The Temple of Understanding


Development Department
Temple of Understanding 
212-573-9224, x22 


Tuesday October 16, 2012 from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM EDT

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2 Desbrosses Street
New York, NY 10013

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2012 Hollister Awards Gala 

At the 2012 Juliet Hollister Awards Gala, the Temple of Understanding will celebrate the work of leaders actively advancing the role of cross-cultural cooperation and affiliated with the Abrahamic tradition (Judaism, Islam and Christianity).

  • New York University’s Center for Spiritual LifeImam Khalid Latif, Chelsea Clinton, and Rabbi Yehudah Sarna--for their work in advancing a new model of integrating interfaith and cross cultural education into campus life;
  • Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp -- President and Founder of the Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values (The Netherlands), will be honored for including interfaith leadership in his institute's work on sustainable development;
  • May Rihani held the position of Senior Vice President for three international development organizations and was the co-chair of the United Nations Girls' Educational Initiative (UNGEI).  She dedicated her career to advancing educational quality and equity in developing nations.
  • A Lifetime Achievement Award will be given to Rev. Dr. James A. Forbes, the Harry Emerson Fosdick Distinguished Professor at Union Theological Seminary, for his advancement of greater awareness and understanding of multi-cultural and interfaith’s value in national and local communities.


Introducers of this year's honorees are a distinguished group of past Hollister awardees and include:

  • Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom for the US State Department, Suzan Johnson Cook;
  • Peabody Prize and McArthur Foundation Award winning urban environmentalist, Majora Carter;
  • Human rights advocate, development consultant and daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Naomi Tutu.

Hollister Awards are given to religious figures who bring cross cultural understanding and values into the place of worship and secular figures who promote respect for diversity in such areas as the arts, education, media, government, science, law, ecology and social justice. 

Past honorees include:

His Holiness the XIVth Dalai Lama; Nelson Mandela; Dr. Wangari Maathai; Rev. Dr. Thomas Berry; His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal; Dr. Hans Kung; Russell Simmons, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Mary Robinson to name a few.


With a mission to advance peaceful coexistence among individuals, communities and societies through education, dialogue and environmental justice, the Temple of Understanding, throughout its Juliet Hollister Award, creates a forum for recognizing the potential of young leaders and celebrating the work of longtime innovators.


Please contact our Development Department to learn about our sponsorship opportunities by calling 212-573-9224, ext 22 or emailing

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