Professor Ephraim Isaac, BD (Harvard Divinity School ’63), Ph.D. (Harvard University ’69), D.H.L. (CUNY) D.Litt. (AAU), Director of the Institute of Semitic Studies, a founder and the first professor of Afro-American Studies at Harvard University, called the “Father of Peace” by Ethiopians, founded the Horn of Africa Peace & Development Center (PDC) and the Coalition of Ethiopian Elders (CEE). Inspired by the Biblical prophets and Ethio-Oromo peace tradition, he has succeeded brilliantly in peace building in modern Ethiopia, the second largest country in Africa. In all his achievements, his loyal PDC-CEE colleagues have always been his steadfast partners. Professor Isaac is head of the NCAFP’s Ethiopia project “Peace Dialogues for a Sustainably Stable Ethiopia.”
Isaac has received many education and peace prizes from fellow Ethiopians, among others, the Ethiopian Association of United Nations Certificate of Appreciation in recognition of his "effort, commitment and vision to transform the culture of war and violence into a culture of peace." He has also received honorary degrees by Addis Ababa University and John Jay College of Criminal Justice (CUNY) for his contribution to Ethiopian Education and peace. He continues energetically to work for the reconciliation of the peoples and government of Ethiopia and all opposition parties at home and abroad because, as a spiritual person, he believes that love and brotherhood/sisterhood, mutual respect and personal sacrifices contribute to democracy, economic justice, equality and lasting peace, ultimately beneficial prosperity for all.
Besides his incessant work for peace and reconciliation in his birth land of Ethiopia, Dr. Isaac is sought after by numerous interfaith and intercultural groups and organizations globally as a member of their Boards or Advisory Councils, including the Temple of Understanding, the Institute of Religion and Public policy, Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding, Princeton Fellowship in Prayer, Institute for Jewish & Community Research, and Oxford Forum in England, and others. In this capacity, he contributed to numerous peace and reconciliation dialogues throughout the world. Isaac’s Middle East Peace work is known to the Late King Hussein, Prince Hassan, and Israeli and Palestinian leaders, an effort that begun in the early 70’s when, as a Harvard professor, he became one of the first and an active member of the American Professors for Peace in the Middle East.