DIAMOND, Mo. – The United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri will naturalize nearly 60 new citizens at 11:30 a.m., on Thursday, May 25th. The citizenship ceremony will be held at George Washington Carver National Monument in Diamond, Missouri. This event’s applicants represent nearly 30 countries, including Bangladesh, Ghana, Nepal, South Africa, and Yemen.
The Honorable M. Douglas Harpool will preside over the ceremony. Thomas Jefferson Independent Day School’s Upper School Vocal Ensemble will perform the National Anthem and America the Beautiful. Members of Joplin High School’s Junior ROTC will serve as the ceremony’s Color Guard. Guest speakers will include: Park Superintendent Jim Heaney; Crowder College Board of Directors member and naturalized citizen Nicolas Olivares~Diaz; Attorney Jarica Oeltjen with the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association; and Vice-President of the Carver Birthplace Association Jimmy Sexton. Representatives from the offices of Senator Josh Hawley, Senator Eric Schmitt, and Congressman Eric Burlison will also be in attendance.
There will be a short reception for the new citizens and their guests, hosted by The Carver Birthplace Association, immediately following the ceremony. Members of the press may enter with equipment between 10:45 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.
The National Park Service (NPS) partners with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to host naturalization ceremonies in national parks. Superintendent James Heaney stated, “It is fitting that we are honoring citizenship at the birthplace and childhood home of one of America’s truly remarkable citizens, George Washington Carver. We are all looking forward to celebrating how culturally diverse and dynamic our nation truly is!”
Administered by the National Park Service, an agency of the Department of the Interior, George Washington Carver National Monument preserves the birthplace and childhood home of George Washington Carver – scientist, educator, and humanitarian. The park is located two miles west of Diamond, Missouri on Highway V, then ¼ mile south on Carver Road. For more information, please call the park at 417-325-4151 between 9:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., visit the park website at www.nps.gov/gwca, or visit the park Facebook page.