Washington, D.C. — The Atlantic Council on Wednesday evening (April 28) will present its top annual leadership awards to a U.S. President who enlarged NATO and helped end genocide in the Balkans, a singer activist who is fighting disease and poverty in Africa, and a European bank executive at the forefront of global efforts to address the recent financial crisis.

In the first year of re-entry of France into NATO’s military command structure, the Atlantic Council also will honor a French and U.S. general who are the current and past Supreme Allied Commanders for Transformation. The awards have been designed to highlight four pillars of the U.S.-European relationship:  political, business, military and humanitarian leadership.

President Bill Clinton will receive the Distinguished International Leadership Award for his historic stewardship of the Atlantic community including, among other accomplishments, his role in the expansion of NATO to new European democracies, in bringing peace to the Balkans through the the Dayton Accords and in peace negotiations for Northern Ireland.

The Council will present its first Distinguished Humanitarian Leadership Award to Bono, the lead singer of U2 and co-founder of ONE and (RED), for his efforts in mobilizing resources and awareness in fighting disease and extreme poverty in Africa, as well as for his work in addressing other pressing humanitarian challenges. Bono is expected to speak about the nexus between security and development.

Dr. Josef Ackermann, the chief executive of Deutsche Bank, will be presented the Distinguished Business Leadership Award for the crucial direction he and his bank provided during the financial crisis, as well as for the role he now plays in the recovery and stabilization of financial markets. Dr. Ackermann is expected to speak about financial regulatory reform.

The Distinguished Military Leadership Award will be presented jointly to French Air Force General Stéphane Abrial, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, and to U.S. Marine Corps General James Mattis, Commander of U.S. Joint Forces Command, for their leadership at a critical time as the Alliance took on its biggest and most important mission to secure and reconstruct Afghanistan, as well as for playing key roles in paving the way for France’s full re-entry into NATO.

Among those introducing the awardees at the 2010 Atlantic Council Annual Awards dinner are National Security Advisor General James L. Jones, Senator John McCain, Atlantic Council Chairman Senator Chuck Hagel, and Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Previous awardees include President George H.W. Bush, German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Colin Powell, Brent Scowcroft and Henry Kissinger. General Jones, Senator Hagel and Admiral Mullen are also past honorees.

The Atlantic Council promotes constructive U.S. leadership and engagement in international affairs based on the central role of the Atlantic community in meeting 21st-century global challenges. Led by Senator Chuck Hagel, Chairman, and Fred Kempe, President and CEO, the Atlantic Council embodies a network of world leaders and experts who aim to renew and energize the transatlantic community through non-partisan and cross-national discussions and studies.

Each year our Awards Dinner brings together more than 900 leaders from over 50 countries to honor the individuals who have made exceptional and distinctive contributions to the strengthening of the transatlantic relationship.  Our distinguished guests of the evening include 10 current or former heads of state and government, two dozen members of Congress, 40 ambassadors to the United States and 35 global chief executives, and numerous senior officials of the Obama administration.