France Honors Five Connecticut Teachers with the Ordre des Palmes Académiques

For Immediate Release

Contact: Marilyn Wilkes (203) 432-3413

France Honors Five Connecticut Teachers with the Ordre des Palmes Académiques

May 9, 2008. New Haven, CT � On Monday, May 12, Ambassador Pierre Vimont, Ambassador of France to the United States, will confer the insignia of Chevalier of the Ordre des Palmes Académiques upon five Connecticut teachers: Brian Carter, PIER Outreach Director, European Studies, Yale University, New Haven; Carol Kearns, French teacher, Litchfield High School, Litchfield; Margaret Nocturne, French teacher, Joel Barlow High School, West Redding; Nancy Silander, French teacher, E.O. Smith High School, Storrs; and Sharon Straka, Director, Center for the Teaching of French, Yale University, New Haven.

The presentation will take place at a private reception at Yale University. Following the presentation, Ambassador Vimont will give a public address on the topic “France, Europe, and the United States: What Prospects for Trans-Atlantic Relations” in Rosenfeld Hall, 109 Grove Street, at 3:30 p.m. 

The Ordre des Palmes Académiques (Order of Academic Palms) was founded by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1808. A brilliant administrator, Napoleon appreciated the importance of education, and he established the honorary titles of titulaire, Officier de l’Université, and Officier d’Académies as awards for devotion and accomplishment in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and research. In more recent times, this award was made a ministerial Order under the French Minister of Education and now has three ranks—Chevalier, Officier, and Commandeur.

Ambassador Pierre Vimont was appointed Ambassador of France to the United States by President Nicolas Sarkozy on August 1, 2007. Prior to his present appointment, Mr. Vimont was Chief of Staff to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, a position he had held since 2002. He was previously Ambassador and Permanent Representative of France to the European Union from 1999 to 2002.

Contact Information:

Marilyn Wilkes

The Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale

(203) 432-3413