Beyond Vassar

Spirit of Vassar Award

By Micah Buis '02

This June, AAVC awarded Reverend Robert Jackson ’77 and Grisela Alejandro Jackson ’78 the Spirit of Vassar Award. The couple, residents of New Orleans, “have been tireless in their efforts toward rebuilding the city after Katrina,” said Awards Committee Chair Justina Fugh Frenzel ’83. Rev. Jackson, who never evacuated the city and was integral in keeping a key portion of the city’s water system viable throughout the catastrophe, is still working hard to restore the system fully. He also directs the rebuilding of their local church sanctuary, pastoring those who have returned and maintaining contact with and serving those displaced throughout the country. Grisela has taken the lead in expanding the church’s education ministry by establishing a nonprofit that is working to create a charter school in the unserved area of their church. “We were profoundly impressed by the breadth of their sustained and multifaceted contributions,” said Frenzel. “Their selfless dedication to rebuilding New Orleans exemplifies, we believe, the true essence of the Spirit of Vassar Award,” an award that recognizes Vassar alumnae/i for extraordinary volunteer service. To learn more about the AAVC Awards Program,