It's a prestige pantheon that includes the world's most accomplished political and moral leaders: the Nobel Peace Prize.
Mother Teresa won it in 1979 for her tireless work with the poor and the sick. Nelson Mandela won in 1993 for transforming a racially segregated South Africa. And Al Gore won in 2007 for a lifelong commitment to protecting planet Earth.
Today it was announced that the 2009 Peace Prize will go to President Barack Obama.
It was a startling piece of news, considering he had been in office for just 12 days before the nominations were due.
The award clearly signals hope from the international community - that a new day has dawned in America - and that President Obama's global approach has been welcomed.
But just nine months into his first term, it seems more like an investment - a futures trade from the Nobel committee - on the promise of what they might see one day - from the man who now literally has the world on his shoulders.
That's a page from my notebook.
I'm Katie Couric, CBS News.
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