2012 Ramon Magsaysay Awardees Announced
The Board of Trustees of the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation (RMAF) today announced that this year six individuals from Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Taiwan will receive Asia's premier prize, the Ramon Magsaysay Award. The Awardees are:
Chen Shu-Jiu, from Taiwan. She is being recognized for "the pure altruism of her personal giving, which reflects a deep, consistent, quiet compassion, and has transformed the lives of the numerous Taiwanese she has helped."
Romulo Davide, from the Philippines. He is being recognized for "his steadfast passion in placing the power and discipline of science in the hands of farmers in the Philippines, who have consequently multiplied their yields, created productive farming communities, and rediscovered the dignity of their labor."
Kulandei Francis, from India. He is being recognized for "his visionary zeal, his profound faith in community energies, and his sustained programs in pursuing the holistic economic empowerment of thousands of women and their families in rural India."
Syeda Rizwana Hasan, from Bangladesh. She is being recognized for "her uncompromising courage and impassioned leadership in a campaign of judicial activism in Bangladesh that affirms the people's right to a good environment as nothing less than their right to dignity and life."
Yang Saing Koma, from Cambodia. He is being recognized for "his creative fusion of practical science and collective will that has inspired and enabled vast numbers of farmers in Cambodia to become more empowered and productive contributors to their country's economic growth."
Ambrosius Ruwindrijarto, from Indonesia. He is being recognized for "his sustained advocacy for community-based natural resource management in Indonesia, leading bold campaigns to stop illegal forest exploitation, as well as fresh social enterprise initiatives that engage the forest communities as their full partners."
Established in 1957, the Ramon Magsaysay Award is Asia's highest honor and is widely regarded as the region's equivalent of the Nobel Prize. It celebrates the memory and leadership example of the third Philippine President, and is given every year to individuals or organizations in Asia who manifest the same sense of selfless service that ruled the life of the late and beloved Filipino leader.
"The Magsaysay awardees of 2012," says RMAF President Carmencita Abella, "are six remarkable individuals, all deeply involved in creating sustainable solutions to poverty and its accompanying disempowerment - whether in the forests or on farmlands, in exploitative industries or in inadequate education. Working selflessly in unpretentious yet powerful ways, they are showing how commitment, competence, and collaborative leadership can truly transform millions of individual lives and galvanize progressive community action."
"Their concerns are clearly quite diverse - agricultural productivity, environmental justice, farmer education, women economic empowerment, good education for the young. But there is one thing these Magsaysay laureates share: a greatness of spirit which infuses their distinct leadership for change. Working with others, they all single-mindedly apply their skills to their passion for improving the lives of others. They all refuse to give up, despite adversity and opposition. They are all deeply rooted in hope."
The six 2012 Magsaysay awardees join 290 other laureates who have received Asia's highest honor to date. This year's Magsaysay Award winners will each receive a certificate, a medallion bearing the likeness of the late President, and a cash prize. They will be formally conferred the Magsaysay Award during Presentation Ceremonies to be held on 31 August 2012 at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), to which the public is cordially invited.
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