On Wednesday April 6th, 2022 The Asia Foundation hosted the 10th Lotus Leadership Awards in New York City. This year’s awards honored Reshma Saujani, founder of Girls Who Code and the Marshall Plan for Moms, for working to close the gender gap in STEM for women and girls; the G-Star RAW Denim Foundation, for advancing women’s entrepreneurship and economic empowerment; and Kampuchea Action to Promote Education for strengthening girls’ education and leadership in Cambodia.
The adventurous Dutch fashion company G-Star, known for its sustainable denim, is also a force for development in Asia through its GSRD Foundation. GSRD will be honored April 6 with an Asia Foundation Lotus Leadership Award.
On April 28, 2021, we honored Eileen Fisher for her pioneering leadership in women’s economic empowerment and sustainability and Women In Need (WIN), a nonprofit partner working to end gender-based violence in Sri Lanka.
Visit Cambodia to hear from two young women, Phally Sim, a scholarship recipient, and Reaksmey Chhorpon Long, a tech entrepreneur. They share their experience of sustaining education during the pandemic and the crucial role of technology in helping women sustain livelihoods. Meloney Lindberg, The Asia Foundation’s Country Representative in Cambodia, and Jane Sloane, Senior Director of the Women’s Empowerment Programs, share how Young Lotus Members have made an impact in supporting girls’ education, women’s access to technology, and women’s entrepreneurship. This panel is joined by Young Lotus Circle Founder and Lotus Circle Advisor Lin Jamison as moderator.
April 19, 2021 — The Asia Foundation was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Dr. Vartan Gregorian, whom the Foundation honored in 2016 with a Lotus Leadership Award in his role as president of Carnegie Corporation of New York. Dr. Gregorian accepted the award, which recognizes outstanding individuals and organizations for their contributions towards women’s and girls’ empowerment in Asia, on behalf of Carnegie’s partnership with The Asia Foundation to improve access to university and advanced level education to Afghan women. Upon receiving The Lotus Leadership Award, Gregorian said: “The Asia Foundation and I go back to when I was a graduate student at Stanford University. Today, your president, David Arnold, is leading a vibrant, mission-driven organization that works well with other organizations on important global issues. In Afghanistan, I know you are respected for approaching pressing challenges in partnership with the Afghan government and citizens, focusing closely on governance and education to address economic and social needs. In my view, together we are empowering inspiring, self-reliant individuals and institutions –through knowledge – so that they are able to tackle the complex development challenges of their country and their region.” A fearless and transformative leader in the fields of education and philanthropy, Gregorian led Brown University, was provost at the University of Pennsylvania, taught at the University of Texas, UCLA, and San Francisco State College, and led the Carnegie Corporation, but perhaps his most prominent achievement was reviving the New York Public Library. Deeply passionate about books, Gregorian was a champion of The Asia Foundation’s long-running Books for Asia program which provides textbooks and educational materials to schools, universities, research institutes, and public libraries in 18 developing countries throughout Asia. He spoke at a Books for Asia event, “The Power of a Book,” in New York, saying: “To read is to be human. As a young boy in Iran, books provided me salvation and imagination. Without books and access to stories, I wouldn’t be here today. I am eternally grateful to The Asia Foundation for taking the power of books around Asia.” Vartan Gregorian’s lifetime of service and… Read more
February 17, 2021 — Vogue Paris features The Asia Foundation in a profile of actor and Lotus Leadership Award honoree Lana Condor. Since 2017, the Foundation has worked with Condor to support female scholars in her birth town of Can Tho, Vietnam. “I feel proud to use my voice and continue to tell people that the Asian-American experience is not one experience alone,” Lana told Teen Vogue in 2020. “It’s something that I don’t plan on ever stopping. Making TV and movies is awesome, but if you have a purpose behind it, it’s even better.” Lana has also organised a scholarship through non-profit The Asia Foundation and worked with Michelle Obama for her Girls’ Opportunity Alliance to improve education for young people in Vietnam and Malaysia.