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ANTIGONISH, Nova Scotia – Dr. Kent MacDonald, president of St. Francis Xavier University, has announced that Palagummi Sainath, former rural affairs editor of The Hindu newspaper, is the university’s 2015 Coady Chair in Social Justice.
“Palagummi Sainath has received many awards for his dedication to raising awareness about the rural poor in India,” said Dr. MacDonald. “His impressive body of multimedia reporting over 30 years has led to changes in government policies and has brought the plight of poor farmers to the national agenda. I’m very pleased to have him join us on campus to share his experiences with our community for two weeks in October and then another two weeks in November.”
“Mr. Sainath will engage students, faculty and community members during his time with us,” says Dr. June Webber, director of Coady Institute and vice-president at StFX. “We are truly privileged to have this opportunity for mutual learning, sharing and reflection.”
Mr. Sainath’s other awards include: the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Journalism Literature and Creative Communication Arts in 2007; the United Nation’s Food & Agriculture Organisation’s (FAO) Boerma Prize (the foremost award for development journalism) in 2000; the Harry Chapin Media Award in New York, 2006; and was the first print journalist to win the Inspiration Award at the Global Visions Film Festival in Edmonton, Canada in 2002.
Sainath’s book Everybody Loves a Good Drought (Penguin India, 1996) has remained a non-fiction bestseller by an Indian author and was declared a Penguin ‘Classic’. To research the book he traveled 80,000 kilometres across India, walking more than 5,000 kilometres. A review by the Guardian UK newspaper called it: “A devastating new book…on a huge section of Indian society. Its author has criss-crossed the country, living in the poorest villages and riding the trains with out-of-work migrants, to compile a dossier of deprivation and neglect.”
The Coady Chair in Social Justice at StFX honours the spirit of Dr. Rev. Moses Coady and the leaders of the Antigonish Movement by bridging local and global concerns, involving the community and encouraging an interdisciplinary approach to issues. Events include public presentations, seminars and workshops held on campus by thought leaders/activists that bring students, faculty, community members and citizen-leaders together for shared learning.
About the Coady International Institute
Through its unique, community-based approach, St. Francis Xavier University’s Coady Institute equips citizen leaders from around the world to address contemporary global challenges and opportunities. Since 1959, its 7,000 graduates and partners have worked in 130 countries to build a fair, prosperous and secure world – one community at a time.
About St. Francis Xavier University
As Canada’s premiere undergraduate university, StFX offers a unique educational experience that is intimate and personalized. Renowned for leadership and its commitment to social justice, StFX exceeds the needs of today’s students through outstanding teaching, exceptional hands-on research and an extraordinary residential environment.
To schedule an interview with Mr. Sainath, contact:
Media and Communications Officer
Tel: (902) 867-4933
Mobile: (902) 870-9662