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Global citizens of the year announced as epic 168 nation contest ends

Michael Teoh, Winner; Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Hazel Williams; Chris Arnold, CEO Smaller Earth; Max Steinberg, CEO Liverpool Vision; and Carielle Doe, Winner.

A world-wide search for the two people who most embody the spirit of global citizenship and enterprise has finally ended during Global Entrepreneurship Week.

30-year-old Carielle Doe a freelance journalist from NY, USA and 23-year –old Michael Teoh, a youth activist from Malaysia, fought off competition from 44,489 people who registered for the Your Big Year competition – an international contest offering a year’s free world travel to the two people who could prove themselves worthy of the title of Global Citizen of the Year 2010.

Entrants from 168 countries had to complete a series of Apprentice-style challenges - from raising money for charity to producing videos promoting their home towns - to reach the finals.

Carielle and Michael were chosen from 22 other finalists after spending a week in Liverpool completing eliminating challenges and meeting expert judges. Their prize is an all-expenses paid journey across the globe from January 2011. They will spend their year-long trip working with some of the poorest communities in education and conversation and meeting world leaders.

“I am honoured and excited to have won the competition. It will give me the chance to use my journalistic skills in telling stories about our travel through the power of social networking. Michael is the perfect partner he is very calm and collected and gains peoples respect for his knowledge. He is also very pro-active and his strengths lie in connecting with people of influence and networking. We will be a great combination as Ambassadors for Your Big Year”, said Carielle.

“I am thrilled to have won Your Big Year and with the prize comes responsibility to support the spirit of global citizenship, where every citizen regardless of race or country, can make a difference and I’m ready for that challenge. I am looking forward to travelling with Carielle she is great fun and outgoing and her excitement is contagious. She will be able to communicate our adventures through her storytelling as a documentary maker and we will make a great team”, added Michael.

Your Big Year organiser Chris Arnold said: “I am ecstatically pleased with the winners of the inaugural Your Big Year competition. Carielle is engaging, intelligent and keen to explore. Michael is driven, capable and a perfect lead ambassador. As they travel the world next year, both will strongly represent Smaller Earth, the themes of Citizenship and Enterprise.

Your Big Year was launched earlier in the summer and attracted entries purely through online promotion.