NEW YORK, April 26, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "Today, people in nation after nation are struggling for freedom from oppressive regimes. Could there be a more appropriate time for a major new human rights award honoring brave individuals who joined a similar struggle 75 years ago?"
So said Sebastiaan Faber, Board Chair of The Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA), in announcing the first annual ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism.
The $100,000 award connects the inspiring legacy of the International Brigades – who battled fascism during the Spanish Civil War – to international activist causes defending human rights today.
The first recipient is Baltasar Garzón, the internationally celebrated Spanish magistrate who ordered the arrest of former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet in 1998 and later worked to identify human rights violations committed during the Spanish Civil War and the Franco dictatorship.
"Judge Garzón's exceptional courage in defense of human rights and the recovery of historical memory regarding crimes against humanity makes him the ideal first recipient," said Peter Carroll, Chair Emeritus of ALBA's Board of Governors, describing Garzón as "one of the most effective and imaginative thinkers in international human rights law."
The events - Saturday, May 14th
Pre-event Benefit: 12:00 - 2:00 pm
60 Washington Square South
A light lunch and question-and-answer session with Judge Garzón, who will be interviewed by Jonathan Turley, Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University, and legal analyst for CBS News, NBC News and MSNBC. Special guests include Perry Rosenstein, President of the Puffin Foundation; Larry Cox, Executive Director of Amnesty International USA; and Michael Ratner, President of the Center for Constitutional Rights. Honorary Committee (in formation) includes Harry Belafonte, Mike Farrell and Susan Sarandon.
Award Ceremony and Musical Celebration: 2:30 pm
60 Washington Square South
$45; $25 students
ALBA - During the Spanish Civil War (1936-39) nearly 40,000 men and women from 52 countries, (including 2,800 Americans later called the Abraham Lincoln Brigade) traveled to Spain to fight fascism. Founded in 1979, The Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA) is a non-profit educational organization promoting public awareness of that war and its historical, political, artistic and biographical significance. The Archives, at New York University's Tamiment Library, are used by scholars and students from around the world. ALBA also preserves the Brigade's legacy with exhibitions, publications, performances and programs for teachers.
The Puffin Foundation – Since 1983, the Puffin Foundation Ltd. has sought to open the doors of artistic expression by providing grants to artists and art organizations often excluded from mainstream opportunities due to race, gender, or social philosophy. Its mission is to ensure that the arts continue to grow and enrich our lives. It joins with similarly concerned groups and individuals and is a long-standing supporter of ALBA's educational mission.
SOURCE Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA)