Remarks as Prepared for Delivery by First Lady Jill Biden at the 2022 Concordia Annual Summit


New York, NY

Thank you Nick It’s wonderful to see you again! I was hoping to join you all on Monday, but the President and I were traveling to the UK for the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. Nonetheless, it was important for me to be there for the event. Thank you for welcoming me back today.

You know when we were in London I was so moved to be a part of this historic moment. You could feel the love of her people in her sorrow. Once, as we were watching the mourners, I saw a little boy in a Boy Scout uniform. he was so young But as he passed, he raised his three fingers and saluted the queen one last time.

When I saw that, my breath caught. It was such a small gesture that said so much about what she meant to the people of her country, no matter what age they were. And it wasn’t just her people. Leaders from around the world came together to honor a life of public service – and I was grateful to be a part of it.

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I have felt this immense gratitude more than once as First Lady – especially since I have had the opportunity to travel the world and meet leaders and the people they represent. From Japan to Ecuador to Ukraine, I’ve been reminded that our differences are precious—and our similarities infinite. On these trips there were some who asked me why:

Why meet with HIV patients in Panama?

Why meet with Wounded Warriors in the UK?

Why Visit Refugees in Romania?

It’s tempting to think that “other people’s” problems are their own to solve on their own. But if we have learned anything from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is that we are connected.

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We have seen how a deadly virus can move through the world. How hunger and violence are intertwined. How the loss of trees in the rainforest takes a piece of the future from us all.

injustice and corruption. poverty and pollution. sickness and despair. You are not enclosed by borders.

But when doctors and clinics have what they need, deadly diseases can be stopped before they spread.

When a nation embraces democracy, it becomes living proof that governments can do good for the people they represent – and inspire others to follow their example.

When parents don’t have to worry about how to support their families, children can learn and grow and become the leaders and innovators we need.

yes we are connected That is why this summit is so important. Therefore we need diverse perspectives and contributions; public-private partnerships spanning industry, government and civil society; and leaders who are not afraid of bold, innovative ideas.

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The president – my husband Joe – understands that. He knows that there is no one president, one government or one country that can do this alone. And he strives to lead with diplomacy, democracy and humility.

Your work here today reaffirms that our lives in our country and around the world are connected in immeasurable and powerful ways. And it shows your commitment to honoring that connection in everything you do.

thanks for your work We will stand by your side and together we will build a better future for all of us.

Many Thanks.

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