The UCLA Anderson School of Management knows professor Stuart Gabriel as director of the UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate, the Arden Realty Chair … and a global citizen committed to tikkun olam, the Jewish obligation to repair the world.
Gabriel and his family — wife Judith Katzburg and sons Jesse and Oren Gabriel — were honored on Nov. 18 with a tribute at UCLA’s Royce Hall, where they received Jewish World Watch’s (JWW) annual Global Soul Award in recognition of their service and allegiance to the organization and its mission to curb, heal and intercept genocide worldwide. Together, they have worked locally and internationally to safeguard marginalized, oppressed communities, standing witness to injustice. As the Rabbi Edward Feinstein remarked during the tribute to the family held at UCLA’s Royce Hall, “Tonight, it’s our turn to witness back.”
Gabriel has been a member of the volunteer board of JWW for more than 10 years. He and his family began hosting in-home parlor meetings to raise awareness and funds for the organization soon after its co-founding by Janice Kamenir-Reznik and the late Rabbi Harold Schulweis. JWW is watching conflict areas across the globe, paying particular attention to high-risk regions like the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan, and intervening with political action and boots-on-the-ground in-country education and health initiatives.
Katzburg, a health services researcher known for her development of individualized, choice-driven smoking cessation programs for women, carries out humanitarian efforts to aid vulnerable populations, especially in the field of maternal and child health. She conducts free clinics locally and is working across organizations to build a national coalition against gun violence in America based on a public health model.
The Gabriel sons have conducted fundraising efforts that include $36,000 raised by Jesse for a JWW project that provides solar cookers to Darfuri women living in refugee camps to eliminate their need to leave the relative safety of the camp for firewood. Oren, who now serves on JWW’s board with his father, organized a concert benefiting JWW when he was a student at UC Berkeley; he later volunteered in Rwanda at the Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village, where children of Rwandan genocide victims heal and are educated.
In remarks he made during the tribute to his family, Gabriel said that the evening celebrated the strength of the collective to push back against the bigotry and violence in our world with acts of healing, humanitarianism and relief. “The world is a very broken place with terrible challenges for a lot of reasons,” he said. “This is the challenge our family has taken on.”
This story has been adapted from the original in the UCLA Anderson Blog.