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Nobel winner Leymah Gbowee speaks out on peace, women, and leadership

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Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images/Newscom

(Read caption) Leymah Gbowee addresses a Columbia Business School conference in New York. She was jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize Oct. 7 with Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Yemen's Arab Spring activist Tawakkul Karman.

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Leymah Gbowee, one of this year's three women recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize, knows how to get a message across.

In 2002, in the midst of Liberia's second civil war, she helped organize more than 3,000 Christian and Muslim women to peacefully protest the conflict. The women also vowed to stop having sex with their husbands until the violence ceased.

The creative, public demonstrations led to a meeting with Liberia's then-president and warlord, Charles Taylor. In response, he committed to opening peace talks with the rebel group, Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy, in Ghana. The war ended in 2003, the same year Mr. Taylor was exiled and indicted with war crimes by the Special Court of Sierra Leone.

Today Ms. Gbowee, a citizen of Liberia, continues her social justice work. She established the Women Peace and Security Network Africa in Accra, Ghana, in 2007.

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