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The autobiographical story of a St. Lawrence graduate who came to the U.S. from his tribe in Africa has been published as a children's book by the National Geographic Society.

Facing the Lion: Growing Up Maasai on the African Savanna, by Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton '91, M'94, with Herman Viola, has been published for release in August 2003, for children aged 12 years and older. A Washington Post review states of the book, "Once a warrior, always a warrior. Facing the Lion describes Lekuton's extraordinary passage between worlds and his continuing effort to hold the two in balance."

Lekuton earned his St. Lawrence degree in economics and government, with a minor in geography. He received a master of education degree in 1994, and recently completed his master's degree in international education policy at Harvard University. A Maasai tribesman who grew up on the savanna of northern Kenya, Lekuton teaches eighth-grade social studies in Langley, Virginia. Each summer he brings a group of students and parents to Kenya to work on development projects that help his people.

The book includes a full-color photo insert of life in Kenya, that, according to publishers, "draws young readers deeper into this vibrant but rapidly disappearing culture."

Posted: August 25, 2003