jr.
Billy Frank, Jr. was a tireless advocate for Indian treaty rights and environmental stewardship. His activism paved the way for the “Boldt decision,” which reaffirmed tribal co-management of salmon resources in the state of Washington. Frank led effective “fish-ins,” modeled after sit-ins of the civil rights movement, during the tribal “fish wars” of the 1960s and 1970s. His magnetic personality and tireless advocacy over more than 50 years made him a revered figure both domestically and abroad.

Lee Hamilton
Lee Hamilton has been one of the most influential voices on international relations and U.S. national security over the course of his career. From 1965 to 1999, he served Indiana in the U.S. House of Representatives, where his chairmanships included the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Since retiring from Congress, Hamilton has been involved in efforts to address some of our nation's most high profile homeland security and foreign policy challenges.

Katherine G. Johnson
Katherine G. Johnson is a pioneer in American space history. A NASA mathematician, Johnson's computations have influenced every major space program from Mercury through the Shuttle program. Johnson was hired as a research mathematician at the Langley Research Center with the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), the agency that preceded NASA, after they opened hiring to African-Americans and women.

Willie Mays
Willie Mays was a professional baseball player, spending most of his 22 seasons as a center fielder for the New York and San Francisco Giants. Mays ended his career with 660 home runs, making him the fifth all-time record-holder. Known as “The Say Hey Kid,” Mays was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979 and landed on MLB's All-Time team. In 1951, Mays became one of the first African-American players in Major League Baseball history and won the Rookie of the Year award. Mays also served in the U.S. Army.

Barbara Mikulski
Sen. Mikulski is a lifelong public servant who has held elected office since 1971. She became the longest serving female Senator in 2011, the longest serving woman in Congress in 2012, and the first female Senator to chair the Senate Appropriations Committee in 2012. Previously a social worker and community activist, she championed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and helped establish the NIH Office of Research on Women's Health to include women in federally-funded health research protocols.

Itzhak Perlman
Itzhak Perlman is a treasured conductor and sought-after teacher. A native of Israel, he came to the United States at a young age and made his Carnegie Hall debut in 1963 when he was 18. In addition to performing internationally and recording the classical music for which he is best known, Mr. Perlman teaches talented young musicians through the Perlman Music Program alongside his wife Toby. Through his advocacy and his example, he has been an important voice on behalf of persons with disabilities.

William Ruckelshaus
William D. Ruckelshaus is a dedicated public servant who has worked tirelessly to protect public health and combat global challenges like climate change. As the first and fifth Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, he shaped the guiding principles of the agency. Among the EPA's key early achievements under his leadership was a nationwide ban on the pesticide DDT and an agreement with the automobile industry to require catalytic converters, which significantly reduced automobile pollution.

Stephen Sondheim
Stephen Sondheim is one of the country's most influential theater composers and lyricists. His work has helped define American theater with shows such as Company, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, and Into the Woods. Mr. Sondheim has won eight Grammy Awards, eight Tony Awards, an Academy Award, and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg is an American film director, producer, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. A three-time Academy Award winner, Spielberg is widely considered one of the most influential filmmakers in cinematic history. Spielberg is the co-founder of DreamWorks Studios as well as the founder of the USC Shoah Foundation, an organization dedicated to overcoming intolerance and bigotry through the use of visual history testimony.

Barbra Streisand
Barbra Streisand is one of our nation's most gifted talents. Her body of work includes extraordinary singing, acting, directing, producing, songwriting, and she is one of the few performers to receive an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and a Tony. In 1984, she became the first woman to win a Golden Globe for Best Director. In 2009, she endowed the Barbra Streisand Women's Heart Center at Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, which works to correct gender inequality in the research of heart disease.

James Taylor
As a recording and touring artist, James Taylor has touched people with his warm baritone voice and distinctive style of guitar-playing for more than 40 years, while setting a precedent to which countless young musicians have aspired. Over the course of his celebrated songwriting and performing career, he has won multiple Grammy awards and has been inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the prestigious Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Minoru Yasui
Minoru Yasui was a civil and human rights leader known for his continuous defense of the ideals of democracy embodied in our Constitution. Yasui challenged the constitutionality of a military curfew order during World War II on the grounds of racial discrimination, and spent nine months in solitary confinement during the subsequent legal battle. In 1943, the Supreme Court upheld the military curfew order. Yasui spent the rest of his life appealing his wartime conviction.

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