LIVE VIDEO: Obama Awards Presidential Medal Of Freedom To Ellen, Diana Ross, Tom Hanks, Others

NBC News reports:

For the last time during his tenure in office, President Obama will bestow the Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, on a distinguished array of American icons on Tuesday. The medal, which has existed in some form since the Truman administration, has been given at Obama’s discretion more than any other president, and according to the Washington Post, he has honored women and people of color at a rate higher than any of his predecessors.

For example, this year’s awardees includes Motown soul singer Diana Ross, TV talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, veteran actress Cicely Tyson, artist and designer Maya Lin. Rock legend Bruce Springsteen, Motown soul singer Diana Ross, former basketball champions Michael Jordan and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and actors Tom Hanks, Robert De Niro and Robert Redford and Saturday Night Live creator and producer Lorne Michaels will also be awarded the medal at the White House ceremony.