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Jessica Aberly: Peace Fellow
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THE JEWISH NEWS
20300 Civic Center Drive, #240, Southfield, MI 48076
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 1988
NAME: Jessica Ruth Aberly
OCCUPATION: A Herbert "Pete" Scoville
Peace Fellow with the Committee For
RESIDENCE: Washington, D.C.
FAMILY: Parents: Suzanne, director of
public relations and marketing at
Millender Center; and Ansel, president
of SLC Recycling Industries Inc. Two
older sisters: Rachel, a publicist for
Columbia Tri-Star Films in Los
Angeles; Naomi, senior assistant buyer
at Neiman-Marcus in Dallas.
Grandmother Rose Aberly resides in the
EDUCATION: B.A. degree from Brown
University in international relations.
SYNAGOGUE: Temple Emanuel-El and
Washington Hebrew Congregation.
ORGANIZATIONS: "Take Note," a
professional a cappella singing group
and Brown Alumni Association.
FAVORITE BOOK: The Fountainhead by
HOBBIES: Singing, Italian and
LATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT: "Finding my
niche in a new city. Seeing how the
Scoville Fellowship works and fitting it
into my professional and personal
PHILOSOPHY: "Never say never. (My
mom used to always tell me that.) We
are capable of doing things more than
we think possible."
BACKGROUND: Jessica Aberly grew up in
Huntington Woods. At age 15, her
family moved to Bloomfield Hills. She
attended Lahser High School and
became involved with the music and
During her teenage years, Aberly
was active in Michigan State Temple
Youth (MSTY). She was a MSTY state
representative for Temple Emanuel-El.
"My mother was a tremendous role
model for me," says Aberly. She notes
that her mom went back to work while
raising children and was a docent at the
art museum. "She instilled the love of
art and history," she recalls. Aberly
credits her father for her love of
languages. Since he speaks French,
Spanish and Yiddish, she naturally
wanted to learn about foreign cultures.
After graduating from high school in
1984 with honors, she attended Brown
University, majoring in international
relations. During the summer of 1987,
Aberly was the public relations intern
for the Women's Action for Nuclear
Disarmament in Southfield.
Her interest in peace and languages
led her to spend a college semester in
Italy. For her final project, she
researched the influence of the NATO
allies on domestic policies in Italy.
While attending Brown, she also
worked on the Brown Nuclear
Education Project, assisting in high
school discussions and campus outreach
programs. She researched presidential
candidates' views on nuclear arms
issues for voters in the Rhode Island
primary. When she was not busy
studying or volunteering for nuclear
disarmament, Aberly worked as a
caterer for Brown University Food
When Aberly saw the application for
the Herbert Scoville Peace Fellowship,
she knew her experience made her right
for the job. During her six-month
fellowship working at the Committee for
National Security, she is writing
foundation proposals for related groups
and helping with speeches on national
security issues for professional women's
groups. For the last two months she will
coordinate intern projects and update
the internship program. She will also
research the evolution of Soviet military
and civilian thinking on "non-offensive
She is planning to contiue to work
for the Committee For National
Security after her fellowship using her
communication and research skills to
explore arms control and NATO security
policy issues. Aberly believes there are
many windows of opportunity to work
toward world peace. "We have to be
cautious to know our adversaries and
Aberly notes her parents' support
allowed her to pursue her interests.
"They were very good about letting me
go and do it all."