Longtime human rights advocate and professor emeritus Glen Johnson will be awarded the Eleanor Roosevelt Val-Kill Medal on October 13.
The award is bestowed annually to individuals and organizations of high ideals and courageous actions in their fields. It recognizes those who have made significant contributions to humanitarian efforts in their communities and around the world in areas that were the focus of Eleanor Roosevelt’s life’s work such as education, advocacy, social justice and human rights. Other recipients this year are Gloria Steinem, Senator Patrick Leahy, Marcelle Pomerlau Leahy and Joan Davidson.
In citing Johnson as a recipient, the Eleanor Roosevelt Leadership Center at Val-Kill wrote, “Johnson devoted his entire career to the study of the importance of human rights as a building block of democratic societies as well as foreign policy and international relations. During a 40 year career as a professor of political science at Vassar College, he brought to every successive generation the insight that there is no true freedom if it is not grounded in human rights.”
Currently the Shirley Ecker Boskey Emeritus Professor of Political Science and International Relations at Vassar, Johnson is also the author of a major book about Eleanor Roosevelt’s work in the United Nations, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: A History of Its Creation and Implementation, 1948-1998, and has written extensively on the subject of international human rights. Johnson has been extremely active in the Eleanor Roosevelt Center at Val-Kill, serving in various capacities, including as president of the board of directors from 1997-2001. Most recently, Johnson has been a member of the board of directors of the World Affairs Council of the Mid-Hudson Valley.
Stephen Rock, professor of political science and acting dean of the faculty, will present the award to Johnson on Sunday, October 13, at the Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site in Hyde Park. (Note: Because of the federal government shutdown, the location of the ceremony has been moved to Astor Courts in Rhinebeck). For information about attending the event, please click here.
Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential, liberal arts college founded in 1861.