Peace Islands Institute Honors Remarkable Individuals


Date posted: June 11, 2012

Peace Islands Institute’s 5th Annual Award Ceremony was held on June 3rd, 2012. Over 200 guests and many dignitaries joined PII to applaud accomplishments of the honorees. NJ Assembly Speaker Hon. Sheila Oliver said, “It is phenomenal to see an organization (Peace Islands Institute) has so many leaders from the corporate sector, government, non profit sector, education community of this state – all connecting up with an organization, which has as its objective: ‘elevating our consciousness and our diversity'”.

PII Awards 2012 Honorees

Diversity Appreciation Award: NJ Assembly Speaker Hon. Sheila Oliver

Education Award: Asm. Patrick J. Diegnan, District 18

Community Service Award: Prosecutor Robert A. Bianchi, Morris County

Media Award: Michael Aron, Chief Political Correspondent of NJTV

Peace and understanding Award: Wahy-ud Deen Shareef, Senior Advisor to the Mayor of Newark

Business Award: James R. Coyle, President of Gateway Regional Chamber of Commerce

Asm. Gordon Johnson (District 34) hosted the event.

The winners of PII Art and Essay Contest were also recognized at the event. The contest for grades 6 through 12 was held for the third time and the winning arts and essays were exhibited during the reception. Winners received more than $10,000 all together.

Peace Islands Executive Director Levent Koch welcomed the guests. He said, “The reason we are gathering here tonight is simple but noble; we have come together to honor some remarkable and inspiring individuals who have committed themselves to making this world a better place for us all. We are profoundly honored to present them with awards they so justly and completely deserved.”

He continued saying his appreciation, “We value their dedication, we salute their courage, and we pay tribute to their continuous commitment. Let their devotion and courage be an inspiration to us all and may others follow in their footsteps”.

Diversity Appreciation Award recipient Hon. Sheila Oliver made a speech after she received her award: “There’s no doubt that there’s a common thread amongst all of us and I guess that is what has connected each honoree this evening to Peace Islands Institute is the Interfaith Dialogue.

I am so proud of the work that Levent and his colleagues have done with PII. It is tremendous. And someone had made a reference to how this organization has established itself, grown and expanded. It is phenomenal to see an organization (PII) has so many leaders from the corporate sector, government, non profit sector, education community of this state – all connecting up with an organization, which has as its objective: ‘elevating our consciousness and our diversity’.

I thank PII because by promoting cultural diversity, inclusion, bringing everyone to the table, taking people to Turkey it elevates peoples’ consciousness and reminds us of that our planet is a very diverse place- it does not necessarily revolve around one state, nation or government; and I think that the work that you were doing will go a long way. I commend you for acknowledging and engaging young people. I read some phenomenal essays this evening I saw artwork that was reflective of a depth of understanding of young people. To sensitize young people to issues of poverty, and social justice means that we are inculcating within young people a sensitivity that as they go through their life’s journey they will step into the realm of leadership to end this state, to promote the ideals, that so many of us, that are here this evening believe so strongly about.” She concluded by pledging to continue to work with PII in promoting the concept of cultural understanding.

“I think that work that what you’re (PII) doing will go a long way. I commend you for engaging young people. Sensitizing young people to an issue of poverty & social justice, means we are inculcating a value in young people.”

Business Award recipient James R. Coyle said after thanking the PII for being honored, “I see they really have a strong passion for what they do. The understanding they increase between cultures is so essential to world and frankly incumbent on rest of us.”

Education award recipient Asm. Patrick J. Diegnan said “The philosophy of the PII is what I try to follow everyday, all of us should strive to address these challenges each and everyday. I hope mission statement of the PII becomes a common theme around the world.”

Community Service Award honoree Prosecutor Robert A. Bianchi expressed his feelings by quoting his father, he said “My dad taught me this adage when I was younger, ‘A minority seizes authority, becomes a majority and hates a minority.’ Everyday I wake up, and I say to myself if today were my last day and I’m laying on a bed just before I’m gone, to a better place, hopefully, is it the treasure that I accumulated in dollars and cents…. in my mind and for you young folks, volunteerism like these folks do, giving more and more of yourself to others, even when its difficult to do because you’re tired… that’s the treasure of knowing that you made a difference.”

PII was presented resolutions/letters by the following elected officials:

Governor Chris Christie, US Senator Robert Menendez, US Senator Frank Lautenberg, Congressman William Pascrell, Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen, Congressman Scott Garrett, Congressman Leonard Lance, Congressman Steve Rothman, NJ Senate Resolution by Sen. President Stephen Sweeney, NJ Assembly & Senate Joint Resolution by Sen. Loretta Weinberg and Asm. Gordon Johnson, Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan.

Source: Star Ledger Online Edition NJ.com http://www.nj.com/helpinghands/index.ssf/2012/06/peace_islands_honors_remarkabl.html


Related News

Best robot design award for Turkish school students in NY competition

ORHAN AKKURT, NEW YORK Students from the private Turkish school Pioneer Academy of Science were granted the prize of the best robot design in a competition in New York last week. Ninety-five schools participated in the competition FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) displaying designs of robots. At the end of the competition, the team from the […]

Alevis and Sunnis to Search for Peace and a Future Together at Abant Meeting

Upcoming 30th meeting of the Abant Platform will search for a peaceful common future for Alevis and Sunnis who have been living peacefully together in Anatolia despite external provocations and some unwanted interruptions. The coexistence in the past promises hope for future. The meeting is themed as “Alevis and Sunnis: Searching for Peace and a Future Together,” which will be attended by intellectuals who will also be part of the solution.

Gulen-Inspired Schools Promote Learning and Service: A Response to Philadelphia Inquirer

Dr. Jon Pahl and Dr. John Raines A Response to Philadelphia Inquirer Article 03.20.2011 The recent article “U.S. Charter-School Network Draws Federal Attention” by Martha Woodall and Claudio Gatti can shed light on the existence of schools around the globe founded and led by individuals inspired by Muslim public intellectual Fethullah Gülen.  Unfortunately, the article […]

A new Turkish Cultural Center launched in Kiev

A new Turkish cultural center has been launched under the umbrella of Ukraine’s nearly two-century-old National Pedagogical Dragomanov University. The center has been brought to life with the cooperation of International Meridian Educational Institutions and National Pedagogical Dragomanov University, under the auspices of Turkey’s Embassy to Kiev, Consultancy to Ministry of Culture and the company, Anex Tour.

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On Assault on Press Freedom in Turkey Senate Floor

Mr. President, I have spoken many times on the Senate floor in defense of press freedom because it is a fundamental cornerstone of a democratic society. Today I want to briefly draw the Senate’s attention to the situation in Turkey, one of the many countries in the world where this basic right is under threat by officials in the government who seek to silence their critics.

Donate your qurban, bring joy to families in need

USA-based Embrace Relief Organization is organizing an Eid Al-Adha (Festival of Sacrifice) campaign to distribute your “livestock donations” to the needy across the globe. Embrace has been organizing this campaign every year for many year.

Latest News

Fethullah Gülen’s Condolence Message for South African Human Rights Defender Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Hizmet Movement Declares Core Values with Unified Voice

Ankara systematically tortures supporters of Gülen movement, Kurds, Turkey Tribunal rapporteurs say

Erdogan possessed by Pharaoh, Herod, Hitler spirits?

Devious Use of International Organizations to Persecute Dissidents Abroad: The Erdogan Case

A “Controlled Coup”: Erdogan’s Contribution to the Autocrats’ Playbook

Why is Turkey’s Erdogan persecuting the Gulen movement?

Purge-victim man sent back to prison over Gulen links despite stage 4 cancer diagnosis

University refuses admission to woman jailed over Gülen links

In Case You Missed It

Turkish businessmen’s helping hands reach out to Romanian flood victims

The fall of democracy and predicament of political Islam in Turkey

Extradition request for Gülen aims at manipulating public perception

Turkey deports former EU official for alleged Gulen-ties

Romania Refuses to Extradite Journalist to Turkey

Turkish Canadian institute presents peace and dialogue awards

GYV head dismisses ‘parallel state’ allegations against Hizmet

Copyright 2024 Hizmet News