About the Award
With the vision of recognizing extraordinary civic courage and actions that prioritize responsibility to the wider community, defense of democracy, and promotion of human rights and civil liberties over self-interest, the Forum 2000 Foundation established the International Award for Courage and Responsibility in 2021. The Award is given to citizens, or institutions selected in a three-stage process, involving the opinions of a rich variety of significant personalities of the Forum 2000 community.
About Carl Gershman
The inaugural recognition went to Carl Gershman, a lifelong defender of democracy, human rights activist, and former President of the National Endowment for Democracy. Over nearly four decades, Carl Gershman has built the NED´s global grants program, along with the International Forum for Democratic Studies, the Journal of Democracy, the Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellows Program, the World Movement for Democracy, and the Center for International Media Assistance. Before Assuming the presidency of NED, Mr. Gersman was the Executive Director of Social Democrats, USA, a Resident Scholar at Freedom House, and Counselor to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, in which capacity he represented the U.S. in the U.N.´s Third Committee that deals with the international human rights.
His indefatigable energy, enthusiasm and passionate commitment to his work allowed him to succeed in building, promoting, and strengthening democracy all around the world. His devotion for the democratic cause earned him deep respect and admiration, as he became one of the leading figures within the global “democracy community”.