Asia Society Announces 2017 Asia Game Changers

2017 Asia Game Changers

Awardees Will Be Honored at Awards Dinner and Celebration in New York on November 1, 2017

NEW YORK, August 8, 2017 — Asia Society today announced this year's recipients of the Asia Game Changer Awards, which recognize those making a transformative and positive difference for the future of Asia and the world. Asia Society is proud to partner with Citi to honor these extraordinary individuals and organizations, continuing a tradition begun with the inauguration of Asia Game Changers four years ago.

This year’s nine honorees include a young woman using rap music to fight a trauma in Afghanistan, a trailblazing CEO changing urban life in China, a Hollywood star building bridges between India and the world, and an environmentalist placing his life on the line to stop deforestation in his native country. His Highness the Aga Khan, spiritual leader to the world’s 15 million Ismaili Muslims, will receive the Asia Game Changer Lifetime Achievement Award.

“In a world of challenges, it is important to honor the dreamers and leaders, those who take action and those who inspire us to build a better world,” said Asia Society President Josette Sheeran. “This year’s Game Changers have each made a significant difference through a unique vision, perseverance, and courage.”

“Citi’s mission is to enable growth and economic progress and we are honored to once again partner with the Asia Society,” said Citi Asia Pacific CEO Francisco Aristeguieta. “These awards reflect how these Game Changers are using courage and creativity to inspire and make a positive impact in communities.”

Honorees are nominated and selected by members of Asia Society’s global network.

The 2017 awardees are:

Asia Game Changer Lifetime Achievement Award: His Highness the Aga Khan (Global)
Founder, Aga Khan Development Network
For using philanthropy to lift millions of Asia’s most vulnerable

Sonita Alizadeh (Afghanistan)
Rapper and activist
For using rap music to empower the girls of Afghanistan

Jean Liu (China)
President, Didi Chuxing
For revolutionizing transportation in China

Aisholpan Nurgaiv (Mongolia)
Eagle huntress
For breaking gender barriers at a remarkably young age

Leng Ouch (Cambodia)
Environmental activist
For risking his life to expose an environmental calamity

Dev Patel (India/ United Kingdom)
For using celebrity to place a spotlight on India’s poor

Sesame Workshop (Global)
Nonprofit organization
For proving that learning can be fun — and have a profound impact — anywhere in the world

Wu Tong (China)
Musician and composer
For showing that musical virtuosity knows no bounds

Tadashi Yanai (Japan)
Founder, UNIQLO; Chairman, President and CEO, FAST RETAILING
For building a global retail empire that gives back to local communities

The honorees will attend the Asia Game Changer Awards Dinner and Celebration at Cipriani 25 Broadway in lower Manhattan on November 1, 2017. The evening will feature performances from Game Changer Wu Tong as well as the Aga Khan Music Initiative’s All-Stars Ensemble, which brings together beloved artists-performers from Asia and the West.

Previous Game Changers include ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar; Alibaba founder Jack Ma; comedian Aasif Mandvi; Acumen CEO Jacqueline Novogratz; Xiaomi founder and CEO Lei Jun; documentarian Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy; architecture icon I.M. Pei; education activist Malala Yousafzai; filmmaker Zhang Yimou, among others.

More information about the 2017 and past awardees, including bios, and the November 1 event is available at Members of the media should email for details.

About Asia Society

Asia Society is the leading educational organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding of Asia in a global context and strengthening partnerships among peoples, leaders and institutions across the fields of arts, business, culture, education, and policy. Founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller 3rd, Asia Society is a nonpartisan, nonprofit institution with offices in Hong Kong, Houston, Los Angeles, Manila, Mumbai, New York, San Francisco, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney, Washington, DC, and Zurich.

About Citi

Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.

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