This year's Identity Award was bestowed ex aequo to two personalities residing in the United States of America for their contribution to strengthening the sense of belonging to Macao. The governing bodies of the International Institute of Macau (IIM) decided to grant this Award to Frederico Alberto Silva, better known by Jim Silva, and António Manuel Pacheco Jorge da Silva. They have dedicated the best of their years to serving the Macanese Community in the Diaspora, both of whom as President respectively in the Macanese American Union (UMA) and the Lusitano Club of California.
Jim Silva was a professional in the financial area in Hong Kong, having written texts that were published into books on his memoirs of the Pacific War, and his knowledge of the patuá, religion, cuisine and cultural legacy of his grandparents, elements which can be aggregators of a community. Jim Silva published six booklets, including "All our Yesterdays" and "Reminiscences of a wartime refugee in Macau".
António Pacheco Jorge da Silva, who worked as an architect in Macau, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom and the USA, retired early to devote himself to writing the history of Portuguese descendants in Macau, including his experiences in many regions of China and integration into the countries of the diaspora, and analyzing their social and cultural implications. Among his works are "The Portuguese Community in Hong Kong (2 volumes)" "The Portuguese Community in Shanghai”, "Macaense Cuisine - Origins and Evolution" and "Macaenses - the Portuguese in China", which is being translated also into the Chinese language.
Unselfishly and persistently, they have both devoted part of their lives to publicize the history and culture of Macao and enhanced the appreciation and strengthening of the Macau Identity.
The Award, instituted since 2003, is given by a collective decision of IIM's social bodies and aims to award individuals or institutions that have continuously contributed to the strengthening and enhancement of Macanese identity. Among those awardees in the past, include such figures as Monsignor Manuel Teixeira, Henrique de Senna Fernandes and Arnaldo de Oliveira Sales, and institutions such as the Diocese of Macau, Holy House of Mercy (Santa Casa da Misericórdia), the University of Macau, the Portuguese School of Macau (EPM) and other bodies, both local and abroad, linked to the Macanese diaspora.