Nobel Peace Prize Recipient to Speak at Gatton College Sept. 22

Posted: September 19, 2016

In the first major lecture of the academic year, the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics welcomes 2016 Chellgren Lecturer and Nobel Peace Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi to the college’s Kincaid Auditorium 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22.

The theme of his speech is “The Role of Business in Bringing About Social Change.”  

The event is free and open to the public; however, seating is limited and advanced registration is required. Registration is available on a first-come, first-served basis at http://gatton.uky.edu/speaker-kailash.

Satyarthi was awarded the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize along with Malala Yousafzai “for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education.” Following the tradition of Mahatma Gandhi, Indian activist Satyarthi has waged a peaceful struggle to stop children being exploited as labor instead of attending school. He has also contributed to the development of international conventions on the rights of children.

“Economic growth and human development need to go hand in hand,” Satyarthi said in his keynote address to the 2014 Jamnalal Bajaj Award ceremony in India. “Human values need to be advocated vigorously.”

Satyarthi was born in the Vidisha district of Madhya Pradesh in India. After completing an electrical engineering degree, he worked as a teacher in the area. In 1980, he left teaching and founded the organization Bachpan Bachao Andolan, which has freed thousands of children from slave-like conditions. He has also been active in a wide range of other organizations working against child labor and for children's rights to education. 

David Blackwell, dean of the Gatton College, said, “We are fortunate to be able to bring this distinguished humanitarian to our campus. His message is sure to resonate with students, faculty, staff and members of the broader community.”

This event is a 2016 Chellgren Lecture and is co-sponsored by the Gatton College and UK’s College of Arts and Sciences. The Chellgren Lecture Series at the Gatton College was established in 2001 with an endowment gift from Paul W. Chellgren, former chairman and CEO of Ashland, Inc. It brings to campus chief executive officers and other leaders to address issues confronting corporations and the business community.

Satyarthi will also give the keynote address at the 2016 Kalam Scholars Conference for Indian Business & Economic Research on Friday, September 23. The A.P.J. Kalam India Studies Research Program, funded through the generous gift of Dr. M.S. Vijayaraghavan, supports research in the Gatton College and the University of Kentucky examining India's role in international commerce. This conference features research presentations from both University of Kentucky and Indian scholars.