Greg MortensonGreg Mortenson is the co-founder of the nonprofit Central Asia Institute and co-author of the New York Times bestseller Three Cups of Tea (Penguin).

In 1993, Mortenson climbed Pakistan’s K2, the world’s second highest mountain, in the Karakoram range. While recovering in a local village called Korphe, he met a group of children sitting in the dirt writing with sticks in the sand, and made a promise to help them build a school. From that rash promise, grew a remarkable humanitarian campaign, in which Mortenson has dedicated his life to promote education and literacy, especially for girls, in remote, volatile regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Mortenson advocates girls’ education as the top priority to promote economic development, peace and prosperity, and says, “you can drop bombs, hand out condoms, build roads, or put in electricity, but until the girls are educated a society won’t change.”

In conjunction with Greg Mortenson’s appearance at Kentucky Author Forum, and through the generosity of Greg and his Central Asia Institute, 1000 copies of Three Cups of Tea were distributed throughout the Louisville community. The distribution effort was a partnership between Kentucky Author Forum and Carmichael’s Bookstore, and allowed for free copies of this inspiring book to be given to schools, libraries, hospitals, and community centers.

lyden_jGreg Mortenson was interviewed at Kentucky Author Forum by Jacki Lyden, Senior Correspondent and Alternate Host for National Public Radio. Lyden, who traveled extensively in the Middle East as Foreign Correspondent for NPR, interviewed Ambassador Dennis Ross  at Kentucky Author Forum in 2004.