Samantha Smith was an American schoolgirl, child actress, and peace activist. She achieved popularity during the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States of America; she visited the Soviet Union as a goodwill ambassador which attracted extensive media attention. She also took part in peacemaking activities in Japan before dying in an airplane crash at age 13.
Phan Thi Kim Phuc is a South Vietnamese-born Canadian woman. As a nine-year-old child, she was captured in a photograph taken during the Vietnam War, in which she is shown running naked on a road following a napalm attack. It took her a long time to recover from her injuries. As an adult, she is a peace activist.
Wangari Maathai was a Kenyan environmental, social, and political activist. She achieved popularity after becoming the first African woman to be honored with the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize. She is credited with founding a non-governmental organization called The Green Belt Movement (GBM), which focuses on women's rights and environmental conservation.
Yoko Ono is a Japanese multimedia artist, peace activist, and singer-songwriter. She came into prominence after marrying John Lennon of the Beatles. She is widely criticized for her unquestionable influence over John Lennon and his music. She is also often blamed for the disbandment of The Beatles. Despite all these criticisms, Yoko Ono continues to go on her merry way.
Crushed to death in Gaza by an Israeli armored bulldozer, peace activist Rachel Corrie was also a member of pro-Palestine International Solidarity Movement. Born and raised in USA, she had gone there as part of her college assignment and met her death while trying to stop the demolition of Palestinian houses by Israeli forces, causing international furore.
Daniel Berrigan was an American anti-war activist, Jesuit priest, Christian pacifist, author, poet, and playwright. Berrigan gained national attention for his protest against the Vietnam War, which landed him on the FBI's most-wanted list. He remained a popular anti-war activist throughout his life, co-founding an anti-nuclear weapons movement called the Plowshares movement in 1980.
Martti Ahtisaari is a Finnish politician who served as the tenth president of Finland; he was in office from 1994 to 2000. In 2008, he was honored with the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize for playing an important role in resolving long-lasting and serious conflicts, such as the ones in Namibia and Iraq. In 2008, he was also awarded the Delta Prize for Global Understanding.
German feminist, Marxist theorist, and Communist activist Clara Zetkin had a prominent role in the Communist Party of Germany and Comintern following World War I. Initially trained to be a teacher, she gradually gravitated towards women’s and labor movements. She later became closely associated with Lenin.
Leymah Gbowee is a Liberian peace activist who played an important role in leading the Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace, a nonviolent peace movement. The movement played a significant role in ending the Second Liberian Civil War. In 2011, Gbowee shared the Nobel Peace Prize with Tawakkul Karman and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for her work concerning women's rights.
Cindy Sheehan is an anti-war activist. Her son, US Army Specialist Casey Sheehan, was killed by enemy action during the Iraq War in 2004. Following his death, she became a passionate anti-war activist and held an extended anti-war protest outside President George W. Bush's Texas ranch. She is a member of the Peace and Freedom Party.
Mordechai Vanunu is an Israeli peace activist and former nuclear technician. In 1986, he revealed details of Israel's nuclear weapons program to the British press and was subsequently imprisoned for 18 years. Internationally, he is known as a whistle-blower, while in Israel, he is considered a traitor. He was awarded the Right Livelihood Award in 1987.
Remembered as the first president of the Leland Stanford Junior University, now known as Stanford University, David Starr Jordan was a reputed ichthyologist. An anti-war activist, too, who opposed America’s participation in World War I, he spent his later years as the chief director of the World Peace Foundation.
Peace Pilgrim was a spiritual teacher, mystic, pacifist, and peace activist. Born as Mildred Lisette Norman, she adopted the name "Peace Pilgrim" and walked across USA for 28 years, spreading the message of peace. She has few possessions and no organizational backing. She was killed in an automobile accident while on her seventh cross-country journey.
Betty Williams was a peace activist from Northern Ireland. She was the president of the World Centre of Compassion for Children International and headed the Global Children's Foundation. She and Mairead Corrigan were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1976. She traveled the world and lectured on topics of peace, education, anti-extremism, inter-cultural and inter-faith understanding, and children's rights.
Michael Culver is an English actor who has played iconic roles across various entertainment mediums, such as theatre, TV, radio, and film. He is perhaps best known for playing important roles in many of William Shakespeare's plays, such as The Tragedy of King Lear, Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Twelfth Night.
Philip Berrigan was a peace activist and Catholic priest. He was active in the peace and nuclear disarmament movement and advocated for peaceful and nonviolent protests. He was affiliated with the Society of St. Joseph of the Sacred Heart. He was married to a former nun and peace activist Elizabeth McAlister. The couple founded Jonah House, a faith-based community.
Nobel Peace Prize-winning activist Jody Williams is known for his contribution to the formation of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines. She has received 15 honorary degrees and was also named the Glamour magazine’s Woman of the Year. She has also penned books such as After the Guns Fall Silent.
Mairead Maguire is a peace activist from Northern Ireland. Along with Betty Williams and Ciaran McKeown, she co-founded the Women for Peace (now known as Community for Peace People). Maguire and Williams received the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize. More recently, she was involved in discussions around the Rohingya crisis. She has also called for the abolition of all armies.
Roger Nash Baldwin was a pacifist who played a major role in the development of the human rights movement in USA. He was a founding member of the American Civil Liberties Union and also founded the International League for the Rights of Man. He was a conscientious objector during World War I. He received the Medal of Freedom in 1981.
Frédéric Passy was a French pacifist and economist. He is credited with co-founding the Inter-Parliamentary Union as well as many peace societies, such as the Société Française pour l'Arbitrage entre Nations. He is best known for his involvement in the European peace movement, for which he received the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1901.
Also known as Padre of Peace, Catholic priest Alec Reid played a major role in the Northern Ireland peace process. He made headlines after being photographed performing the last rites of 2 British soldiers murdered by the IRA. Years later, it was discovered, he was then carrying papers for an ongoing peace settlement.
A Japanese Christian social reformer, Toyohiko Kagawa was educated at the Princeton Theological Seminary in the US and later spearheaded the Friends of Jesus band in Japan, encouraging compassion for the poor and women’s suffrage. His written work is preserved in the 24-volume Kagawa Toyohiko Zenshu.
British politician and socialist Fenner Brockway is remembered for his devotion to causes such as world peace and anticolonialism. Born to British missionaries in Calcutta, he initially worked as a journalist and later led the Independent Labour Party. Imprisoned multiple times for his political activities, he also wrote extensively on social issues.
Eagle Woman was a Lakota activist and translator. She was known for mediating the conflicts between the Sioux, white settlers, and the US government. She was the only woman recognized as chief among the Sioux. Along with her daughter, she organized a day school at Standing Rock Indian Reservation. She was inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame.
Eugen Drewermann is a German theologian, peace activist, church critic, and former Catholic priest. Drewermann's work is considered important and has been translated into over 12 languages. Over the years, Eugen Drewermann has received several prestigious awards such as the Herbert-Haag-Prize, Erich Fromm Prize, and International Albert Schweitzer-Prize.
The Rev. William Sloane Coffin Jr. was a Christian clergyman and peace activist. A multi-talented person, Coffin took part in peace movements and the Civil Rights Movement during the 1960s and 1970s. He was also a talented pianist, athlete, and CIA officer during his younger days. He was honored with prestigious awards, such as World War II Victory Medal.
Japanese translator and scholar Komaki Ōmiya was better known by his pseudonym, Ōmi Komaki. Born to a politician in Japan, he quit school to be with his father at a conference in France, and never left. Back in Japan, years later, he promoted communism and translated works of French authors.
Fuki Kushida was a Japanese women's rights activist who served as the first Secretary General of the Women's Democratic Club. She is also known for her association with the Federation of Japanese Women's Organizations where she served as the president. Also a peace activist, Kushida is remembered for leading protests against the establishment of the US military bases in Japan.