On Friday, January 11, Pedro Pires, the former President of Cape Verde spoke to a crowd at Wellesley College which included guests from all over the region. Pires, who successfully led Cape Verde as president from 2001-2011 after it gained independence from Portugal, discussed his country’s transition to democracy.
Pires was the winner of The Mo Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership in 2011. The award is given to African heads of state considered to be exceptional role models for the continent. Recipients are recognized for work developing their countries, lifting people out of poverty, and paving the way for future prosperity and success. Pires visited Wellesley as part of the 2013 Madeleine Korbel Albright Institute for Global Affairs.
Opening remarks were given by former United States Congressman Barney Frank, and Layli Maparyan, the Katherine Stone Kaufmann ‘67 Executive Director of the Wellesley Centers for Women, served as moderator. Wellesley College President H. Kim Bottomly and Bridgewater State University President Dana Mohler Faria offered a welcome.
President Pires delivered his talk in Portuguese. An official from the Consulate provided English translation.