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The 2013 recipient of The S. Michael Yasutake Award was Angela Smith, who received the award at the 176th Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago in November. The award was introduced by Matthew Zaradich, chair of the Peace and Justice Committee, and was presented by Newland Smith, member of the committee.

Smith is a student of the United Nations affiliated University for Peace pursuing a Master’s degree in Sustainable Peace in the Contemporary World and for the past eight years has been working for peace in Central America with a focus primarily on investment in women and girls.

In 2012, she co-founded a women’s cooperative in partnership with the Episcopal Church in El Salvador where she also collaborates with mediators and faith leaders working to advance a peace process addressing gang violence. Two months ago, Angela returned to El Salvador to accompany Episcopal Bishop of El Salvador, Martín Barahona, to meet with actors engaged in this gang truce/peace process that is so critical to the future of El Salvador. In recognition of her work in El Salvador, Angela was one of forty people from twenty-seven nations accepted into this past June’s Advanced Study of Nonviolent Conflict at Tufts University, Fletcher School.