Wangari Maathai, Kenyan Green Party founder and Nobel Peace Prize winner, passes away at age 71

Wangari Muta Maathai (1940-2011)

It is with great sadness that the family of Professor Wangari Maathai announces her passing away on 25th September, 2011, at the Nairobi Hospital, after a prolonged and bravely borne struggle with cancer. Her loved ones were with her at the time.

Professor Maathai’s departure is untimely and a very great loss to all who knew her—as a mother, relative, co-worker, colleague, role model, and heroine; or who admired her determination to make the world a more peaceful, healthier, and better place.

Prof. Wangari Muta Maathai started the Green Belt Movement in 1977, working with women to improve their livelihoods by increasing their access to resources like firewood for cooking and clean water. She became a great advocate for better management of natural resources and for sustainability, equity, and justice. A synopsis of her life and work can be read here.

Prof. Maathai leaves her three children—Waweru, Wanjira, and Muta—and a granddaughter, Ruth Wangari. They are truly very grateful for all the prayers and support they have received.

Further information on how Prof’s life will be celebrated, where to share memories and condolences, and how to join us to build her legacy for generations to come will be provided shortly.

-The above is from an announcement at The Greenbelt Movement website
-Thank you to Green Party Watch for sharing the sad news

Video of an animated fable told by Wangari Maathai:

Video of 2004 speech about electoral concerns:


Related Articles:

IPR linked to a Newsweek story: Women and Leadership (Including three Green Party leaders)

In Copenhagen: Global Greens forum to address global warming (at onthewilderside)

Kenyan Green party founder/Nobel Prize Winner Wangari Maathai 4/9/09 (at onthewilderside)

One thought on “Wangari Maathai, Kenyan Green Party founder and Nobel Peace Prize winner, passes away at age 71

  1. Mike Seebeck

    Wangari was a graduate of St. Scholastica College, 1964, biology, which later joined with St. Benedict’s College in 1971 to form Lidia and I’s alma mater, Benedictine College.

    (Small world, isn’t it?)

    While neither Lidia nor I knew Wangari, it was with pride throughout the entire Raven Nation that such a small college had such a huge impact on peace. Wangari was the only Nobel Peace laureate to come from a US Catholic college, and she will be missed.

    Benedictine press release to add to the links:

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