Ali Reza Eshraghi was a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley when he met Pate Thomson and Mary Alice Rathbun of Berkeley Rotary Club.  Pate and Mary Alice sponsored him as a peace fellowship applicant, the Berkeley Club agreed he was well qualified and then the District interviewed him.  Ali was nominated in late June 2009 as one of the District 5160 candidates for peace fellowship.  Rotary Foundation reviewed all candidates nominated and Ali was one of two nominees from District 5160 who was accepted.  We obtained this news in late November 2009, however, acceptance by Rotary Foundation does not guarantee school acceptance.  Ali submitted an application to University of North Carolina (UNC) and then visited the university and met with professors.  We just learned in March 2010 that UNC has accepted Ali into their Communications Studies program.  He will get a masters degree, sponsored by Rotary and will be part of the group studying at the Duke/UNC Rotary Peace Center. Susan Cohen-Grossman


Dear Rotary Friends,

With The arrival of the Persian new year on the very first day of spring, I wanted to share this joyous occasion with you. May the rebirth of the nature bring you peace, and happiness.

I also wanted to share my happiness with you that I have accepted by the University of North Carolina to study at the Department of Communication Studies. Having this opportunity would not be possible without your kind supports. Thank you.

Since I have started working as the editor of IWPR’ Iran Program in last January, several interesting articles have been published on our website. The readership of the website has also drastically increased and little by little it is finding its own place as a reliable source for those who are looking for information about Iran.

I particularly succeeded in establishing a network with seasoned journalists, academicians, and experts inside Iran as our main goal in this program is to enhance the local journalists and activists and to give them voice.

I believe this is a unique opportunity to provide a small but open door from within Iran to give reports and analysis about the incongruities and paradoxes in such times of turmoil, conflict and lack access to vital information.

I would greatly appreciate if you have a chance to visit the website and give me your comment and advice as it was always insightful and very much helpful to me.

Looking forward to hearing from you,