Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav flew to Boston last week to receive a prestigious Global Citizenship Award from that city's Tufts University, reports www.mynet.co.il. Yahav received the award in recognition of his leadership and of his "devotion to the cultivation of an open, tolerant and pluralistic community, despite the pressures of terrorism and frictions," said a letter sent to the mayor by the university's Global Leadership Institute.
According to the report, Yahav will join a constellation of distinguished personalities from around the world who have received the award, among them scientists, politicians and policy-makers, academics, doctors, judges and authors. According to the Tufts University web site, the Global Citizenship Awards were established in 1993 in the memory of Dr. Jean Mayer, a world-renowned nutritionist who advised three American presidents (Nixon, Ford and Carter) and the United Nations on local and international food issues, and who was the university's 10th president. A number of recipients are honored with the awards each year, which recognize an individual's "moral courage, personal integrity and passion for scholarship."
Joining Yahav on the 2008-9 list of recipients are: the founding president of Engineers Without Borders (USA), Bernard Amadei; the former mayor of Medellin, Colombia, and 2010 presidential candidate Sergio Fajardo, for his contribution to the decrease in homicides in his city; the former director of UNESCO's five-year project on sustainable human settlement, Saskia Sassen; the vice-president of the International Mayors for Peace organization, member of the Obama transition team, and mayor of Akron, Ohio, Donald Plusquellic; the President of East Timor and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Jose Ramos-Horta and several others.
The report said that as well as receiving the award at an official ceremony, Yahav would attend an international conference at the university on municipal issues, and would head two panels there, one on terrorism in cities and the other on urban renewal. No comment was reported from Yahav.