Chelsea Clinton Headlining Inaugural Service Event
WASHINGTON (AP) - Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton has signed on to help promote President Barack Obama's inaugural kick-off event to get Americans across the country engaged in serving their communities.
The 32-year-old plans to headline a summit on the National Mall Saturday that is the centerpiece of the president's National Day of Service, a call to action meant to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
on the holiday weekend celebrating his birthday. Acting as the day's
honorary chair is a new inaugural role for the woman who participated in
the festivities as an adolescent, standing next to her father, Bill Clinton, as he was sworn into office in 1993 and 1997.
Clinton was often seen but not
heard as a youth growing up in the White House, but increasingly has
made her public voice heard in recent years. She campaigned for her mom,
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's,
2008 presidential primary campaign against Obama and now is an NBC News
special correspondent. Last fall she traveled to Nigeria on behalf of
her father's charitable foundation, meeting with the country's president
and promoting the Clinton Health Access Initiative's efforts to reduce child mortality there.
A week after Election Day, she
appeared at the Glamour Women of the Year awards in New York with a
stageful of women who had been involved in races across the country,
noting that gender progress was made in 2012 although there still is a
long way to go. She has promoted efforts to allow gay marriage and
assisted in raising money for victims of Hurricane Sandy.
"When I was growing up, both my
parents and grandparents instilled a commitment to service in me,"
Clinton said in a statement provided to The Associated Press by the
Presidential Inaugural Committee. "They taught me that helping our
neighbors and serving our community were essential parts of being a good
citizen and a good person."
Inauguration planners are asking
people across the country to sign up for the effort and have staff in
all 50 states to coordinate activities across the nation. Obama, a
one-time community organizer, began the tradition four years ago,
expanded it this time and hopes to make it an inaugural tradition,
The fair that Clinton will be
headlining will feature service opportunities in seven areas — community
resilience, economic development, education, environment, faith, health
and veterans and military families. Clinton said in her statement that
Saturday is just the beginning — Obama is asking people to pledge to
keep volunteering regularly help their neighbors in the long term.
"Think about how much good we can
all do if everyone who pitches in this weekend keeps up that commitment
throughout the year," she said. She added that she'll be thinking of
her late grandmothers when she takes part because they always found time
to volunteer for their churches, communities and kids' schools no
matter what else was going on in their lives.
Obama, Vice President Joe Biden
and members of their families plan to take part in service events
Saturday in the Washington area.
Wednesday, May 22 2013 12:27 AM EDT2013-05-22 04:27:35 GMT
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