I am writing in response to your article about the Professional Leaders Project (“Scholarships Passed Over,” April 2).
I would like to take this opportunity to provide your readers with additional facts and context that did not appear in the original article.
As the article reported, the academic fellowship program was discontinued due to a lack of funding. Just as it was difficult to halt the overall operations of the Professional Leaders Project, we were very sorry to announce the end of the fellowship. As a PLP co-founder, I saw firsthand the profound impact that the academic fellowship program had on the lives of driven and talented Jewish professionals. It was therefore heart-wrenching to have to deliver the news to our current fellows that the program would be discontinued.
The program was discontinued primarily due to the untimely death of William Davidson, one of the project’s founders and primary funder. Davidson’s legacy is deeply tied into the significant contributions that the PLP successfully made in the Jewish community. Between 2004 and 2009, PLP directly touched nearly a thousand young Jewish leaders through a range of initiatives, including conferences, “Live Network” leadership development cohorts and through its academic fellowship program. PLP also worked with a host of organizations and community leaders to advocate for the creation of a leadership pipeline for next generation leaders.
Davidson’s vision and support for PLP has created a lasting legacy. Today, there are numerous Jewish leaders working in and volunteering across countless Jewish organizations. It is my hope that in time PLP will once again be in a position to continue this ever-important work of ensuring our Jewish future through the strong and capable leadership of our next generation.
Co-founder, the Professional Leaders Project
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