Larry King, Brett Ratner to be honored by American Jewish Historical Society

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — Television personality Larry King and Hollywood filmmaker Brett Ratner will be honored by the American Jewish Historical Society.

King will be awarded the 2016 Emma Lazarus Statue of Liberty Award, and Ratner will be awarded the inaugural 2016 Visionary Leadership Award at the society’s annual award dinner on Dec. 1 in New York City.

The Lazarus award is presented “to an individual or group whose contribution reflects the highest values of the American Jewish Community.” The award is named for poet Emma Lazarus, whose archival collection – including the original handwritten “The New Colossus” engraved on the Statue of Liberty’s pedestal – is housed at the American Jewish Historical Society. Past recipients include Henry Kissinger, Ellie Wiesel, Ed Koch, Beverly Sills, George Schultz, Sanford I. Weill and Mortimer B. Zuckerman.

King has interviewed more than 50,000 people over the course of his career, which started in radio, continued to television and is now continuing online.


The new Visionary Leadership Award is to be presented to “a dynamic thought leader in the American Jewish community.”

Ratner is one of Hollywood’s most successful filmmakers, and, as director, his films have grossed over $2 billion at the global box office. He co-founded RatPac Entertainment, a film finance production and media company, in 2013.

The American Jewish Historical Society, the oldest ethnic, cultural archive in the United States, provides access to more than 25 million documents and 50,000 books, photographs, art and artifacts that reflect the history of the Jewish presence in the United States from 1654 to the present.