Nobel Laureate joins distinguished list of leaders in global, multi-year effort to recognize Jewish achievement and contribution to humanity.
The Genesis Prize Foundation announced Sunday that Elie Wiesel, the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize Winner and human rights activist, joins distinguished individuals from, Argentina, Canada, Israel, Italy, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States in a global initiative aimed at strengthening the connection of Jewish people around the world to the cultural and spiritual values that unite them.
Dubbed the Jewish Nobel by Time Magazine, the annual, $1 million Genesis Prize will be awarded to an accomplished, internationally renowned professional from anywhere in the world who is a role model in his/her community and who can inspire the younger generation of Jews worldwide.
The inaugural Genesis Prize will be awarded in the spring of 2014 in Jerusalem by the Prime Minister of Israel.
Candidates will be nominated by leaders of prominent institutions and organizations in every major Jewish community as well as major universities around the world. The Selection
Committee will narrow the list to five candidates, who will then be considered by the Prize Committee. Committee members were selected for their outstanding leadership in areas such as international affairs and journalism, human rights and justice, business and philanthropy as well as for their unwavering support of Jewish causes.
"From Moses to Maimonides and Einstein to Ben Gurion - Jews have contributed to the world in an unparalleled way—always moving forward and inspiring inventions, innovations, thought and creativity," said Natan Sharansky, Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel and Chairman of the Genesis Prize Selection Committee.
"The Genesis Prize pays homage to that and aims to find the next generation of great Jewish minds. I am proud to be cooperating with the Prime Minister's Office and the Genesis Philanthropy Group as we begin this exciting and fascinating journey which will shed light on the men and women who light up the world".
"The Prize will be the cornerstone of a worldwide effort to create a new, robust consciousness for younger generations of Jews," said Stan Polovets, Chairman of the Board of the Genesis Prize Foundation.
"We believe that when young people better understand and relate to their rich historical and cultural legacy, they are far more likely to carry forth important values that can contribute to the betterment of the world," Polovets added.