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June 2018 Newsletter

Dear friends,

In late 2010, when we were in the beginning stages of developing what would become GPD Charitable Trust, we knew it was important to outline a set of guiding principles as we assess new and existing grantees. Our list was long, but after careful consideration, we landed on four principles that would ultimately lead our efforts:  

1. The commitment to making the world a safer and freer place

2. The belief that well-timed interventions and mentorship are critical to developing leaders of characters who can fully self-actualize

3. The belief that civic organizations and programs that support youth development are the backbone of a strong community

4. The belief that organizations and individuals are more effective and impactful when they work collaboratively

It is with these four guiding principles in mind that we present to you, our June 2018 update. As always, please feel free to reach out directly if we can be a resource for you or if you would like to explore ideas on ways we can work together.

Syria Direct's Noura Hourani Earns Prestigious Award 

Please join GPD in congratulating Noura Hourani, Arabic Editor for GPD’s partner organization, Syria Direct. This month, Noura was awarded the Women in News Editorial Leadership Award from the World Association for Newspapers and News Publishers. This annual accolade recognizes an ‘exemplary contribution of an Editor to her newsroom —and under her leadership the contribution of her newspaper— to society.'

Justin Schuster, Managing Director of Syria Direct said: “We could not be more proud of Noura’s accomplishments and steadfast commitment to the well-being of the people of Syria. This is a small win in the larger fight in bringing the atrocities taking place in Syria to light. We are honored to have GPD’s continued support and generosity by our side.”

Co-Founded by GPD in 2013, Syria Direct is a non-profit journalism organization that produces timely, credible coverage of Syria while training a small group of highly talented, aspiring Syrian and American journalists in professional news-gathering and accurate, in-depth reporting.

Good News Coming From Iraq

This June, GPD hosted its third three-day seminar as part of the Iraq Leadership Fellows Program at the American University of Iraq in Sulaimani.

The Fellows Program’s primary focus is to develop and educate young politically and socially engaged Iraqis who are keen on positively influencing the future of their country and shape the next generation of Iraqi leaders. These future leaders were given the opportunity to learn cutting-edge techniques in campaigning and community organizing to develop, refine and launch their own political or social initiatives with extensive mentoring and support. The three-day seminar is intended to foster an environment of sustainability for each Fellows’ success in building long-lasting, transformative social and political movements.

As a result of their efforts, the Fellows are now actively engaged in a broad range of advocacy campaigns including electoral and education reform, Yazidi political representation, controlling underage marriage, and vocational training.

West Point Cadets visit Army Radio FM

In early June, GPD proudly hosted West Point Cadets at Army Radio FM, a counter pro-Russia radio and online broadcasting program that serves 24/7 in meeting the information, news, and entertainment needs of the Americans and Ukrainians defending freedom and democracy on Ukraine's front lines. 

Welcoming West Point Cadets to Army Radio FM is a strong example of GPD’s venture patriotic philanthropy at work — and our commitment to the belief in fostering civic organizations and programs that support youth development.

Northwestern University's MENA Co-Founder and Director named Dean of Tulane University’s School of Liberal Arts

Brian Edwards, Co-Founder and Director of Northwestern University's 
Middle East and North African (MENA) Studies program —a partner organization of GPD— announced he has accepted a position as the Dean of Tulane University’s School of Liberal Arts, effective July 1, 2018. 

GPD Founder, John DeBlasio said: "It was only through Brian's incredible leadership that the Northwestern MENA program grew from our simple idea with a small faculty to become an internationally recognized program with ongoing community programming and an interdisciplinary PhD certificate. I'm proud to call Brian a trusted friend and colleague, having met him through the Emerging Leaders Program led by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. On behalf of GPD, we wish him and his wife success at Tulane."

At West Point, John DeBlasio inducted into Douglas MacArthur Society  

GPD’s Founder and Executive Director, John DeBlasio, was honored by the West Point Association of Graduates’ Lifetime Giving Societies and inducted into the Douglas MacArthur Society in recognition of his unwavering commitment to giving back to West Point consistently and significantly over the course of his lifetime.

Honorees are the cornerstone of the Academy’s and WPAOG’s continued success. Under John's direction, GPD has continued to support the Center for the Study of Civil-Military Operations Fund, the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering Academy Scholars Fund, and the Club Sports Endowment.

For more updates on GPD's smaller grantees, please visit the Stardust Fund page







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GPD Charitable Trust · 1510 North Elston · #3f · Chicago, IL 60642 · USA

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