(Wilmington, DE), April 8, 2016 -- At a ceremony today in Wilmington, Delaware, the chairman of the Institute of International Education’s (IIE) Scholar Rescue Fund, Mark Angelson, announced a $1 million gift in honor of Beau Biden, the former Attorney General of Delaware who passed away in May of 2015.
According to Angelson, the endowment, made possible through an anonymous donation, will enable the Institute to rescue one scholar in danger each year in perpetuity, as part of the organization’s work to ensure that there will always be a place where persecuted academics can find safe haven.
Mr. Angelson and former Delaware Senator Ted Kaufman, a board member of the IIE, together with IIE President Allan Goodman, presented Biden’s widow, Hallie Biden, with a specially crafted chair to commemorate the occasion.
“The IIE Scholar Rescue Fund Beau Biden Chair is a fitting tribute to a man who spent his life in pursuit of justice,” said Angelson. “Throughout his too short career, Beau Biden demonstrated an unwavering commitment to safeguarding the most vulnerable among us – whether young victims of violent crimes or displaced families in war-torn parts the world. Mr. Biden worked tirelessly to protect those most in need of protection.”
After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania and earning his law degree at the Syracuse University College of Law, Mr. Biden began his career working as a prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s office in Philadelphia, and served as a rule-of-law adviser in postwar Kosovo. He joined the Delaware National Guard in 2003, rising to the rank of major in the Judge Advocate General’s office, and served a tour of duty in Iraq for which he was awarded a Bronze Star. He was elected attorney general for the State of Delaware in 2006 and reelected in 2010. During his time in office, he created the child predator unit and oversaw the prosecution of Dr. Earl Bradley, a Lewes pediatrician convicted of assaulting more than one hundred children.
The Beau Biden Chair at the IIE Scholar Rescue Fund will provide fellowships to preserve the lives and knowledge base of scholars who are in danger in their own countries. It will enable them to continue their academic careers, teaching and conducting research at safe haven universities, with the goal of saving them so they can continue to educate the future generation and, in many cases, help to rebuild their home countries after times of crisis and conflict.
Preference will be given to those scholars and universities that relate to Mr. Biden’s life and service; for example, scholars from Iraq where Beau Biden was deployed 2008-2009, and Universities like Delaware, and Penn or Syracuse, from which he graduated.
“Beau was a man who believed that our conduct must be driven by our conscience, our moral codes and our individual and collective values,” said Senator Kaufman, a longtime friend and mentor to Biden. “He used his voice to speak for those who couldn’t speak for themselves, and he used his power to protect the most powerless. This endowment will continue that legacy of service and sacrifice.”
“We are delighted to enhance our cooperation with our long-term partner, the University of Delaware, and further strengthen the continuing relationship that the IIE Scholar Rescue Fund has had with Penn and Syracuse as we join together to honor Beau Biden by hosting threatened scholars in his name,” said Allan Goodman.
Mr. Angelson is a Vice Chairman and Mr. Kaufman is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Institute of International Education, and both serve on the selection committee for the IIE Scholar Rescue Fund.
About the Institute of International Education Scholar Rescue Fund (IIE-SRF)
The Institute of International Education Scholar Rescue Fund® formalizes an unwavering commitment that IIE has demonstrated for nearly a century to preserve the lives, voices, and ideas of scholars around the globe. IIE-SRF fellowships support visiting appointments for threatened scholars to continue their work in safety at partnering academic institutions worldwide. At the heart of IIE-SRF is the idea that each scholar we help who continues his or her work in safety is a beacon of hope in our world. Since 2002, IIE-SRF has assisted 633 scholars from 55 countries, placing them at over 350 host partner institutions in 41 countries around the world.
For more information on the fund, please go to: http://www.scholarrescuefund.org. High resolution photos are available upon request.