AJWS Bay Area: What’s Happening

June 2017

“We’re here to put a dent in the universe.” —Steve Jobs

I never met Steve Jobs. I wish I had, as I’ve devoured much that has been written about him. He seemed undaunted by difficulties or complexities. He disdained naysayers and admired those who plowed on, despite seemingly unsurmountable challenges.

As part of our AJWS community, I have been humbled to meet our courageous and visionary grantees, to hear their stories and witness their work. Their aspirations and hardships are at once daunting and impactful. They are kicking a dent in the universe every day.

One such person is Nobel Peace Prize winner and past AJWS grantee, Leymah Gbowee. She led a women’s movement that put an end to a brutal civil war in Liberia and helped elect the first woman President in Africa. Another is Madhavi Kuckreja from Sadbhavana Trust, an organization that works with some of the poorest and most marginalized women in India.

Both of these powerful women will speak on June 11 at AJWS’s Global Justice Luncheon and Seminar at the Stanford Faculty Club. They will discuss why empowering women is an integral part of sustainable change and how their work is putting a dent in the universe. If you have not yet purchased your ticket, you can do so here.

AJWS will honor Terry Winograd, a Stanford professor and an AJWS supporter for over 30 years, at this event. Terry first drew the connection between the AJWS investment model and the technology investments he witnessed in Silicon Valley, where he taught many top corporate leaders. One of Terry’s former students, Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo, will present him with an award before we transition to a seminar exploring the AJWS investment model.

At the seminar, we will hear from Dena Kimball, executive director of The Kendeda Fund, which has invested millions of dollars in AJWS to stop the practice of child marriage in India. About 15 million girls around the world become brides every year, and one of every three live in India — where child marriage continues despite laws against the practice. We will also hear from John Taylor, managing partner at Wellspring Advisors, which has a long history of investment in AJWS’s innovative approach to supporting lasting, positive changes in the lives of women and girls.

AJWS is working to put a huge dent in the universe. We’re supporting local leaders around the globe to shape truly just societies for all people — and I hope you might leave this event as inspired as I am to play a part in making that change happen.

Thank you for being part of this critical work. As always, please reach out if you have any questions. I hope to see you on June 11.


Alon Shalev
Executive Director, San Francisco and Western Region

AJWS Bay Area Upcoming Events


AJWS Global Justice Luncheon and Seminar

Investing in Women and Girls
Join us for a special luncheon to honor philanthropist and human rights activist Terry Winograd, and be inspired by AJWS’s commitment to changing the lives of women and girls in the developing world. The luncheon will feature a keynote address from Leymah Gbowee, 2011 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Liberian peace activist and AJWS grantee. Following the luncheon, the seminar will feature a panel of human rights experts who will discuss AJWS’s investment model and theory of change.

Sunday, June 11
Luncheon 11:00-1:00, Seminar 1:30-3:00
Stanford Faculty Club

Please contact Stephanie Aron at saron@ajws.org with any questions.

Buy Tickets

India Study Tour

February 18-25, 2018
Join AJWS and Jim and Cathy Koshland on an unforgettable trip to India. Together, we will see tikkun olam in action and meet grassroots groups working to protect the lives and lands of India’s people. Over the course of one remarkable week, we will engage in dialogue with local leaders and intellectuals who will offer insights into the unique challenges of securing human rights in this complex country.

For more information, please visit the India Study Tour page or e-mail us at studytours@ajws.org.