The Les Aspin '60 Fellowship, 2016

The Committee met at the Horchow Hall headquarters of The Jackson Institute at Yale on April 5. Present were Fritz Steele, Jim Trowbridge, Doug Guiler, ‘86er Gary Eisenberg, ‘86er Bill Monahan, and Chuck Schmitz. After an informative conversation with the Institute’s Cristin Siebert, the Committee shared a sandwich lunch with last year’s three laureates, Zoe Rubin, Andrew Grass, and Aaron Berman, to hear about their experiences in the field and their recommendations for improving the experience of the Fellowship.

In six 20-minute sessions during the afternoon the Committee interviewed the finalists, selected for us by Yale faculty from the 21 original applicants for Fellowship support. The Committee considered the finalists to comprise the best panel yet assembled for the Aspin: there was not a weak applicant among them. Ultimately, in order to make the best use of the $13,800 available from the endowment for use this year, the Committee settled on four applicants and allocated $13,752 among them.

The Committee’s selections were as follows:

Alexander Tymchenko (AFROTC), U.S. NATO, Brussels, IT support and cyber-security;
Minsun Cha, North Korea Defector Center, Seoul, assisting escapees and providing information devices for North Korean population;
Stephanie Siow, Freedom for All, NYC, human anti-trafficking measures; and
Jonathan Esty, State Department European Bureau (Political-Military Section), Washington, internship.

Following its exertions, Committee members adjourned to Mory’s for their own “after-glow” celebration.

I will write congratulations to each laureate on behalf of the Fellowship, and we will publish another issue of the Aspin Newsletter with photos and profiles of this year’s new Aspinites. The Newsletter goes to alumni Aspinites and other friends of the Fellowship. The Aspin send-off dinner, hosted by 2015 Aspinites for the 2016 crop, in one of the colleges will take place later in the spring. We will maintain contact with the new laureates during their summer work. We are exploring the merits of an Aspin Facebook page to enhance our existing efforts to give continued life and relevance to the Fellowship.

Charles Schmitz
Chairman, Yale Class of 1960 Les Aspin Fellowship Committee