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Donor Stories

Below are stories of people who have given to the Friends Endowment.

The Deborah Baltzly Aliber ’48 Endowment to Support the Study of the History and Culture of the Middle East

Debbie Baltzly Aliber 
developed her passion for history and culture when she studied at Friends in the 1940s. Her father, Alexander Baltzly, taught history at New York University. Debbie continued her study of history at Smith College. Soon after the Alibers moved to Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood in 1965, she began to participate in various programs at the Oriental Institute (OI) of the University of Chicago. She loved her role as a docent in guiding thousands of school children through OI galleries and participated in many OI-sponsored trips to Egypt, Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Iraq and Iran. After the Alibers moved to Hanover, NH in 2003, Debbie took numerous courses on ancient and contemporary history at the Institute for Lifelong Education at Dartmouth College. Debbie attributed her fascination with history and culture to her education at Friends.

The family of Debbie Baltzly Aliber ’48 honors her memory with an endowment at Friends.

“Because Debbie attributed her fascination with history and culture to her education at Friends, we chose to create an endowment at Friends in her memory. We want to honor her and perpetuate her support of the School which meant so much to her. We hope that this gift contributes to the education and passion of many generations of students.”  

- Robert Aliber, Husband

The Karen L. Bradley Fund for Excellence

Karen, parent of Ellen '98 and Joanna '03, worked on the Faculty Compensation Committee, bringing work expertise based on 30 years of working as Human Resources VP at NYU. Her experience in policy development and union negotiation were invaluable in the negotiation with FSA union. Karen felt that the faculty were the soul of the School and this endowment will support the work of current and future faculty members. Her husband, Gary, established the fund in Karen’s memory, to be used at the discretion of the Principal for curricular innovation and special initiatives, including stipends and support for faculty development.  

Richard Wong Family Education Fund

The Richard Wong Family Education Fund was established in 2005 by Richard and Mae Wong, parents of Boji Wong ’92 and Richard T. Wong ’98, to attract a greater number of students of Chinese ancestry to the school. Originally named the Boji ‘92 and Richard ‘98 Wong Family Chinatown Scholarship, this fund helped provide these students with outstanding educational experiences, access to enriching opportunities and a foundation to achieve lifelong success at Friends Seminary. 

Richard Wong (1935-2020) was an ambitious and enthusiastic Chinese-American attorney who brought a passionate light to his work as a scholar, lawyer, advocate and friend. Well aware of the lack of legal representation in Chinatown, upon completion of his clerkship Richard declined an offer to join an already established firm, instead opening his own practice. Gim & Wong would prove to serve Chinatown for 26 years, providing everything from the community's legal needs to paving the way for hundreds of individuals and families to immigrate and naturalize as U.S. citizens and establish their own roots.

Upon his death in July of 2020, the fund was renamed the Richard Wong Family Education Fund. Richard dedicated his life to advancing the lives and rights of Chinese Americans and recognized the power and importance of education. This endowed fund will ensure that his passion and hard work will live on through the students who come through the doors of Friends Seminary. 

The Richard Wong Family Education Fund is an inspiring example of what endowed funds can do over time to enrich the Friends Seminary Community. Investing in the school’s endowment over time creates sustainable change, ultimately allowing Friends Seminary to help “bring about a world that ought to be.”
Friends Seminary actively promotes diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism in all its programs and operations, including admissions, financial aid, hiring, and all facets of the educational experience. To form a community which strives to reflect the world’s diversity, we do not discriminate on the basis of race or color, religion, nationality, ethnicity, economic background, physical ability, sex, gender identity or expression, or sexual orientation. Friends Seminary is an equal opportunity employer.

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Friends Seminary — the oldest continuously operated, coeducational school in NYC — serves college-bound day students in Kindergarten-Grade 12.