This year marks the two hundredth anniversary of our College’s founding. The Bicentennial affords us the opportunity to celebrate the tradition and values that have carried Allegheny across two centuries. As a centerpiece of that celebration, and in recognition that our institution’s legacy mirrors that of our nation, this year’s Allegheny College Prize for Civility in Public Life will honor moments of extraordinary civility in American history.
We will highlight moments when choosing the civil course required exceptional courage and created an important positive impact for our country.
We hope that these moments will remind us all that civility has played a profound role in our history.
Moreover, we hope that they will inspire young people to see the possibilities of public service and encourage today’s civic leaders to choose civility in their public interactions.
Save the Date: Civility Prize 2015 Presentation
The fourth annual presentation of the Allegheny College Prize for Civility in Public Life
Monday, May 4, 2015 at 10 AM
live from the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
James H. Mullen Jr., Allegheny College President
Tom Ridge, Former Pennsylvania Governor and the First U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security
Douglas Brinkley, Nationally Renowned Presidential Historian
About the Allegheny College Prize for Civility in Public Life
The Allegheny College Prize for Civility in Public Life – the nation’s leading effort to positively reinforce civility in contemporary American politics – will take a different approach this year. In this its bicentennial year, Allegheny is engaging nationally renowned historians to help the College identify and award the most important moments of civility in American history.
Usually, the Prize is awarded to contemporary political figures – such as last year’s prize, awarded to the 20 women of the Senate for their work in defusing a federal shutdown. As Allegheny celebrates its 200th anniversary in 2015 — a history nearly as old as America herself – the time was right to look back, said Allegheny President James Mullen.
“Civility has played an essential and under-appreciated role in American history,” said Mullen. “It is our hope that by helping people to appreciate the profound, essential and positive role that civility has played in American history, we can in some small way inspire current politicians to recommit to civility. And perhaps most importantly, we hope to inspire young people to see politics as a vocation worthy of their aspirations.”
Mullen said that nationally renowned presidential historian Douglas Brinkley, author of Cronkite and other acclaimed histories, has agreed to lead the bicentennial Civility effort with Allegheny. Other prominent historians are assisting by submitting nominations.
“Allegheny’s work to underscore civility has quietly become an important force for good in American politics today,” said Brinkley, who received an honorary degree from Allegheny in 2013. “It will be meaningful to look back over the arc of American history to remind ourselves that civility has been at the root of some of our most important national moments.”