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Office of the First Lady

For Immediate Release April 13, 1995
       Excerpts From First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton's Remarks at
            the 17th Annual Mother of the Year Awards Luncheon

The following are excerpts from prepared remarks by First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton upon receiving the 1995 Outstanding Mother Award presented by the National Mother's Day Committee in New York City on Thursday, April 13, 1995:

"I come back to one thought: my mother, a homemaker who never had a career outside the home, inspired me to make the most of whatever opportunities came my way in life. My aspirations turned out to be different from hers. But without her support and encouragement, I could never have fulfilled them. She respected my choices. She supported me at every step."

"The fact is that mothers in America today -- whether they work inside or outside the home -- have more responsibilities, obligations, and expectations placed on them than ever before. Somehow, while handling childrearing, the care of aging parents, career decisions, economic pressures, and all of the accompanying exhaustion and stress, mothers are supposed to live neatly integrated and balanced lives. Yet we all know that in reality modern motherhood is seldom neat. It is a constant and delicate juggling act."

"Whether mothers are talking about child care, the minimum wage, family leave time, good schools, safe streets, or the need for close-knit communities, their issues are in many ways the central issues of our time. They are the issues that will define our culture for many years to come. They are the issues that speak to our collective concern about the erosion of family values and the importance of investing in our children and securing our future as a nation."