Maria Gunnoe is a fearless advocate for environmental and social justice. Despite threats and intimidation Ms. Gunnoe works to educate and build citizen advocacy, and to rally communities that face the destruction of their natural environment in her home of Boone County, West Virginia.
Tag: Medal Recipient
2011, Aung San Suu Kyi
Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has committed her life to the non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights in Burma. Since 1988, she has been the leader of the democratic opposition and a voice of conciliation and unity among the regions and peoples of Burma.
2010, Denis Mukwege
Dr. Denis Mukwege is director of Panzi Hospital in the eastern Congo who has treated thousands of women who have suffered extreme physical and emotional trauma from sexual violence that is used as a weapon in the wars of the region.
2009, Lydia Cacho
Lydia Cacho is a journalist, author, feminist and human rights activist. She has spoken out against the abuse of women in Mexico, using the unsolved murders in Ciudad Juárez as a call to action against the failure to bring justice to perpetrators of violence against women. Cacho founded Ciam Cancún, a shelter for battered women…
2008, Archbishop Desmond Tutu
The first black South African Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town, Archbishop Desmond Tutu rose to international fame during the 1980s as a deeply committed advocate of nonviolent resistance to apartheid. In 1995, Nelson Mandela asked Tutu to investigate atrocities committed on all sides during the apartheid years, appointing him chair of South Africa’s Truth and…
2008, Sompop Jantraka
Sompop Jantraka established an organization in Thailand to rescue girls and young women from sexual trafficking in Thailand and the neighboring region of southeast Asia. His work has offered shelter, education and a future for thousands of children and disrupted networks that exploit the poor and vulnerable.
2006, Sister Luise Radlmeier
Sister Luise Radlmeier came to the attention of the Wallenberg Committee through an article in Reform Judaism (Fall 2005) which reveals how Congregation Har HaShem in Boulder, Colorado organized the sponsorship for ten young Sudanese women in Colorado through the efforts of this Dominican missionary. Sr. Luise has served her order in many ways —…
2005, Paul Rusesabagina
In 1994 the country of Rwanda descended into madness. In the spring of that year tensions were high due to years of political and economic strife. When President Juvenal Habyarimana died after his plane was shot down on April 6, this ignited longstanding conflict between two ethnic groups, the Hutu and Tutsi. Encouraged by the…
2004, Heinz Drossel
Heinz Drossel was drafted into the German Army after refusing to join the Nazi Party. He retained his humanity throughout the war, hiding Jews from the Holocaust.
2003, Bill Basch
Bill Basch was a teenage courier for Raoul Wallenberg in Budapest who distributed Schutz-Pässe to Jews in hiding. He was captured and sent to concentration camps. He endured and survived to become a successful businessman in Los Angeles.