ICRD Remembers Dr. Abdul Aziz Said

It is with a heavy heart that ICRD bids farewell to our friend and colleague, Dr. Abdul Aziz Said, who joined ICRD’s Board of Directors in 1999, shortly after the founding of the organization. Dr. Said was an incredibly formative part of the Center, witnessing its early interfaith peacebuilding forays into places like Sudan, Afghanistan, and Kashmir, and its growth over the years to reach over 20 countries on five continents. As we seek the ways in which shared values across religious traditions can contribute to empathy and stability, Dr. Said’s lasting contributions to the culture and methodologies of the Center cannot be overstated.

Dr. Said was a pioneer in our field, a world-renowned scholar and peacebuilding practitioner, and was known by many as American University’s “Living Legend of Peace”. As the many testimonies and outpouring of grief demonstrate, Dr. Said was the true embodiment of all that we aspire to as peacebuilders. While his accolades and accomplishments are too many to name here, and his well-deserved praise is being sung in many places, his long service on the ICRD Board will forever mark the trajectory of our work, and we are immeasurably better for it. As Dr. Douglas Johnston, ICRD’s founder and President Emeritus stated, “Although Heaven will glow all the brighter with his presence, he will be sorely missed by [all] who have benefited from his inspiring insights during his many years of teaching. Abdul Aziz was a living example of what it means to give unto others.”

ICRD extends our deepest condolences to his wife, Elena Turner, and our gratitude for Dr. Said’s many years of partnership and mentorship.