On Monday, January 23, 2012, Senator Barbara Boxer read into the Congressional Record* the following statement:
Mr. President, this year the late Walter and Leonore Annenberg’s legendary California estate, Sunnylands, will open its doors to the public as the Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands. I ask my colleagues to join me in honoring the Annenbergs’ remarkable legacy and saluting the new institution’s noble goals.
Sunnylands was designed and built in the mid-1960s as the Annenbergs’ desert home in Rancho Mirage. It served as their winter residence and as a tranquil retreat and meeting place for Presidents of the United States, U.S. Supreme Court Justices, scholars, historians, former diplomats, Governors, State legislators as well as bipartisan coalitions of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Among many other notable guests, President Nixon wrote his 1974 State of the Union speech there, and Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles visited in 1983.
In 2001, the Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands was founded to continue Sunnylands’ role as a conference center and retreat for national and international leaders to address the world’s most pressing concerns. Throughout their lifetimes, Ambassador and Mrs. Annenberg hosted and sponsored a number of solution-driven retreats that fostered positive diplomatic, judicial, and legislative progress.
Now, the new Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands will be available for the President of the United States and the Secretary of State to bring together world leaders to promote and facilitate peaceful international agreements; for the President and the Cabinet, the Supreme Court, and the bipartisan leadership of the Congress to meet to focus on ways to improve the functioning of the three branches of government; and for leaders of major social institutions, such as universities, colleges, public schools, charities, and government agencies, to meet and determine how these institutions might better serve the public good.
I invite all of my colleagues to join me in congratulating the Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands for realizing the Annenbergs’ dream of creating a world-class center that provides our leaders with an atmosphere to discuss vital issues, promote cooperation, and craft solutions for our Nation and the world.
*Congressional Record, Vol. 158, No. 9, S35