Rep. French Hill (R-AR) to Join Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) as Co-Keynote Speaker at the James W. Foley Freedom Awards

WASHINGTON – The James W. Foley Legacy Foundation announced today that Rep. French Hill (R-AR) will join Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) as a co-keynote speaker at its Foley Freedom Awards dinner on May 1st at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, which will also mark the foundation’s 10th anniversary. 

The foundation is named for James Foley, a freelance journalist who was captured in Syria by ISIS in 2012 and murdered in 2014. Later that same year, the Foley family established the foundation, which is dedicated to securing the freedom of Americans unjustly held captive abroad, preventing future hostage taking, and improving journalist safety. 

These two keynote speakers who represent the nation’s two major political parties illustrate the nonpartisan nature of the foundation’s work and the bipartisan unity required to address the national crisis of hostage-taking. Hill has actively focused attention on innocent Americans held hostage or wrongfully detained abroad and has sponsored legislation that supports the needs of captives’ families. Shaheen has long been a supporter of the foundation’s work as Diane Foley’s home state senator and during James Foley’s captivity when she served as governor of New Hampshire. As members of Congress, both Hill and Shaheen have served as vocal champions of Americans held unjustly captive abroad. 

“We are honored that two stalwarts of the urgent mission to bring home all Americans unjustly held abroad will join us as speakers at our awards dinner on the 10th anniversary of our foundation’s beginning,” said Foley Foundation President and Founder Diane Foley. 

The international recording artist Sting will attend the event and will perform the song “The Empty Chair,” which he co-wrote with American record producer J. Ralph for the 2016 documentary film Jim: The James Foley Story

The evening will feature the presentation of four awards honoring those who demonstrate moral courage and are exemplars of humanitarianism, excellence in government service, press freedom, or effectiveness in freeing innocent American captives.  

Amna Nawaz, co-anchor of the PBS NewsHour, will be the emcee. 

About the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation

James W. Foley was an independent American conflict journalist who worked extensively across the Middle East. He was taken hostage by ISIS in Syria in 2012 and was killed in 2014. His impact on colleagues and friends has been highlighted in the award-winning documentary film “Jim: The James Foley Story.

The Foley Foundation is a registered nonprofit foundation that seeks to secure the freedom of all Americans held unjustly captive abroad and prevent future hostage-taking. To donate, click here.

For more information or to learn how you can make an impact, please visit or contact Amy Coyne at or +1 (800) 803-7010.