President Barack Obama will bestow the Presidential Medal of Freedom on basketball superstar Michael Jordan, now the principal owner of the Charlotte Hornets NBA franchise, the White House announced Wednesday.
Jordan is among 21 individuals who will receive the nation’s highest civilian honor on Nov. 22.
In the announcement, the White House described Jordan as “one of the greatest athletes of all time.”
In 15 seasons in pro basketball, Jordan led the Chicago Bulls to six National Basketball Association championships. Earlier, as a freshman at the University of North Carolina, he led the Tar Heels to a national championship in 1982.
Other people receiving the medal include: Basketball champion Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Native American leader Elouise Cobell (posthumously), entertainer Ellen DeGeneres, actor Robert De Niro, polymath physicist Richard Garwin, philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates, architect Frank Gehry, computer scientist Margaret H. Hamilton, actor and advocate Tom Hanks, rear admiral and computer programmer Grace Hopper (posthumously), artist and architect Maya Lin, entertainer Lorne Michaels, FCC attorney Newt Minow, Miami Dade College president Eduardo Padrón, actor and director Robert Redford, singer Diana Ross, sports broadcaster Vin Scully, singer Bruce Springsteen, and actress Cicely Tyson.