Since its establishment in 2006, the Foundation’s annual Lincoln Leadership Prize has honored exceptional individuals for their service in the Lincoln tradition. Past honorees include U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, astronaut James A. Lovell Jr., journalist Tim Russert, Polish President Lech Wałęsa, U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, film director Steven Spielberg, the Little Rock Nine civil rights movement icons, historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, scientist Neil DeGrasse Tyson, U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair, philanthropist David Rubenstein, actor Gary Sinise, corporate leader Mellody Hobson and business leader Jim Reynolds.

2024 RECIPIENT OF THE LINCOLN LEADERSHIP PRIZE ANNOUNCED

The Lincoln Presidential Foundation (“Foundation”) announced that it will award its prestigious Lincoln Leadership Prize to acclaimed historian Jon Meacham for his exceptional contributions to the historical canon and public understanding of American democracy.

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The Lincoln Leadership Prize, to be presented during an in-person dinner on May 21st at the Four Seasons Hotel Chicago (120 East Delaware Place), is an annual award that recognizes notable individuals for a lifetime of exceptional service in the spirit of the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. The award honors individuals who accept the responsibilities imposed by history and demanded by conscience, who show great strength of character and exhibit unwavering commitment to the defining principles of democracy.

The Foundation is also proud to announce that Edward J. Wehmer Sr., Executive Chairman of the Board and Founder of Wintrust, will receive its 2024 Wayne Whalen “Charity for All” Award. This award, inspired by Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address, recognizes individuals like Wehmer who exemplify civic leadership, generosity of spirit, and a commitment to the ideals of this nation. The presentation of the award will take place during the Foundation’s Lincoln Leadership Prize event honoring Jon Meacham.

Jon Meacham is a Pulitzer Prize–winning biographer. The Rogers Chair in the American Presidency at Vanderbilt University, he is the author of the New York Times bestsellers His Truth Is Marching On: John Lewis and the Power of Hope, Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush, Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power, American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House, American Gospel, and Franklin and Winston. A fellow of the Society of American Historians, Meacham lives in Nashville.

Ed Wehmer serves as an executive leader of the Northwestern Memorial Foundation, Lurie Children's Hospital, and is active on many other non-profit boards. With his wife Dorothy, he champions charitable causes including Misericordia, Loyola Academy, and Mercy Home for Boys and Girls. His philanthropy has been inspired in part by his own experiences in his youth. He held various jobs while attending school including as a delivery boy, cooler cleaner, and parking lot guard. He is dedicated to causes that promote health and human services, particularly for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and to giving hardworking students “a leg up in the world.”

For sponsorship opportunities or more information, contact Phyllis Evans at (217) 557-5610 or pevans@lincolnpresidential.org.

Thank You to Our Generous Sponsors!

Platinum
Charles and Mary Anne Bobrinskoy*
GCM Grosvenor*
John L. Nau, III*
Wintrust*

Gold

Anonymous
BMO*
Chicago Cubs*
Hobson/Lucas Family Foundation*
Judy and Ray McCaskey*
Motorola Solutions, Inc.*
Reputation Partners LLC*
Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan*
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP*

Silver

ACP CreativIT, a Zaf Group Company
Ameren Illinois
Susan J. Cellmer and Jeffrey C. Neal
Comcast
The Crown Family
ITW
Michael and Susan Kahn
Northwestern Medicine
Dr. Scholl Foundation
Union Pacific
The University of the South | Sewanee
Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP

Bronze

ArentFox Schiff
Ariel Investments
Will and Mimi Ball
Angelo J. Bufalino & Vedder Price, P.C.
Chicago White Sox
Conlon Public Strategies
Governor Jim Edgar
Fifth Third Bank
Friedman Properties, Ltd.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP
International Game Technology
Isaac Josephson
Thomas and Bridget Lamont
Lori Lennon and Donald Lynch
Victoria and Paul Liebenson
Richard and Missy Mark
Erin Carlson Mast
Sergio ‘Satch’ Pecori/Hanson Professional Services Inc.
Peoples Gas
Pritzker Military Foundation
Pritzker Traubert Foundation
The Sidley Austin Foundation

Contributions

Crist/Kolder Associates
Catie Danz
John Davidoff
Martha and Bill Forsyth
Jan and Jack Frigo
Anne and Patrick Gallagher
Barry Hines
Lavin Family Foundation
Locke Lord LLP
Maria Millen
Jeff Papa
PJH & Associates, Inc.
John C. Robak
Lisa and Tom Sodeika

— as of May 17, 2024
*Denotes Event Co-Chairs