Davis Tarwater Gives Keynote Address to New Citizens


On Wednesday March 27th, one hundred ninety-four individuals became citizens of the United States at the Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville, Tennessee.  Olympic Gold Medalist Davis Tarwater gave the keynote address to the new citizens, who represented sixty-six countries.  Tarwater explained during his speech that despite everyone in the room having a different past and different experiences, they all were Americans, “Citizenship brings us together, unites us together under the call to freedom.”  

He continued, “By becoming an American today you not only enrich the community that you are in, but you alter the course of history for future generations because now your children and grandchildren will be part of the fabric of America as Americans.”  Tarwater represented the United States in the 2012 Olympics where he won gold in the 800 freestyle relay, but he wanted to ensure the naturalization proceedings remained focus on the people who were becoming citizens, “I was trying to hopefully find a way to incorporate what I have done on state as an American to the trials and tribulations they may face everyday.”