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In Memoriam: Marc Chernick

Four people stand behind and hold up a large poster with a drawn image of women with arms raised and words about constructing peace 

On April 18, 2018, the Inter-American Foundation (IAF) lost a great friend, colleague, and advisor. Marc Chernick was an accomplished academic, grassroots development practitioner and author who mentored thousands of students and positively influenced those who had the great pleasure of knowing him. He was also a tireless champion for peace and reconciliation, dedicating his life to understanding and putting an end to the decades long conflict in Colombia.

Marc gave generously of his time, energy and wisdom for over seven years as a member of the Academic Review Committee for the IAF’s Grassroots Development Fellowship Program, where he advised on the selection of IAF fellows and counseled PhD candidates on their dissertations and field research. His relentless good cheer and ever-present, mischievous smile brightened many IAF Fellows’ Mid-Year Conferences.

Over the past two years, the IAF drew on Marc's knowledge, expertise and contacts in Colombia in the design and launch of our Colombian Peace Initiative. His insights into the complexities of the peace process and its impacts on IAF grantee partners have immeasurably enriched the initiative. Although many will remember Marc for his impressive achievements over the course of his four-decade career, we at the IAF will especially miss his wisdom, good humor, hope, and an idealism laced with a healthy streak of cynicism.

With Marc’s passing, the Americas have lost a steady, insightful contributor to scholarship, peace and understanding in the region. He will be deeply missed, and his legacy at IAF, as in the Americas, will endure.

Three men sit outside in front of a bright green landscape and fencing

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