Founder of Maiti Nepal Anuradha Koirala has been named 2010 CNN Hero for the Year. The Cable News Network (CNN) declared her the winner at the end of the program “CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute” on Saturday night.
Koirala is fighting to prevent the trafficking and sexual exploitation of Nepal’s women and girls. Since 1993, she and her group, Maiti Nepal, have helped rescue and rehabilitate more than 12,000 victims.
The program, in its fourth year, recognizes everyday people who are changing the world for the better.
“CNN Heroes has illustrated the best of humanity through the telling of stories of selfless acts of kindness, courage and perseverance,” said Jim Walton, president of CNN Worldwide. “We are honored to bring these Heroes the recognition they so deserve. It is a program the entire CNN family is proud of and excited to share with our viewers.”
CNN Heroes have been profiled weekly on the network since January. They were chosen from more than 10,000 nominations submitted by viewers in 100 countries.
A blue-ribbon panel of judges, including Muhammad Ali, Sir Richard Branson and Yo-Yo Ma, selected the top 10 Heroes, who will each receive $25,000 for their cause. An additional $100,000 will go to the CNN Hero of the Year.
Grammy Award-winning artists Bon Jovi, John Legend and Sugarland performed in the program attended by Halle Berry, Demi Moore, Jessica Alba, Kid Rock, LL Cool J, Renee Zellweger, Gerard Butler, Kiefer Sutherland, Marisa Tomei, Aaron Eckhart and Holly Robinson Peete.
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[Image and Video Courtesy CNN]