Hmong New Year, Laos Community Honors Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Jane Hamilton-Merritt
At Hmong New Year events in Rhode Island on October 11-12, leaders of the Hmong and Laotian Community will honor distinguished author and human rights advocate Dr. Jane Hamilton-Merritt and kick-off nation-wide events to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the publication of her book Tragic Mountains.
(Media-Newswire.com) - Providence, Rhode Island and Washington, D.C. October 11,2008 - At Hmong New Year events in Warwick Rhode Island on October 11-12, leaders of the Hmong and Laotian Community will honor distinguished author and human rights advocate Dr. Jane Hamilton-Merritt and kick-off nation-wide events to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the publication of her book Tragic Mountains. Dr. Hamilton-Merritt’s book Tragic Mountains: The Hmong, The Americans, and The Secret Wars for Laos 1942-1992 ( Indiana University Press ) was published to acclaim and selected as a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award in History. It is now in available in paperback.
Indiana University Press stated in a recent press release: “In celebration of the 15th anniversary of its publication, Tragic Mountains, is a must. Jane Hamilton-Merritt recounts the story of the Hmong’s struggle for freedom and survival in Laos from 1942 through 1992.”
The two-day Hmong New Year event is hosted by the Hmong United Association of Rhode Island and its President, Mr. Toua Changcha Thao will help kick-off the events along with New Year Chairman Chue Toua Yang and other community leaders. Invited keynote speakers, participants, cosponsors include U.S. Congressman Patrick Kennedy ( D-RI ), the U.S. Congressman James Langevin ( D-RI ), U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse ( D-RI ), U.S. Jack Reed ( D-RI ), Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian, Philip Smith, Executive Director, Center for Public Policy Analysis and members of the Laotian and Hmong community.
A special award will be presented to Dr. Jane Hamilton-Merritt for her leadership role on behalf of human rights, refugee and humanitarian issues. Hmong dancers will perform at the events.
Dr. Jane Hamilton-Merritt, journalist, photographer, war-correspondent, historian, human rights advocate, expert on Southeast Asia, was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 1998 and again in 2000 for her work on behalf of the Hmong tribal people of Laos.
In 1999, she was elected to the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame and inducted into the Explorer’s Club. She has testified numerous times before the U.S. Congress on chemical-biological warfare, genocide, refugee issues, and human rights violations by Asian governments. During the early 1980s, she worked as an Expert Consultant on Highland Lao Refugees to the U.S. State Department.
As an expert on Southeast Asia, Dr. Hamilton-Merritt has lectured extensively in secondary schools and universities throughout the country on Asian peoples and their cultures and on the Vietnam War Era. At a Connecticut university, she created and taught a course of the Vietnam War Era for both undergraduates and graduates.
In 1969, she was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for her coverage of the Vietnam War and the winner of the Inland Daily Press Associations Grand Prize Trophy for her frontline combat photography in Vietnam.
She is the author of six books and hundreds of articles. She has written for the Washington Post, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times, Dayton Daily News, Bangkok Post, Reader’s Digest, Saturday Review, Vietnam Magazine, VVA Veteran, Stars and Stripes, Freedom Review, American Spectator, and Asian Fortune. She has appeared on numerous television specials, including an hour feature on Japanese national television.
Other honors include her participation as a Yale-Mellon Visiting Faculty Fellow at Yale University.
Thousands of Hmong and Laotian-Americans are expected to attend the two-day New Year events in Rhode Island which include cultural, artistic, sporting and civic activities.
Philip Smith, Executive Director for the Center for Public Policy Analysis will also receive a reward for his human rights work on behalf of Laotian and Hmong refugees and asylum seekers at Ban Huay Nam Khao, Thailand.
Anna Jones ( 202 )543-1444
Center for Public Policy Analysis 2020 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Suite No.#212 Washington, DC 20006
This story was released on 2008-10-11. Please make sure to visit the official company or organization web site to learn more about the original release date. See our disclaimer for additional information.