The United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is to accept the Tipperary International Peace Award in person; visiting Tipperary on Sunday May 24th 2015, to receive his award at the Ballykisteen Hotel in Co. Tipperary.
As previously announced Mr Ban Ki-moon is being honoured for his leadership in mobilising the international community to address a series of grave conflicts and major natural disasters.
“At a moment of division, he has sought to be a bridge-builder; in a period of economic upheaval. He has strived to give voice to the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people; and in a world of deepening interconnectedness, he has pursued wide-ranging efforts to adapt the United Nations to face a new generation of challenges and threats,” the Tipperary Peace Convention has stated.
Mr Ban Ki-moon, who is expected to be accompanied to Co. Tipperary by his wife (married Yoo Soon-taek in 1971), has three adult children: two daughters; Seon-yong (born 1972), Hyun-hee (born 1976) and a son; Woo-hyun latter who was born in 1974.
Mr Ban Ki-moon was born on June 13th 1944 and is the current Secretary-General of the United Nations, having succeeded Mr Kofi Annan in 2007. Before becoming Secretary-General, Mr Ban Ki-moon was a career diplomat in South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and in the United Nations. He first entered the diplomatic service in the same year he graduated from university, accepting his first post in New Delhi, India. Here, working in the foreign ministry, he quickly established a reputation for both modesty and competence.
He was the foreign minister of South Korea from January 2004 through until November 2006, before beginning his campaign for the post of Office of Secretary-General. Initially considered as having only an outside chance of achieving this office, he was able to travel to all the countries on the United Nations Security Council, as the foreign minister of South Korea. He was soon recognised for his strong diplomatic skill and acknowledged as the campaign’s most likely victor. Thus on October 13th 2006, he was elected as the eighth Secretary-General by the United Nations General Assembly.
Previous recipients of the Tipperary International Peace Award have included Bob Geldof, former US President Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev, late US Senator Edward Kennedy and his sister former Ambassador to Ireland Jean Kennedy-Smith, Dr Sima Samar, Benazir Bhutto, Dr Richard Haass, wounded Pakistani school girl and Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai, former President Mary McAleese and her husband Senator Martin McAleese.
The Tipperary International Peace Prize, now in its 27th year, recognises the contribution of individuals and organisations that promote peaceful cooperation.