2013 Asia Society Awards Dinner

Article by Yvonne Lo

On October 17, 2013, Asia Society’s 2013 Awards Dinner was held at the Pierre Hotel where they honored “exceptional business and cultural individuals and companies whose leadership and commitment have helped to improve loves and strengthen relations between the United States and Asia.”

Josette Sheeran, Kees Kruythoff (Photo credit Bennet Cobliner)

Asia Society’s Global Citizenship Award was presented to Unilever for its Sustainable Living Plan. Unilever is giving back to society rather than living on it. In November 2010, Unilever is committing to a ten year journey towards sustainable growth. Unilever is taking responsibility not just for how our consumers use our brands. The Sustainable Living Plan provides improved health and nutrition to millions of people, reduces greenhouse gases, conserves water, reduces waste, and sources sustainable materials for all its products. They declared that by 2020 they would cut their environmental footprints in half and their only source would be sustainable palm oil. Accepting on behalf of Unilever was Unilever North America President Kees Kruythoff.

Ronnie Chan, David Bonderman (Photo credit Bennet Cobliner)

TPG Founder David Bonderman was recognized with the Global Leadership Award for his leadership in strengthening ties between U.S. and Asian companies and for his vision and his early involvement with Myanmar. TPG’s Sustainability Program supports environmental, health, and safety practices throughout its global operations.

Nusrat Durrani (Photo credit Bennet Cobliner)

The Cultural Achievement Award went to MTV World and was accepted by MTV World General Manager and Senior Vice President Nusrat Durrani. MTV, a division of Viacom Media Networks, is the first credible media platform for Asian pop music and culture in the United States. MTV World has championed hundreds of Asian artists, ideas, and causes to audiences around the world, creating a sense of global connection.

Stephen A. Schwarzman (Photo credit Bennet Cobliner)

Blackstone Chairman and CEO Stephen A. Schwarzman and Citi Asia Pacific’s chief executive officer Stephen Bird made special remarks. Blackstone Chairman and CEO Stephen A. Schwarzman described the founding of the Schwarzman Scholars program at China’s Tsinghua University. Stephen Bird announced Citi’s support of the Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI) with $1M donation.

The evening’s musical interlude came from Gods Robots, a Mumbai-San Francisco collaborative ensemble comprised of Janaka Atugoda on electronics, Shridevi Keshavan on vocals and Shabi Farooq on tablas.

Congratulations to Asia Society New York for hosting such a meaningful event and it’s truly wonderful to witness all the success that Asia Society has accomplished in 2013!

Stephen Bird (Photo credit Bill Swersey)


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