Jefferson-Lincoln Awards

The twenty-first Jefferson-Lincoln Awards: An Evening to Honor Lives of Public Service gala was held on Saturday, November 6, 2021 at The Inn at Spanish Bay.

United States Representatives Liz Cheney (R-WY) and James Clyburn (D-SC) along with Chris Wallace, Anchor of FOX News Sunday were the latest in a series of national figures to be honored not only for their years of public service, but also for their spirit of bipartisanship in representing the American people as well as their own constituents.


Liz Cheney served as Wyoming’s lone member of Congress in the U.S. House of Representatives. Prior to her election to Congress, she served at the State Department as a Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Middle East. A specialist in national security and foreign policy, she was also a Fox News analyst, and the co-author, along with Vice President Cheney, of Exceptional: Why The World Needs a Powerful America.First elected to the congress in 2016, Representative Cheney served as the Chair of the House Republican Conference, the third-ranking Republican in the House of Representatives from 2019-2021.  She served on the House Armed Services Committee and is Vice Chair of the House’s select committee investigating the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol.Representative Cheney graduated for Colorado College in 1984 and received her J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School. She and her husband have five children and live in Wilson, Wyoming.



James E. Clyburnis the Majority Whip and the third-ranking Democrat in the United States House of Representatives. He previously served in the post from 2007 to 2011 and served as Assistant Democratic Leader from 2011 to 2019. Congressman Clyburn’s youth as the eldest son of an activist, fundamentalist minister and an independent, civic-minded beautician grounded him securely in family, faith and public service. When he came to Congress in 1993 to represent South Carolina’s sixth congressional district, Congressman Clyburn was elected co-president of his freshman class and quickly rose through leadership ranks. He was subsequently elected Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, Vice Chair, and later Chair, of the House Democratic Caucus. As a national leader, he has championed rural and economic development and many of his initiatives have become law. His memoir, Blessed Experiences: Genuinely Southern, Proudly Black, published in 2015, has been described ‎as a primer that should be read by every student interested in pursuing a career in public service. Congressman Clyburn graduated from South Carolina State University. He has three daughters and four grandchildren.



Chris Wallace was the anchor of FOX News Sunday, Fox Broadcasting Company’s Sunday morning public affairs program. In 2014, he marked his 50th year in the broadcasting industry. Mr. Wallace began his career at WNBC-TV (NBC 4) in New York in 1975. He served as NBC’s Chief White House Correspondent from 1982-1989 and worked at ABC News for fourteen years before joining FOX News Channel (FNC) in 2003. Throughout his nearly two decades at FNC, Mr. Wallace has participated in the coverage of nearly every major political event. Most recently, he was chosen to moderate the first presidential debate of the 2020 election season between former Vice President Joe Biden and incumbent President Donald Trump. The debate was the highest-rated in cable news history and was his second time moderating a presidential debate. In July 2020, Mr. Wallace’s wide-ranging interview with President Donald Trump was met with praise from all sides of the aisle. He has interviewed President Barack Obama, Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Emmanuel Macron and former Vice President Al Gore, among others. Throughout his 50-plus years in broadcasting, Mr. Wallace has won every major broadcast news award for his reporting, including three Emmy Awards, the Dupont-Columbia Silver Baton, the Peabody Awardand the Sol Taishoff Award for Broadcast Journalism, awarded by the National Press Foundation. Most recently, he received the ICFJ Founders Award for Excellence in Journalism, for “his unbiased, piercing approach to interviews.” Mr. Wallace attended Harvard College.


About the Jefferson-Lincoln Awards

The Jefferson-Lincoln Awards are presented each year to individuals whose professional achievements represent exceptional commitment to the principles of our democracy, to bipartisanship and a dedication to encouraging the healthy function of the United States’ system of government through an informed electorate.

The gala evening features the presentations of awards as well as an outstanding four-course, gourmet dinner with fine wines prepared by honored local chefs.

The Jefferson-Lincoln Awards celebration is the Panetta Institute’s major fundraising event of the year, and helps support the many programs that promote the Institute’s goal of enhancing public policy and attracting thoughtful men and women to lives of public service.


The Jefferson-Lincoln Awards are made possible thanks to the generosity of a variety of individuals and organizations who have joined a growing list of sponsors and hosts for the event.


Secretary Leon Panetta and Sylvia Panetta hosted by Sherry E. DeBoer

U.S. Representative Elizabeth Lynne Cheney hosted by Debra and George Couch III for

U.S. Representative James E. Clyburn hosted by California State University, Monterey Bay

Chris Wallace hosted by Cannery Row Company, Don Chapin Company and Steve Caldeira

U.S. Representative Jimmy Panetta hosted by Susan Prest and Commander Allen Sherwood


The Frank & Denise Quattrone Foundation; Denise Foderaro and Frank Quattrone, Trustees

Zenith Insurance Company


Tonya Antle

Beacon Global Strategies

Laurie and David Benjamin

Blue Shield of California

Chevron Corporation


The Eubanks Family Foundation

Fenton & Keller


Georgia Pacific

Koret Foundation

Stan McKee

Sharon and Stan Meresman

Montage Health


Pacific Gas & Electric Company

Pacific Maritime Association/Sugerman Communications Group

Pebble Beach Company

The Peter G. Peterson Foundation

Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System

Santa Clara University

Susan Prest and Commander Allen Sherwood

Stanley Zax


Rusty Areias and Julie Sandino Areias

AT&T California

Bank of America

John and Evelyn Dilsaver

Alfred Glover and Family

Kaiser Permanente

Katrina and Luca Maestri

The Panetta Family

Melissa and Shawn Rosza

Vishal Verma (Two Tables)

Kathy and Tom Wiggans

With Honor Action

Previous Jefferson-Lincoln honorees include:

Year 2019

  • Lamar Alexander, United State Senator (R), Tennessee
  • Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security (2009-2013)
  • Josh Gottheimer, United States Representative (D) 5th District of New Jersey
  • Thomas Reed, II, United States Representative (R) 23rd District of New York

Year 2018

  • John Hickenlooper, Governor (D), Colorado
  • Christine Todd Whitman, Governor, New Jersey
  • Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff

Year 2017

  • Rob Portman, U.S. Senator (R), Ohio
  • Jack Reed U.S. Senator (D), Rhode Island

Year 2016

  • Tom Carper, U.S. Senator (D), Delaware
  • Lisa Murkowski, U.S. Senator (R), Alaska
  • Sam Farr, U.S. Representative (D), 20th Congressional District, California
  • Fran Townsend, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism (2004-2008)
  • Robert Mueller, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (2002-2013)

Year 2015

  • Scott Pelley, Anchor, CBS Evening News and Managing Editor and Correspondent, 60 Minutes
  • Martha Raddatz, Chief Global Affairs correspondent, ABC News
  • David Martin, National Security Correspondent, Pentagon and State Department, CBS News
  • Jim Miklaszewski, Chief Pentagon Correspondent, NBC News

Year 2014

  • Barbara Starr, Chief Pentagon Correspondent, CNN
  • Mike Rogers, U.S. Representative (R), 8th District, Michigan
  • Ron Wyden, U.S. Senator (D), Oregon

Year 2013

  • Bob Schieffer, Host CBS Face the Nation
  • Barbara Mikulski, U.S. Senator (D), Maryland
  • Saxby Chambliss, U.S. Senator (R), Georgia

Year 2012

  • Ray LaHood, 16th Secretary of Transportation (R)
  • Candy Crowley, Chief Political Correspondent and Anchor, CNN
  • Steny Hoyer, U.S. Representative (D), 5th District, Maryland

Year 2011

  • Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense (R) (2006-2011)
  • Alice Rivlin, Director, U.S. Office of Management and Budget (D) (1994-1996)
  • Wolf Blitzer, Lead Political Anchor, CNN

Year 2010

  • Tom Brokaw, Special Correspondent, NBC Nightly News
  • Cokie Roberts, Senior News Analyst, NPR and ABC News
  • David Brooks, Columnist, The New York Times

Year 2009

  • Bernard Shaw, Anchor Emeritus, CNN
  • Andrea Mitchell, Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent, NBC News
  • Jim Lehrer, Executive Editor and Anchor, PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer

Year 2008

  • Arnold Schwarzenegger, 38th Governor (R), California
  • Jane Harman, U.S. Representative (D), 36th District, California
  • Jim Saxton, U.S. Representative (R), 3rd District, New Jersey
  • Ron Brownstein, Political Director, Atlantic Media

Year 2007

  • David Broder, National Political Correspondent, The Washington Post
  • Judy Woodruff, Senior Correspondent, PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer
  • Belva Davis, Television Journalist, KQED

Year 2006

  • Sherwood Boehlert, U.S. Representative (R), 24th District, New York
  • Ike Skelton, U.S. Representative (D), 4th District, Missouri

Year 2005

  • Susan Collins, U.S. Senator (R), Maine
  • Dianne Feinstein, U.S. Senator (D), California
  • Joseph Lieberman, U.S. Senator (D), Connecticut

Year 2004 

  • John Breaux, U.S. Senator (D), Louisiana
  • Olympia Snowe, U.S. Senator (R), Maine

Year 2003 

  • William Cohen, Secretary of Defense (R) (1997-2001)
  • Norman Mineta, 14th Secretary of Transportation (D)
  • Marty Meehan, U.S. Representative (D), 5th District, Massachusetts
  • Christopher Shays, U.S. Representative (R), 4th District, Connecticut

Year 2002 

  • Russ Feingold, U.S. Senator (D), Wisconsin
  • John McCain, U.S. Senator (R), Arizona

Year 2001 

  • John Murtha, U.S. Representative (D), 12th District, Pennsylvania
  • Bill Young, U.S. Representative (R), 10th District, Florida

Year 2000

  • John Chafee, U.S. Senator (R), Rhode Island Posthumously
  • Daniel Patrick Moynihan, U.S. Senator (D), New York