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Remarks on Signing the Presidents' Declaration To Fulfill the Promise of America and an Exchange With Reporters

September 22, 2014

The President. Hello, everybody. All right, don't knock anything over. [Laughter] It's always a little hazardous.

It is a great pleasure for me to welcome the leadership and some of the key participants in America's Promise. I think as many of you know, this is something that the Powell family and others helped to initiate and a number of Presidents have participated in.

The concept is simple: that our greatest asset are our children. And it is absolutely critical for us as a nation to continually find ways in which we can make sure that they are safe, that they are getting the kind of education they need to succeed in the 21st century, that they're healthy, that they are on the track not only to be successful, but also to be good citizens. And the companies and organizations and non-for-profits that are represented by—behind me, under Alma's leadership, have contributed in so many ways, but this is just a small sampling of the hundreds of organizations around the country that are doing great work every single day and are learning from each other and creating a network of concern and nurturing for our children in every walk of life.

And so I'm very proud to be the latest President to sign on to America's Promise. It is consistent with a number of the initiatives that we've been putting forward in the administration, whether it's through our efforts in Race to the Top and the Department of Education, more recently, the work that we're trying to do around "My Brother's Keeper" and making sure that every young person in America gets a chance at success.

And so in addition to the symbolic act of signing on to this declaration, this also gives us an opportunity to collaborate and learn more about some of the great work that's being done out there and figuring out how Government, private sector, and nonprofits can all work together to achieve the same goal.

So thank you very much for your outstanding work, all of you. And I will now——

Former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell. Thank you, Mr. President.

The President. ——affix my name to this.

[At this point, the President signed the declaration.]

The President. There you go.

Thank you, guys.

[Many reporters began speaking at once.]

U.S. Secret Service

Q. Do you still have confidence in the Secret Service?

The President. The Secret Service does a great job, and I'm grateful for the sacrifices that they make on my behalf and my family's behalf.

Thank you very much, everybody.

NOTE: The President spoke at 2:35 p.m. in the Oval Office at the White House. In his remarks, he referred to Alma J. Powell, chair of the board of directors, America's Promise Alliance.

Barack Obama, Remarks on Signing the Presidents' Declaration To Fulfill the Promise of America and an Exchange With Reporters Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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