University of Minnesota
Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies


Whitney Taylor and Katie Menke Receive Human Rights Awards

Whitney Taylor and Katie Menke Receive Human Rights Awards

The Inna Meiman Award is given in recognition of the friendship between Inna Meiman, a Soviet era Jewish refusenik who was repeatedly denied a visa to seek medical treatment and Lisa Paul a graduate of the University of Minnesota, who fought tirelessly on her behalf, including a 25-day hunger strike that galvanized a movement for Inna's freedom. The friendship between Paul and Meiman is memorialized in the book, Swimming in the Daylight: An American Student, a Soviet-Jewish Dissident, and the Gift of Hope.

The Sullivan Ballou Award is named after Major Sullivan Ballou, an Army soldier killed at the First Battle of Bull Run in 1861. Ballou became the inspiration for this award because of the heartfelt commitment he expressed in a letter to his wife before the battle. The award carries on Ballou's spirit by honoring a student who acts from the heart and devotes heartfelt energy to those around them.

The celebration is hosted by the Human Rights Program in the Institute for Global Studies and the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Minnesota.