Drake to host International Women of Courage Award recipient

Zarifa Ghafari, a U.S. Secretary of State’s 2020 International Women of Courage Award recipient, will speak at Drake University on Thursday, March 12, at 7 p.m.

Ghafari will be interviewed on stage by Rekha Basu, award-winning columnist for The Des Moines Register, and there will be opportunity for questions from the audience. A reception will follow.

The event will be in the Sussman Theater of the Olmsted Center, 2875 University Ave., Des Moines, IA 50311. It is free and open to the public. Parking is available in the Drake lot on 25th Street and Carpenter Avenue.

After successfully launching a woman-focused radio station, Ghafari became mayor of Maidan Shar, Afghanistan, when she was 26 years old. Ghafari defied opposition in her conservative community to tackle her city’s problems, including launching a “Clean City, Green City” campaign. She has championed women’s rights and opportunities for young women.

The U.S. Secretary of State’s International Women of Courage Award annually recognizes women from around the world who have demonstrated exceptional courage, strength and leadership in acting to improve others’ lives. Ghafari’s appearance at Drake is sponsored by the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and the Principal Center for Global Citizenship. The Iowa International Center is the State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program host in Iowa.