Leymah Gbowee

Liberian peace activist

Leymah Gbowee is a Liberian peace activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate who led a women’s peace movement that helped to end the country’s Second Civil War in 2003. Gbowee organized numerous nonviolent protests to end the war, including large-scale sit-ins, encouraging women to register to vote, occupying official premises, and even a “sex strike.” Because of these protests, Liberian President Charles Taylor agreed to attend peace talks to negotiate with rebel groups, leading to the end of the war. Gbowee was the executive director of the Women Peace and Security Network Africa and a founding member of the Women in Peacebuilding Program. She served as the commissioner-designate for the Liberia Truth and Reconciliation Commission and was the focus of the award-winning documentary “Pray the Devil Back to Hell.” In 2011, she was awarded the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize and published “Mighty Be Our Powers: How Sisterhood, Prayer, and Sex Changed a Nation at War,” which recounts her journey through civil war and activism. She founded and serves as president of the Gbowee Peace Foundation, which promotes equal rights and reconciliation in West African countries.

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