An especially joyous mood filled the reception hall where Tom Kaplan, Chairman of the 92Y, stood beside Ambassador François Delattre to receive the insignia of the Legion of Honor last March 5th, amidst family, friends, and colleagues. A keen entrepreneur who is passionate about affairs ranging from endangered animals to international relations, Mr. Kaplan spoke profoundly about some of these issues, including his close ties to France.
Awards & Events
The Legion of Honor
The Legion of Honor (Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur), France’s premier award, was founded by Napoleon Bonaparte to recognize eminent accomplishments of service to France. The Order is made up of three ranks -- chevalier, officier, commandeur -- and two high offices (“dignités”) -- grand officier and grand croix. A Presidential award, the Legion of Honor may be give to foreign (non-French) citizens in recognition of actions benefitting the country of France or, more broadly, achievements which upold its ideals. American honorees include John Ashbery, Renée Fleming, Wynton Marsalis, Barbra Streisand, and Elie Wiesel, as well as hundreds of World War II veterans.
The Order of Merit
The Order of Merit (Ordre national du Mérite) was created in 1963 by President Charles de Gaulle. This Presidential award recognizes distinguished service to France, in the military as well as in the public and private sectors. It has three ranks --Chevalier, Officier, and Commandeur-- and two high offices (“dignités”) -- grand officier and grand croix.
The Order of Academic Palms
The Order of Academic Palms (Ordre des Palmes Académiques) was founded in 1808 by Napoleon Bonaparte who established the honorary titles of Titulaire, Officier de l'Université, and Officier d'Académie as awards for devotion and accomplishment in the areas of teaching, scholarship and research. Since being raised to the status of the Order under the Minister of Education in 1955, this award has three ranks Chevalier, Officier, and Commandeur. French citizens living abroad and foreign (non-French) nationals may receive this award for contributing significantly to furthering French intellectual, scientific, and artistic achievements in the world.
The Order of Arts and Letters
The Order of Arts and Letters (Ordre des Arts et des Lettres) was established in 1957 to recognize eminent artists and writers, as well as people who have contributed significantly to furthering the arts in France and throughout the world. The Order of Arts and Letters is given out three times annually under the jurisdiction of the Minister of Culture and Communication. American recipients of the award include Paul Auster, Ornette Coleman, Agnes Gund, Marilyn Horne, Jim Jarmusch, Richard Meier, Robert Paxton, Robert Redford, Meryl Streep, and Uma Thurman.
Image: Jim Jarmusch and Antonin Baudry, June 23, 2011 © Clarisse Rebotier.
Francine LeFrak received the insignia of the Legion of Honor on November 26 at a ceremony held at the French Consulate. Ambassador François Delattre who presided at the ceremony, emphasized not only Ms. LeFrak’s distinguished work as an advocate for humanitarian causes but also her generosity toward French and American cultural endeavors.
On Thursday evening July 11, Cultural Counselor Antonin Baudry bestowed the insignia of the Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres on American comic book writer and artist Matt Madden, in a ceremony held at the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York.
French and Francophile Stanford University Professors were decorated on June 28th, 2013, by the Consul General of France in San Fransciso. Marie-Pierre Ulloa received the insigna of Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters, and Aron Rodrigue was decorated with the insigna of Chevalier in the Order of the Palmes Académiques.
Four remarkable educators deeply passionate about international collaboration received the insignia of the Ordre des Palmes Académiques on June 18th in a ceremony held at Yale University that was co-hosted by French Cultural Counselor Antonin Baudry and Ian Shapiro, director of Yale's MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies.
Cultural Counselor Antonin Baudry conferred the insignia of the Order of Arts and Letters on Ian Wardropper on June 10, 2013, at a reception co-hosted by the Board of Trustees of The Frick Collection where the event was held. Director of the Frick Collection since 2011, Dr. Wardropper, previously held long-term key positions at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
On Tuesday evening April 30, Cultural Counselor Antonin Baudry introduced "Introduction to the New York startup community " class given by Matt Brimer, co-Founder of General Assembly. General Assembly is an organization that works to create opportunities in technology, business and design in New York City and internationally. The class brought those interested in start-ups together to learn how to get involved.
There’s a revolution brewing and the French are in the leading ranks of the rebels! On Tuesday evening, Cultural Counselor Antonin Baudry bestowed the insignia of the Palmes Académiques on our own Fabrice Jaumont, who, as Education Attaché of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, has helped lead the vanguard of the bilingual revolution in American classrooms.
Nathalie de Gunzburg received the medal of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters on March 7, 2013, in an insignia ceremony presided over by Antonin Baudry, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy at the French Embassy Cultural Services in New York, amidst an illustrious gathering including Ms. De Gunzburg’s family and close friends and colleagues.
Adam Gopnik received the medal of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters on March 11, 2013, in an insignia ceremony presided over by Antonin Baudry, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy at the French Embassy Cultural Services in New York, amidst an illustrious gathering including Mr. Gopnik’s family, Editorial Director of The New Yorker Henry Finder, The New Yorker’s film critic Richard Brody, as well as other close friends and colleagues.
972 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10075