The International Center is pleased to announce the 2014 International Citizens of the Year
The International Center has selected Mayor Greg Ballard and First Lady Winnie Ballard as dual recipients of its 2014 International Citizen of the Year award. The pair will be honored at a September 9, 2014 dinner and awards program at The Indiana Roof Ballroom in downtown Indianapolis.
The International Citizen of the Year award was established in 1985 to honor individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the globalization of Indiana in business, culture, education, government, medicine, research, media, sports, or community service. The Ballards join an illustrious list of prominent community leaders who have been honored as past International Citizens of the Year for their contributions in one or more of these areas. Former winners include Senator Richard Lugar; Congressman Lee Hamilton; Governors Mitch Daniels and Robert Orr; Mayor William Hudnut; Jim Morris; K.P. Singh; Sidney Taurel; Christel DeHaan, the late Rev. Fr. Boniface Hardin and Dr. Martin Jischke, among others. The 2013 award recipient was Mark Miles, CEO of Hulman & Company.
“The Mayor and Mrs. Ballard were the unanimous selection by The International Center’s Board of Directors as our 2014 International Citizen of the Year honorees,” said Michael Overdorf, board chairman. “They embody, through their values and their actions, a spirit of cultural diversity and inclusiveness; of global leadership; and of the mutual benefits of global trade and investment. We look forward to bringing together friends of The International Center and champions of the Ballards to honor them for their substantial achievements.”
Now accepting applications for the 2014 Festival Fund grant program.
To learn more about this grant program, please visit our Festival Fund page for information about qualifications, guidelines, and materials for your application.
If you are curious about festivals and events we have supported in the past, join us in congratulating and thanking our 2013 Festival Fund awardees! For a full report of these events click here.
The International Center, in partnership with the Indianapolis Foundation, is excited to spend another year supporting this program and as a result, the enrichment of cultural diversity in our community.
Please contact Kaitlyn Neel at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Diane Thomas Named Honorary Consul of France in Indianapolis
Diane Thomas, president and CEO of The International Center, now additionally serves the Indiana community in her post as the Honorary Consul of France in Indianapolis. The installation ceremony on March 2013 was conducted by Graham Paul (left), Consul General of France in Chicago, who traveled to Indianapolis for the occasion.
Diane’s installation was witnessed by some 50 members of the French American community in Indianapolis at a private reception hosted at the home of IUPUI Chancellor Charles R. Bantz (right). In her role as Honorary Consul, she assists citizens of France while visiting or living in Indiana, and facilitates trade and friendship between the peoples of the United States and France.
Portuguese Major and Romanian Editor for Dinner? Must be Friday.
“Hosting State Department dinners is one of my favorite things, so of course I said yes when asked…even if the party was on Friday, and it was already Wednesday afternoon. I did my grocery shopping Thursday after work, prepared the soup and vegetables, then set the table before heading to bed. On Friday, I arrived home at 4:30 p.m. and immediately enlisted my friend Jane Gehlhausen, director of International & Cultural Affairs at City of Indianapolis, to cut flowers from the garden and arrange a few bouquets. I put the roast in the oven, cut the bread, prepared scalloped potatoes and got the vegetables ready to reheat. Meanwhile, we opened wine. If I’ve learned one thing along the way, it’s that wine is a great enabler of good conversation, so I always have plenty on hand – unless our visitors are from Muslim countries where alcohol isn’t served.
"Our interns picked up the guests and arrived promptly at six, joined by past International Center Board Chair Florence May and her father. I offered drinks and conversation quickly ensued. For most of our visitors, this is their only opportunity to spend relaxed time in an American home, talking openly and asking candid questions. These guests were particularly lively and, along with the mix of ages, experiences and points of view represented in the room, it was clear we were in for some great discussion.
“The point of this program is to open up each other’s eyes to the world, in a personal way that defies the abstract images we see on television or other media," Diane finishes. “It’s a front row seat to U.S. foreign policy…with wine!”
To find out more about being an International Center dinner hospitality volunteer, click the Volunteer Now button.
Our partnership with the National Council for International Visitors continues, but with a new name.
Since it was founded in 1961, Global Ties U.S., formerly known as the National Council for International Visitors (NCIV), and its member organizations have served as private sector partners to the U.S. Department of State's prestigious International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). World leaders, ranging from former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to Mexico's last president Felipe Calderón, developed close ties to the United States through their experience as IVLP participants. With an impressive alumni roster of more than 350 current and former heads of state worldwide, the IVLP and members of the Global Ties network have played a role in shaping U.S. international relations for decades.
The International Center is the only Indiana affiliate of Global Ties U.S. and one of the most respected among the 100+ member organizations across the country. To learn more about the International Center's role with the IVLP and how you can get involved click here.