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Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medals

The University of Virginia and the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello will present their highest honors, the Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medals in architecture, law and citizen leadership, during their joint Founder's Day activities.

The awards are presented jointly by U.Va., which he founded in Charlottesville in 1819, and by the Foundation, the independent, nonprofit organization that owns and operates his home, Monticello.

The 2015 recipients are:  

Herman Hertzberger, an internationally acclaimed Dutch architect and recipient of the 2012 Royal Gold Medal who established his firm, Architectuurstudio HH, in 1960 and who since has made significant contributions to the world of modern architecture.

The Honorable Joan E. Donoghue, the current American judge serving on the International Court of Justice and a lifelong public servant in the realms of international and foreign relations law.

U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a civil rights activist, lifelong public servant and central player in America’s struggle for equal rights. Lewis chaired the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and organized the march from Selma to Montgomery, which took place 50 years ago this week, on March 7, 1965.

Watch Rep. Lewis's speech at Monticello on April 13, 2015, on »

The Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medals are the highest external honors bestowed by the University, which grants no honorary degrees. They recognize achievements of those who embrace endeavors in which Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence and third U.S. president, excelled and held in high regard.

2015 Founders Day Events

Rep. John Lewis will be the featured speaker at Monticello's commemoration of Jefferson's 272nd birthday, on April 13 at 10 a.m. on the West Lawn of Monticello. The celebration is free and open to the public and will be livestreamed at

The School of Law will host a public talk by Donoghue on April 13, 2015 at 10 a.m. in Caplin Pavilion.

The School of Architecture will host a public talk by Hertzberger at 3:00 pm on April 13 in the Caplin Theater.




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