We cultivate, connect, and celebrate U.S. Presidential Scholars – past, present and future.
Each year, 161 of the nation’s top high school graduates are chosen to be U.S. Presidential Scholars and are honored by the White House. These Scholars go on to advance the arts, culture, business, education, and civic life of the nation. We help them achieve their goals by connecting them to each other and supporting them throughout their careers.
Join Us on June 21-24, 2019
Celebrating 55 years of Presidential Scholars and 40 years of Presidential Scholars in the Arts
Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Washington, D.C
Event Speakers and Special Guests
Dr. Jane Rigby (1996, DE) is a civil servant Astrophysicist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Rigby serves as the Operations Project Scientist for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).
Dejha Carrington is Vice President of External Relations at National YoungArts Foundation.
Kim Barker is a reporter on the investigations team at The New York Times.
GRAMMY award-winning multi-percussionist Joseph Gramley has performed internationally as a soloist, chamber musician, educator, producer, concert host and with major symphony orchestras
Kenyon Victor Adams is a multidisciplinary artist and curator. He currently serves as the director of the Louis Armstrong House Museum & Archives in Corona, NY.
Pat Grady is a partner at Sequoia Capital, which he joined in 2007.
Hugh Kennedy is an actor and teaching artist who lives in Los Angeles.
Dr. Bergmark is the founding executive director of Voices for Civil Justice, a national communications hub for civil legal aid that launched in 2013.
Kathy McHale worked for 30 years for non-profit organizations related to community organizing, social issues, and assistive technology
Chat Travieso is a Brooklyn-based artist, designer and educator. He creates socially engaged and architectural public art, as well as research-based projects about spatial justice issues.
Michael A. Weiss is chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and director of chemical biology and biotherapeutics for the Indiana University Precision Health Initiative.
Alvin W. Thompson is a United States District Judge for the District of Connecticut.
Jean Shin is 1990 YoungArts Winner in Visual Arts & U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts.
Nasha Thomas oversees AileyCamps and designs the national outreach for Ailey’s Arts In Education & Community Programs department.
Lee Heinemann is 2011 YoungArts Winner in Visual Arts & U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts.
Rachel Moore is a 1982 YoungArts Winner in Dance & U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts. She is president and CEO of The Music Center, Los Angeles’ premier performing arts center.
Nadia Wolff is a 2016 YoungArts Winner in Design Arts and Visual Arts & U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts.
Sharon Otterman has been a reporter for The New York Times since 2008, primarily covering education, religion and breaking news for the Metro desk.
Kathy Qian is the co-founder of Code for Democracy and recipient of the 2018 Seed Grant.
Leonard Earl Howze is an accomplished theater, film and television actor.
Thomas G. Tsao is President and Chairman of the Presidential Scholars Foundation.
Dr. Felice Kaufmann, who conducted the only longitudinal study on U.S. Presidential Scholars ever conceived, is a pioneer in the field of gifted education.
2019 Presidential Scholars Honorees
The 2019 Presidential Scholars Honors Celebration will be held on Saturday, June 22, 2019 honoring climate scientist Richard Alley (1976, OH), hematologist Katherine High (1968, NC), and dancer Desmond Richardson (1986, NY) with the Roosevelt Thompson Award and philanthropist Lin Arison with the Dr. Felice Kaufmann Award. This will be a highlight of our 2019 Anniversary weekend marking the 55th anniversary of the USPS Program and the 40th anniversary of the Presidential Scholars in the Arts. All anniversary celebration attendees will receive a ticket to the celebration dinner.
A room block at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel is available at a discounted rate for all event attendees.
Make your reservations soon. Space is limited.
Email Jamie with any questions.
Meet notable Scholars and see photos and performances of U.S Presidential Scholars in the Arts.