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Geena Davis gets ITU award

Among others, Geena Davis was awarded the 2012 ITU World Telecommunications and Information Society Award in recognition of her leadership in promoting ICTs as a means of empowering women.

ITU marks the 147th anniversary of its establishment on 17 May this year by recognising three eminent personalities who have contributed to the ongoing digital revolution in information and communication technologies (ICT). President of Argentina Ms Cristina Fern√°ndez de Kirchner, Chairman of Huawei Ms Sun Yafang, and Hollywood celebrity and advocate Geena Davis have been awarded the 2012 ITU World Telecommunication and Information Society Award in recognition of their leadership and dedication towards promoting ICTs as a means of empowering women and girls.

Making the announcement, ITU Secretary-General Hamadoun Touré lauded the work of the laureates in promoting both the involvement of women in the ICT field, and in leveraging the catalytic role ICTs can play in creating far-reaching opportunities for women and girls.

‚This year’s theme, ‚Women and Girls in ICT’ aims to ensure that there is equal opportunity for all and that women and girls can play a greater role within the ICT sector,‚ Dr Tour√© said. ‚We are determined to work with partners across all sectors of society to promote the full potential of ICTs for the benefit of women and girls. The ability of technology to empower women and girls in communities around the world is still largely untapped. Technology can play a much greater role as a catalyst and contributor to reach the Millennium Development Goals, eliminate gender disparities and enable greater access for girls and women to knowledge and career opportunities.‚

ITU advocates the opening of fresh avenues of advancement to women at the highest echelons of decision making, and encourages young women to seek opportunities within the ICT sector.

The World Telecommunication and Information Society Award will be presented in Geneva on 16 May 2012. The ceremony will be followed by a high-level panel discussion with the laureates and other distinguished speakers.

World Telecommunication and Information Society Awards

President Cristina Fern√°ndez has sought to empower women and girls through ICTs. Under her leadership, telecommunication development has made great strides in Argentina. The National Telecommunication Plan, pushed by Executive Power, has taken far-reaching steps to connect the people of Argentina to ICTs. President Cristina Fern√°ndez has been a staunch supporter of the Movimiento Justicialista and is committed to the defence of Human Rights and gender equality. She was elected President of Argentina in 2007 and re-elected in 2011.

Ms Sun Yafang is Chairman of Huawei, a position she has held since 1999. Ms Sun’s leadership has taken Huawei from a small local enterprise to a global giant providing innovative technologies and tailored solutions and services to leading telecoms operators worldwide. Sun is also actively involved in a variety of corporate responsibility programmes as well as philanthropic activities and is an active member of the Broadband Commission for Digital Development.

Ms Geena Davis is an Academy Award winning Hollywood actor and is recognised for her advocacy of women and girls. She is the founder of the non-profit Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, a research-based organization working within the media and entertainment industry to engage, educate and influence the need for gender balance, reducing stereotyping and creating a wide variety of female characters for entertainment targeting children 11 and under. Geena Davis is ITU’s special envoy for women and girls in the field of information and communication technology.

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