Congressman Petri’s earns award from Queen Elizabeth
Source: Fond du Lac Reporter
Picture: Former U.S. Rep. Tom Petri, right, was recognized as an Honorary Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) during a ceremony at the British Ambassador’s Residence. The insignia was presented to the former congressman by British Ambassador Sir Peter Westmacott .
Former U.S. Rep. Thomas E. Petri was formally presented with the insignia recognizing his appointment as an honorary Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire during a ceremony June 11 at the British Ambassador’s Residence in Washington, D.C.
The insignia was presented to the former congressman by British Ambassador Sir Peter Westmacott, on behalf of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, according to a press release from the British Embassy.
The official ceremony follows a January announcement that the former congressman was awarded an OBE in recognition of his role in promoting U.K.-U.S. transatlantic relations by championing ties between Congress and the U.K. Parliament.
Petri was the U.S. Representative for Wisconsin’s Sixth Congressional District from 1979 to 2015. He led the House British-American Parliamentary Group from 2001 until his retirement in 2015.
Following his trip to the Falkland Islands in 2013, Petri emerged as an avid supporter of the Islands. He has advocated on their behalf in a Congressional Resolution on the Falkland Islands referendum, and encouraged his colleagues to support the Islanders right to self-determination.
“Congressman Petri has been a great friend to the U.K., helping to strengthen the ties between our two countries and our legislators. I congratulate him on this well-deserved honor,” Westmacott said.
Upon accepting the title, Petri said, “The close U.S.-U.K. relationship is an important constant in a rapidly changing world, and I thank Her Majesty for this most welcome, if unexpected, recognition of my small contribution to our partnership.”
According to the British Embassy in Washington, the U.K. honors system recognizes exceptional achievement and service to the nation, and includes non-British nationals who receive Honorary awards for their important contribution to British interests.
All British honors are awarded on merit, and honorary awards are conferred by the queen on the advice of the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary. The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire was founded in 1917.