2009 Celebrations to Illuminate Lincoln's Lasting Impact on America
Dr. Gary P. Zola, Executive Director of the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives-located on the Cincinnati, Ohio campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR)-and Associate Professor of the American Jewish Experience at HUC-JIR, has been appointed to serve on the national Advisory Committee of the congressionally recognized Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. 2009 will mark the 200th anniversary of Lincoln's birth, a man who many historians have called America's greatest president.
The Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission was created by Congress to inform the public about the impact Abraham Lincoln had on the development of our nation, to emphasize the contribution of his thoughts and ideals to America and the world and to find the best possible ways to honor his accomplishments. The President, the Senate and the House of Representatives appointed a fifteen-member commission following the passage of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission Act in 2000 (Public Law No: 106-173). Commission members were chosen based on their knowledge and study of President Lincoln and their dedication to educating others about Lincoln and that time in our history. The Commission is supported by the Advisory Council, which is comprised of American leaders who will stimulate Lincoln observances throughout the period leading up to the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's birth -- February 12, 2009. They will encourage and undertake contributions of lasting value such as publications, presentations, numismatics, philately, films and video productions.
"I am honored to serve on the Lincoln Commission's Advisory Council and to highlight the life of this remarkable human being," said Zola. "The 16th president has often been called �the great Emancipator,' and this is because of the pivotal role he played in both preserving and enlarging freedom and justice in the United States of America.
All Americans are indebted to this extraordinary man who stood at the nation's helm during the stormiest of times."
The official public Bicentennial Commemoration launches February 2008 and closes February 2010, with the climax of the Commemoration taking place on February 12, 2009-the 200th anniversary of Lincoln's birth. Across the country, communities, organizations and individuals have already begun to plan parades, museum exhibitions, performances, art installations and much more. The Commission has established a website, www.lincoln200.gov which contains comprehensive information about the upcoming commemoration.
This appointment marks the second time that Zola, who was born and raised in Illinois- the "Land of Lincoln" -has served on a congressionally recognized commission.
From 2003-2006, he chaired the Commission for Commemorating 350 Years of American Jewish History.
The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, founded in 1947 by its namesake on the Cincinnati, Ohio, campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, is committed to preserving a documentary heritage of the religious, organizational, economic, cultural, personal, social and family life of American Jewry. The Marcus Center contains over 15,000 linear feet of archives, manuscripts, nearprint materials, photographs, audio and videotapes, microfilm, and genealogical materials.