President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf: "The capitol city had been dark for 14 years"

One of the nominees most frequently mentioned for Carol Muske-Dukes' Nine Women to Run the World, featured here last week, was Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the 71-year-old president of Liberia. WVFC was thrilled when Christian Science Monitor correspondent Jina Moore, who had talked to Sirleaf last fall from West Africa in a reporting trip funded by Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting, agreed to share some of the president's thoughts with WVFC. We look forward to seeing more work like Moore's piece in the CSM Magazine, in which we learned (among much else) how much it matters in land disputes for women to get their fair share. — Ed.

by Jina Moore In October 2009, I sat down with the first elected female head of state in Africa, to talk about the strides she’s made and the challenges she’s faced. One of the most notable had happened just that summer: in its final report, the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommended she and 30 others be barred from public office. In our meeting, President Johnson-Sirleaf and I talked about getting lights back on in Monrovia, girls back into school, and steering the country toward national reconciliation after so many years of conflict.

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