The Milestones Project received the 2003 Global Tolerance Award by the Friends of the United Nations. As part of that experience we unveiled the initiative to bestow the first ever ‘International Peace Prize for Children,’ a Nobel-Prize level award recognizing, stimulating and celebrating extraordinary achievement by children under 18 who promote inclusiveness and acceptance of others in their region of the world.
The selection panel for this wonderful award includes international luminaries and fellow Laureates such as Dr. Pedro Sanchez and Dr. James Orbinksi. View biographical information on our Laureates here.
An awards ceremony will be held each year and the presentation may be rotated among cities around the world to expand awareness of the Prize.
James Jude Orbinski, MD
James Orbinski is Associate Professor of Medicine at University of Toronto and a Fellow at the Munk Centre for International Studies.
In 1998, Dr. Orbinski received the Governor General’s Meritorious Service Cross for his work as the Médecins Sans Frontières (French Doctors Without Borders) chef de mission to Rwanda during the 1994 civil war. Dr. James Orbinski was president of the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) at the time the organization received the 1999 Nobel Peace Prize. He has worked with MSF in a number of settings – including Goma, Zaire (now Congo) in the fall of 1996 during the refugee crisis; in Kigali during the Rwandan genocide of 1994; and in Baidoa, Somalia during the civil war and famine of 1992-93.
He was a founder of the McMaster University Health Reach Program that investigates and promotes the health of children in war zones, and he was a founding member of MSF Canada in 1990. He has been president of the MSF International Council since 1998.
Currently, James Orbinski is the President of Dignitas International, a medical humanitarian organization working with communities to dramatically increase access to life-saving treatment and prevention in areas overwhelmed by HIV/AIDS. He is closely associated with the University of Toronto’s Massey College where he is a Senior Fellow and was the founding Saul Rae Fellow.
Orbinski received a Bachelor’s degree from Trent University prior to his MD from McMaster University (1990), and a master’s degree in international relations from the University of Toronto (1998).
In 2001, Orbinski was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Trent University. He was awarded another honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Windsor in 2006.
Pedro Sanchez, Ph.D.
Pedro Sanchez is Director of Tropical Agriculture and Senior Research Scholar at the Earth Institute of Columbia University in New York City. He serves as Co-Chair of the Hunger Task Force of the Millennium Project, and advisory body to the United Nations. Sanchez served as Director General of the World Agroforestry Center (ICRAF) headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya from 1991-2001. He is also Professor Emeritus of Soil Science and Forestry at North Carolina State University, and was a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley. In April 2006 he was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 2003, and received the World Food Prize in 2002.
A native of Cuba, Sanchez received his BS, MS and PhD degrees from Cornell University, and joined the faculty of North Carolina State University in 1968. His professional career has been dedicated to improving the management of tropical soils through integrated natural resource management approaches to achieve food security and reduce rural poverty while protecting and enhancing the environment. Sanchez has lived in the Philippines (working at the International Rice Research Institute), Peru (working at the National Research Institutes), Columbia (working at the International Center for Tropical Agriculture) and Kenya.
Sanchez is the author of Properties and Management of Soils of the Tropics (rated among the top 10 best-selling books in soil science worldwide), and author of over 200 scientific publications. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy and the Soil Science Society of America. He has received decorations for the governments of Colombia and Peru and was awarded the International Soil Science Award and the International Service in Agronomy Award. In February 2001 the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium awarded him a Doctor Honoris Causa degree for his work on tropical soils in Africa. In August 2001 Sanchez was anointed a Luo Elder with the name of Odera Kang’o by the Luo community of Western Kenya, in recognition for his assistance in eliminating hunger from many villages in the region.