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Impact of Giving: Al and Nancy Jubitz
Impact of Giving: Al and Nancy Jubitz

Spend an hour talking with Portland philanthropist Al Jubitz about war, nuclear arms, oppression and violence and you can’t help feeling a little more optimistic about the world.

Jubitz is a fervent believer that the international peace movement is making progress in its efforts to resolve conflicts without violence, efforts that Jubitz and his wife Nancy have supported with a recent gift to PSU’s conflict resolution program.

Their gift provided funds to hire Assistant Professor Vandy Kanyako and to support two graduate assistants. It also gave the program a measure of independence and allowed it to add an undergraduate degree this year to complement its master’s degree created in 1996.

“To be able to have our own departmental sovereignty and autonomy, that’s huge,” says Rob Gould, PSU faculty member and conflict resolution program director. “It means we’re respected as an equal partner in the evolution of the field.”

Jubitz said he supports the program in part because he admires Gould’s work.

“I give Rob Gould an awful lot of credit,” he says. “He and his faculty—they’re the ones who have influenced me.”

Al is the retired co-chairman of the Jubitz Corp., which operates the Jubitz Travel Center in Portland. Al, Nancy and the Jubitz Family Foundation, which they created with their three daughters, have supported PSU for more than 20 years, contributing to the School of Social Work, Portland’s Walk of the Heroines, the President’s Circle
and other funds and events.

But the conflict resolution program has been a priority because Al’s goal is to prevent war by 2030 and he believes we’re headed in the right direction. He points out that nuclear arms have been reduced. International organizations like the United Nations are mediating conflicts. And he estimates that more than 400 colleges and universities throughout the world now offer peace studies programs.

“All the indicators,” he says, “point to a more peaceful world. But there’s a long way to go.”

Gould has known Jubitz for 30 years and says his generosity has supported Associate Professor Harry Anastasiou’s work to bring peace to the ethnically divided island of Cyprus. Gould also credits Jubitz with maintaining a positive attitude in the face of ongoing conflicts across the globe.

“It’s really refreshing to be around Al because he is so optimistic,” Gould says. "It gives you hope."

 

For more about supporting students, faculty and programs in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, please contact Pat Regan, Senior Director of Development, 503-725-8118, patrickjregan@pdx.edu.