San Francisco graduate student wins Haas/Koshland Award

Oren Kroll-Zeldin, a doctoral student working in a program that stresses the connection between scholarship and activism, is the winner of the 2012 Haas/Koshland Memorial Award, the S.F.-based Jewish Community Federation announced.

Oren Kroll-Zeldin

Each year, the Jewish Community Endowment Fund invites students to apply for the award, which provides up to $20,000 to support a year of study and personal development in Israel. The award is open to college students, from sophomore year through graduate school, either from or attending school in the Bay Area.

Kroll-Zeldin, who teaches high-schoolers at Midrasha in Berkeley, is a Ph.D. candidate at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. “I focus my work in Jewish-Palestinian alliance-building movements,” he said. “This focus is one way I can commit myself to the work of justice.”

He said the award “is giving me the incredible opportunity to conduct my dissertation fieldwork in Jerusalem, working with and researching both Jewish and Palestinian communities.” Such work, he added, “will give me the opportunity to learn with and from Israeli and Palestinian scholars and activists who integrate scholarship with issues of social justice.”

This year’s supplementary award winners are Monica Deeb (U.C. Santa Cruz), Daniel Romero (U.C. Berkeley School of Law) and Eliana Sudikoff (University of Maryland).

The award was established in 1982, three years after the death of Walter A. Haas Sr. The award is named for him and Daniel E. Koshland Sr., who died in 2007. Both men were actively involved in the management of Levi Strauss & Co. and were responsible for the company’s success.