The plane set to carry French President François Hollande to California from Washington, DC, taxis into position at Andrews Air Force Base.
We’re getting ready for tonight’s state dinner for France here at the White House. White House Chef Cris Comerford and Pastry Chef Bill Yosses are giving you the inside look — from the (very) locally sourced honey, to a paint sprayer just for chocolate (yum).
Crowds braved freezing temperatures this morning on the South Lawn of the whitehouse to watch the arrival of #French President François Hollande.
The first formal visit by the President of a French Republic to the United States was Vincent Auriol in Spring 1951. The trip sought to convince U.S. lawmakers and the public that France was steadily recovering from wartime destruction, thanks to Marshall Plan aid, and reinforce the Fourth Republic’s commitment to the transatlantic alliance.
President Auriol took daily English lessons to prepare for his visit because, according to the New York Times, he wanted to “speak at least a few words of English in each of the many talks he expects to make in the United States, notably in an address he will make before a joint session of Congress.”1 In March 1951, Auriol sailed for New York from Le Havre aboard the Ile de France with his wife, son, and Robert Schuman, French Foreign Minister, among others.2 The French presidential party landed in New York then took a train to Washington D.C.’s Union Station on March 28.
Auriol made another notable “first” when he became the first French head of state to address a joint session of the U.S. Congress on April 2. He was also awarded the Legion of Merit, Degree of Chief-Commander, by President Harry Truman. Returning to New York on April 2, Auriol received an honorary doctorate from Columbia University. On Wednesday, April 4, the Auriols visited Eleanor Roosevelt in Hyde Park, NY, and presented her with the Order of Commander of the Legion of Honor before sailing for France that evening.
View the video retrospective of French presidential visits to the United States via France’s Institut National Audovisuel (INA).
Secretary Kerry surprised journalists participating in LiveatState this morning by joining Assistant Secretary Thomas-Greenfield to talk about U.S Africa policy. What would you have asked him?
The White House will be hosting French President François Hollande for a State Dinner that celebrates the best of American cuisine. Go behind the scenes on the White House Blog as they prepare!
U.S. Embassy Moscow is on the ground to support Team USA at Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi. Go Team USA!
Check out their Instagram account to see more photos from the games!
Michelle Kwan, 5-time World Figure Skating Champion, 2-time Olympic Medalist, and Senior Advisor for the U.S. Department of State, shares the Department of State’s well wishes in the 2014 Winter Olympics and Paralympics. To learn more about Sports Diplomacy, check out our Office of Education and Cultural Affairs.
Our #BlackHistoryMonth post today features an Olympian! Vonetta Flowers made history in 2002 when she became the first African American to win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics.
Vonetta was originally a track-and-field athlete, making it to the qualifiers for the American team in 1996 and 2000. But sadly, after five surgeries for several injuries, she decided to stop competing. Just two years later, her husband spotted a help-wanted advertisement, asking for American track-and-field athletes to try out for the bobsled team. By the next Olympics, Vonetta and her teammate, Jill Bakken, took home the gold - the first for an American bobsled team in 46 years! You can find more information about Vonetta Flowers here.
In the U.S., February is Black History Month! Celebrate with us every day at noon as we post a new #BHM fun fact.
Are you excited to watch all the amazing athletes at the Olympics?
Who was the first female Team USA athlete to medal at a Winter Games? Find out who and learn more about the history of the Winter Games here!