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SAIS Legacy Circle Luncheon Honors Exemplary Supporters

December 18, 2023

A high-profile event for a special group of SAIS supporters was held December 18, 2023—at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg Center in Washington, D.C. The Legacy Circle Luncheon was a unique opportunity to celebrate members of the SAIS Legacy Circle, which recognizes donors who have named SAIS in their estate planning.

This event also recognized members of the school’s Class of 1973 as they continued to celebrate their 50th reunion this year. The event program included updates from SAIS Dean James Steinberg, and a fireside chat on current events with Elizabeth McKune, a former U.S. ambassador to Qatar, SAIS alum, and Legacy Circle member.

McKune, who had a distinguished 33-year-long career in the United States Foreign Service, also received the 2023 John Hopkins Alumni Association Award for Public Service. The Public Service Award honors alumni who have brought credit to the university through their current or recently concluded distinguished public service as elected or appointed officials.

Marjorie Sonnenfeldt received the 1943 Award, which is bestowed upon a member of the SAIS Legacy Circle who has demonstrated an exceptional commitment to the institution’s continued success with a documented legacy gift while making a substantial positive impact on the world. Sonnenfeldt’s professional career portfolio is rich with diverse experiences, from working for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to researching and writing for nongovernmental organizations and serving on the Planning Board of Montgomery County, Maryland.

Five current SAIS students who are recipients of a variety of fellowships made possible by SAIS donors also participated in the day’s event.

Along with other generous benefactors, members of the SAIS Legacy Circle make significant contributions to the enhancement of the school’s reputation for excellence. Their generosity supports the education of highly talented students, helps attract and retain outstanding faculty, and enables SAIS to expand and adapt program offerings to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing international environment.