Awards Presented to Artist and Fulbright Alumnus Chuck Close; India’s Minister of Human Resource Development Kapil Sibal; Women Leaders Denise Benmosche and Amy Brandt
NEW YORK—At the Institute of International Education's awards gala in New York City on September 21, nearly 600 business, education, government, foundation and policy leaders celebrated the award winners’ commitment to international education and the empowerment of women through education.
IIE presented Microsoft with the Opening Minds Corporate Leadership Award in recognition of the company's global philanthropy and outstanding commitment to corporate social responsibility and education in communities around the world. The event highlighted Microsoft's support for the Women in Technology (WIT) Program, a partnership among Microsoft, IIE and the U.S. Department of State to provide women throughout the Middle East and North Africa with vital business and technology skills. Pamela Passman, Corporate Vice President and Deputy General Counsel for Global Corporate Affairs, accepted the award on Microsoft’s behalf. Outstanding women from Lebanon, Morocco and Iraq who participated in the WIT program were special guests at the gala. IIE Trustee Ruth Hinerfeld joined IIE Chairman of the Board Thomas S. Johnson in presenting the award.
Chuck Close received IIE’s Fritz Redlich Alumni Award in recognition of his distinguished career as a world-renowned artist whose life and works have increased mutual understanding, and his status as an alumnus of the Fulbright program, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. Special guest Ann Stock, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs, presented the award. After receiving his MFA from Yale, Close had a Fulbright Fellowship to Austria in 1964-65, which enabled him to study art and visit artists who were working in Europe, gaining valuable international insight at the outset of his career. His highly innovative and creative works have made him one of the most important artists of our time, and his remarkable career is the subject of this year’s acclaimed biography, "Chuck Close: Life."
The Institute also honored outstanding individuals who further the goals of IIE's work in international educational exchange. Kapil Sibal, Minister of Human Resource Development in India, received IIE’s Stephen P. Duggan Award for Mutual Understanding, named for the Institute’s founder. Minister Sibal’s vision of global education and commitment to internationalizing Indian higher education, especially through partnerships with U.S. institutions, promises to provide greater higher education access across India and open India’s doors to increased global collaboration. IIE’s Center for International Partnerships is working to help colleges and universities in the United States and India form strategic partnerships. Sam Pitroda, Advisor to the Prime Minister of India, joined IIE Trustee S.A. Ibrahim in presenting the award.
Denise V. Benmosche and Amy C. Brandt received IIE’s Women’s Global Leadership Award in recognition of their exceptional commitment to advancing IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund (SRF). Both women have played a seminal role in enabling SRF to rescue persecuted scholars from around the globe and advance academic freedom worldwide. Special guest HRH Princess Ghida Talal of Jordan joined IIE Trustee Henry Jarecki in presenting this award. IIE created the Women’s Global Leadership Award to mark the 90th anniversary of its founding in 2009 and presented the inaugural award to the three women founders of the Iran Opportunities Fund, a unique public-private partnership dedicated to fostering mutual understanding between the U.S. and Iran through international exchange.
According to IIE President and CEO Allan E. Goodman, "The individuals and organizations that the Institute is honoring realize the potential impact of education on people’s lives across the world and represent the diversity of the community that champions international education. They are leaders in business, government, philanthropy and the arts, and they embody IIE’s mission. They are a reminder of what is possible when people exchange ideas across cultures, learn from one another and cooperate globally. IIE is proud to celebrate their many achievements."
News anchor and Fulbright alumna Linda Vester was the Mistress of Ceremonies for the event, which was generously underwritten by the Angelson Family Foundation. Funds raised at the event will be used for IIE’s emergency assistance for students and scholars.
The Gala co-chairs were: Mark A. Angelson – Chairman, World Color Press Inc.; Maryam Panahy Ansary – Trustee, IIE; Judy & George Beraka; Marianne Boesky – Owner, Marianne Boesky Gallery; Nieca Goldberg, MD; Peter M. Gottsegen – Senior Partner, CAI Partners; Jack M. Greenberg – Chairman, Western Union Company; Ruth Hinerfeld – Trustee, Institute of International Education; Ali Hirji – Vice President, Citi Commercial Banking; S.A. Ibrahim – CEO, Radian Group Inc.; Henry G. Jarecki – Chairman, The Falconwood Corporation; Thomas S. Johnson – Retired Chairman & CEO, GreenPoint Bank; Helene L. Kaplan and Mark N. Kaplan – Trustee, IIE; Henry Kaufman – President, Henry Kaufman & Company, Inc.; Laya Khadjavi – Managing Director/Head of Global Markets, Morgan Stanley/Smith Barney; Linda R. Meier – IIE Trustee; Sam Pitroda – Advisor to the Prime Minister of India; Thomas A. Russo – EVP and General Counsel, AIG; Tom Sandell – Founder and CEO, Sandell Asset Management.
About the Institute of International Education
The Institute of International Education (IIE), a private not-for-profit organization founded in 1919, is a world leader in the international exchange of people and ideas. IIE designs and implements over 200 programs of study and training for students, educators, young professionals and trainees from all sectors with funding from government and private sources. These programs include the Fulbright Student and Scholar programs, the Gilman International Scholarship Program, and the Humphrey Fellowships, administered for the Department of State, as well as corporate and foundation training and scholarship programs. IIE also conducts policy research, provides advice and counseling on international educational opportunities abroad, and provides emergency support to students and scholars in danger. The Institute of International Education has a network of 18 international offices worldwide and more than 1,000 college and university members. Since IIE was founded, a total of 62 IIE alumni or Trustees have won the Nobel Prize.