(INDIANAPOLIS – October 9, 2019) — The International Center presented the 2019 International Citizen of the Year (ICY) award to Michael Crowther during its annual award dinner at the Indiana Roof Ballroom on October 8, 2019.

The Center’s Board of Directors selected Mike Crowther, CEO of the Indianapolis Zoological Society, for his global contributions as the founder of the biennial Indianapolis Prize. The Indianapolis Prize, recognized as the world’s leading award for animal conservation, has positioned Indianapolis as an international hub of wildlife conservation leadership and brings attention to the city with more than two billion media impressions during each two-year cycle.

Mike Alley, longtime friend and colleague of Michael Crowther and co-chair of the event, presented the award.

This year’s event also honored George Srour, co-founder and chief dreamer of the Indianapolis- and Uganda-based humanitarian non-profit, Building Tomorrow, with the second annual Global Impression Award (GIA).

Under George’s leadership, Building Tomorrow has built over 75 primary schools for Ugandan children, created a fellowship of leaders serving those students, and developed an educational approach to help students and communities succeed. Maggie Bishop, GIA committee member, presented the award.

Julie K. Griffith, executive vice president of the Indiana Innovation Institute and board chair of The International Center, said, “Mike embodies the best that Indiana has to offer. His leadership with the Indianapolis Zoo and the Indianapolis Prize has elevated our entire state as a key player in the efforts of global conservation.”

“The opportunity to celebrate Indiana’s emerging global leadership through the Global Impression Award, with a highlight on George’s accomplishments with Building Tomorrow, gives us hope for a bright future,” added Ms. Griffith.

The other Global Impression Award finalists were Dr. Sherri Bucher, associate research professor of pediatrics at the Indiana University School of Medicine and Andrea A. Richter-Garry, vice president for international engagement at the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. The 2018 Global Impression Award winner was Dr. Rachel Vreeman, now the vice-chair for research in global health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Call for nominations for the 2020 Global Impression Award will be available on The International Center’s website in the spring of 2020.