Skip to content


WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono praised today’s announcement that President Barack Obama has posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Hawaii Congresswoman Patsy T. Mink.

Among Congresswoman Mink’s numerous accomplishments during her decades of public service, she is most widely known for being one of the principal authors of Title IX, the federal law that protects students from gender discrimination in federally supported education programs and activities. Signed into law on June 23, 1972, the legislation has since been renamed the Patsy Takemoto Mink Equal Opportunity Education Act.

“This recognition for my friend, Patsy Mink, is well deserved and I am proud to have lent my early support to this effort. A visionary and a trailblazer, Patsy’s legacy lives on in every female student and athlete in America who’s been given a fair shot to compete in the classroom and on the playing field,” said Senator Hirono. “We are proud that a keiki o ka aina, born and raised on Maui, who continues to inspire all of us, has received this high honor. I commend the Hawaii State Bar Association for its nomination and organizing the effort that has made this honor a reality.”

The Hawaii State Bar Association (HSBA) Civic Education Committee nominated Congresswoman Pasty Takemoto Mink for the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Troy Andrade, Ruth Oh, and Ted Pettit, members of the HSBA Civic Education Committee, spearheaded the effort and provided the following statement.

"The Hawaii State Bar Association Civic Education Committee is extremely proud that President Obama is recognizing one of the greatest civic leaders of our time. No one is more deserving of the Presidential Medal of Freedom than Congresswoman Mink. The Committee looks forward to planning several events throughout 2014 and 2015 to celebrate Congresswoman Mink's life and legacy."

The Presidential Medal of Freedom, along with the Congressional Gold Medal, is one of the highest civilian awards in the United States.