Kennedy Center Special Evening Remarks
Frank F. Islam
May 7, 2017
Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen:
I am Frank Islam. Welcome to our humble home
On behalf of my wife Debbie and myself, it is my distinct pleasure and privilege to welcome Chairman David Rubenstein, President Deborah Rutter, my fellow board members, members of the NCPA, and you distinguished guests and friends of the Kennedy Center to this special evening in recognition of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
As we begin this evening, I recall the following words of President Kennedy etched in the Foyer at the Center:
I look forward to an America which will reward achievement in the arts as we reward achievement in business or statecraft. I look forward to an America which will steadily raise the standards of artistic accomplishment and which will steadily enlarge cultural opportunities for all of our citizens. And I look forward to an America which commands respect throughout the world not only for its strength but for its civilization as well.
Since its establishment, the Kennedy Center has played a pivotal role in helping America and Americans realize John F. Kennedy’s vision for the arts. Therefore, with President Kennedy’s words in mind, and in memory of the 100th anniversary of his birth, as we break bread, listen to good music, and converse with each other tonight, let us renew our commitment to the Kennedy Center and to taking America forward through the arts.
The arts and culture is a sweet spot in our family. Art plays a pivotal role in connecting, inspiring, engaging, and educating communities. It has a unifying and healing power. The art transcends all boundaries. It represents the very best of our humanity.
Debbie and I are delighted to join you for this special evening and to being your partners in the future on this journey forward.
At this time, let me call upon David Rubenstein, Chairman of the board of trustees of the Kennedy Center to say few words
David the floor is yours