BRIEFLY...

Matt Tompkins (2000, pictured left) is Supervisor for the FBI's Northern California Regional Intelligence Center. He came to the Regional Meeting at UC Davis, and was very helpful to the current Scholars in attendance. He mentioned that the first 18 months of his work with the Bureau involved interagency WMD policy at the White House level, a concern of his since his Strauss project on The R&D and Deployment of Ballistic Missle Defense.....Josh Franco (2006, pictured below) has been serving as a Sr. Legislative Assistant to U.S. Representative John Garamendi, first in Washington DC, and then in his field office in Fairfield, CA. He is returning to UC Merced to pursue his PhD this fall. Josh also attended the UC Davis Regional Meeting and was full of suggestions for the current Scholars.....Samantha Wilson (2008) is still active in her Child Leadership Project while pursuing a Master of Divinity, with an emphasis in Leadership for Social Justice Community Organizations, at Claremont School of Theology. She advised current Scholars at the Southern Calfornia Regional Meeting at her alma mater, UCR.....Ankur Luthra (2002) wrote that the 501(c)(3) non-profit that he started for his Strauss project, Computer Literacy 4 Kids, just celebrated it's 10th Anniversary. He works at Ziff Brothers Investments, where he specializes in global technology.....Rodney Clara (1998) is Director of the new east coast division of ECS Refining, the industry leader in electronic waste recycling.....James Chu (2010) is in Shaanxi, China, evaluating the vocational school and career counseling systems.This follows on his Strauss project which involved helping migrant students explore new life paths.....Emily Taylor Beighley (2001)  is a freelance Humane Education Consultant, and hopes to have her own elementary school in a few years.....Brian McInnnis (2005) works for the Rand Corporation in Washington DC where he specializes in geospacial predictive policing, educational policy and natural language processing of text.....

If you're a former Strauss Scholar, we'd love to include your information - professional and/or personal - in Briefly... Please send updates to admin@straussfoundation.org . Thanks.

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Nicole Bazell (2001, pictured left) graduated in 2008 from UC Berkeley with a Masters in Public Health public policy, and is now working as the national HIV program manager for the Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum, which she describes as the leading national policy and advocacy organization working to increase the health of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islanders. She also notes that in 2009 she married her UC Santa Cruz college sweetheart, and they’re living in Oakland…… Tess Bridgeman (2002) was studying at Stanford while implementing her Strauss project --Building Bridges To Community He alth In Underserved Areas—and was later named a Rhodes Scholar, so it hardly comes as a surprise that she graduated from NYU Law School magna cum laude  and Order of the Coif. Or that she submitted her DPhil in International Relations at Oxford, and returned there in December for her dissertation defense. Now living in Philadelphia, Tess is clerking for Judge Ambro on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals… Jesse Dubler (2008, pictured right) checked in to let us know that he’s holding down a full-time staff/research position at Rochester Institute of Technology, conducting research in psycholinguistics… There continue to be any number of wonderful ways that the project Britney Holland (2009) created and executed while at Loyola Marymount—Increasing Advocacy & Support For Veterans—resonates, very much including on the LMU campus itself. For instance, Britney organized a luncheon for veterans—including faculty and staff who served in the Armed Forces—part of her ongoing outreach that caught the attention of LMU’s Vice President of Student Affairs. Not long thereafter came the creation of a paid student position in The Center For Service And Action, currently held by the president of the Student Veterans’ Organization, an LMU student and veteran… Joelle Rosser (2006, pictured left) recounts how her Strauss project, Educating Americans & Africans Together, led to her opting—after she graduated from UC San Diego--to work in Tanzania for the better part of two years. She then enrolled in medical school at Emory, is now in her second year, during which she’s been involved in starting a free clinic for homeless women in Atlanta, called the Harriet Tubman Women’s Clinic… Ben Moore (2009) informed us he’s enrolled in Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs working towards a Master of International Affairs with a concentration in International Security Policy and a specialization in Conflict Resolution. He’s also working part-time at the U.S. State Department's Office of Foreign Missions where he aids diplomats from foreign consulates and UN missions with their privileges conferred through diplomatic immunity. Moreover, he notes, his project--Educationand Nonviolent Communication on the Thai-Burma Border—continues to flourish, including the school they constructed serving 29 internally displaced Burmese students… Siddarth Puri (2004, pictured right), whose project was HEAR (Hepatitis Education Awareness and Research): Giving Voice to “The Silent Killer,” began medical school at UC Davis this year, noting “I'm entrenched in the beginnings of medical education, but really enjoying it so far.”…Speaking of medical school, as we often are in Briefly… Jamie Zimmerman (2007) is in the midst of her second year at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. She also serves as the leader of the Mount Sinai chapter of Physicians for Human Rights, as well as the global health student group.  And Jamie—whose project was Heart of Africa: Using Film To Bring Refugees’ Stories To An American Audience--recently returned from Mozambique, where she spent several months conducting community health research in the buffer zone of Gorongosa National Park, in collaboration with the Carr Foundation…  As one measure of the demands of guiding his Strauss project (The Hep B Project: Asian & Pacific Islander Capacity-Building Against Hepatitis B in Alameda County,  Kevin Hur (2009, pictured left) handed the reins to a seven-member leadership committee! He still consults on the project, and reports that they’ve exceeded 600 people screened for Hepatitis B, doubling the number of  patients in six months. The project’s prestige and influence continues to expand—Kevin and a current project member presented it at a major Hepatitis B conference in Boston.  Not surprisingly, perhaps, Kevin is pursuing a career in medicine, currently attending medical school at Johns Hopkins. …

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Eli Winkelman(2006,pictured with President Clinton) has continued to see her Strauss project, Challah For Hunger, expand into a flourishing empire of sorts: there are now 30+ chapters dotting the country--indeed, Eli and the CFH juggernaut are holding its first International Leadership Summit, in Austin, TX, October 15-17, bringing together chapter leaders from across the U.S. (and Australia) for network building and leadership training. This comes on the heels of Eli being awarded $20,000 from Chase Community Giving. But high-level recognition is hardly new. The  website prominently features a YouTube clip from a Clinton Global Initiative session a few years ago, in which President Clinton outlines and praises Eli's story of founding the organization... Mark Michalski (2003) passed along an article from the San Jose Mercury News that chronicles the ongoing progress, seven years later, of his project: Creating Communications Infrastructure In the Schools of the Himalayan Mountains. He, working in collaboration with Mahabir Pun (pictured right, foreground) and others, installed an Internet network in the Nepali mountain region, thereby providing new educational and other opportunities in the region...Catie Bereznay (2006) touched base to let us know that she had concluded her first year at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, and has been selected as a Gate's scholar - and next year will be doing an internship examining maternal health issues in either Eastern Africa or Bangladesh...Josh Nesbit (2008, below, assisting a patient), operating from the base of his Strauss project (Expanding the Role of HIV-Positive Community health Workers: A Communication Initiative in Rural Malawi), has expanded the scope of his public service and text message networks providing medical information and care, wearing such hats as co-founder and executive director of FrontlineSMS: Medic and FrontlineSMS Ambassador. Visit www.jopsa.org for information and posts about the projects, international health, mobile technology, and more...Once in a blue moon, the enhanced professional opportunities afforded to alumni recipients of the Strauss Scholarship originate rather close to home: Emily Rasmussen (2006) was hired by Strauss Foundation Chair Nancy Barry to work at Nancy Barry Associates - Enterprise Solutions to Poverty... At this point, it's not uncommon for Strauss alumni and their projects to intersect with the Clinton Global Initiative. Indeed, Samantha Wilson (2008) received a grant from the CGI for what's now called the Child Leader Project, but was launched as a Strauss project with a longer, more unwieldy name She discusses the history - and future - of the project in this local CNN interview (although without acknowledging its Strauss roots, an egregious oversight for which we forgive her!)...

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Jamie Zimmerman (Strauss 2007, pictured left; there's also a photo from her film, below right) let us know that as an outgrowth of her Strauss project, Heart of Africa: Using Film To Bring Refugees' Stories To An American Audience - which hit some cultural and ethical bumps on the road to film fruition - she and her colleagues did complete a short documentary. Entitled "Far From Gone," the film relates the stories of two refugees from the Republic of Congo. The documentary was selected to be screened at the International Documentary Association's DocuWeek festival held last summer at the ArcLight Theatre in Hollywood...Matt Spence (1999, below left) fills us in on some of what he's done in the decade since he was a Strauss Scholar: After graduating Yale Law School, he clerked for a federal appeals court judge in Chicago, followed by working for the Obama campaign- specifically, for Susan Rice. He moved to Washington, DC, in the employ of the Obama transition team, and on Inauguration Day, he began work at the White House on the National Security Council. His office is in the West Wing, where he reports to National Security Advisor General James Jones and his deputy, Tom Donilon...Leah Katz (1998, below right) is living in Oakland and working as the Grants Manager for Sustainable Conservation (http://www.suscon.org/), a California-based non-profit organization that believes protecting the environment can also be good for business. "As for other great news," she adds, "I am getting married this fall."...Shawn Mattison (2000) reports that he graduated from UCSF Medical School in May, and began a four-year joint residency program in internal medicine and public health at Kaiser in Oakland. In his fourth year, Shawn will be attending UC Berkeley's School of Public Health to get an MPH ("my third master's degree, as ridiculous as that is"). About his Strauss project, Safe Space: A Free Clinic for Homeless Youth, he notes that it "continues to thrive! I have had the opportunity to work there as an undergraduate and a medical student, and now I am looking forward to returning as an attending physician as soon as I am licensed!" ...Brian McInnis (2005) wrote to inform us that his Strauss project, University of California: Increasing Voter Participation, spurred a more consuming interest academically and professionally - further galvanized, he says, by an important conversation with Strauss Foundation trustee, James Stofan. This led to graduate school in public policy at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, and an additional year there as a reseacher, and he's now working for the Rand Corporation on education public policy issues...Jenna Harvey (2007, left) was first runner-up in the Miss California contest held last summer in Fresno, where more than 50 counties were represented. Harvey was pre-med at UC Davis, graduating with a major in communication and minors in music and neurobiology, physiology and behavior - medical school is on the immediate horizon, with a likely path towards pediatrics...

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Tess Bridgeman(Strauss 2002, pictured left) touched base to let us know that she is about to begin her third and final year of law school at NYU and is " still finishing up my doctorate in International Relations at Oxford (in my " spare time ")" and later says, " by way of update on my Strauss-funded project, Puente a la Salud Comunitaria, is still up and running in Oaxaca,Mexico"... Amy Cantor(1998) currently resides in Ventura, CA, where she is starting her final year as a family medicine resident at the Ventura County Medical Center... Alex Quick(2005, pictured right), who founded Donor Dudes, a student organization designed to help address the shortage of lifesaving donors(organ, tissue, blood, marrow, etc.) recently wrote in "to let the Strauss Foundation know that Donor Dudes is still doing their thing. Feel free to sign up for our quarterly newsletter at www.DonorDudes.com"... Thomas Duncan(1997, pictured left), is Director of Public Policy and Outreach Coordinator of a green technology company called TernionBio Industries-- and in an instance of Strauss synergy, he is collaborating on certain projects with Aram Nadjarian(2005), who's now working as Director of Special Projects and Special Advisor to the Secretary of California's Environmental Protection Agency; another hat Aram is wearing: organizer for the Governors' Global Climate Summit 2 in Los Angeles... Sarah Averbach(Strauss 2001), whose project was entitled  "Helping Hands Women's Clinic: Khandbari, Nepal," reports that she graduated from UCSF School of Medicine in May, and has started her residency in Ob-Gyn at Boston's Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard University ...Ankur Luthra(2002), is living in Saratoga, CA and working in Palo Alto for Ziff Brothers Investments, a private, New York City-based investment firm, handling technology investments for the firm... Devra Wang(1999, pictured right), whose project was "Reducing Barriers To Buying Green Electricity," is living in Sunnyvale and spending most of her time looking after her identical twin baby boys, but is also working part-time for the Natural Resources Defense Council, promoting energy efficiency and other solutions to global warming ...
 

 

If you're a former Strauss Scholar, we'd love to include your information — professional and/or personal — in BRIEFLY. Please send updates, including pictures to Barbara Taborek at admin@straussfoundation.org. Thanks.


 

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