The United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will be the Special Guest for the 2017 New Year’s Eve celebration, co-organized by Times Square Alliance and Countdown Entertainment, to ring in the New Year. He will push the Waterford crystal button on the main stage beginning the official 60-second countdown to the New Year, and call on people around the world to take actions in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“I look forward to joining with hundreds of thousands of people from around the world to ring in the New Year at Times Square,” said the Secretary-General. “This event is a powerful reminder of our common humanity at a time when solidarity is needed to tackle global issues, respond to the needs of those who suffer and overcome divisions in society. As we celebrate a new year, let us also sound the loudest possible call for inclusion, compassion and peace.”

Previous Special Guests for Times Square New Year’s Eve include Muhammed Ali, Christopher Reeve, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. This year’s celebration will focus on global solidarity, particularly the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

“Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s legacy of bringing people and nations together, and peace aligns perfectly with New Year’s hopes for a better and more just world,” said Tim Tompkins, the President of the Times Square Alliance.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was unanimously adopted by the UN’s 193 Member States on 25 September 2015. The Agenda touches every area of our lives. It is a blueprint for action across all three pillars of the organization’s work—peace and security, development, and human rights. With its 17 Sustainable Development Goals, it recognises the complexity of our daily experience—poverty, disease, inequalities, our changing climate, what forces us from our homes to seek refuge, violence inside and outside our homes, and extremism driven by those who put hatred above hope.

“We are honoured to highlight Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s legacy as he joins us on stage to lead the countdown to the New Year for the revellers in Times Square and viewers watching around the world,” said Jeff Straus, the President of Countdown Entertainment.

To join the Times Square New Year’s Eve conversation on Twitter, please follow #BallDrop.

Media contacts
Devi Palanivelu, UN Department of Public Information
T: (212) 963-1104 | E:
Kyle Sklerov, Rubenstein Communications
T: (212) 843-8486 | E: