IVLP Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change

About the Award

The Global Ties U.S. IVLP Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change Award recognizes alumni of the U.S. Department of State International Visitor Leadership Program for high achievements in driving social change through innovation in their home communities. The 2024 award will recognize alumni of the U.S. Department of State’s flagship International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) in the East Asia and the Pacific region who demonstrate social innovation and global leadership in the area of social activism derived directly from their IVLP participation.

The award is sponsored by Global Ties U.S. Advisory Council member and IVLP alumni Vicente Lopez-Ibor Mayor, and presented annually at the Global Ties U.S. National Meeting.

Who Can Submit a Nomination?

Nominations may be submitted by Community-Based Members, National Program Agencies, the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Embassies, and Interpreters and Liaisons working on IVLP projects, as well as Alumni Associations. Self-nominations by IVLP alumni are also encouraged, but not required.

Nominees must be past participants of the IVLP who demonstrate a significant difference they are making in their local or national community by addressing one of the following four areas derived directly from their IVLP participation:

  1. Fostering economic prosperity and entrepreneurship
  2. Advancing civil society and human rights
  3. Working to promote alternatives to violent extremism
  4. Combating climate change

Awardees by Year


Zheng Qing Qu (China) and honorable mention, Sachiyo Sakaguchi (Japan), community building leaders.


Anass Hanafi (Italy) and honorable mention, Jona Rizvanolli (Albania), civic engagement leaders.


Mehwish Abbasi (Pakistan) and Adrian Lasimbang (Malaysia), social justice leaders.


Saad Abid (Morocco) and Raisa Banfield (Panama), environmental leaders and activists


Runcie Chidebe, Founder, Project PinkBlue (Nigeria)


Mine Atli, Activist, KAYAD (Cyprus)


Sophie Lamprou, Founder, Impact Hub Athens


Rebeca Gyumi, Founder and Executive Director, Msichana Initiative