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Ma Ellen, born as Ellen Eugenia

Ledgerhood J. Rennie
Ledgerhood J. Rennie
Ledgerhood J. Rennie

“Ma Ellen,” born as Ellen “Eugenia” Johnson in the Liberian Capital, Monrovia, on October 29, 1938, is the granddaughter of a traditional chief from Western Liberia and of a market woman from Sinoe County.

She proudly obtained her high school education at the prestigious College of West Africa (CWA) in Monrovia.

After her high school education, she matriculated to the Madison (Wisconsin) Business College at the University of Colorado, where she netted a Bachelors of Science Degree (BSC) in Accounting.

Subsequently, she enrolled at the Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, where she obtained a Master’s Degree in Public Administration in 1971.

Following her prolonged quest for national political achievements, Ellen Johnson ascended, for the first term, to the Liberian Presidency through a popular decision at the 2005 poll.

Having ably guided the nation and people throughout her first term, President Johnson-Sirleaf was re-elected during Liberia’s 2011 elections to continue navigating the ship of state - a mandate that she’s scrupulously carrying out.

Prior to her election to the nation’s highest office, Ma Ellen served with distinction in several other national and international posts, especially her selfless service offered at global financial institutions and within the United Nations Bureaucracy.

Madam Johnson-Sirleaf, in 1965, joined the Treasury Department (Ministry of Finance), and then rose to the position of Minister of Finance in 1979, now Ministry of Finance & Development Planning.

At the Ministry, she performed with distinction as she committed her service to managing Liberia’s Fiscal Affairs, and to introducing policies to mitigate what were then referred to as, “rampant abuse” of the people’s rights and “waste of government resources.”

The Liberian Leader is also on record for being among those who committed their lives toward efforts aimed at restoring not only the rights of the poor in Liberia, but the rights of the humankind everywhere.

It’s no doubt that such service and commitment culminated into the Liberian people’s popular approval of her ongoing national leadership and the awarding of several honors at both local and global levels.

As a memorable testimony, President Johnson-Sirleaf is proudly listed amongst the world’s living legends for her numerous milestone achievements as an Advocate, a Global Servant, Political Leader, and a Peace Ambassador.

The President is also recognized amongst the world’s living Legends for being a Promoter of Women’s Rights, a Distinguished Stateswoman, a Democrat, and an Epitome of Free Expression.

Manifestingly, the Liberian Leader has a basketful of accolades, including the World’s Premier Nobel Peace Prize, in recognition of her struggle for global peace, women development and democracy.

Other awards won by President Johnson-Sirleaf included France’s highest award and public distinction: the “Grand Croix of the Le’giond Honneur” (2012), the “Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development” (2012).

In 2007, she received the “Presidential Medal of Freedom” –the foremost prestigious civilian honor usually conferred by an American President.

The revered and internationally acclaimed Liberian Leader also received the 2012/2013 “Global Citizen Movement Award” for championing the cause of gender equality.

The Times News Paper reported that about 60,000 people assembled in the Hall to witness President Johnson-Sirleaf, amongst other prestigious personalities, receiveher award. She has since won the “Friend of the Media Award” and several others.

Indeed, this living Legend commands a great deal of confidence and respect from her colleagues in the global community, thus earning for her, for the second time ongoing, the position of Chair of the Mano River Union (MRU) in West Africa.

President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf also earned the position of Chair of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), amongst several other strategic posts that she is currently holding to her credit.

As President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf observes her 76th Birth Anniversary Wednesday, October 29, 2014, the Management and Staff of the Liberia Broadcasting System (LBS) congratulate and wish her longevity, strength, and God’s bountiful blessings in her national strides to win the war against Ebola.


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