The Rales Foundation Gifts $5 Million to the Ron Brown Scholar Program to Increase Scholarships

For Immediate Release

June 17, 2021

Contact: Vanessa Evans-Grevious,

Charlottesville, VA – The Ron Brown Scholar Program is excited to announce a $5 million gift from The Norman R. and Ruth Rales Foundation. This game-changing grant will double the number of scholarships the Program is able to award over the next five years.

The Rales Foundation’s underwriting of one hundred twenty-five additional scholarships increases our incoming cohorts to almost 50 freshmen, each of whom will receive $40,000 toward their educational expenses. In making this generous grant, the Foundation recognized the life-changing impact this Program has had on a generation of talented but underprivileged young African Americans.

“We look forward to 2021 — our 25th year — with optimism and a renewed sense of purpose. The Rales gift sets a strong foundation for our next 25 years,” said Michael Mallory, president of the Ron Brown Scholar Program. The ripple effects of their generosity are incalculable: twice as many Scholars means twice as many transformative leaders. Ron Brown Scholars have already become innovators in fields as diverse as the arts, science, and public service. This next generation of Ron Brown Scholars will have double the opportunity to promote racial equality in America, and with your help, we will be there to support them all the way.

RBSP will continue fundraising to maintain our own commitment to supporting 20-25 Ron Brown Scholars annually. We ask that you continue your support of our work to benefit this expanding base of Scholars. Together, we can advance the ongoing leadership development of these students— and the more than 2,000 students enrolled in our three signature programs: the Ron Brown Scholarship, Ruth and Norman Rales Leaders Network, and the Guided Pathway Support Program.

About Norman & Ruth Rales

The Norman & Ruth Rales Foundation is dedicated to supporting children and families facing hardship by creating opportunities for them to realize life’s potential. The foundation strives to advance the legacy of Norman and Ruth Rales, two individuals from modest means who built an extraordinary life together based upon the values of integrity, compassion, hard work, and giving back to others. Norman Rales, raised in the Hebrew Orphan Asylum in Harlem during the Great Depression – where he learned lessons about the value of community, striving, and resiliency – was honored to be the 2010 recipient of the Ron Brown Scholar Program American Journey Award.

About the Ron Brown Scholar Program

The Ron Brown Scholar Fund is a 501(c)3 public charity. Named for the late Secretary of Commerce and inspired by his dedication to public service, the Ron Brown Scholar Program was established in 1996 to advance the collective impact of extraordinary service–minded leaders through a family type network. The value of the scholarship is far more than the $40,000.00 awarded for college; in addition to these funds, each Scholar has the opportunity to participate in leadership development activities, regional meetings, conferences and receives mentoring. Since the Program was founded in 1996, more than $28 million has been raised to support 489 students who have received generous scholarships to America’s finest colleges and universities.