Beirut Times – Michael Absi – Biography - Awards - Recognitions
As a successful Lebanese-American, Michael Absi embraced his heritage and engaged in advocating on behalf of young Lebanese. His personal experiences enforced in him the importance of education and the critical role it plays in providing opportunities, which led to his support of the Lebanese and Arab American community.
Michael Absi was born and raised in Beirut, Lebanon. He had an eternal dream to work for the marginalized Lebanese and Arab-American communities and always envisaged of starting a community publication that would act as a true voice of the Lebanese and other Arab communities.
In order to achieve his long-lasting dream, he immigrated to the United States for good. Afterward, he initiated a local community newspaper, whose basic aim was to facilitate Arab-Americans by providing distinctive information, as well as by highlighting their sufferings and social needs.
Mr. Absi’s passion for journalism and the humanitarian cause brought him to new highest. His aspiration to help the Lebanese and the Arab-Americans paved the way for the establishment of the Beirut Times newspaper in 1985, a bilingual Arabic and English newspaper in Los Angeles. Currently, it is the only bilingual, English and Arabic, newspaper that is published, as well as distributed, at the national level. Beirut Times underscores the basic needs of Arab-Americans. While on the other hand, it strives to establish equality between Americans and Arab-communities.
Evidently, under the auspices of Mr. Absi, the paper’s circulation skyrocketed to attain new heights. And now apart from the USA, the paper is also read in Canada, Mexico, Europe, and the Middle East. In addition to all this, with the passage of time, Mr. Absi has become excessively involved in uplifting humanitarian causes through the renowned newspaper.
His whole career has been devoted to the cause of Lebanese and Arab-Americans via the newspaper, he is consistently trying to improve their lives. Moreover, analytical articles of the Beirut Times widen the horizon and perspective of Arab-Americans. Indeed, versatility, integrity, and flexibility of Beirut Times make it unique among all other Arab-English newspaper.
Mr. Absi underscores the working mechanism of the Beirut Times by saying that, “The Beirut Times provides a forum for rational and peaceful negotiations. This way we may learn to understand and love each other. Fighting is never a solution.” No doubt, that is why Beirut Times has emerged as one of the most powerful channels which promote peace through communication. Michael Absi has achieved his vision through diligent struggle, prudence, and family participation.
Mr. Absi, further added that a newspaper cannot achieve success easily, "It takes unrelenting, arduous labor and the ability to attract advertisers to make it work". He elaborated the mutual effort and teamwork by saying that "We strive to preserve our divergent cultural heritages, maintain close ties with our roots and promote community development," he says. "Every race, nationality, and religion have their share of peace-loving people who bear no bad will to anyone. Those among us who want their peaceful views known are always welcome to contact me for publication. The participation of anyone concerned with bringing peace and dignity to all people of the biblical lands is always welcome".
Indeed, after all this struggle and effort Michael Absi has emerged as a renowned humanitarian, a passionate journalist, and a visionary leader of Arab-American communities. And for his noteworthy struggles.
Mr. Absi, Editor-in-Chief of the Beirut Times, daily has earned a number of awards and accolades. He was even nominated for the Ellis Island Medals of Honor Award. The basic purpose behind this nomination was that most of the ethnic newspapers fail to muster numerous readers and hence, vanishes even before achieving their aims.
Contrarily, Beirut Times gained numerous supporters and readers within the span of three years. Additionally, it was stated in the nomination letter that Mr. Absi is a perfect candidate for this award because since the inception of Beirut Times in 1985 he has earned a number of awards.
In order to pay tribute to the professional journalistic integrity and humanitarian values of Mr. Absi, a number of awards were attributed to him. It would be pertinent to mention some achievements here.
He was an important Publisher, Editor-in-Chief, Spokesman for his community, and an exemplary gentleman in many ways.
In short, all the aforementioned struggle and effort will make Mr. Absi one of the eminent personalities of Lebanese American, as well as Lebanon history. And he will always be honored as one of the leaders of Arab-Americans.
Awards and Recognitions
In recognition for Professional Journalistic Integrity and Meritorious Public Service, The Beirut Times and the Editor-in-Chief, Mr. Michael Absi, have been the recipient of the following esteemed awards:
1987: Certificate of Merit, from the City of Los Angeles by 4th District Councilman, John Ferraro.
1987 - 1989: Certificates of Merit, from the Arab American Press Guild.
1989: Certificate of Merit, from the University of California Lebanese Cultural Club.
1989: Commemorative Resolution, from the City of Los Angeles by 8th District Councilman, Robert Farrell, and the State of California.
1990: Certificate of Congratulations on Excellence in Journalism, by Mayor Tom Bradley and the City of Los Angeles.
1991: Congratulatory Certificate, from the City of Los Angeles and the State of California, by Councilman, Robert Farrell.
1991: Certificate of Congratulations, from the City of Los Angeles, by Mayor Tom Bradley.
1991: Certificate of Merit, from 8th District Councilman, Robert Farrell.
1992: Proclamation on Behalf of the City of Azusa, California by Mayor Eugene Moses.
1993: Plaque from the Lebanese Army Commander General Emile Lahoud commending the Editor-in-Chief Mr. Michael Absi for his efforts in the service of Lebanon.
1993: Certificate of Recognition, from Azusa Mayor Eugene F. Moses to the Editor-in-Chief Michael Absi for dedicated service to the community.
1993: Plaque from the Lebanese community of Boston, MA, commending Editor-in-Chief Michael Absi for his efforts in the service of Lebanon.
1995: Resolution from the Los Angeles City Council introduced by Councilwoman Jackie Goldberg, congratulating the Beirut Times for its quality of content and meritorious public service for 11 years.
1995: Certificate of Congratulations, from Los Angeles Mayor Richard J. Riordan.
1995: Certificate of Recognition, from the California Legislature Assembly signed by Willie L. Brown, Jr., Speaker of the Assembly, for meeting the communications needs of the Arab American community for 11 years.
1995: Certificate of Recognition, from the City of Glendora, California.
1995: Resolution from the San Dimas City Council commending Editor-in-Chief Michael Absi for his commitment and service to the Arab American community over the past 11 years.
1997: Resolution from the Board of Supervisors of the County of Los Angeles congratulating the Beirut Times for its quality of content and meritorious public services.
1997: The Beirut Times and the Editor-in-chief, Mr. Michael Absi, received the highest reward among outstanding corporate executives from Who’s Who publication.
2003: Resolution from the Los Angeles City Council and the mayor James Hahn introduced by Councilman Dennis Zein, congratulating the Beirut Times for its quality of content and meritorious public service for 19 years.