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José Andrés is nominated for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize, congressman confirms

By Heidi Knapp Rinella

Ever since José Andrés and his small nonprofit group took it upon themselves to feed hungry Puerto Ricans following the near-knockout punch of Hurricane Maria last year, the celebrity chef’s name has been whispered in talk about potential nominees for a Nobel Peace Prize. Today, Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.) confirmed that he has nominated the restaurateur and humanitarian for the 2019 award.

Delaney, who has already announced his presidential campaign for 2020, said he could not discuss any specifics of his nomination or what motivated it. The five-member Norwegian Nobel Committee, which awards the annual prize, discourages nominators from making any public announcements. The deadline for nominations is Feb. 1, and the committee will announce the laureates next October.

The Nobel Foundation did not immediately respond to an email about Andrés’s nomination. According to its website, the Nobel committee “does not itself announce the names of nominees, neither to the media nor to the candidates themselves.” The committee also doesn’t reveal any information about nominees until 50 years after the award is first announced.

Last year, according to the committee, there were 331 candidates, the second-highest number ever. The record was 376 candidates in 2016.

Only certain individuals are allowed to submit nominees. They include people who have previously won, past and current members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee and current members of a national assembly, such as the House of Representatives.

The Washington Post obtained some of the language from Delaney’s nomination submission for Andrés. In the section where the congressman explained why he nominated Andrés, Delaney wrote:

“Because of Mr. Andrés’s work, millions of people have been fed. This is the most basic human need and Mr. Andrés has proven to be world-class in this essential humanitarian field. With an incredible spirit and an innovative mind, Mr. Andrés is solving one of the world’s ancient problems and supplying world leaders with a new road map to provide more effective disaster relief in the future.”


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