ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A University of Maryland law professor who worked as a senior adviser on Liberia President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s campaign says he’s “bursting with pride” she has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

Larry Gibson said Friday that Sirleaf has paid her dues to earn the award. Sirleaf became Africa’s first democratically elected female president in 2005, and Gibson played a major role in developing a modern campaign for her candidacy.

Gibson says he has seen Sirleaf periodically over the years when she has visited Maryland or the nation’s capital.

Maryland has cultural ties to the West African nation. A large group of Marylanders settled in Liberia, which was once two separate countries. One of them was called Maryland, after the state. Liberia still has a county called Maryland.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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