Working for Peace on Earth and Peace with Earth since 1952

About Promoting Enduring peace


Officers and Staff


President - Paul Hodel  is PEP’s longest- serving Board member (1976-present). He is the former founding director of the Peace & Justice Center in New Haven. His is active in the Society of Friends (Quakers) and its peace activities. A graduate of the Yale Divinity School and a former member of its alumni board, Paul lives in New Haven with his wife Pat Wallace, a senior administrator in the city’s government. Together and separately they have attended hundreds of peace marches, demonstrations, and related events. Paul teaches on peace and nonviolence topics at Albertus Magnus College in New Haven.


Vice-President - Kate Frazier  became involved with the good work of PEP during the cold war with the USSR, when her father, Howard Frazier, former Executive Director of PEP, initiated the Volga Peace Cruises, which encouraged ordinary Soviet and American citizens to meet and exchange ideas along the Volga River. She participated in several Peace Cruises, where she experienced the effectiveness and value of citizen diplomacy. She has long been active in peace and civil rights issues, and more recently with climate change issues, locally as well as nationally. Kate’s work life has centered around rehabilitation counseling / job development for injured workers. She lives in Northern California, where she raised three children. She is a strong believer in the connective power of music and the arts, and joins with several groups weekly to play live music with and for others, often those with disabilities. She has been on the PEP board since 2009.


Treasurer - James van Pelt helped revitalize PEPeace starting in 2005. He has been an active PEP member and volunteer since 1989, assisting in PEP’s Gandhi Peace Award program and PEP’s support of humanitarian programs such as medical aid to Ukraine and the Japan Peace Boat, among others, and represented PEP at the World Solidarity Congress in Cuba (1994). He has authored or coauthored various books and articles, including Peace Heroes: The Gandhi Peace Awards and Venceremos Brigade (Simon & Schuster), and has co-founded several alternative institutions including the Miccosukee Land Cooperative, the Connecticut Folk Festival and Green Expo, and the Center for Participant Education at Florida State University. He has provided technology assistance to a variety of Connecticut progressive and charitable groups and public institutions, and his technologist positions have included Senior Technology Advisor for Connecticut school districts; Director of Advanced Solutions for Dun & Bradstreet; and personal technology consultant to American Express and other corporations and non-profits. He holds a BA from Duke University and a Master of Arts in Religion (magna cum laude) from the Yale Divinity School, where he co-founded Yale’s Initiative in Religion, Science & Technology and was Research Fellow from 2003 to 2005 and an Instructor/Lecturer from 2005 to 2008. He has been a seminar leader and conference organizer at Yale’s Center for International and Area Studies and has organized five international conferences at Yale since the 2008 conference “Ending the Cold War Against Cuba”. 


Secretary - Frances Frazier carries a lifelong vision of justice and equality for all the world’s people. The values of family, education as empowerment and community connection/ action run strong in her background. She first came to PEP through her father Howard Frazier, the Executive Director from 1978 until his death in 1997, who during the Cold War made the U.S.S.R. accessible to many people through sponsoring Peace Cruises where open discussions, inquiry and friendships were encouraged . Frances has been in the arena of education and community activism for most of her adult life, and now teaches Citizenship and ESL classes to adult students in California. She has been a member of the board of Promoting Enduring Peace for six years.


Administrator - Stanley Heller is a retired schoolteacher and a trade union member for over 40 years.  He's host of the TV news magazine "The Struggle"


Editor, PeaceNews - Chris Zurcher



A brief history of PEP


Promoting Enduring Peace was founded in 1952 by Dr. Jerome Davis. Davis was born in Kyoto Japan, was trained as a sociologist, directed YMCA efforts in Russia during World War I,  did labor organizing,  was Professorship of Practical Philanthropy at Yale Divinity School for a dozen years, and for several years in the 1930’s was national president of the American Federation of Teachers.  As Davis saw it, the purpose of Promoting Enduring Peace was resisting the ideology of ceaseless aggression and nuclear terror that characterized the Cold War. Its principal programs have been peace education, citizen diplomacy, and the awarding of the Gandhi Peace Award to recipients such as Eleanor Roosevelt, Cesar Chavez, Daniel Ellsberg, and more recently Amy Goodman (2012), Bill McKibben (2013), and Medea Benjamin(2014) and to Tom Goldtooth and Kathy Kelly in 2015. 


The Gandhi Peace Award has always been accepted in person by the recipient during a ceremony held for that purpose in Connecticut or New York City, usually once each year. Since 2011 the Award has come with a cash prize. Nominees are distinguished by having made, over a period of years, a significant contribution to the promotion of an enduring international peace founded on social justice, self-determination, diversity, compassion, and environmental harmony, achieved through cooperative and nonviolent means in the spirit of Gandhi.


Prior to the internet PEP mailed out packets of articles to all who requested them; during the Vietnam War period alone PEP mailed over 10 million articles encouraging peace to educators and organizers in numerous countries. In 1975 PEP presented “Uncloaking the CIA” at Yale University, the first national conference exposing the dangers posed by unregulated CIA activities in 1976, from which a book of the same name was developed and published in 1978 (Ed. Howard Frazier). A principal conference organizer was Dr. Martin Cherniack, then a student at the Yale School of Medicine, who later served as president of the organization for 18 years. A conference is planned on the integration of the peace and environmental movements toward the transition to a sustainable, peaceful civilization.


By organizing groups of Americans to visit the USSR, Cuba, Costa Rica, China, and Mongolia during and after the Cold War, PEP has given ordinary citizens a chance to get to know “the Other,” leaving them with positive, lifelong memories, new friendships and hope for a peaceful world. As an example, in 2002 a PEP citizen diplomacy delegation journeyed to Vietnam to contribute to healing the deep scars left by the 1960-74 U.S. invasion. Its largest and most well-publicized event was the reciprocal tours of the Volga River in Russia and the Mississippi River in 1978 by citizen delegations from the Soviet Union, the United States, and other nations.

Though PEP is a secular organization, its roots are in the Christian Left and it continues to cooperate with members of the progressive religious community. In its early years PEP was led by Davis and Dr. Roland Bainton, both Yale professors (Religion and Divinity School, respectively), and its executive directors were retired Christian ministers. Howard T. Frazier, the first president of the Consumer Federation of America, served as PEP’s longest-serving Executive Director. He developed and conducted the programs and activities from 1978 until his death in 1997, with the assistance of his wife and, later, co-director Alice Zeigler Frazier.

The GPA - The First 36 Years

by James van Pelt

history-of-the-gandhi-award-james-van-pelt (pdf)