Brandeis Alumni, Family and Friends
All Brandeisian Stories
Brandeisians are remarkable.
They’re making a difference in the worlds of science, literature, arts and entertainment, public policy and various other fields — and they’re doing so in service to others, boosting a culture of generosity at the same time that they are repairing the world. Here are a some of their stories. Read them and get inspired.
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Journalist and publisher Peter Osnos ’64 looks back on a transformative trip to Mississippi to meet with civil rights pioneers.
Civil rights attorney Laura Wolf ’08 is giving Brandeis students opportunities her grandmother didn't have.
Unexpected DNA test results send an only child on a search for her extended “bamily.”
Fellow alumni and theater colleagues John-Andrew Morrison ’95 and Rachel Peters ’99 discuss how their Brandeis connection evolved into a working relationship and friendship as they navigate careers in the theater.
In the cut-throat entertainment industry Josh Gondelman is known for being the nice guy of comedy.
Students Alexander Wicken ’23 and Daphne Ballesteros ’24 discuss the benefits of peer mentorship and why it's inspired by Brandeis values.
Jennifer Post ’86 empowers queer entrepreneurs to become leaders in business.
Jiahuan “Green” Xia ’15 is bridging cultural divides while building a streetwear empire.
A Westchester-based book club that includes several Brandeis alumnae, reflects on over 50 years together.
A tenacious Gerry Guttell ’60, P’86, G’22 pays it forward.
In honor of National Poetry Month, we celebrate Elisa New ’80, who brings poetry to the masses with a pop-culture twist.
Behind the notorious trial of Leo Frank in 1915 and the letters and archives held by Brandeis that help to tell his story.
The story behind the founding and purpose of the Brandeis National Committee in the 1940s.
How the efforts of the Brandeis National Committee are evolving to meet the current needs of the university.
After heading off to dental school post-Brandeis, Daniel Levine ’94 pivoted to becoming a performer and now heads to the Grammys as a nominee.
As the head of passenger operations at Ukrzaliznytsia – Ukrainian Railways – Oleksandr Pertsovsky ’10 i is one of the people keeping Ukraine moving.
Elana Hagler ’02 was chosen to honor the first American woman astronaut in a unique form - the US quarter.
A forward-thinking Black Indian Brandeisian excavates his past and comes full circle, back to the Rose Art Museum.
Retired businessman Bob Mallet established the Robert and Toni Mallet Endowed Scholarship with a $1 million gift. The scholarship provides financial assistance to undergraduate business students who have a commitment to the Jewish community.
Physicist extraordinaire, Deborah Berebichez ’96, is celebrated in a Smithsonian exhibition honoring 120 female scientists this Women's History Month.
Lizzy Topper ’21 and her experience at Brandeis inspired her parents to support the university's accessibility efforts.
Co-founder of the advocacy group the Breasties, Brianna Majsiak ’16 supports people dealing with breast cancer throughout their journey.
A member of the national volunteer network Team Rubicon, Laura Block ’91 helps people rebound after a disaster.
Former Facebook engineer Sahar Massachi ’11, GSAS MA’12, is leading a high-profile group of tech experts trying to fix the social internet.
Erica Rabner ’13 and her filmmaker husband put together a not-your-average wedding video. It's narrated by their 90-year-old Jewish grandmothers. Just in time for Valentine's Day.
This award-winning alumna brings Brandeisian values to the world's largest retailer.
In a powerful new book, Anita Hill describes the true costs and consequences of gender-based violence.
Paula García, MA SID’13, is taking a people-first approach to solving the climate crisis.
Heller alumni are advancing health equity from every angle.
Yoni Battat discovered the oud as a teenager and has been in love with Arabic music ever since.
Brandeis student William Kevorkian ’23 interviews inspiring alumni for his WBRS radio show.
The subject of a recent documentary, Pauli Murray was a pioneer of law, social justice and gender identity, at Brandeis and worlds beyond.
A successful field project at Brandeis International Business School helped Elan Kawesch ’20, MA’21 land a full-time job with a tech startup.
David Allon '81 talks about his father's life and the process of writing his memoir.
Members of the Alumni Club of Chicago were recently treated to a unique - and tasty - theater production by Amy Rubenstein ’00 .
Since his time at Brandeis, Donald Soffer ’54 has realized his business vision and inspired students that have come after him.
As the hospital's director of spiritual care, Harris helps kids and families withstand the trials of hospitalization and serves as a supportive advocate for young patients like Spencer Raifman.
With the creation of the Baruchowitz Family Fellowship for Dysautonomia Research, Brandeis Neuroscience Professor Susan Birren will aim to broaden understanding of a chronic, sometimes debilitating, condition that’s often misdiagnosed.
More than 100 alumni volunteers answered the call when Prof. Ed Bayone set up virtual networking opportunities for his students during the pandemic. “You never know what connections you might create,” says Allan Volf ’15, MA ’16.
For scholarship recipient Peter Agaba, MA’20, a lifelong passion for learning led him to Brandeis. Now he’s giving back to his home village in Uganda by supporting the next generation of students
Klodeta Janaqi’s childhood dream of studying in the U.S. was out of reach. Then the Peter Petri Global Fellowship changed everything. “Donors should know they are making many people’s dreams come true,” says the MBA’21 graduate.
Natasha Frye ’14 honors her indigenous heritage through her work and her art.
The late Professor Robert Stevenson “was pivotal in my life,” says Elaine Yamaguchi ’71. She hopes the fund will provide career guidance as well as support for research.
Daniel Estrin ’06, NPR's Jerusalem bureau chief, helps Americans understand the complexity — and the possibilities — of the Middle East.
Artist Amelie de Cirfontaine ’18 covers storefronts on the streets of San Francisco with joyful color.
Michael Horowitz ’84, inspector general of the U.S. Department of Justice, is committed to truth, even unto its innermost parts.
Classically-trained pianist Benjamin Schore ’56 had success in real estate and a long-standing commitment to the arts.
Angela Self ’22 is researching why so many young Americans are leaving Christianity behind.
Journalist Elizabeth Bruenig ’13 peers into the human condition’s dark corners to explore sin, guilt and evil.
Matthew Ginsburg and Joanna Fung, parents of Anna Ginsburg ’21, honor her grandparents and their reverence for education with a gift to Brandeis.
Jazz bassist Chuck Israels ’59 reflects on a career playing with legends, the current state of jazz and his time at Brandeis.
Prince Charles Alexander ’79 has played many starring roles in the music world.
Proud alumni Ira and Nancy Shapiro support Brandeis to honor all that makes the university great.
Health-conscious entrepreneur Michael Shoretz ’09 enjoys the sweet taste of success.
Former Traquina Scholar Shekeyla Caldwell Sandore ’14 turned her childhood experience into a children's book to promote diversity and inclusion.
As one of few out trans rabbis in the United States, alum Lily Solochek ’11 shares their perspectives on recent anti-trans legislation and violence.
2021 marks signature anniversaries of several commencements, including one that became a sing-along.
Exceptional graduates of Waltham High School express gratitude to the Stroum Family Foundation for the opportunity to attend Brandeis with full scholarships
Scott Feinberg ’08, awards columnist at The Hollywood Reporter, knows a thing or two about winning and losing.
In her Instagram account Nail the Cocktail, Claudiane Philippe ’13, MA’14, combines an interest in cool libations with a passion for social change.
Ariana Boltax ’14 helps vets learn how to communicate with grieving clients.
Up at bat: Amelia Schimmel ’08, public-address announcer for the Oakland Athletics.
Alex Goldstein ’06 uses his Twitter account @FacesOfCOVID to remember lives ended by the coronavirus.
The scion of a progressive-politics family, Lily Adams ’09 has made her own way as a Democratic Party operative through smarts, moxie and, occasionally, sharp elbows.
The alumni of the Myra Kraft Transitional Year Program hail the impact it had on their lives.
Bela (Apparao) Labovitch ’87, P’17 is making a difference in the tech world and is attracting more young women to do the same.
Chari Smith, PhD’89 found that enthusiasm for science was contagious during her time at Brandeis.
CSO of Faze Medicines Rachel Meyers ’84 looks back on her time at Brandeis and her introduction to the wonders of biochemistry.
When Classical Studies Lecturer Alexandra Ratlaff encountered Helen Wong ’19, she knew she’d be an asset to the field of archeology.
Although Alana Hodson ’19 planned to pursue a career in medicine, a research opportunity studying hearing loss revealed a new way she could help.
Bonnie Ronish ’09 gained much more than a polished resume from her experience as an undergrad esearching infectious diseases.
Space scientist Rachel Zimmerman Brachman ’95 is motivating the next generation to consider careers in STEM.
Ulrike Tillmann ’85 wasn't initially settled on a career in mathematics research but was eventually drawn in by the challenges it offers.
Ming Lee Tang ’04 began her research career as an undergraduate at Brandeis and is now considered a leader in energy research.
Her junior year in Paris sparked lasting friendships and a career in International Development for Mara Posner Metzger ’88.
Linda Phiri ’16 was inspired to work hard and live well while studying abroad in Sydney.
For Harrison Goldspiel ’13, studying abroad in Ecuador resulted in the discovery of a passion.
While Steven Safran ’94 experienced an extraordinary year in Israel, he managed to enjoy the "normal" moments of life abroad.
Khushee Nanavati ’19 learned to appreciate the vitality of a modern city against a traditional Asian backdrop in Singapore.
For Rabbi Ronald Kronish ’68, P’99, studying abroad in Jerusalem in 1966 was the beginning of a life's journey.
For Diane (Gass) Gennaretti ’74, studying abroad was not only a cultural awakening—it was a semester that changed the course of her life.
How Elyssa Kotzen ’07 pivoted a family business on the brink of collapse.
As administrative director of equity and inclusion at Massachusetts General Hospital, Natalie Johnson ’07, is working to address racial disparities in health care.
Dr. Ria Roberts ’10 followed through on her childhood dream of becoming a doctor and gives back by helping minorities pursue careers in medicine.
During his time at Brandeis, Jerry Saunders II ’11 was inspired to pursue an MD/PhD, marrying his interest in science with his desire to be a practicing physician.
A commitment to social justice and a calling to work in health care led Brian Gibbs, PhD'95 to what he calls his life's purpose.
Health Policy Fellow Bishar Jenkins, MPP’20 is addressing inequities and shaping policy for marginalized populations.
How a chance book recommendation triggered a guilty reminder of an interaction that Mike Leiderman ’66 had with a Brandeis benefactor half a century ago.
Adam Smoler ’01 reflects on his time at Brandeis, his preference for Chicago and how he ended up becoming one of Google's youngest managers
The executive and former Brandeis trustee joined the Brandeis Women’s Network to offer insights from her experience working with brands, companies and social-impact organizations.
Disney’s chief legal officer, Alan Braverman '69, describes how his Brandeis experience helped shape his professional path.
For Brian Ackerman ’81, sharing independent films and the rich experiences they offer is a calling.
Sixteen years after the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 took her husband’s life, Ariele Cohen ’99 says the friendships they made through Brandeis have helped keep his memory alive.
One of the game’s top players says “The Queen’s Gambit” makes the right moves in portraying the chess world.
For Ayan Sanyal ’14, a cup of homemade chai is a warm reminder of home and family. Unable to find any authentic blends in New York, he and his brother decided to show America what makes an authentic chai drink so much better.
Impacted by a volunteer experience in Kenya, Elana Reinholtz ’11 left a career in finance to launch Bird + Stone, a mission-driven company that sells cause-conscious jewelry.
When the COVID-19 pandemic shut down production of goods across the country and textile mills shifted to making masks and personal protective equipment, Stephanie (Fodor) MacDonald ’04 stepped in to help.
Eric J. Harvey, MA’11, PHD’20, writes losing his vision has led him to imagine entirely new ways of living, learning and moving through the world.
Teacher David Nurenberg ’99 writes on learning to think and talk about structural injustice.