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posted 12/13/05

Jeffrey D. Sachs Honored by the Shriver National Center on Poverty Law

"He [Sargent Shriver] showed all of us in the most incredible direct way, not only how [poverty] can be solved, but how seamless the connections are between the challenges between poverty in our own country and poverty in the world,” said Jeffrey D. Sach in his address to more than 650 guests at the Seventh Annual Sargent Shriver Awards Dinner in Chicago.

More than 650 guests gathered in Chicago at the Seventh Annual Sargent Shriver Awards Dinner on December 1, 2005 to honor Jeffrey D. Sachs, director of The Earth Institute at Columbia University, for his leadership in the fight against extreme poverty. The Shriver National Center on Poverty Law also honored documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock for surfacing the difficulties of living on a minimum wage in the United States in his FX reality show 30 Days.

Since 1998 the Shriver Center has been celebrating the work of individuals who have contributed greatly to the cause of justice for people living in poverty. In keeping with the 2005 Awards Dinner theme, “The State of Poverty,” the center and its award committee selected Sachs to receive the Robert Sargent Shriver Award for Equal Justice for Distinguished Achievement in Promoting Poverty Alleviation.

Sachs, who delivered the keynote address, emphasized the leadership of Sargent Shriver, a lifelong public servant, in leading the fight against poverty in the United States. Among his many distinguished accomplishments, Sargent Shriver led the establishment of the Peace Corps, and served as U.S. ambassador to France from 1968 to 1970. “Sargent Shriver showed in his life and career, so many remarkable things… He showed all of us in the most incredible direct way, not only how [poverty] can be solved, but how seamless the connections are between the challenges between poverty in our own country and poverty in the world,” said Sachs in his address.

Robert Sargent Shriver founded the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, dedicated to tackling the complexities of domestic poverty at the individual level as well as the state and federal levels, in 1967.

“Visionaries like Jeffrey Sachs and communicators like Morgan Spurlock have embraced our efforts because they understand the true costs of neglecting the poorest among us,” said Barbara Carney, director of development for the Shriver Center.

Jeffrey D. Sachs, director of the Earth Institute, received the Robert Sargent Shriver Award for Equal Justice for Distinguished Achievement in Promoting Poverty Alleviation.

Past recipients of the Robert Sargent Shriver Award for Equal Justice include actor and activist Harry Belafonte; the Honorable Alexis H. Herman, U.S. Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton; and Helen Thomas, a career journalist who has spent more than four decades covering the White House.

For more information about the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, please visit their Web site at www.povertylaw.org.

The Earth Institute at Columbia University is the world's leading academic center for the integrated study of Earth, its environment and society. The Earth Institute builds upon excellence in the core disciplines — earth sciences, biological sciences, engineering sciences, social sciences and health sciences — and stresses cross-disciplinary approaches to complex problems. Through research, training and global partnerships, it mobilizes science and technology to advance sustainable development, while placing special emphasis on the needs of the world's poor. For more information, visit www.earth.columbia.edu.