Newly renamed Stan Greenspon Holocaust and Social Justice Education Center, to expand Holocaust education in the region
Queens University of Charlotte has received a 1.5 million-dollar gift from North Carolina-based Jewish philanthropist Stan Greenspon to further advance Holocaust education throughout the region.
Queens’ President Dan Lugo believes the endowment comes at a crucial time for our community.
“The vision of the Greenspon Center aligns perfectly with the strategic vision of Queens,” he said. “The Center’s commitment to Holocaust and social justice education and to interfaith bridge-building will develop change-makers and expand equity and inclusion. This gift will have a transformative impact on our campus and community and allows Queens to distinguish itself on a national level.”
Greenspon, who enjoyed success as an insurance broker and saw a need to expand Holocaust education in the region, views the Center as a “culmination of a dream.”
In a 2015 interview with the Charlotte Observer, he said, “My prayer is that similar terrible nightmares will not happen again and that the center’s work of social justice will change the landscape so that all races and religious groups, apart from terrorists, will be treated fairly and with respect.”
“Stan’s partnership has been pivotal to the Center’s impact, and never more so than in this moment,” said Rabbi Judy Schindler, Sklut Professor of Jewish Studies and director of the Greenspon Center. “This gift, which comes on the heels of our recent fifth anniversary, firmly roots Holocaust education as a core of the Center’s vital mission, launching a Holocaust Education Fellowship Program and establishing an endowed director position. At such a critical juncture, the Greenspon Center volunteer and professional leadership felt it was appropriate to adopt a new name; The Stan Greenspon Holocaust and Social Justice Education Center, which places a necessary focus on education and training, which are the hallmarks of the Center.”
Talli Dippold, who co-authored the 2015 study that envisioned the Center and has been co-leading since its inception will be the inaugural director.
“The Association of Holocaust Organizations, comprised of hundreds of institutions and individuals, celebrates this new gift to the Stan Greenspon Center supporting a new Holocaust Pedagogy Fellowship Program,” said Susan Myers, the organization’s president. “We are confident that stellar Holocaust educators will emerge from this new initiative thus honoring the legacy of Holocaust survivors and creating a safer and more just society for all.”
Noah Goldman ’19, past president of Hillel, an international Jewish campus organization, acknowledged how Jewish life at Queens affected his ability to become a change agent. As a result of a painful antisemitic incident during his college years, he recognized the ways “antisemitism started to creep into the mainstream of politics, and how it had begun to impact him more and more.” It was his peers and professors who supported him to speak out against hatred.
“Queens gave me a platform to comfortably say that hate is unacceptable and to unleash bravery I did not know that I had,” Goldman said. “Queens helped me learn that I am strong enough to speak up and speak out.”