Internationally Famed Science, Arts Leaders to be Honored at Kyoto Prize Symposium Gala


San Diego — March 11, 2011 — An internationally famed stem cell scientist, a renowned mathematician and an artist who has created a new form of expression will bring their voices and their talents to San Diego for a one-time-only experience as the annual benefit gala for the Kyoto Prize Symposium is held April 4 at the Hilton Bayfront Hotel.

Designated as laureates of this year’s Kyoto Prize, they come to San Diego from areas as disparate as Hungary and South Africa and represent three varying categories—advanced technology, basic sciences and arts and philosophy—wide-ranging areas of interest to a diverse San Diego audience.

The laureates include Dr. Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University and UC-San Francisco, representing the field of biotechnology and medical technology; Dr. Laszlo Lovasz of Hungary’s Eotvos Lorand University, representing mathematical sciences, and William Kentridge of South Africa, representing the fields of painting, sculpture, craft, architecture and design. Each was selected for the lifelong contributions they have made toward the betterment of human society.

The black-tie gala will serve as the distinguished opening ceremony for the 2011 Kyoto Prize Symposium, which continues through April 6 with free public lectures and presentations by individual laureates at San Diego State University, UC San Diego and the University of San Diego.

The benefit gala also will introduce the recipients of the 2011-2012 Kyoto Prize Scholarships, which will be awarded to three students from San Diego County and three from greater Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico. Each student will receive a college scholarship valued at up to $10,000.

Dr. Irwin Jacobs is honorary chair of the benefit gala and Masashi Oka, president and CEO of Union Bank, is serving as co-chair.

For information and reservations, please call 619 794-8272. Tickets for the gala can also be obtained at