President Barack Obama awarded 13 Presidential Citizens Medals at a White House ceremony and among this elite group were two Hispanics. Roberta Diaz Brinton and Colombian born Jorge Munoz received the Presidential Citizens Medal, the second highest civilian award after the Medal of Freedom, for their work in predominantly Latino communities.
The award is given to a U.S. citizen “who has performed exemplary deeds or services for his or her country or fellow citizens.” Brinton mentors disadvantaged and minority students in East Los Angeles while working as the Science Director of the University of Southern California. Jorge Munoz is the founder of An Angel in Queens, a non-profit that delivers free home-cooked meals to the needy on a street corner in Queens, New York.
Other notable Americans that have received this honor are Colin Powell, Elizabeth Taylor, baseball legend Roberto Clemente and the first Latina President of the American Public Health Association, Dr. Helen Rodriguez-Trias