Larry and Dulcie Kugelman believe in the powerful impact each person can make toward peace. Both Larry and Dulcie have a long history contributing to the advancement of people and their communities. Following his graduation from college, having received a dual degree in English Literature and Philosophy, Larry joined the Peace Corps and traveled to Iran where he taught English to Iranian youth.
Dulcie became interested in the field of peace studies in the early 1980’s when she came to Chapman University as an undergraduate and found an interest and passion in the field of Peace Studies. As a student, Dulcie participated in the Chapman Peace Corps where she volunteered at a Santa Ana elementary school. She is still impacted by the memory of her experience helping a young boy who had Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), and who had also been a victim of violence.
According to Dulcie, it was during a class with Dr. Don Will, the Delp Wilkinson Chair in Peace Studies, where she learned that peace building is about conflict resolution. In one of her peace studies courses Dulcie wrote a paper about the religious and political conflict in Northern Ireland allowing her to explore her own heritage, and learn about the significance of such conflict in a global context. Following the receipt of her degree in peace studies at Chapman University, and Larry’s professional retirement from a long and distinguished career in the health field, they decided to travel to Ireland, to live and study mediation at the University of Ulster.
It was while living in Northern Ireland that Larry and Dulcie could more clearly see the impact that conflict can have. They saw firsthand how the unequal political structure combined with prejudice and violence divided the community, and allowed hatred to grow.
It was in Ireland that Larry and Dulcie learned to feel true empathy and compassion. It is through their experience and education that Larry and Dulcie have formed the belief that people need to be encouraged that they can make a difference. “Every person must know that they can contribute in some way to the peace-building effort worldwide.”