- Listen to Ron's Interview with Patricia King -  

An Elder’s Gift: Helping Transform the Lives of Young Girls

   

Episode description:

Patricia King has had a long, extraordinary career —and she continues to evolve with new projects and pursuits, even into her 80s. Pat spent 25 years as an international management consultant, working with Fortune 50 companies like PepsiCo, Chase Bank, and Pfizer, and writing five nonfiction business books, including the bestseller, “Never Work for a Jerk,” which landed her on the Oprah Winfrey show. In her sixties, Pat launched another successful career as a historical mystery writer—with the pen name, Annamaria Alfieri. Her early mysteries, set in South America, were followed by another series set in British East Africa, now Kenya. While working on her last novel, “The Blasphemers,” Pat came across accounts of British missionaries who sought, over 100 years ago, to end the practice of female genital mutilation, or FGM, imposed on young girls, between the ages of 11 and 14. Just as her book was launched, she made another startling discovery: FGM is still practiced  in Kenya, as well as several other African countries. In today’s episode, Pat talks about the latest chapter in her life—how she met a proud Massai woman named Sarah Lesiamito, who founded the Sidai Resource Center, a nonprofit whose mission is to save Kenyan girls from forced marriages, female genital mutilation and other regressive practices. Pat will describe her own efforts to support Sarah’s mission, raising awareness abroad and funds needed of continue the work of the Sidai Resource Center. Such efforts not only help young girls become full-fledged members of society, but they transform the lives of everyone in their communities.

Guest description:

Patricia King has had a long, extraordinary career —and she continues to evolve with new projects and pursuits, even into her 80s. Pat spent 25 years as an international management consultant, working with Fortune-fifty companies like PepsiCo, Chase Bank, and Pfizer. Her five nonfiction books on business subjects include Never Work for a Jerk, which landed her on the Oprah Winfrey show. After “retiring” as a consultant she helped launch and manage a small , highly successful direct marketing company. During these entrepreneurial years, Pat was also working toward the launch of yet another career as a historical mystery writer—with the pen name, Annamaria Alfieri. Her early mysteries, all set in South America, have garnered critical acclaim. The Christian Science Monitor chose her Blood Tango as one of ten must-read thrillers. The Washington Post said of her debut novel, “As both history and mystery, City of Silver glitters.” Pat is also author of the Vera and Tolliver series of historical mysteries set in British East Africa. Described as Out of Africa meets Agatha Christie, Strange Gods, The Idol of Mombasa, and The Blasphemers are stories that capture the beauty and the complexities of imposing a culture on a foreign land. Her last novel has led to yet another chapter in Pat King’s real-life story: a transcontinental effort to save young Kenyan girls from forced marriages, female genital mutilation and other regressive practices and help transform their future. A world traveler, Pat takes a keen interest in the history of the places she visits and writes about. She lives in New York City and is a member of the board of trustees of the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival and a past president of the New York Chapter of Mystery Writers of America.

Sarah Lesiamito, the founder of the Sidai Resource Centre

Pat and Sarah

To learn more about the Sidai Resource Center in Northern Kenya, click   https://sidairesourcecentre.org/

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