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Bhikkhuni Rattanavali (from Thailand) is the co-founder (along with Bhikkhuni Dr. Lee of Outstanding Women in Buddhism Awards. The idea for the awards arose in March 2001 after the nuns attended two events: (1) The Outstanding Women’s Awards in Thailand organized by Dr. Suteera Vichitranonda, Director of the Gender and Development Research Institute established by a United Nations UNIFEM grant, and (2) an invited speech offered by Venerable Bhikkhuni Dr. Lee at the United Nations in honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, 2001.