obama - AP - January 26 2011
President Barack Obama smiles on Capitol Hill in Washington, January 25, 2011, while delivering his State of the Union address. Photo by AP
Text size

United States President Barack Obama will host a reception on Tuesday, May 17, in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month, the White House reported on Monday.

"The reception will highlight and celebrate the history and unique identity of Jewish Americans and their profound and ennobling contributions to the American story," a White House statement said.

Grassroots Jewish community leaders from across the country, rabbis, Members of Congress, and a broad range of leaders engaged in business, the arts, education, and public and community service will dine with the president in the White House.

“Seeking a brighter future, a small band of Jewish refugees came to this land more than three centuries ago, to a place called New Amsterdam…From those first days in New Amsterdam, Jewish Americans have dedicated their innovation, creativity, and hearts to the greater good, contributing scientific accomplishments, pioneering works of literature and musical genius, and performing distinguished service in our Nation's military,” Obama said.

Since taking office Obama has continued the tradition started under the previous Administration of proclaiming May Jewish American Heritage Month.

Last year, the President and First Lady hosted the first ever White House reception in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month.