Posts Tagged ‘Haas Center for Public Service’

Community celebrates Roland Prize, partnership awards

April 30th, 2012

During an April 25 luncheon at the Garden Court Hotel in Palo Alto, Calif., School of Medicine Professor GABRIEL GARCIA was honored with the Miriam Aaron Roland Volunteer Service Prize. Garcia is co-founder of the Patient Advocacy Program, a program that trains Stanford students to serve as volunteers in local health clinics.

The Haas Center for Public Service awards the annual Roland Prize to members of the faculty “who engage and involve students in integrating academic scholarship with significant and meaningful volunteer service to society.” It was created by alumna Miriam Aaron Roland and includes a $5,000 cash award. Garcia is the 14th faculty member to receive the award since it was established in 2004.

Also during the event, three community groups and a Stanford student organization were recognized with 2012 Community Partnership Awards. This year’s winners were:

  • DreamCatchers, an after-school program for low-income youth, which was founded by SARAH MUMMAH ’10 when she was an undergraduate;
  • Canopy, an organization devoted to preserving trees and planting more;
  • InnVision, a group that provides housing and services to homeless people, which shared the honor with Stanford Project on Hunger, a Stanford student group that collects, saves and prepares unused, leftover food on Stanford’s campus for distribution to the hungry.

Garcia was traveling, but accepted the honor via video.  Stanford News Service videographer STEVE FYFFE captured the festivities and included Garcia’s acknowledgement in this video.



Juniors Margaret Chapman and Vineet Singal receive public service scholarships

May 25th, 2011

Margaret Chapman

Two Stanford juniors have been awarded scholarships from The Donald A. Strauss Public Service Scholarship Foundation to pursue service projects during their senior year. Established by the family of late alumnus DON STRAUSS, the $10,000 scholarships are given to 10–15 California college juniors annually. At Stanford, the scholarships are administered through the Haas Center for Public Service.

MARGARET CHAPMAN, a mechanical engineering major, will travel to northern Peru to help provide the rural village of Vista Alegre with electricity using LED and micro-hydro-technology.

“I was fortunate to visit developing countries with my family when I was little,” Chapman said. “In college I discovered that what I really enjoyed was the application of science to solve real world problems.”

At Stanford, Chapman is involved with the Stanford chapter of Engineers for a Sustainable World and has worked with the group in Peru since her sophomore year.

Vineet Singal

VINEET SINGAL, a biological sciences major, will work with Anjna Patient Education, an organization he co-founded that provides health education services to free clinics. Singal will work at Schuman-Liles clinic in Oakland to create interactive educational modules utilizing iPad kiosks, as well as creating prototypes for text message-based outreach at free clinics. Following this pilot, Singal plans to expand to free clinics in high-need areas throughout the United States.

“The greatest challenges our world will ever face are present as we speak — global warming, energy, war, health care and disease — and it is only through firm and relentless action that we can solve them,” Singal said.

At Stanford, Singal is the student leader of One Hundred Thousand Cheeks, a campaign to register 100,000 members of South Asian descent on the national bone marrow registry.

DON STRAUSS ,’37, demonstrated a lifelong commitment to public service and education. In his hometown, Newport Beach, he was a member of the school board for ten years, served on the city council for 12 and also served as mayor.  Following his death in 1995, Strauss’ widow, Dorothy M.R. Strauss, established the Donald A. Strauss Public Service Scholarship Foundation in 1997. Since that time, the foundation has awarded 206 scholarships to students with a demonstrated record of community and public service.

—  Katie Pfeiffer

Two Student Affairs staff members win 2011 Margaret Ann Fidler Awards

May 18th, 2011

Suzanne Abel, left receives her award from Margaret Ann Fidler

SUZANNE ABEL, associate director for external relations at the Haas Center for Public Service, and CAROLE PERTOFSKY, director of wellness and health promotion services at Vaden Health Center, each recently received a 2011 Margaret Ann Fidler Award for Distinguished Service in Student Affairs.

The award specifically recognizes those who demonstrate extraordinary dedication to their work and the mission of the university and whose work reflects integrity and a “sincere belief in the value of teamwork and collaboration.”

Pertofsky, left, receives her award from Fidler

The award citation for Suzanne Abel read:


  • For passionate and empathetic leadership across Stanford and within many constituencies and communities;
  • For fully embodying and exemplifying Stanford’s excellence and values;
  • For “walking the talk” in tireless commitment to the common good;
  • For unwavering dedication and personal connection to students, staff colleagues;
  • And, for remaining to be one of the last holdouts to still deliver hand-written notes.

The award citation for Carole Pertofsky read:

  • For vision, collaboration and leadership across Student Affairs, Stanford University and the community;
  • For advocacy, passion and dedication to holistic student development;
  • For almost 20 years of extraordinary innovation and commitment to the well-being of Stanford students;
  • And for being the personal wellness and happiness “Guru” for all.

After reading the citation, MARGARET ANN FIDLER, former associate vice provost for administration in Student Affairs, presented each winner with a plaque. The winners, each of whom also received a $1,000 prize, were honored during a May 10 Student Affairs Service Awards breakfast. Former Vice Provost for Student Affairs JIM MONTOYA created the award to honor Fidler when she retired in 2001.

– Kathleen j. Sullivan

Alexander Berger named winner of Kevin Bacon’s challenge

May 13th, 2011

From left, actor Kevin Bacon holds forth with Alexander Berger, Aaron Kalb and Alex Romanczuk.

It’s been quite a spring for Stanford senior ALEXANDER BERGER. Recently, the philosophy major from Littleton, Colo., was one of 10 undergraduates to receive the Deans’ Awards for Academic Accomplishment.  Then on May 11, at a Haas Center event featuring actor KEVIN BACON, Berger was named the winner of the Stanford edition of the “1 Degree Challenge,” which asked students to come up with the “Next Big Idea” for using social networking for social good.

Berger’s team, which included fellow seniors AARON KALB and ALEX ROMANCZUK, came up with “Give Like A Billionaire,” an idea that would leverage Facebook, Twitter and email to help those with relatively modest resources engage friends and friends of friends in raising money for charity.

The proposal offered the example of Peter Thiel, cofounder of PayPal and an early Facebook investor, who raised money for his favorite charities by offering to match their contributions.

“Our proposal is to help non-billionaires use friends to raise money for the charity they care about. They begin by selecting a charity and setting a goal,” Berger says in a video explaining the proposal. “Then they ask their friends for contributions, which they will only pay if the goal is met. If the person raising funds falls short of the goal, then the money will be returned to the people who donated. So, instead of having a rich person like Peter Thiel match each friends’ donations, they match each other’s donations.”

Berger’s team will work with Bacon to implement his idea through and receive up to $50,000 for promotion and technical development.

“Kevin Bacon’s challenge gave us  — and all the other participants —  a great chance to think about how social networks could be used more effectively to advance the causes we care about.  We were really grateful for the opportunity to participate, and happy that ‘Give Like A Billionaire’ might be able to help great charities raise more money somewhere down the line,” Berger said.

- Elaine Ray



On video: Community Partnership and Volunteer Service Awards luncheon

May 13th, 2011


It’s an annual gathering in a sunny banquet room of the Garden Court Hotel in downtown Palo Alto.  A crowd of civic leaders from Stanford and Palo Alto offer a salute to volunteers whose efforts have had a significant impact on the community.

In introducing the 2011 award winners, Stanford Vice President for Public affairs DAVID DEMAREST quoted his former boss in the White House, George H. W. Bush.

“I remember him often saying that any definition of a successful life must include service to others,” Demarest said. “The amazing work done by the people in this room that we honor today is at the heart of that statement.”

The Miriam Aaron Roland Volunteer Service Prize went to Stanford Drama Professor JANICE ROSS, who created and has taught “Dance in Prisons: The Arts, Juvenile Justice and Rehabilitation in America” for 10 years. The Haas Center for Public Service selected Ross for the prize.

Three Community Partnership Awards went to Project Safety Net, the Peninsula Family Advocacy Program and the Redwood Environmental Academy of Leadership.

– Daniel Stober and Steve Fyffe