Jewish Council on Urban Affairs is proud to present the
Rabbi Robert J. Marx Social Justice Award to
Dedicated jcua member, past board president and Lifelong social justice champion
Peggy has been involved with organizing for social change since the 1960s, when as a student at UC Berkeley she worked with Cesar Chavez’s movement to advance labor rights for farm workers. In the Peace Corps she ran a literacy program for the workers in Peruvian fishmeal factories and helped rural communities to organize and run credit and agricultural cooperatives. Back in the U.S., she was a founder of the Chijnaya Foundation, which continues to work with dozens of impoverished communities on the Altiplano of Peru.
Peggy spent her career as a lawyer on behalf of children and families at the Children and Family Justice Center of Northwestern Law School, the Cook County Juvenile Court and the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. She has served as president of the Winnetka School Board and the Women’s Board of the Chicago Youth Centers, as trustee on North Suburban Special Education Board and as political action director for the New Trier Democrats.
Active with JCUA for over ten years, Peggy is a dedicated member and a leader on JCUA’s work for immigration justice. As board president, she led the organization to its renewed dedication to organizing the Jewish community to fight for systemic change. She is a mother of three and grandmother of three more, soon to be four. Peggy’s heroes are Amartya Sen, Bill Moyers, Joe Steiglitz, Reyna Wences and Robert J. Marx.