Commending the exceptional achievements of individuals and organisations working to build a better world, the LUI Che Woo Prize – Prize for World Civilisation, held its annual Prize Presentation Ceremony tonight at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Three laureates received the 2019 LUI Che Woo Prize: The Nature Conservancy, winning the Sustainability Prize; Dr Jennifer A. Doudna, winning the Welfare Betterment Prize; and Ms Fan Jinshi, winning the Positive Energy Prize.
Tonight’s Prize Presentation Ceremony was attended by honourable guests including The Hon Mrs Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; The Hon Mr Tung Chee-hwa, Vice Chairman of the 13th National Committee of the CPPCC; Professor TAN Tieniu, Vice Minister of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong; Mr Huang Lanfa, Vice Chairman of Committee for Liaison with Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and Overseas of CPPCC; Mr Yang Yirui, Deputy Commissioner of the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; Dr Lui Che-woo, Founder of the LUI Che Woo Prize and Chairman of the Board of Governors cum Prize Council of the LUI Che Woo Prize; and Professor Lawrence J. Lau, Chairman of the Prize Recommendation Committee. Other respected members of the LUI Che Woo Prize governing bodies were also in attendance.
Founder of the Prize, Dr Lui Che-woo shared a few meaningful words at the Prize Presentation Ceremony, saying, “A few years ago, I founded the LUI Che Woo Prize based on my belief in ‘lasting serenity and shared harmony’. I hope everyone can pursue inner peace by becoming more loving and understanding, and together cherish what the world has to offer. Knowing that the hard-earned achievements of the laureates align with my vision for the prize, I feel nothing but happiness.”
Mrs Carrie Lam also gave a speech at the ceremony and extended her congratulations to this year’s awardees, commenting, “This is the third time in a row that I’ve taken part in the Lui Che Woo Prize ceremony. And, I must say, it’s an honour and a delight to be here, to see how splendidly the vision of Dr Lui is being realised. It is a privilege, too, to join you in celebrating those who, with their purpose and passion, so brilliantly serve a larger good.”
Laureates of the 2019 LUI Che Woo Prize
The 2019 Sustainability Prize was presented to The Nature Conservancy. A global non-profit organisation dedicated to the conservation of land and water, The Nature Conservancy works with a number of different organisations and individuals to tackle climate change, water scarcity, food shortages and other conservation challenges. Its network spans over one million members and six continents, making it one of the world’s most effective and wide-reaching environmental groups. In Hong Kong, The Nature Conservancy is nurturing future environmental leaders through educational initiatives.
“I want to extend my deepest thanks to Dr Lui. Your dedication to making the world a better place”, said by Secretary Sally Jewell, Chief Executive Officer of The Nature Conservancy, accepted the Prize on behalf of her organisation. “Change is possible. But it takes courage, commitment, and above all—leadership. My colleagues and I believe that Hong Kong and the entire Asia Pacific region can lead the world toward a more sustainable future”, she added.
The 2019 Welfare Betterment Prize was conferred upon Dr Jennifer A. Doudna, the co- inventor of CRISPR-Cas9 – a revolutionary genome-editing technology allowing genetic material to be added, removed or altered in animal and plant cells. Her work has given hope to millions and has vast applications for improving human welfare. CRISPR-Cas9 has been called one of the world’s most monumental discoveries for its potential to treat or prevent diseases like cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anemia and even HIV and cancer; and to help engineer plants with climate change-resistance and better nutritional value.
Receiving her award at the Prize Presentation Ceremony, Dr Jennifer A. Doudna said, “I do believe that the positive message of Dr Lui Che-woo and our collective efforts to build a more harmonious world can improve our health, happiness, and future success. Tonight is an opportunity to consider how our approach and the work itself can help deliver that better future.”
The 2019 Positive Energy Prize was awarded to Ms Fan Jinshi. Spreading positive energy and demonstrating unwavering determination through countless social, cultural and financial hardships, Ms Fan has devoted 56 years to the Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang, China. This significant cultural site is home to one of the world’s most important collections of Buddhist culture and other historical artefacts; and Ms Fan’s heroic commitment to its study and preservation has benefitted both the site itself as well as the wider world’s understanding of the Grottoes and best practices in preservation. Her major contributions to its digital preservation and broad dissemination have set new standards for cultural preservation.
Ms Fan accepted her Prize in person this evening, saying, “It is my great honour to protect, study and promote the Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang. This tough but meaningful task deserves not only my lifelong dedication, but also the continuous contributions of future generations.”
Spreading Positive Energy and Harmony Through Dance
Guests at the Prize Presentation Ceremony enjoyed a special performance presented by the Taiwan First Deaf Dance Group and local talents. Founder cum lead dancer, Ms Lin Chinglan was born with severe hearing impairment but she did not let the disability defines her. She has dedicated herself to the art of dance and overcome countless difficulties to become a professional dancer and established her own dance group, providing a creative platform for dancers with hearing impairments to express themselves.
A well-known spokeswoman who empowers others to pursue their dreams, Ms Lin Chinglan demonstrates infinite positive energy through her determination.