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A nation must think before it acts.
On January 31, 2012, the board of trustees of the Philadelphia-based Foreign Policy Research Institute elected Alan Luxenberg as president of the think tank.
Luxenberg, who had been FPRI’s acting president for a year, has served the organization since 1976, when he was still a student at the University of Pennsylvania, and over the years has served in virtually every position within the organization.
He said he hoped to carry on “the FPRI tradition of marrying history and geography to inform policy recommendations,” adding that while “we have no party line at FPRI, we are not neutral.” FPRI’s scholars, he said, “work to advance the interests of the United States of America.”
In 1990 he founded FPRI’s Wachman Center (originally known as the Marvin Wachman Fund for International Education), which ever since has served as the outlet for FPRI’s educational programming, including its nationally renowned History Institute for Teachers. Faculty from over 500 schools in 46 states have participated in the History Institute, a professional development program for high school teachers.
As head of FPRI’s Wachman Center, he established a collaboration in 2005 with Mason Crest Publishers, a publisher of books for the pre-college educational market, and wrote two books designed for middle and high school students: The Palestine Mandate and the Creation of Israel (Mason Crest, 2007) and Radical Islam (Mason Crest, 2009). The Palestine Mandate is part of a 10-volume series on the Making of the Modern Middle East; Radical Islam is part of a 10-volume series on Islam. FPRI served as editorial consultant on the two book series and on an earlier book series on Modern Middle East Nations.
Luxenberg also developed partnerships with the Reserve Officers Association in Washington, DC, which today hosts many FPRI conferences, symposiums and briefings, and with the First Division Museum at Cantigny in Wheaton, Illinois, where the Institute’s annual program on military history for high school teachers is held.
In 2009, he helped establish the Consortium on Grand Strategy, which is jointly sponsored by FPRI and Temple University’s Center for the Study of Force and Diplomacy. The consortium is a unique undertaking that includes faculty from 15 different institutions of higher learning in Greater Philadelphia.
He serves on the board of the Global Philadelphia Association, a consortium of internationally oriented organizations in Philadelphia, and was chairman of Forum International, a predecessor consortium. He has also served on the boards of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia, Congregation Adath Jeshurun (Elkins Park), Auerbach Central Agency for Jewish Education, and was Steering Comittee chairman of WAC’s Forum III division (for young professionals). He founded and chaired Penn Periodicals, a consortium of journals and magazines published at the University of Pennsylvania. For six years, he taught grades 7-10 in two religious schools in Elkins Park, PA.
He received a B.A. in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Benjamin Franklin Scholar, and an M.A. in history from Temple University, where he was a Russell Conwell Fellow.