Kramer receives Isserman prize

Award recognizes WUSTL student involved in ecumenical or interfaith activities

Senior Renee Kramer has been awarded this year’s Rabbi Ferdinand M. Isserman Prize.

The Isserman prize recognizes a WUSTL student who has made a significant contribution in leadership and service to ecumenical or interfaith activities, both on campus and in the wider community.

Kramer, of Fairfax, Va., is majoring in political science in Arts & Sciences with minors in architecture and institutional social analysis.

Renee Kramer

As a member of WUSTL’s Jewish Student Association from 2007-2010, Kramer founded the Annual Women’s and Friends’ Seder, which highlights women’s experiences and contributions to the Jewish culture and welcomes people of all genders and faiths.

She also served as president in 2009 for the organization Wash U Students for Israel, in which she oversaw student Israel-advocacy events on campus. During this term, she organized a multicultural concert with performances by the world-renowned music group The Idan Raichel Project and nearly a dozen student groups. Through the concert, more than $2,000 was raised for the Hagar School in Be’er Sheva, a progressive Arab-Israeli learning center.

She also was a fellow for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America during the 2009-10 school year, for which she managed speaker events on WUSTL’s campus and wrote monthly op-ed submissions for WUSTL’s student newspaper, Student Life, on topics concerning policy and politics in the Middle East.

From 2008-2010, Kramer, a member of the Alpha Phi sorority, served on Aviva Jewish-Greek Women’s Council and founded an annual Pink Shabbat dinner to raise breast cancer awareness and organized a fundraiser at local salons to raise money for women and children’s charities.

In 2009, Kramer traveled to a rural village in Guatemala for a service trip as a Takkana Fellow for Social Justice for the American Jewish World Service. In Guatemala, Kramer helped paint an addition to the village school and helped teach students about conservation and environmental responsibility.

Kramer served as a policy intern at the Center for National Policy (CNP) in Washington, D.C., during the summer of 2009. In that role, among other duties, she updated CNP members on current events, wrote and distributed summaries of Capitol Hill briefings for CNP staff, and collected data and research for publications.

After graduation, Kramer plans to attend law school, focusing on international business affairs.

The Isserman prize honors the late Rabbi Ferdinand M. Isserman and his wife, Ruth Isserman. Ferdinand Isserman, a distinguished rabbi and author, was actively involved in social and interfaith issues locally, nationally and internationally.

Kramer received the $500 award during a celebratory luncheon April 12 at Whittemore House.

For more information or to nominate a student for next year’s award, email Steven M. Ehrlich, associate dean for academics in University College in Arts & Sciences, at