It is our privilege to present the 2021 Franklin D. Roosevelt Distinguished Public Service Awards to Chairman Frank Pallone and Secretary-Treasurer Elizabeth Shuler of the AFL-CIO. As we face challenges to the very core of our democracy and our values as a nation, our awardees are on the front lines. Whether they are fighting for good jobs and fair wages, defending access to affordable healthcare and retirement security, or advancing environmental protections, Chairman Pallone and Secretary-Treasurer Shuler demonstrate the breadth of what it means to devote one’s life to public service and civic duty. They are so worthy of this recognition.
Throughout their own time in public life, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt reimagined almost every aspect of what America was and could be. When confronted with worldwide economic devastation and the specter of war, thinking small was not an option. The New Deal they established was one that valued the rights of all working people and their desire to live safe, healthy, and prosperous lives.
At the Roosevelt Institute, we work to reimagine today’s rules so that they work for everyone. Our nationwide network of policy and thought leaders, from Nobel-winning economists to emerging student leaders, draws on the ambitious example of Franklin and Eleanor to devise innovative and actionable solutions for a more equitable economy and society. But we cannot achieve real change alone: we need allies, from elected officials to activists, who are committed to taking good ideas and putting them into action.
Finally, we thank for their leadership, Chairman Pallone and Secretary-Treasurer Shuler and all of the friends, family, and supporters who have joined us to celebrate their achievements and their example.