Governor Whitmer to receive award from Kennedy Library Foundation for her service during the pandemic
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - The John F. Kennedy Library Foundation is recognizing Governor Whitmer for her service during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The John F. Kennedy Library Foundation today announced that Governor Whitmer is one of seven recipients for the special Profile in Courage Award.
“It is my honor to accept this prestigious award on behalf of every Michigander who stepped up to help their family and community through the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “I am humbled by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and the Kennedy Family for their recognition. We must all strive to live up to the call of public service put forward by President Kennedy decades ago and exemplified by the heroes on the frontlines of this pandemic who are putting shots in arms and working tirelessly in schools, stores, and hospitals statewide.”
When Michigan’s first cases of COVID-19 were identified in early March 2020, Governor Gretchen Whitmer invoked emergency powers in a bid to contain the spread of the virus and save lives, issuing early, controversial orders to close schools and businesses, mandate mask wearing, and ban large gatherings, among other measures.
While her leadership earned praise from many, she also faced sustained, vocal backlash over stay-at-home rules that remained in place as COVID-19 cases in Michigan continued to rise during the spring. Protests over Whitmer’s pandemic response became increasingly threatening, with armed demonstrators surrounding and at one point storming the state capitol to demand an end to stay-at-home orders.
In October, thirteen men were charged with a June 2020 plot to kidnap and kill Whitmer. The men were said to be motivated at least in part by anger and resentment over pandemic restrictions. However, Governor Whitmer did not lift restrictions in response.
Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and her son, Jack Schlossberg, will present the awards for COVID Courage as part of a virtual ceremony that will air for the public on May 26, 2021 at 6:00pm ET.
Copyright 2021 WILX. All rights reserved.
Subscribe to our News 10 newsletter and receive the latest local news and weather straight to your email every morning.