Nobel Peace Prize Forum
March 4-5, 2011
Striving for Peace—Courage to Act
The 23rd Annual Nobel Peace Prize Forum will focus on the importance of courageous action in the work of peacemaking. Nobel Laureate Barack Obama—whose work inspires the 2011 Forum—states that to truly honor ideals like peace, justice, and human rights, we must uphold these ideals “not when it is easy, but when it is hard.” In this spirit, the forum will highlight the work of those who have acted with courage to confront difficult issues of religious discord, social and economic injustice, and the threats of nuclear war and environmental degradation.
Luther College, along with four other colleges of Norwegian heritage in the Upper Midwest, sponsors the annual Forum in conjunction with the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo. This event is the Nobel Institute’s only such program or academic affiliation outside of Norway. The other sponsoring colleges are Augsburg College, Augustana College (Sioux Falls), Concordia College (Moorhead) and St. Olaf College.
Invited but not confirmed: President Barack Obama, 2009 Nobel Laureate
The following speakers are confirmed :
Shirin Ebadi, Iranian lawyer and human rights activist who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003 for her significant and pioneering efforts in democracy and human rights, especially for the rights of women and children. She is the first Iranian and the first Muslim woman to receive the prize.
Eboo Patel, founder and president of the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), a Chicago-based institution building the global interfaith youth movement. He was named by U.S. News & World Report as one of America's Best Leaders of 2009.
Steinar Bryn, Norwegian peace studies specialist and Project Director for the Nansen Dialog Network, which focuses on inter-ethnic dialogue between strategic individuals and groups that have strong influence or decision-making power in deeply divided communities. Dr. Bryn and the Nansen Dialog Network were nominated for the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.
Scott Hanson, Brigadier General with the U.S. Air Force. General Hanson is director of Iraq Training and Advisory Mission and commander of the 321st Air Expeditionary Wing in Baghdad, Iraq. He leads a joint and combined organization responsible for mentoring, training and advising the Iraqi air force.
Alisa Gravitz, Executive Director of Green America (formerly Co-op America), the nation's leading green economy organization. Green America’s programs encourage corporate responsibility, tackle climate change, build fair trading systems, advance healthy, local communities, and provide green purchasing and investing information for families and businesses.
Geir Lundestad, Director of the Norwegian Nobel Institute, permanent Secretary for the Norwegian Nobel Committee, and adjunct professor of International History at the University of Oslo. Dr. Lundestad, one of Norway's best known historians, has published numerous articles and books in the field of contemporary history and international politics.
In addition, 45 additional presenters will be offering more than two dozen workshops.