WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council on April 30 will present its annual Distinguished Leadership Awards, one of the most significant honors for accomplishment in international relations to: the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO); Adrienne Arsht, executive vice chair of the Atlantic Council; Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund; and Frederick W. Smith, Chairman and CEO, FedEx Corporation.

“The recipients of the 2019 Distinguished Leadership Awards embody the breadth and depth of global leadership on which the future of the transatlantic community and our world rests,” said Frederick Kempe, Atlantic Council president and CEO. “By honoring NATO, upon the 70thanniversary of the alliance, and these unique individuals we hope to remind the world of the game-changing nature of principled leadership and, through their examples, inspire others to similar accomplishments.”

For the first time, the Atlantic Council will present its Distinguished International Leadership Award to an international organization, NATO, the most successful and enduring security alliance, for its positive impact in shaping the world following the destruction wrought by World Wars I and II and its continuing role in preserving the values of the transatlantic community in a period of growing uncertainty. General James L. Jones, USMC (Ret.), Executive Chairman Emeritus of the Atlantic Council and former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, will present the award to Rose Gottemoeller, Deputy Secretary General of NATO, who will accept on behalf of the Alliance.

The Atlantic Council will present its Distinguished Service Award, a rarely presented honor, to Adrienne Arsht, for her visionary business leadership, outstanding contributions to philanthropy, and her game-changing commitment to the Atlantic Council through the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center and the Adrienne Arsht Center for Resilience – both leaders in their fields. Alonzo Mourning, founder of The Mourning Family Foundation, will present the award to Ms. Arsht.

The Atlantic Council will recognize Christine Lagarde with the Distinguished International Leadership Award for her steadfast, resourceful and principled leadership in a time of volatility, her commitment to providing opportunity through economic reform, and her unwavering support of gender equality. Ivanka Trump will present the award to Madame Lagarde.

The Atlantic Council will present its Distinguished Business Leadership award to Frederick W. Smith for his visionary entrepreneurial and business leadership that transformed FedEx into the world’s leading express transportation provider – with more than 450,000 team members in more than 220 countries and territories – for his principled support of corporate giving and personal philanthropy, and for his commitment to creating a positive corporate culture for his employees. Mr. Smith’s award will be presented by Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

Perhaps the most significant event on the Washington calendar celebrating global leaders, the Atlantic Council’s Distinguished Leadership Awards convenes a diverse audience of over 800 guests from more than fifty countries—including current and former heads of state, foreign dignitaries, ambassadors, members of Congress and the administration, military commanders, international business leaders, and the media.

Past honorees include former US presidents, European heads of state, globally accomplished chief executives, decorated military commanders, and world-renowned performing artists and humanitarians.   

The event is on-the-record and open to press. To request media accreditation please email press@atlanticcouncil.org. Further details will be provided upon confirmation of accreditation.