Mortenson wins Kiriyama Prize for “Three Cups of Tea”
April 2nd, 2007
Montana humanitarian and mountaineer, Greg Mortenson, has received the prestigious Kiriyama Prize for his New York Times bestseller ‘Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission To Promote Peace…One School At A Time’.
The aim of the KIRIYAMA Prize is to promote books that contribute to a greater understanding and peace among the peoples and nations of the Pacific Rim and South Asia.
The Kiriyama Prize www.kiriyamaprize.org, consists of a cash award of US $ 30,000, of which half of the cash award is given to the author of the winning fiction title, and half is given to the author of the winning nonfiction title. Over 140 nonfiction books were submitted and nominated for the Kiriyama Prize.
Portland co-author, David Oliver Relin, who helped Mortenson write Three Cups of Tea www.threecupsoftea.com, will split the $ 15,000 nonfiction prize share with Mortenson.
Mortenson 49, is the founder of nonprofit, Central Asia Institute www.ikat.org which is dedicated to promote education and build schools, especially for girls, in remote villages of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Since he began his efforts after a 1993 K2 climb, Mortenson has set up 58 schools which provide education to over 24,000 students, including 14,000 girls. In 1998, Mortenson received the AAC David Brower Conservation Award.
Three Cups of Tea was also recently as the Pacific Northwest Bookseller Association (PNBA) Nonfiction Book of the Year and was TIME magazine’s Asia Book of the Year.
The KIRIYAMA Prize takes its name from Reverend Seiyu Kiriyama, president and founder of Agon Shu, a Buddhist Association headquartered in Tokyo, Japan.
Mortenson is married to Dr. Tara Bishop, the daughter of the late Dr. Barry Bishop, a senior National Geographic Society (NGS) editor, NGS Chairman of Research and Exploration Committee, and photographer on the NGS American Everest 1963 expedition.