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K-State Today

September 21, 2012



2012 Kansas Peace Awards: Monique King and Obair Siddiqui

By Doug Benson

This year’s recipients of the Kansas Peace Awards, sponsored by the Dow Center for Multicultural and Community Services with K-State Libraries, are Monique R. King, community member, and Obair Siddiqui, K-State graduate student in engineering.

The presentation of the awards will be during the Community Cultural Harmony Week awards banquet at noon Friday, Sept. 21, in the K-State Student Union Cottonwood Room.

King, a retired master sergeant in the U.S. Army, has lived in Manhattan for four years. She has taken on the leadership role for the city’s annual Juneteenth Celebration. During her tenure, the event has seen considerable growth resulting in a move from Douglass Community Center to City Park. The move created a venue for community leaders and citizens to find common ground in a great town atmosphere. King is also involved with other community organizations.

Siddiqui served for two years as president of the Muslim student association and was last year’s president of the International Coordinating Council, where he transformed the council into a well-functioning organization with high standards.  His ability to motivate a very diverse group of students from around the world into a high-functioning team was amazing. He is a member of the university religious committee and is on the graduate engineering student council as well.

The purpose of the awards — started in 2010 by Young-ok Yum, professor of communication studies, — is twofold:

1. To raise awareness of the need for understanding, innovation, open-mindedness and ongoing work to promote an inclusive, peaceful and vibrant culture in our local communities and the larger society.

2. To recognize and publicize the stories of K-State and community members who have contributed, though creative and constructive means, to bring together diverse sociocultural groups, promote intercultural understanding, and help to build a caring, engaged community.