Pacquiao hailed as “Asia’s Game Changer of the Year” for 2015

  • Pacquiao will be honored as this year’s “Asia’s Game Changer of the Year”
  • He is cited for using sport and his star power as “sources for good”
  • Pacman leads 7 other awardees from across Asia

MANILA, Philippines – Eight-division titlist and Saranggani Congressman Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao has been named as this year’s top honoree for the “Asia’s Game Changer of the Year Awards” by the Asia Society, following in the footsteps of last year’s winner, Alibaba chief executive officer Jack Ma.

Pacquiao was named on top of the list of individuals across Asia “who are transforming ideas into action and improving lives,” according to Asia Society President Josette Sheeran.

“While all honorees received widespread support, one individual rose to the top of our list. Manny Pacquiao achieved his remarkable success after a childhood of extreme hunger and poverty,” Sheeran said in a statement on the organization’s website

“Today, Manny is a major humanitarian force, directing his philanthropy toward numerous causes, including education and the fight against human trafficking. He is a remarkable inspiration and demonstrates the power of giving back to transform people’s lives,” he added.

This year’s honorees are selected through a global survey of more than 1,000 thought leaders and include a group of scientists, a comedian, a dancer, a fighter pilot and a boxer.

“What they share in common is that they all fight for a better today and inspire the world to do things differently,” Sheeran added.

The following awardees announced by Asia Society recently are:

  1. Asia Game Changer of the Year: Manny Pacquiao (The Philippines)

Humanitarian, world-famous boxing champion, and member of the Philippines House of Representatives.

For using his sport, and his star power, as sources for good.

  1. Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano, and Shuji Nakamura (Japan)

2014 Nobel Laureates in Physics and inventors of a new energy-efficient light source – the blue LED.

For lighting our world in a groundbreaking and sustainable way.

  1. Chanda Kochhar (India)

CEO of ICICI Bank and the first woman to head an Indian bank.

For breaking the glass ceiling, transforming an industry, and empowering the masses.

  1. Lei Jun (China)

Founder & CEO of Xiaomi, China’s leading smartphone vendor

For changing the game of communication in China and beyond

  1. Li Cunxin (Australia/China)

Artistic Director of the Queensland Ballet, known as “Mao’s Last Dancer”.

For his art, his courage, and his cultural diplomacy.

  1. Aasif Mandvi (United States/India)

Comedian, activist and powerful spokesperson for Muslims and Asian Americans

For using comedy to challenge perceptions, and work for good

  1. Mariam al-Mansouri (United Arab Emirates)

Fighter pilot, UAE Air Force and role model for women throughout the Arab world.

For battling stereotypes, and terror, from the air.

  1. Kiran Bir Sethi (India)

Founder, Design for Change and The Riverside School, and champion of youth volunteerism.

For empowering children to change the world.

The eight awardees will be honored at the Asia Game Changer Awards Dinner and Celebration at the United Nations on October 13, 2015 in New York where Pacquiao is expected to address the gathering.

The awards will be presented by Asia Society trustees such as Citi CEO, Global Consumer Banking Stephen Bird; renowned opera singer Renee Fleming; PepsiCo Chairman and CEO Indra K. Nooyi; veteran broadcaster Charlie Rose; former Australian Prime Minister and President of the Asia Society Policy Institute Kevin Rudd; and Asia Society Co-Chairs Ronnie C. Chan and Henrietta H. Fore.