For Immediate Release: November 30, 2011
Contact: Lorri Crowley (202) 482-3809
Senior Commerce Officials Honor Efforts to Increase International Trade, Diplomacy With Prestigious Award
Eight Recipients Recognized with Peace through Commerce Medal
WASHINGTON – Acting Deputy Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank and Under Secretary for Commerce for International Trade Francisco Sánchez recognized eight recipients from around the world with the International Trade Administration’s (ITA) esteemed Peace through Commerce Award (Award) at a U.S. Department of Commerce ceremony today.
The eight recipients are: Fred Irwin of Berlin, Germany; Frederick Lam of Hong Kong; Jerry Levine of San Francisco; Kiran Pasricha of New Delhi; Pete Peterson of Hanoi, Vietnam; Putera Sampoerna of Jakarta, Indonesia; the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, headquartered in Beijing; and the International Franchise Association (IFA), headquartered in Washington. Levine and the IFA were in attendance at today’s ceremony.
“Both Jerry Levine and IFA have a legacy of promoting U.S. trade opportunities and simultaneously advancing and improving U.S. trade relationships internationally,” Blank said. “Their advocacy has helped American businesses begin or expand their exporting, which in turn supports American jobs and provides new opportunities for international diplomacy and cultural ties.”
The Peace through Commerce Award recognizes an individual, group, or organization – at home or abroad – whose actions have significantly promoted and developed U.S. export initiatives, encouraged innovative approaches, and improved overall U.S. trade. These efforts mirror and help advance the goals of President Obama’s National Export Initiative, which seeks to double U.S. exports by the end of 2014 and supporting millions of American jobs.
The Award dates back to the first Secretary of State, Thomas Jefferson, who commissioned the medal in 1790. Jefferson gifted the medal, formerly known as the Diplomatic Medal, to foreign diplomats who aided the Continental Congress during the American Revolution. The Award was revived by Under Secretary Sánchez earlier this year in recognition of the fact that America’ s international relationships play an enormous role in the nation’s economic future.“The reality of a global economy is that it not only changes the way we work and do business, but it also changes the way we see the world,” said Sánchez. “Each of the Award recipients is a leader in their field in promoting trade not only to support jobs and economic growth, but also to overcome cultural barriers, fostering new opportunities and cultural understanding across the globe.”
International Trade Administration
The International Trade Administration (ITA) is the premier resource for American companies competing in the global marketplace. ITA has 2,100 employees assisting U.S. exporters in more than 100 U.S. cities and 77 countries worldwide. For more information on ITA visit www.trade.gov.
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