November 18, 2020: Daisaku & Kaneko Ikeda World Peace Day

WHEREAS, Dr. Daisaku Ikeda, president of Soka Gakkai International (SGI), has dedicated his life to bolstering the foundations of a lasting culture of peace for over 60 years; and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda's wife, Mrs. Kaneko Ikeda, has been his best and closest companion and has worked alongside and supported him in his efforts for world peace for over 68 years; and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda's efforts have resulted in the establishment of a multicultural, global peace movement comprised of more than 12 million members in 192 countries and territories, including 1,656 members in the state of Michigan; and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda's efforts to promote peace, culture, and education have led to him receiving more than 390 honorary doctorates and professorships from academic institutions worldwide and more than 800 honorary citizenships from communities spanning the globe, including an honorary citizenship from Ann Arbor, Michigan; and,


WHEREAS, Mrs. Kaneko Ikeda has been awarded honorary degrees from academic institutions worldwide and has received more than 75 honorary citizenships spanning the globe for her contributions to peace, culture, and education; and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda is the recipient of numerous awards including the United Nations Peace Award, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Humanitarian Award, the Rosa Parks Humanitarian Award, the Simon Wiesenthal Center International Tolerance Award, the Tagore Peace Award, and the Rizal International Peace Award, and has also been decorated with national orders from 23 countries around the world; and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda has founded peace institutes, cultural institutes, and schools and universities around the world, including Soka University of America, all of which are aimed toward the advancement of peace, culture, and education; and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda has met with key leaders, cultural figures, and scholars from every region of the world to discuss ways of resolving the common challenges facing humanity and has also published dialogues probing the crucial issues of our time with over 80 such individuals, including Mikhail Gorbachev (former U.S.S.R. president), Arnold J. Toynbee (British historian), Hazel Henderson (Social activist and futurist), Dr. Linus Pauling (American chemist and peace activist and the world's only winner of two unshared Nobel Prizes), and Vincent Harding (American historian, social activist, and emeritus professor who worked closely with Martin Luther King Jr. as a friend and confidant); and,


WHEREAS, Dr. Ikeda and Mrs. Ikeda's connection to Michigan also included a deep friendship with the late Rosa Parks (the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement), and, together with Mrs. Parks, they shared a vision of a world without violence where peace and justice prevail; and,


WHEREAS, the SGI members of Michigan, along with SGI members around the world, celebrate the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Soka Gakkai on November 18, 2020, and will renew their vow to positively contribute to the welfare of humanity in the same spirit as Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, Josei Toda, and Daisaku Ikeda, the organization's three founding presidents and perpetual mentors;


NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim November 18, 2020, as Daisaku & Kaneko Ikeda World Peace Day in Michigan.