The Andrew Blane Memorial Fund for Human Rights Defenders


The Andrew Blane Memorial Fund for Human Rights Defenders is a fund established in memory of Andrew Blane — a champion of human rights and human beings. Andrew spent over half his ninety years championing individuals who sought to make the world a better place. Through his work for Amnesty International and in his daily life, Andrew brought a compassionate heart, generosity of spirit, and passionate ideals for a better world.

Andrew’s family established this fund to continue the work of his life: to privately lift up individuals facing hardship, and to publicly build a more peaceful, just, and loving society by defending human rights. To honor him and ensure his legacy, we establish this fund to support at least one “human rights defender” each year.

Criteria for the fund beneficiary:
- Must be a “Human Rights Defender”, working in some way to better our world
- Priority to those facing personal hardship (e.g. poverty, inability to work, exile, asylum seeking, grief, illness, crisis), who would benefit from financial support.
- Priority to women, in alignment with the Kota Alliance’s mission.

Electing the fund beneficiary:
- The beneficiary will be chosen by Andrew’s surviving family.
- A new beneficiary will be chosen yearly, on March 16, Andrew’s birthday.
- The community is welcome to suggest nominees for the fund, by email to 

Fund allocation
- There are no restrictions. The chosen person will have full freedom to use the funds however they want, in whatever way will most benefit their life.

You can also mail a check to The Kota Alliance, 601 West 26th St, #325-102, New York, NY 10001. Mark check “Andrew Blane Fund”


Tom Carroll
Gail Middleton
Fred and Rebecca Shiffman
Henry Klimowicz
Alexei Bayer
Pajton Dauer
Leena Lehtolainen
Synnöve Malmström
Isabel Muela
Barbara Sellars
Martin Scheinin and Margot Salom
Luce de Palchi
James Estreich
Minna Saslaw
Celia Gerard
Sasha Korbut
Priscilla Ellsworth
Laura Palotie
Frances and Pieter Schenkkan
Anne Alitolppa-Niitamo
Barbara Sproul
Nancy Noguera
Elizabeth Beaujour

The Anna-Riitta and Fritz Fuchs Fund for Reproductive Health


Anna-Riitta and Fritz Fuchs were a formidable couple of scientists. Fritz (1921-1995) was born in Denmark, and met his Finnish wife Anna-Riitta (1926- 2014) in Helsinki as a young doctor. He later persuaded her to come to Copenhagen to continue her chemistry studies.  In 1964, the family moved to the United States, when Fritz was invited to become the chairman of Obstetrics and Gynecology at New York Hospital – Cornell Medical College in New York. Anna-Riitta did research at Rockefeller University, and later joined her husband at NYH-CUMC , where she ran the Reproductive Endocrinology research lab.

Early in the new couple’s life, tragedy struck when their first child was born prematurely and did not survive. They then dedicated their lives to pursuing the mechanisms of premature labor, in addition to other work in the field of reproductive health. Their main field of research was the mechanism of action of oxytocin and prostaglandins in labor, and their findings have directly influenced clinical practice today. Many scientists from several countries worked in their lab and rose to become leaders in their field back home. 

Anna-Riitta and Fritz had four more children, while Anna-Ritta simultaneously pursued and completed her PhD in Chemistry. Coming from Finland, where women got the right to vote already in 1906, she was also an early feminist, declaring at one point that “women’s liberation would not have happened without the pill.” The Fuchses also actively promoted women in science.

Your donation of $300 pays for one month of co-working and meeting space, networking and other services provided by the Kota Alliance at its offices in the Women's Lab of the Centre for Social Innovation in New York City. $3600 pays for one year of peace of mind for such an organization, allowing them to focus fully on their work! The organizations will be chosen by qualified peers.

The Fuchs’ family, friends, colleagues and alumni are pleased to contribute to this fund in their memory, which will support Kota Alliance organizations working for women’s reproductive health and the education of girls. We invite others who value the importance of this field, and women’s contribution to science, to contribute as well.

Anna-Riitta’s Obituary

Fritz’s Obituary


Eliot Blane
James Capalino
Albert de la Chapelle
Frank and Judith Chervenak
Lars Fuchs
Martin Fuchs
Peter Husslein
Jaana Rehnstrom and Andrew Blane
Lauri Romanzi
Marissa Feinberg
Betul Ekmekci
Laura Avonius