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Academy of Achievement: Golden Plate Recipients
View Summit Highlights:

The Golden Plate Award is presented annually since 1961 by the Academy of Achievement to approximately 25 guests of honor at the International Achievement Summit.

Chosen by the Academy's Awards Council and other distinguished authorities, these men and women of exceptional accomplishment in the sciences, professions, business, industry, arts, literature, sports, entertainment, and public service are acclaimed ... not as winners, but as "representatives of the many who excel." This page presents a list of representative Golden Plate honorees grouped by decade and field of endeavor. Honorees from specific years can be found at the links below.

Selected Honorees: 1961 - 1976
Selected Honorees: 1977 - 1992
Selected Honorees: 1993 - 2007
Complete List of Honorees: 2008 - 2012


THE ARTS

1960s

Thomas Hart Benton, Painter and Muralist (1961)
Bob Hope, "Ambassador of Entertainment" (1961)
Theodore Roethke, Pulitzer Prize for Poetry (1961)
William Wyler, Three Oscars for Best Director (1961)
King Vidor, Motion Picture Direction (1964)
David Merrick, Theater Production (1965)
Lee J. Cobb, Theater (1966)
Allen Drury, Pulitzer Prize for "Advise and Consent" (1967)

1970s

Shirley Temple Black, Film Actress and Diplomat (1970)
George Cukor, Oscar for "My Fair Lady" (1970)
John Wayne, Legendary Film Actor (1970)
James Michener, Storytelling Phenomenon (1971)
Irving Stone, Master of the Biographical Novel (1971)
Louis I. Kahn, The Philosopher Architect (1971)
Lowell Thomas, Broadcaster and Author (1971)
Frank Capra, Three Oscars for Best Director (1972)
Helen Hayes, First Lady of the American Theater (1972)
Jimmy Stewart, Oscar for Lifetime Achievement (1974)
Ray Charles, Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award (1975)
Will and Ariel Durant, Pulitzer Prize for History (1976)
Stevie Wonder, Singer, Songwriter and Activist (1977)
Alex Haley, Author of "Roots" (1977)
Olivia de Havilland, Two Oscars for Best Actress (1978)
Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., Pulitzer Prize for "A Thousand Days" (1978)
Henry Fonda, Film and Stage Actor (1979)

1980s

Clint Eastwood, Motion Picture Actor and Director (1980)
Charles M. Schulz, Cartoonist, Creator of "Peanuts" (1980)
Quincy Jones, Musical Impresario (1984)
David McCullough, Two Pulitzer Prizes for Biography (1985)
Elizabeth Taylor, Two Oscars for Best Actress (1985)
Clare Boothe Luce, Author and Diplomat (1986)
Loretta Lynn, Legend of Country Music (1986)
Leontyne Price, National Medal of Arts (1986)
Steven Spielberg, Film Director and Producer (1986)
Herman Wouk, Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (1986)
Joseph Papp, Theatrical Producer and Director (1986)
Robert Rauschenberg, Prolific American Painter (1986)
Jim Henson, The Muppetmaster (1987)
Johnny Cash, Country Music Hall of Fame (1988)
Wynton Marsalis, Pulitzer Prize for Music (1988)
August Wilson, Two Pulitzer Prizes for Drama (1988)
Tom Brokaw, Television Journalist and Author (1989)
Henry Mancini, 70 Grammy Nominations (1989)
Mike Nichols, Motion Picture and Stage Director (1989)

1990s

Dizzy Gillespie, Jazz Musician, Composer and Bandleader (1991)
Audrey Hepburn, Actress and Humanitarian (1991)
Martin Scorsese, Film Director, Screenwriter and Producer (1991)
Wallace Stegner, Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (1991)
Philip Johnson, Dean of American Architects (1991)
Barbara Walters, Broadcast Journalism (1991)
Dolly Parton, Entertainment (1992)
Barbra Streisand, 51 Gold Albums and Two Oscars for Best Actress (1992)
John Grisham, Bestselling Author (1993)
Francis Ford Coppola, Filmmaker, Producer and Screenwriter (1994)
Robert DeNiro, Actor, Director and Producer (1994)
Bill Cosby, Entertainment (1995)
Frank O. Gehry, Architecture Gold Medalist (1995)
James M. McPherson, Pulitzer Prize for "Battle Cry of Freedom" (1995)
Mike Wallace, Broadcast Journalism (1995)
Bob Woodward, Investigative Reporter (1995)
Doris Kearns Goodwin, Pulitzer Prize for History (1996)
Joyce Carol Oates, National Book Award (1997)
James Cameron, Master Storyteller and Filmmaker (1998)
Morgan Freeman, Master Screen Craftsman (1998)
Shelby Foote, Civil War Historian and Novelist (1999)
Aretha Franklin, The Queen of Soul (1999)

2000s

Maya Lin, Artist and Architect (2000)
John Williams, Award-winning Composer (2000)
Chuck Berry, Father of Rock and Roll (2002)
Bono, Musician and Activist (2002)
Bob Dylan, Icon of American Culture (2003)
Julie Andrews, First Lady of the Musical Theater (2004)
B.B. King, "King of the Blues" (2004)
Norman Mailer, Two Pulitzer Prizes for Fiction (2004)
John Updike, Two Pulitzer Prizes for Fiction (2004)
Edward Albee, Three Pulitzer Prizes for Drama (2005)
John Irving, National Book Award (2005)
Sally Field, Two Oscars for Best Actress (2005)
Toni Morrison, Nobel Prize for Literature (2005)
Stephen Sondheim, Composer and Lyricist (2005)
Itzhak Perlman, Pre-eminent Violinist of the 20th Century (2005)
Harold Prince, Broadway Producer and Director (2007)
Tom Wolfe, America's Master Novelist (2005)
Nora Ephron, Author and Filmmaker (2007)
Joshua Bell, Grammy Award-winning Violinist (2008)
Nicholas D. Kristof, Two Pulitzer Prizes for Journalism (2008)
W.S. Merwin, Two Pulitzer Prizes for Poetry (2008)
Brian Wilson, Legendary Music Producer and Performer (2008)
Tony Bennett, Legendary Singer (2009)
Nadine Gordimer, Nobel Prize for Literature (2009)
Wole Soyinka, Nobel Prize for Literature (2009)

PUBLIC SERVICE

1960s

Douglas MacArthur, General of the Army (1961)
Alan T. Waterman, Science and Public Service (1961)
Louis Nizer, Trial Lawyer and Author (1962)
Benjamin D. Foulois, Father of U.S. Military Aviation (1965)
Helen Keller, Author and Political Activist (1965)
Benjamin A. Schriever, Father of Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Program (1965)
Daniel K. Inouye, War Hero and Statesman (1967)

1970s

Gerald R. Ford, 38th President of the United States (1971)
Milton Friedman, Nobel Prize in Economics (1971)
Leon Jaworski, Law and Public Service (1971)
Howard Baker, Distinguished Public Servant (1973)
Jimmy Doolittle, Aviation Pioneer and Recipient of the Medal of Honor (1977)
John J. Sirica, Watergate Trial Judge (1977)
Omar N. Bradley, General of the Army (1978)
Frank M. Johnson, Jr., Courageous Federal Judge (1978)

1980s

Jimmy Carter, 39th President of the United States (1984)
Sam Ervin, Jr., Lawyer, Jurist, Legislator and Patriot (1981)
Walter H. Annenberg, Publisher, Philanthropist and Diplomat (1985)
Betty Ford, Distinguished Volunteer Service (1985)
Sandra Day O'Connor, First Woman Justice, Supreme Court of the United States (1987)
General Colin L. Powell, Presidential Medal of Freedom (1988)

1990s

Ronald Reagan, 40th President of the United States (1990)
H. Norman Schwarzkopf, Commander, Operation Desert Storm (1991)
Robert M. Gates, Director of Central Intelligence (1992)
George H.W. Bush, 41st President of the United States (1995)
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Justice, Supreme Court of the United States (1995)
Lady Bird Johnson, Congressional Gold Medal (1995)
Rosa Parks, Congressional Gold Medal Recipient (1995)
Elie Wiesel, Nobel Prize for Peace (1996)
Barbara Bush, Advocate of Family Literacy (1997)
Coretta Scott King, Pioneer of Civil Rights (1997)
James A. Baker III, Presidential Medal of Freedom (1998)
Dick Cheney, 46th Vice President of the United States (1998)

2000s

Mikhail Gorbachev, Nobel Prize for Peace (2000)
Benazir Bhutto, Former Prime Minister of Pakistan (2000)
Lech Walesa, Nobel Prize for Peace (2000)
William J. Clinton, 42nd President of the United States (2002)
Richard M. Daley, Former Mayor of Chicago (2002)
Henry A. Kissinger, Nobel Prize for Peace (2002)
George J. Mitchell, Presidential Medal of Freedom (2002)
John McCain, United States Senate (2003)
Hillary Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State (2003)
Antonin Scalia, Justice, Supreme Court of the United States (2003)
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Prize for Peace (2003)
Shimon Peres, President of Israel (2003)
His Majesty King Abdullah II, King of Jordan (2004)
John R. Lewis, United States Congress (2004)
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey (2004)
Anthony M. Kennedy, Justice, Supreme Court of the United States (2005)
Mohamed ElBaradei, Nobel Prize for Peace (2006)
Wendy Kopp, Founder and President, Teach for America (2006)
Nancy Pelosi, United States Congress (2006)
Antonio Villaraigosa, Mayor of Los Angeles (2006)
Laura Bush, First Lady of the United States (2007)
Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States (2007)
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Nobel Prize for Peace (2008)
Eric Holder, U.S. Attorney General (2012)
Leon Panetta, U.S. Secretary of Defense (2012)
Sonia Sotomayor, Justice, Supreme Court of the United States (2012)

SCIENCE & EXPLORATION

1960s

Luis W. Alvarez, Developer of the Hydrogen Bubble Chamber (1961)
Charles Stark Draper, Inventor of the Gyroscope (1961)
Willard F. Libby, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1961)
Edward Teller, Father of the Hydrogen Bomb (1961)
Murray Gell-Mann, Nobel Prize in Physics (1962)
John R. Pierce, Pioneer of Satellite Communications (1962)
John Glenn, First American to Orbit the Earth (1964)
Edward M. McMillan, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1964)
Howard Aiken, Father of the Computer (1965)
Maria Goeppert-Mayer, Nobel Prize in Physics (1965)
E.C. Kendall, Discoverer of Cortisone (1966)
Harold C. Urey, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1966)
Michael E. DeBakey, Legendary Heart Surgeon (1967)
Claude E. Shannon, Father of Information Theory (1967)
Denton Cooley, Heart Transplant Pioneer (1968)
Jim Lovell, Spacecraft Commander of Apollo 13's Perilous Flight (1968)
Vladimir K. Zworykin, Father of Television (1967)
Charles H. Townes, Inventor of the Maser and Laser (1969)

1970s

Jack S. Kilby, Inventor of the Integrated Circuit (1970)
Rita Levi-Montalcini, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1970)
Willem J. Kolff, Inventor of the Artificial Kidney and Heart (1971)
Norman E. Borlaug, Father of the Green Revolution (1971)
Glenn T. Seaborg, Discoverer of Plutonium (1972)
Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay, Conquerors of Mt. Everest (1973)
Neil Armstrong, First Man on the Moon (1973)
Paul J. Flory, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1974)
Eugene P. Wigner, Nobel Prize in Physics (1974)
Chuck Yeager, First Man to Break the Sound Barrier (1974)
Carl D. Anderson, Nobel Prize in Physics (1975)
Isaac Asimov, Science Writer (1975)
Maurice Hilleman, Developer of Mumps, Measles, Chicken Pox & Hepatitis Vaccines (1975)
Carl Sagan, Astronomy and Literature (1975)
Wernher von Braun, Rocket Scientist and Space Architect (1975)
Sir Godfrey Hounsfield, Inventor of X-ray Computed Tomography (CT Scan) (1976)
Donald C. Johanson, Discoverer of Lucy (1976)
Jonas Salk, Developer of the Polio Vaccine (1976)
Allan Sandage, Discoverer of Quasars (1976)
R. Buckminster Fuller, Designer, Inventor and Futurist (1977)
Rosalyn S. Yalow, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1977)
Linus Pauling, Nobel Prizes for Peace and Chemistry (1979)

1980s

Roger W. Sperry, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1980)
Phillip A. Sharp, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1981)
Alan Shepard, Jr., First American in Space (1981)
Stephen Jay Gould, Evolutionary Biologist (1982)
Leon M. Lederman, Nobel Prize in Physics (1982)
Marvin Minsky, Father of Artificial Intelligence (1982)
Grace Murray Hopper, Developer of COBOL Computer Language (1983)
David H. Hubel, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1983)
Carlo Rubbia, Nobel Prize in Physics (1984)
Donald E. Knuth, Father of Computer Science (1985)
David Baltimore, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1986)
Freeman Dyson, Theoretical Physicist (1986)
Isidor Isaac Rabi, Nobel Prize in Physics (1986)
Francis Crick and James Watson, Discoverers of the DNA Molecule (1986-1987)
John Bardeen, Two Nobel Prizes in Physics (1987)
Jane Goodall, Primate Researcher (1987)
Luc Montagnier, Discoverer of the AIDS Virus (1987)
James Van Allen, Discoverer of the Magnetosphere (1988)
E.O. Wilson, Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction (1988)
Paul Berg, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1989)
Gertrude B. Elion, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1989)
Donald A. Glaser, Inventor of the Bubble Chamber (1989)

1990s

Robert D. Ballard, Discoverer of the Titanic (1990)
Norman F. Ramsey, Jr., Nobel Prize in Physics (1990)
Harold E. Varmus, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1990)
E.J. Corey, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1991)
Sylvia Earle, Oceanographer and Explorer (1991)
Joseph E. Murray, First Successful Human Organ Transplant (1991)
Clyde Tombaugh, Discoverer of Pluto (1991)
Arthur Kornberg, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1992)
E. Donnall Thomas, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1993)
John W. Young, Astronaut (1993)
Francis S. Collins, Director, National Institutes of Health (1994)
Benjamin S. Carson, Pediatric Neurosurgeon (1995)
Stanley B. Prusiner, Nobel Prize in Medicine (1996)
Edward Witten, Theoretical Physicist (1997)
Howard Gardner, The Theory of Multiple Intelligences (1999)
Eric Lander, Molecular Genetics (1999)
Lord Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal and Master of Trinity College (1999)
James Thomson and John Gearhart, Discoverers of Human Embryonic Stem Cells (1999)

2000s

Elizabeth Blackburn and Carol Greider, Nobel Prize in Medicine (2000)
Baruch S. Blumberg, Developer of the Hepatitis B Vaccine (2000)
Sir Aaron Klug, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2000)
Ray Kurzweil, Developer of Optical Character Recognition (2000)
Frederick Sanger, Two Nobel Prizes in Chemistry (2000)
Ahmed H. Zewail, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2000)
Paul Greengard, Nobel Prize in Medicine (2002)
Sir Harold W. Kroto, Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2002)
Robert Langer, Biomedical Engineering (2003)
Sally Ride, First American Woman in Space (2004)
Sir John Sulston, Nobel Prize in Medicine (2004)
Sir Timothy Berners-Lee, Inventor of the World Wide Web (2007)
Richard Leakey, Paleoanthropologist and Environmentalist (2007)
Shinya Yamanaka, Nobel Prize in Medicine (2008)
Paul Farmer, Founder, Partners in Health (2009)

BUSINESS

1960s

Peter G. Peterson, Business and Marketing (1962)
Kemmons Wilson, Founder, Holiday Inn (1965)
DeWitt and Lila Wallace, Co-Founders of The Reader's Digest (1966)
August Busch, Jr., Brewer and Civic Leader (1967)
J.R. Simplot, Agribusiness Pioneer (1967)
Ewing M. Kauffman, Industrialist and Sportsman (1968)
Malcolm Baldridge, Business Management (1969)

1970s

H. Ross Perot, Computer Services Entrepreneur (1970)
J. Willard Marriott, Founder of Marriott Corporation (1971)
Bill Lear, Inventor and Entrepreneur (1972)
Akio Morita, Co-Founder of Sony Corporation (1972)
Lord Roy Thomson of Fleet, Canadian Media Entrepreneur (1972)
Ray Kroc, Mastermind of McDonald's Corporation (1973)
Harland Sanders, Founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken (1975)
Stephen D. Bechtel, Sr., International Engineering and Construction (1976)
John D. MacArthur, Chairman of Bankers Life and Casualty Company (1977)
Sir Y.K. Pao, Founder of World's Largest Shipping Company (1977)
Armand Hammer, Chairman of Occidental Petroleum (1978)
Ray L. Hunt, Chairman of Hunt Oil Company (1979)
Jay and Robert Pritzker, Finance and Hotels (1979 and 1983)

1980s

Herbert Boyer and Robert Swanson, Co-Founders of Genentech (1981 and 1986)
William R. Hewlett, Co-Founder of Hewlett-Packard Company (1981)
James Rouse, Real Estate Development (1981)
Arnold O. Beckman, Inventor and Entrepreneur (1982)
Nolan Bushnell, Computer Game Pioneer (1982)
Steven P. Jobs, Co-Founder and Chairman of Apple Computer Company (1982)
Chung Ju-yung, Chairman and Founder of Hyundai Group (1982)
Gene Autry, Entertainment and Broadcasting (1983)
John W. Kluge, Broadcasting Entrepreneur (1983)
Ted Turner, Founder of Cable News Network (1984)
Philip F. Anschutz, Entrepreneur and Sportsman (1985)
Michael R. Milken, Financier and Philanthropist (1985)
John H. Johnson, Founder of Ebony Magazine (1986)
Henry Kravis and George Roberts, Co-Founders of Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts (1987 - 1988)
Ernest and Julio Gallo, Founders, E. & J. Gallo Winery (1989)
Peter and Walter Haas, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Levi Strauss & Co. (1989 and 1996)
Phil Knight, Co-Founder and Chairman of Nike, Inc. (1989)
Ralph Lauren, Fashion Design (1989)
George Lucas, Creator of Star Wars and Indiana Jones (1989)
Oprah Winfrey, Television Host, Actress, Producer and Philanthropist (1989)

1990s

Leslie Wexner, Retailing and Fashion (1990)
Oscar de la Renta, Fashion Design (1991)
Calvin Klein, Fashion Design (1991)
Richard Branson, Virgin Group of Companies (1992)
Barry Diller, Entertainment Entrepreneur (1992)
William H. Gates III, Co-Founder and Chairman of Microsoft Corporation (1992)
Sumner Redstone, Global Television Network (1993)
Ralph and Brian Roberts, Telecommunications (1994)
Carlos Slim Helú, Mexico's Telecommunications Tycoon (1994)
Herb Kelleher, Founder, Southwest Airlines Co. (1996)
Lawrence J. Ellison, Founder and Chairman of Oracle Corporation (1997)
Michael S. Dell, Founder and Chairman of Dell Computer Corporation (1998)
Frederick W. Smith, Founder and Chairman of Federal Express Corporation (1998)
Eli Broad, Financier and Civic Leader (1999)
Katharine Graham, Chairman of The Washington Post Company (1999)
Stephen Schwarzman, Investment Banking (1999)

2000s

Jeffrey P. Bezos, Founder and Chairman of Amazon.com (2000)
John L. Hennessy, President of Stanford University (2000)
Pierre Omidyar, Founder and Chairman of eBay Inc. (2000)
Lord Jacob Rothschild, Investment Banking (2000)
Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Co-Founders of Google Inc. (2004)
Michael Bloomberg, Mayor of New York City (2004)
Jamie Dimon, CEO, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (2006)
David M. Rubenstein, Founder and Managing Director, The Carlyle Group (2006)
Laurence D. Fink, Investment Management (2007)
Henry M. Paulson, Jr., U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (2007)
Ray Dalio, Hedge Fund Master (2012)

SPORTS

1960s

Rafer Johnson, Olympic Champion (1962)
Jim Murray, Pulitzer Prize for Sports Commentary (1964)
Bill Bradley, Scholar, Athlete and Legislator (1965)
Stan Musial, Baseball Hall of Fame (1968)
Mickey Mantle, Baseball Hall of Fame (1969)
George M. Steinbrenner III, Entrepreneur and Sportsman (1969)

1970s

Terry Bradshaw, Super Bowl Champion Quarterback (1970)
Bobby Orr, Hockey Hall of Fame (1970)
Bart Starr, Super Bowl Champion Quarterback (1973)
John Havlicek, Champion of the Boston Celtics (1974)
Bob Griese, Super Bowl Champion Quarterback (1975)
Willie Mays, Greatest All-Around Player in Baseball History (1975)
Roger Staubach, Super Bowl Champion Quarterback (1976)
John Wooden, College Basketball Hall of Fame (1976)
Hank Aaron, All-Time Home Run King (1977)
Howard Cosell, Sports Commentator (1977)
Gordie Howe, Hockey's Legend (1978)
Tom Landry, Pro Football Hall of Fame (1978)
Paul "Bear" Bryant, College Football Hall of Fame (1979)

1980s

Carl Hubbell, Baseball Hall of Fame (1981)
Jim Plunkett, Super Bowl Champion Quarterback (1981)
Wayne Gretzky, Greatest Player in Hockey History (1982)
Dean Smith, Legendary Basketball Coach (1982)
Franco Harris, NFL's "Player of the Decade" (1984)
Brooks Robinson, Baseball Hall of Fame (1984)
Mary Lou Retton, Gold Medal Gymnast (1985)
Muhammad Ali, Boxing Champion (1986)
Reinhold Messner, Greatest Mountaineer on Earth (1987)
Julius Erving, Basketball Champion (1988)
Walter Payton, Football Champion (1988)
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Basketball Scoring Champion (1989)
Bill Walsh, Pro Football Hall of Fame (1989)

1990s

Michael Jordan, Greatest Player in Basketball History (1990)
Pete Rozelle, National Football League (1990)
Jerry Jones, Super Bowl Championship (1993)
Mike Krzyzewski, Collegiate Basketball Champion (1995)
Arnold Palmer, Athlete of the Decade (1995)
Dorothy Hamill, U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame (1996)
Cal Ripken, Jr., Baseball All-Star (1997)

2000s

Sir Roger Bannister, Athletic Achievement of the Century (2000)
Yogi Berra, Baseball Hall of Fame (2005)
Andre Agassi, Tennis Champion and Philanthropist (2007)
Peyton Manning, Super Bowl Champion Quarterback (2007)
Bill Russell, Basketball Hall of Fame (2008)