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UW-Eau Claire Graduate Student
Awarded National Peace Foundation Fellowship

 MAILED:  July 28, 2003

EAU CLAIRE - A University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire graduate student who will be receiving a master's degree in English at the August 2 commencement ceremony was recently named the first Frances Humphrey Howard Fellow by the National Peace Foundation.

Rusudan Kilaberia, a native of the Republic of Georgia, will be awarded the new fellowship named in memory of Howard, a prominent public policy advocate and long-time member of the Foundation's Board of Advisors who died in 2002 at the age of 88.

Sarah Harder, NPF chairman and president, said the foundation was searching for an individual who would mirror the spirit of Howard, a citizen leader who, among her many other accomplishments, worked with Eleanor Roosevelt to build grassroots support for the United Nations and pioneered peace-building efforts with Russian women.

According to Harder, Kilaberia exemplifies the nature and purpose of NPF as well as the broad interests of Howard.

"Rusudan grew up among people of Georgian, Russian, Abkhaz, Armenian, Greek, Jewish and Muslim cultures. She knows first-hand the beauty and value of each of those cultures, and the difficulty of maintaining consistently harmonious relations among them," said Harder. "And I have personally observed her skills in interpersonal and inter-group relations. These attributes, plus her keen intellect and her swift acceptance of new, practical jobs that need to be done, make her an ideal fellow," Harder said.

Kilaberia will serve as part-time assistant to Harder in Eau Claire. Her primary duty will be working on NPF's Russion Civic Network program, an initiative led by Harder for the past 12 years and now linked to NPF's new role, which involves assisting the Open World Leadership Center at the U.S. Library of Congress in bringing Russian leaders from many professions to the United States for weeklong workshops with their counterparts from other countries.
Kilaberia, known as Rusiko, said she was pleased that she will continue working with Harder.

"Everything I have learned about Frances Howard is impressive. I will do my best to live up to her example," said Kilaberia. "I am very glad to be associated with the National Peace Foundation. All together, this is a great honor."

The NPF, founded in 1982, is a nongovernmental organization that works to build foundations for peace through the development of citizen networks, the advancement of peace education and the promotion of democratic values through international exchanges. Creating civic and political forums throughout the Russian Federation, facilitating dialogue between young Israeli and Palestinian leaders, and establishing e-mail dialogues between students in Cuba and the United States are just a few of NPF's current projects.

The NPF Advisory Board includes Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the Honorable Andrew Young, former senator James W. Symington and Roger Fisher of Harvard University.

Dr. W. Landis Jones, NPF executive director, expressed gratitude to The Coca-Cola Company, for its principal underwriting of the fellowship, and to Coca-Cola vice president Janet Howard (not related to Frances Howard) for helping arrange the support. He also thanked friends of the Howard family as well as NPF members who contributed to the Frances Humphrey Howard Fellowship.

For more information about NPF, the Frances Humphrey Howard Fellowship, and other NPF programs, contact Kathleen Lansing, NPF Communications Director, at 202-783-7030, Ext. 11, or send e-mail to


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Updated: July 28, 2003