The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has just welcomed its newest commissioner, Susie Gelman. USCIRF chair Abraham Cooper, acknowledging President Joe Biden’s announcement of Ms. Gelman’s appointment, said, “Her expertise and insight on global antisemitism and freedom of religion or belief will be a great addition to help support the Commission’s mission to unflinchingly identify threats to international religious freedom.”
Susie Gelman—whose appointment now completes USCIRF’s full complement of nine commissioners—comes to the independent, bipartisan federal government entity with a wealth of experience as an advocate against antisemitism and for human rights. Serving as board chair of Israel Policy Forum for seven terms, the philanthropist/activist has been called “one of the most significant figures in the American-Jewish landscape.”
“Her work in human rights offers a unique perspective to advocate on behalf of those persecuted for their religion or belief.”
Gelman’s credentials include more than four decades helming organizations like the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, the Birthright Israel Foundation, United Jewish Communities, Hebrew University and Washington, D.C.’s historic Adas Israel Congregation.
“I’ve been very privileged to hold several meaningful roles in Jewish life,” Ms. Gelman said of her extensive resume.
“We are fortunate to have Susie Gelman join the Commission at a time where we are seeing a significant rise in antisemitism and anti-Muslim bias throughout the world,” USCIRF Vice Chair Frederick A. Davie commented. “Her work in human rights offers a unique perspective to advocate on behalf of those persecuted for their religion or belief.”
The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom was established by Congress to monitor, analyze and report on religious freedom abroad. USCIRF makes foreign policy recommendations to the president, the Secretary of State and Congress intended to deter religious persecution and promote freedom of religion and belief.
As an organization working to build a world that is safe and inclusive for members of every faith, STAND congratulates Susie Gelman on this important appointment—which will mean the opportunity for her to fight for religious freedom on an even broader scale.