Leonard Leo received the Canterbury Medal on May 4, 2017 at The Pierre in New York.
“Freedom of religion protects the right of conscience, not just in houses of worship but in workplaces, schools, hospitals, government offices, and anywhere else we go in this world. Happily, we in the United States are still a world away from those other places where freedoms are rarely honored because of a fierce independence that refuses to be ordered about, pushed around, or told when your faith is welcome and when it’s not. This is the most American of qualities.” — Leonard Leo, 2017 Canterbury Medalist
In 2007, Leo was appointed by President George W. Bush to the bipartisan U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). He served for five years, three as chairman, traveling to Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Sudan and Vietnam to evaluate violations of religious freedom. He was called on by Congress on multiple occasions to testify on the state of religious liberty abroad. Leo was also a delegate to the UN Council and UN commission on Human Rights.
Leo is the executive vice president of the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies an organization of 46,000 individuals that is premised on advancing limited, constitutional government. While on leave from the Federalist Society in 2005 and 2006, Leo organized efforts in support of the U.S. Supreme Court confirmations of Justices Roberts and Alito. He is currently on leave to support Neil Gorsuch’s U.S. Supreme Court confirmation.
Leo is active in many Catholic charitable organizations, serving as a founding board member of the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, is on the Board of Directors at the Catholic Information Center, and the Board of Trustees at Catholic University of America. He is a member of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Ethics and Public Policy Center.
Leo is on Becket’s Board of Directors and served as Chairman to the 2014 and 2015 Canterbury Medal Galas.
- Tribute Video: About Leonard Leo
- Leonard Leo’s speech transcript and video
- Press Images (photo credit: Becket)
- Press Release: Leonard Leo receives religious liberty’s highest honor (May 5, 2017)
- Press Release: Lion of the Law receives religious liberty’s highest award (April 25, 2017)
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- Press Release: Becket names “Lion of the Law” Leonard Leo 2017 Canterbury Medal (March 16, 2017)
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