Nobel Laureate Jody Williams will present the 2013 Lillian Parker Wallace Lecture at Meredith College on Tuesday, April 2, at 7 p.m. in Jones Auditorium.
Williams, recipient of the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize, will present “My Name is Jody Williams: A Vermont Girl’s Winding Path to the Nobel Peace Prize.” The title is taken from her memoir, which is being published this month.
The founding coordinator and campaign ambassador of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL), Jody Williams is a tireless crusader against war and the lingering effects that armed conflict has wrought around the world. A driving force in building an unprecedented open partnership between governments, international agencies, and the ICBL that she helped create, she was rewarded for her efforts in 1997, when a sweeping international treaty banning antipersonnel landmines was negotiated in Oslo, Norway. In December 1997, 122 nations signed the treaty. One week after that historic event, Williams became the tenth woman (and only third American woman) in history to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
Williams has overseen the growth of the ICBL to more than 1,300 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in over 85 countries, and served as the chief strategist and spokesperson for the campaign. Working in an unprecedented cooperative effort with governments, UN bodies, and the International Committee of the Red Cross, the ICBL achieved its goal of an international treaty banning antipersonnel landmines. She now serves as campaign ambassador for the ICBL, speaking on its behalf all over the world.
Along with Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi of Iran, Williams took the lead in establishing the Nobel Women’s Initiative in 2006. They were joined at that time by Nobel Laureates Wangari Maathai (Kenya), Rigoberta Menchú Tum (Guatemala) and Betty Williams and Mairead Maguire (Northern Ireland). The Initiative uses the prestige of the Nobel Peace Prize and the influence and access of the women Nobel Laureates themselves to support and amplify the efforts of women around the world working for sustainable peace with justice and equality.
The Wallace Lecture honors Dr. Lillian Parker Wallace, who served as professor of history at Meredith from 1921 to 1962. Previous presenters of the Wallace Lecture include Nobel laureates Jimmy Carter (1986), Elie Wiesel (2003), Shirin Ebadi (2006) and Wangari Maathai (2009).
This event is free and open to the public. For Meredith students, the lecture counts as an Academic/Cultural Event in General Education.