CIPI’s work highlighted by Heinz College piece congratulating Nobel Laureate-Center for International Policy & Innovation - Carnegie Mellon University

Thursday, October 13, 2011

CIPI’s work highlighted by Heinz College piece congratulating Nobel Laureate

Carnegie Mellon University’s H. John Heinz III College congratulates Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. Awarded annually, the highly regarded and internationally recognized prize is given to the person who, according to the Prize’s namesake Alfred Nobel, has “done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.”

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was elected President of Liberia in 2005 and is no stranger to Heinz College. She first met with students in the Washington D.C. track of Heinz College’s Master of Science in Public Policy and Management (MSPPM-DC) program in 2009. Since then, President Sirleaf has spoken at CMU’s Center for International Policy and Innovation (CIPI) Conference and several MSPPM students have traveled to Liberia to work with her cabinet through internships and systems projects.

Jendayi Frazer, distinguished service professor in the MSPPM program and former US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, was instrumental in securing the first meeting. In a recent article published on Africa.com, Frazer describes the impact created by Sirleaf and her fellow awardee, human rights activist Leymah Gbowee.

“The President and Ms. Gbowee battled to bring peace to Liberia, and that struggle as personally experienced by both women, was dangerous and violent, with constant threats of assault, imprisonment, and attacks against their humanity and dignity,” writes Frazer. “Their persistence is a lesson to us all. They believed and worked when others with less vision and faith could not see beyond Liberia’s dismal state.”

The Heinz College global community congratulates President Sirleaf on winning this prestigious award.

Photo: President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf meets with Dr. Jendayi Frazer and MSPPM-DC students in April 2009.