U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor has been chosen to lower the boom on the New Year, pressing the button that triggers the descent of the countdown ball in Times Square. Sotomayor, who hails from the Bronx, is the first Hispanic to sit on the Supreme Court.
Tim Tompkins, president of the Times Square Alliance, which coordinates the event, gushed, “She’s an inspirational and aspirational choice.”
Jeffrey Straus, president of Countdown Entertainment, raved, “We are honored to have Justice Sotomayor join us as our special guest this year to lead the 60-second countdown to the New Year. She is an inspiration to everyone determined to achieve their dreams in 2014.”
Sotomayor’s moment will follow a performance by another inspirational and aspirational choice, Miley Cyrus. The honor of pressing the button has also been bestowed on Lady Gaga, Muhammad Ali, and Bill and Hillary Clinton.
One million people are expected to celebrate the welcoming of the New Year in Times Square; another billion are expected to watch the moment around the world. Outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg, though, is expected to celebrate somewhere else, privately.