July 12, 2017
2016 was another successful year for the Phil Zwickler Charitable and Memorial Foundation.
Having Randi on board brings us a new pair of young eyes to see through. Randi introduced us
to our newest grantee Badass Brooklyn Animal Rescue, a non-profit that finds suitable
owners for abandoned dogs. Phil was an animal lover. In fact, he saved and rescued Lucky,
the dog we grew up with.
Randi also arranged for Microsoft's New York office to donate holiday gifts to several needy
families serviced by the Alliance for Positive Change (formally ASCNYC). She is certainly
off to a great start...
The Elm project (formerly Camp Amerikids) continues to thrive by bringing AIDS/Hepatitis C
affected inner city children to the beautiful mountains of New York for a week during the summer.
The kids enjoy a respite from their "real world." Elm continues to nurture these children, some
of which go on to become mentors and leaders for the next set of affected kids.
We continue to support Cornell University by providing resources to researchers. For each of
the past 15 years we have funded scholars, which now number over 30. To win, the applicants
are required to submit an application for funding, and perform their work at Cornell's Human
Sexuality collection. Once they complete their work, they are required to submit a letter
to our Foundation outlining their accomplishments. I have chosen to attach a letter recently
received from a 2016 winner that demonstrates why we are passionate supporters of this grant program.
Mr. Allen Zwickler
Phil Zwickler Charitable and Memorial Foundation
June 1, 2017
Dear Mr. Zwickler:
I am writing to thank you for the opportunity to conduct research at Cornell University Library with
the support of Phil Zwickler Memorial Research Grant. In April, I visited Cornell to use several
holdings within the Human Sexuality Collection, including the Chai Feldblum Papers, Larry Bush Papers,
OutServe-SLDN Records, Human Rights Campaign Records, and National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Records.
The papers I examined at Cornell will be extremely useful for my dissertation, "Sexual Contagion:
The Politics of Sexuality and Public Health in the U.S. Military, 1941-1993." The project explores
military regulations of sexuality between the U.S. entry to World War II in 1941 and the introduction
of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy in 1993, showing how race and gender affected service members'
experience of both venereal disease control policy and homosexuality bans, as well as how the military
treated homosexuality as both as personal disorder and a social problem.
The collection I was able to use at Cornell are particularly valuable to me because they help to fill
in the last decades of my dissertation's narrative, years for which it is more difficult to gain access
to official military records. Additionally, since the collections are those of gay rights organizations
or individuals involved in related advocacy, the sources therein portray the military homosexuality ban
and the enactment of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy quite differently than many federal records.
They reveal the effects of bans and investigations and show how gay service members and other advocates
worked to lobby the federal government to end these practices and to protect the rights of individual's
service members and veterans. I was especially struck by a group of letters in the National Gay and
Lesbian Task Force Records in which several gay and lesbian veterans detailed their own experiences as
suspects in homosexuality investigations.
I deeply appreciate the opportunity to use the rich resources at Cornell's Human Sexuality Collection,
and I thank you for the Phil Zwickler Charitable and Memorial Foundation's generosity and support of
Ph.D. candidate in Africana Studies and History
University of Pennsylvania
Cc: Brenda Marston
Please visit our Cornell page for samples of other letters received to date.
We are extremely
proud of the winners. They are now sending their own students to qualify for grants and
are utilizing social media and are publishing articles and books about subjects that we have funded.
2017 has already been a great year for several of our long term grantees and we look forward to reporting
on them during the year on our website and in next year's letter.
Phil Zwickler Charitable & Memorial Foundation Trust