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Nominations Open for 2020 Guru Nanak Interfaith Prize


Hofstra University is accepting nominations for the 2020 Guru Nanak Interfaith Prize, a $50,000 award to a living individual or organization that has contributed to the promotion of interfaith dialogue, tolerance and understanding.

The goal of this international award is to bring greater visibility to the critical role that religious dialogue plays in the pursuit of peace, and to provide direct support to further such activities. His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet, Tenzin Gyatso, was named the first winner of the Guru Nanak Prize in 2008.

The Guru Nanak Interfaith Prize was established with a gift from the family of the late Sardar Ishar Singh Bindra and Sardarni Kuljit Kaur Bindra, prominent Sikh-Americans; the family still lives in Brookville, New York.

The prize is awarded every two years, and other previous winners include:

  • 2010: The organization Religions for Peace and Rabbi Arthur Schneier, president of the Appeal for Conscience Foundation
  • 2012: Dr. Eboo Patel, founder and president of Interfaith Youth Core
  • 2014: Bhai Sahib Mohinder Singh, chairman and spiritual leader of Guru Nanak Nishkam Sewa Jatha, one of the United Kingdom’s largest Sikh charities, and the Rev. Dr. Katharine Rhodes Henderson is president of Auburn Theological Seminary
  • 2016: The Pluralism Project at Harvard University, founded by Diane Eck, PhD, professor of religious studies at Harvard, and Serve2Unite, a Milwaukee-based organization that focuses on youth and community outreach, created by Pardeep Kaleka and the Sikh community
  • 2018: The Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding, an organization dedicated to combating religious prejudice to create a more peaceful world.

The nomination deadline for the 2020 Guru Nanak Interfaith Prize is November 1, 2019.

A panel of judges composed of religious leaders, academics and individuals known for their commitment to interfaith dialogue will consider the recent and career accomplishments of nominees. A nominee may, for example, have organized members of different faith communities to work toward a common goal; produced a work of art or literature that contributes to or publicizes the importance of interfaith dialogue; or uses a position of authority or power to bring faith communities together. Nominees may be designated on the basis of a single contribution or a lifetime of contributions.

Nominators should provide a brief description of themselves (no more than 100 words), and a two-page letter describing the individual or organization being nominated and the activities the nominator believes qualify the nominee for consideration. Nominations may be submitted via an online form at hofstra.edu/nanakform or by email at gurunanakprize@hofstra.edu

For more information about the prize, go to hofstra.edu/gurunanak

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