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Sanaka Samarasinha – Emporia State

United Nations

Road to Greatness


Sanaka Samarasinha was a law student in Colombo, Sri Lanka before 1988, and as a journalist for Western news agencies including TIME magazine, when the political climate deteriorated to the point that his parents and his journalist mentor insisted he study abroad for his own safety. After arriving in the United States, he enrolled at Emporia State University where he joined Phi Delta Theta and continued his journalism path by becoming the editor of the university newspaper.

Following graduation from Emporia State, Sanaka earned his JD at the University of Maryland and began his career in international affairs serving as a legal extern in India, South Africa and Sri Lanka. From 1997 – 99, Sanaka was the Country Coordinator for the Center for Monitoring Election Violence in Sri Lanka.

Brother  Samarasinha was hired by the United Nations before the turn of the century, and he has had a 15-year career as a development program lead, a rule of law adviser and most recently a lead country representative. During this time, he has assisted Afghanistan, Bhutan, Cambodia, Fiji, Indonesia, Macedonia, Marshall Islands, Mozambique, Pakistan, and Vietnam strengthen their economies and address conditions that compromise development. He has also led recovery efforts of major disasters in Myanmar and his home country of Sri Lanka. After a few short assignment, Sanaka is now Lead Country Representative to the nation of Belarus.

At the 2014 General Convention, Phi Delta Theta awarded Brother Samarasinha with the Distinguished Alumnus Award.

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