Harvard Names Rihanna Humanitarian of the Year

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Award-winning singer Rihanna has been named the 2017 Harvard University Humanitarian of the Year.

She will accept the Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at a ceremony next Tuesday, Feb. 28 at the university.

“Rihanna has charitably built a state-of- the-art center for oncology and nuclear medicine to diagnose and treat breast cancer at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Bridgetown, Barbados,”  S. Allen Counter, director, Harvard Foundation said.

“In 2012, she founded the nonprofit the Clara Lionel Foundation Global Scholarship Program [named for her grandparents] for students attending college in the U.S. from Caribbean countries, and supports the Global Partnership for Education and Global Citizen Project, which provides children with access to education in over 60 developing countries, giving priority to girls, and those affected by lack of access to education in the world today. ”

The Harvard Foundation recognizes prominent public-spirited leaders each year in honor of the late Rev. Professor Peter J. Gomes.

Past honorees include physician-statistician Hans Rosling; actor James Earl Jones; Nobel Peace Prize Committee chairman Thorbjørn Jagland; U.N. Secretaries General Ban Ki-moon, Kofi Annan, Boutros Boutros-Ghali, and Javier Pérez de Cuéllar; gender rights advocate Malala Yousafzai; anti-child-labor spokesman Kailash Satyarthi; tennis player and activist Arthur Ashe; former Health and Human Services Director Louis W. Sullivan; and farmworker rights advocate Dolores Huerta.

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