Honoring two long-time members of the Anera community
At our Annual Dinner on October 11, 2019, Anera proudly honored two wonderful supporters: Ambassador Edward “Skip” Gnehm, for his years of service to Anera, to diplomacy and to the greater good in the Middle East, and the Tarazi family, for leading by example and for giving back to Palestine through education, humanity’s most important investment.
Edward “Skip” W. Gnehm Jr.
Ambassador Edward “Skip” Gnehm has a deep love for the Middle East, born out of his graduate studies at the American University in Cairo, and his distinguished 36-year career in the US Foreign Service, which included serving as the ambassador to Jordan and Kuwait. A man of amazing energy and intellect, Skip is not the kind of person to be satisfied with merely retiring. Instead, he launched a new career in 2004 as Kuwait Professor of Gulf and Arabian Peninsula Affairs at the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University.
Skip also has been an active and pivotal member of the Anera community for the past 15 years, serving several board terms from 2004 to today, including as vice chair from 2008 to 2010 and as chairman from 2011 to 2013. Skip’s dedication to Palestinians and to the work that Anera does has always been principled and consistent. As former Anera President Bill Corcoran said, “For Skip, it’s not a political issue, it’s a moral one. He believes that Palestinians deserve to live with dignity and purpose, just like everyone else in the world.” Anera honored Skip at the 2019 Annual Dinner for all he has done for diplomacy, Anera, and the greater good in the Middle East.
The Tarazi Family
Twelve-year-old Charles Tarazi left Haifa, Palestine with his family in 1948, fleeing in fear for their safety. They thought their evacuation would last a few months, but 71 years later they still have not returned. Charles and his parents, brothers Bahjat and Antoine, and sister Leila became refugees for life, but they all went on to have successful careers and full lives. They instilled in their children a love of the homeland they will never abandon.
Soon after arriving in the U.S. and embarking on his new life as a doctor in New York City, Charles learned about Anera. He has been a donor for five decades and his family has taken up the cause as well. Bahjat included Anera in his will, and Leila was a long-time supporter. Her daughter Renata and her husband Muneer are generous Anera supporters and Muneer served on Anera’s board. Charles and Margaret’s three daughters, Fiona, Nadia and Monica are committed donors. Monica served on Anera’s board while Fiona was a member of the education committee and even made films for Anera. At the 2019 Annual Dinner, Anera saluted the whole Tarazi family for their dedication to helping hope find a way in Palestine.
Even after this war is over, the decimation of life and infrastructure in Gaza will take many years to overcome.