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2023 MADELEINE K. ALBRIGHT DEMOCRACY AWARD HONOREES

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Vladimir Kara-Murza 

Vladimir Kara-Murza is a longtime opposition politician, journalist, and human rights activist and an outspoken advocate for the democratic aspirations of the Russian people. He openly condemned Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and has spoken out continuously on the growing repression inside Russia. Vladimir was arbitrarily arrested in Moscow in April 2022 for his statements against the regime and its war, and is now serving a 25 year sentence on charges of “high treason,” the largest sentence handed down by the Kremlin to a political opposition figure in the post-Soviet era. NDI published and promoted a statement earlier this year condemning Vladimir’s sentencing. A close aide to Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, who was killed in Russia in 2015, Vladimir played a key role alongside Mr. Nemtsov in persuading the U.S. Congress to pass groundbreaking sanctions legislation targeting human rights abusers inside Russia. For his ongoing activism and efforts to advance the 2012 Magnitsky Act, Vladimir was poisoned twice, in 2015 and in 2017, and as a result suffers from lasting health complications, which have been exacerbated during his incarceration.

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Her Excellency Mrs. Graça Machel

Founder, The Graça Machel Trust and

The Foundation for Community Development

Graça Machel is an African stateswoman whose decades long professional and public life is rooted in Mozambique’s struggle for self-rule and international advocacy for women and children’s rights. She is a former freedom fighter in Mozambique’s FRELIMO movement and that

country’s first Minister of Education. 

 

​In the years following her tenure in government, Machel produced a ground-breaking UNICEF report “The Impact of Armed Conflict on Children” that changed the way the United Nations and member states respond in conflict zones. Since then, she has worked tirelessly in support of

global health, child welfare, and women’s rights and empowerment.

 

Machel works through several regional and international development bodies to accelerate social transformation. Machel is a founding member and Deputy Chair of The Elders, and played a key role in establishing Girls Not Brides. She is a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High

Level Sustainable Development Goals Advocacy Group.

 

Machel lends her expertise to a number of organizations in a governance role. She serves as Board Chair of the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes, Board Chair of United People Global as well as Chair of the Mandela Institute for Development Studies. Machel

is a Board Member of the South African Future Trust (SAFT), Mo Ibrahim Foundation, and Education Above All. She is Board Chair Emeritus for the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health (PMNCH) and is a UNICEF Young People's Agenda Global Advisory Board Member.

She is Patron of the African Child Policy Forum. She is a member of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund Advisory Council and of the Africa Frontline First Council. She also sits on the Jack Ma Foundation’s Africa Business Heroes Advisory Board. She is the Chancellor of the African Leadership University and a Sustainable Development Solutions Network Leadership Council and Campaign for Nature Global Steering Committee member.

Machel has created three non-governmental organizations in her own right. She founded and serves as President of the Foundation for Community Development and the Zizile Institute for Child Development. She founded the Graça Machel Trust in 2010 where she focuses on

advocating for women’s economic and social empowerment, food security and nutrition, education for all, as well as good governance.

Among numerous awards, Machel has received the United Nations’ Nansen Refugee Award in recognition of her long-standing humanitarian work. In 1997, she was made an honorary DameCommander of the Order of the British Empire. She is a member of the Ambassador David M.

Walters International Paediatric Hall of Fame. In 2018, she was awarded the World Health2 Organization’s highest honour, the WHO Gold Medal, for her enormous contributions to the health and wellbeing of women, children and adolescents. She was also acknowledged by

Women Deliver with their 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award and she was named one of Africa’s 50 Most Powerful Women by Forbes in 2020. Both SOAS and Leiden University bestowed upon her Honorary Doctoral Degrees for her extensive work to advance women and children’s rights

in 2021.

Graça Machel has dedicated her life to improving the fate of women and children, inspiring hope, and building a more just and equitable world for us all.

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