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Latino State News

Chicago Prepares for Nobel Peace Laureates Summit, Raising $1 Mil

The three-day World Summit, themed “Speak Up, Speak Out for Freedom and Rights,” will occur April 23-25 and will feature moderated discussions with Nobel Peace Laureates that will be webcast around the world, providing a rare opportunity for audience members to observe and engage the world’s most notable figures in a discussion on global peace and human rights.

A special emphasis will be placed on empowering youth to action through interactive panel discussions and school visits. Summit organizers have partnered with the Chicago Public Schools and the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, as well as a variety of national education-focused non-profit organizations, to connect Nobel Laureates in sharing their powerful stories directly with students in the classroom.

Chaired by former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev and former Mayor of Rome Walter Veltroni, the 12th World Summit will have as its Honorary Chair Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and a Host Committee comprised of leaders from Chicago’s civic, academic and corporate communities.

The first World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates was held in 1999 at the suggestion of the Gorbachev Foundation, and the summit has grown over the years, gaining in credibility and importance as it promotes international initiatives and campaigns to foster peace. Each summit’s location is chosen for its unique relationship to the theme of that year. For a look at past summits, visit Past Summits.

Chicago was selected as the first North American city to host the World Summit due to its rich heritage and international profile. Numerous Nobel Peace Prize winners have hailed from the Chicago area, among them Charles Gates Dawes and U.S. President Barack Obama. In 1931, Illinois native Jane Addams became the first American woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her international peace efforts and work on behalf of Chicago’s marginalized immigrant communities.

Today, the City of Chicago is both a recognized center of community and civic engagement, and an active player in international affairs.