SOURCE: Opportunity International

Opportunity International

October 08, 2010 12:20 ET

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist and Author Sheryl WuDunn Receives Opportunity International's Women's Leadership Award

Award Presented by the Women's Opportunity Network (WON); WuDunn Speaks on the Transformational Role Women Play in Eradicating Global Poverty

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - October 8, 2010) -  Opportunity International's Women's Opportunity Network (WON) today honored Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Sheryl WuDunn with the 2010 International Women's Leadership Award at the Fall Microfinance Conference being held Oct. 7-9, at the Marriott Crystal Gateway in Arlington, Va. 

An outspoken critic of women's oppression around the world, WuDunn, along with her husband, Nicholas Kristof, recently authored the New York Times bestselling book, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, which launched an entire movement and a foundation. In a keynote presentation today, WuDunn shared her experiences and the stories of women she has met and followed throughout her career, chronicling their sorrows and joys as they overcame the cruelest of circumstances.

WON's annual leadership Awards recognize people who are making a dramatic impact on the lives of women around the world. Past honorees have included Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, president of Liberia, and Dina Powell, global head of corporate engagement for Goldman Sachs, on behalf of the company's 10,000 Women initiative.

"We are proud to recognize Ms. WuDunn for the attention she is bringing to the injustices suffered by women and girls in the developing world," said Ruth-Anne Renaud, vice president, women's philanthropy, Opportunity International. "Her efforts to raise awareness about the transformational role women can play in eradicating global poverty have been recognized around the world. Through her stories, Ms. WuDunn demonstrates that, if given the appropriate access to health care, education and affordable financial services, even the most marginalized women in developing countries can emerge from poverty and fulfilling lives that can lead to unprecedented social change."

Sheryl WuDunn is the first Asian-American reporter to win a Pulitzer Prize, and a best-selling author, business executive and lecturer. She is a senior managing director at Mid-Market Securities, an investment banking boutique serving growth companies in the middle market, as well as president of TripleEdge, a social investing consultancy. She has authored three best-selling books about Asia and previously worked at The New York Times as both an executive and a journalist. Sheryl graduated from Cornell University, and earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and an MPA from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School.

Opportunity International's Fall Microfinance Conference features lively keynote presentations and breakout sessions about the role that savings-based microfinance plays in eradicating poverty. During the conference, attendees participate in discussions about innovative ways to increase the productivity and sustainability of smallholder farmers in Africa, establish and grow access to community savings banks, insurance and education, as well as provide support for the millions of women entrepreneurs who are emerging in developing countries.

About the Women's Opportunity Network
The Women's Opportunity Network (WON) is a dynamic network of women supporters and staff committed to helping Opportunity International reduce poverty in the developing world. WON's mission is to invest in the lives of women around the world, giving them access to financial services and training that transform their lives, their children's lives and their communities.

About Opportunity International
Opportunity International provides small business loans, savings, insurance and training to over two million people working their way out of poverty in the developing world. Clients in more than 20 countries use these financial services to start or expand a business, provide for their families, create jobs for their neighbors and build a safety net for the future. For more information, visit

Contact Information

  • Media Contacts:

    Rob Meloche
    Opportunity International
    Email Contact

    Jennifer Anaya
    iD8 Marketing/Opportunity International
    Email Contact