P.D. Soros Fellowship for New Americans


A Circle of Friends: Honoring Members of the Board of Trustees

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By Jeffrey Soros (Trustee)

When my father and mother founded the Fellowship program in 1997, they set out to build something brand new.

My mother brought her energy, charisma, and decision-making prowess to the creative process. While my father, an engineer and pioneering CEO, knew how to lay the foundation of something that would not only be sustainable and lasting, but that would be significant and innovative as well.

Together, they made a great team.

Of course, one thing that made them an even better team was their desire to build the Fellowship with others; they wanted to bring the best minds to the table to create something truly innovative and impactful, and that’s just what they did. They looked to their incredible network of friends, which was full of leaders from across sectors, and saw the types of people they hoped their new program might help develop.

Two of the founding board members, Catharine Stimpson and Lawrence McQuade, stepped off the board in the fall of 2014, after nearly 17 years of service. Both Kate and Larry were dear friends to my parents, but they also offered unparalleled professional experience. Kate had built academic programs at several universities, while Larry had worked at the highest levels of both business and government. We can’t thank Kate and Larry enough for all that they have brought to the Fellowship. They are truly extraordinary people and leaders.

Taking their place on the board, are Kenneth Buckfire and Paul Holdengräber, two people who have so much to offer the Fellowship’s leadership. Ken leads a financial restructuring firm, and Paul is the director of programming at the New York City Public Library. They understand what it means to be a leader in the 21st century, and they both care deeply about the immigrant experience.

We wanted to honor the contributions of Larry and Kate and introduce you to Ken and Paul, so we asked four Fellows to interview them. From 1997 to 2013, the year my father passed away, the great pleasure of working with the board was being part of a team that cared about and respected not only the Fellowship, but one another. Since 2013, the board, and the organization as a whole, has become even more important because it is a circle of friends that is committed to seeing my father’s vision through—just as each and every Fellow does as he or she leads an extraordinary life.

Honoring Lawrence C. McQuade- Interview by Nusrat Choudhury (2004 Fellow)

Honoring Catharine StimpsonInterview by Janani Sreenivasan (2004 Fellow)

Meet Ken Buckfire- Interview by Richard Tao (2014 Fellow)

Meet Paul Holdenbraber- Interview by Nishant Batsha (2013 Fellow)

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