awards dinner
Has Pacquiao really changed?

CHICAGO – Manny Pacquiao will lead honorees in the Asia Game Changer Awards dinner and celebration, which will be held at the United Nations (UN) in New York City on Oct. 23, 2015, for “making a transformative and positive difference for the future of Asia and the world.”

Asia Society President Josette Sheran said, “The Asia Game Changer Awards address the lack of recognition for Asians who are transforming ideas into action and improving lives. This year’s honorees could not be more different from one another. They include a group of scientists, a comedian, a dancer, a fighter pilot and a boxer. What they share in common is that they all fight for a better today and inspire the world to do things differently.”

Pacquiao’s award comes in the heels of Alibaba CEO Jack Ma, who took the honors in 2014. Jack Ma or Ma Yun is a Chinese businessman and philanthropist.

While all honorees received widespread support, “one individual rose to the top of our list,” said Sheeran. “Manny Pacquiao achieved his remarkable success after a childhood of extreme hunger and poverty. Today, Manny is a major humanitarian force, directing his philanthropy toward numerous causes, including education and the fight against human trafficking. He is a remarkable inspiration and demonstrates the power of giving back to transform people’s lives.”

Pacquiao and the other honorees will attend the Asia Game Changer Awards Dinner and Celebration at the United Nations on October 13, 2015. Pacquiao will also address the gathering.

Among the Asia Society trustees presenting the awards will be Citi CEO for Global Consumer Banking Stephen Bird; renowned opera singer Renee Fleming; PepsiCo Chairman and CEO Indra K. Nooyi; veteran broadcaster Charlie Rose; former Australian Prime Minister and President of the Asia Society Policy Institute Kevin Rudd; and Asia Society Co-Chairs Ronnie C. Chan and Henrietta H. Fore. The evening will also feature a special live performance by global music movement Playing For Change, recipient of a 2014 Asia Game Changer award.

The honorees were selected through a global survey of more than 1,000 thought leaders. The 2015 awardees are:

[box type=”default” size=”large”] Asia Game Changer of the Year: Manny Pacquiao (Philippines), humanitarian, world-famous boxing champion, and member of the Philippines House of Representatives for using his sport and his star power, as sources for good; [/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano, and Shuji Nakamura (Japan), 2014 Nobel Laureates in Physics and inventors of a new energy-efficient light source — the blue LED for lighting our world in a groundbreaking and sustainable way;[/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Chanda Kochhar (India) CEO of ICICI Bank, the first woman to head an Indian bank, for breaking the glass ceiling, transforming an industry and empowering the masses;[/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Lei Jun (China), founder and CEO of Xiaomi which is China’s leading smartphone vendor, for changing the game of communication in China and beyond;[/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Li Cunxin (Australia/China), artistic director of the Queensland Ballet, known as “Mao’s Last Dancer” for his art, his courage and his cultural diplomacy;[/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Aasif Mandvi (United States/India), comedian, activist and powerful spokesperson for Muslims and Asian Americans for using comedy to challenge perceptions and work for good;[/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Mariam al-Mansouri (United Arab Emirates), fighter pilot, UAE Air Force and role model for women throughout the Arab world for battling stereotypes and terror from the air; and[/box]

[box type=”default” size=”large”]Kiran Bir Sethi (India), founder, Design for Change and The Riverside School, and champion of youth volunteerism for empowering children to change the world.[/box]

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Joseph is a former reporter of the Manila Bulletin, former president of the Rizal-Metro Manila Reporters Association and former president of the Chicago chapter of the National Press Club of the Philippines. A native of Sorsogon, Philippines, he and his family now live in Chicago. A prolific reporter, Lariosa writes a column and news stories for the Filipino Star News and other Filipino community newspapers in the US as well as for GMA News and the Manila Bulletin.

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