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Yarmuth Introduces Legislative Package Honoring Muhammad Ali

WASHINGTON– Today, in recognition of Muhammad Ali’s 77th birthday and in honor of his countless contributions to our nation, Congressman John Yarmuth (KY-03) introduced H.R. 635, the Muhammad Ali Legacy Act; and H.R. 636, the Muhammad Ali Commemorative Coin Act, a legislative package of two bills that would establish a federal grant program to promote Ali’s core values throughout the world, and create a commemorative coin to honor his life and legacy.

“While the highlight reels and record books will long document Muhammad Ali’s many accomplishments inside the ring, his countless contributions outside of it have truly made a lasting impact on the world,” said Yarmuth. “This legislation would help share Ali’s powerful story and message for change throughout our nation and across the globe. Through his humanitarian work, the creation of The Ali Center, and the immense compassion he showed for all individuals throughout his life, he truly was the greatest. I was honored to call The Champ a friend, and I’m proud to introduce this legislative effort to preserve and promote his legacy for generations to come.”

In 2005, Ali established the Muhammad Ali Center in his hometown of Louisville. The center is a cultural attraction and an international education hub whose work is based on the six core principles by which Ali lived: confidence, conviction, dedication, giving, respect, and spirituality.

The federal grant program established by the Muhammad Ali Legacy Act would promote global respect, understanding, and communication. Using values that Ali advocated for and realized throughout his life, the initiative would seek ways to build upon Ali’s humanitarian work. Specifically, the grant program seeks to:

  • Prepare young leaders to contribute to global society through peace building, conflict resolution, violence prevention, character education, and education about world cultures, religions, and languages;

Provide a positive, productive path for young people to combat radicalism, terrorist networks, and organized crime;

Use technology to empower people around the world – including adults, young people, educators, and civic, community, religious, and corporate leaders – to discuss common interests and concerns, share information, and engage in cross-cultural learning; and

Create a global gathering place – both online and in person – for negotiation and mediation.

The bill authorizes $5 million a year for the grant program, which would be administered by the State Department and fund U.S. nonprofit organizations that work to promote these values.

The Muhammad Ali Commemorative Coin Act would direct the U.S. Treasury to mint a limited number of commemorative coins in recognition of Ali’s legacy. Revenue generated from purchase of the coins—after the Mint recoups the full costs—would go to several institutions working to preserve and promote Ali’s legacy, including the Muhammad Ali Center, the Muhammad Ali Institute for Peace and Justice at the University of Louisville, and the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center (MAPC) and Movement Disorder Clinic.