Additional Resource

The Inaugural Morehouse College Gandhi-King-Mandela Peace Prize Citation


Be It Known To All Who Look Upon This Script That

Russell Marion Nelson Sr., MD, Ph.D.

President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Is Being Honored

God spoke the world into being with one powerful command: “Let there be light.” And God called humankind to embody and carry forth that light so that the world might forever be illumined in Divine glory.

Because you — Russell Marion Nelson Sr.—carry the light of truth in the great Morehouse leadership tradition, which recognizes the Universal Christ and works for Universal Justice, we are honored to announce you as the inaugural Laureate of the Morehouse College Gandhi-King-Mandela Peace Prize.

As an internationally recognized medical scientist, revered president, prophet, seer, and revelator for the 17-million-member Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

  • You have continued the legacy of Joseph Smith Jr., founder of the Latter-day Saints movement and the first nationally recognized religious leader in the United States to advocate for the freedom of enslaved Africans, by affirming racial and ethnic equality, and running for the American presidency on a political platform of “Compensation Emancipation”.
  • You have worked tirelessly to build bridges of understanding rather than create walls of segregation. You have led your great church to link arms with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), The United Negro College Fund, Morehouse College and Spelman College to help more people enjoy the light of participatory democracy.
  • You have inspired your church to radical inclusivity and solidarity by taking a stand for the rights of women and children, and to preserve the intellectual, personal, social, and religious freedoms, and protection of all humankind.
  • And you have championed the moral cosmopolitan worldview of the religion of Jesus that is a hallowed blueprint for neighbors first, nonviolent human rights struggles around the globe, by serving as a virtue-ethical, exemplar of leadership grown courageous in the 21st century, one human family with the Creator.

For your noble efforts to heal and reunite the broken body of Christ — and for your contributions to help make the scriptural proclamation “God so loved the world…” a tangible reality — Morehouse College salutes you.

In the spirit of our motto, Et Facta Est Lux, which in English means, “And there was Light,” Morehouse gifts you a crystal obelisk — a shaft of light ancient Egyptians called the Ben Ben Stone to commemorate the ancestors and honor the attributes of God.

May it reflect the light within you and inspire continued works of global peace, harmony, and reconciliation.

Testifying to this honor, affirmed and witnessed under the seals of the College and the Chapel, the signatures of duly authorized officers are hereunto affixed, this, Thirteenth Day of April, Two Thousand Twenty-Three, in the City of Atlanta, Per Dominum Nostrum Jesum Christum

So be it! And, So it is!

Willie Woods, MBA
13th Chairman, Morehouse Board of Trustees

David Anthony Thomas, Ph.D.
13th President, Morehouse College

Lawrence Edward Carter Sr., Ph.D.
Founding Dean, Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.