Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White held the state’s 11th annual U.S. Constitution and Citizenship Day Celebration today. The event commemorated the 232nd anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution, which took place on Sept. 17, 1787. U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman naturalized 50 people from various countries.

“Today’s celebration is an opportunity for us to commemorate the signing of the document that laid the foundation for our great nation,” White said. “In witnessing people from other nations taking the oath of citizenship, we can reflect on what it means to be an American.”

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The event, held at Richard J. Daley Plaza, included a naturalization ceremony, a parade of flags and patriotic musical selections. Judge Johnson Coleman presided over the naturalization ceremony. Over the past 11 years, more than 800 people from various countries have become U.S. citizens at this annual ceremony. Today’s new citizens were from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burma, Canada, China, Congo (Brazzaville), Ecuador, Ethiopia, France, Guatemala, Haiti, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Latvia, Mexico, Moldova, Peru, Poland, Romania, Russia, Taiwan, Thailand, Ukraine and Vietnam.

Cheryl Scott, meteorologist from ABC 7 Chicago, served as emcee for the event. Lincoln Park High School Color Guard and Band performed. Officials from the U.S. District Court and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Bugles Across America, and students from Harold Washington College participated in the ceremony.

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