Profiles in Giving
A Renewed Commitment
Brad Meslin, F82, F84, names new scholarship fund after dean
Brad Meslin, F82, F84, and Dean James Stavridis, F83, F84, first crossed paths as graduate students at The Fletcher School. Nearly three decades would pass before they would meet again. During that time, Meslin and Stavridis ascended to the top levels of business and the military, respectively. Meslin co-founded CSP Associates Inc., which grew to become the leading global aerospace and defense advisory firm, engaged in nearly 1,000 mergers and acquisitions. Stavridis rose to U.S. Navy admiral and NATO supreme allied commander, responsible for more than one million U.S. and allied forces.
“It’s interesting how things have come full circle,” says Meslin, who reconnected when Stavridis became Fletcher’s dean two years ago. “It’s through Admiral Stavridis’s leadership and inspiration that I’ve become much more actively involved with The Fletcher School again.” Meslin recently helped develop Fletcher’s new strategic plan, “To Know the World.”
Meslin’s friendship with Stavridis and his renewed connection with The Fletcher School inspired him to establish the Admiral James Stavridis Endowed Scholarship Fund. “The scholarship fund is a way of recognizing Jim's role in leading the school forward. I also hope that it motivates others to contribute to a very worthy cause,” says Meslin, whose multiyear gift was matched dollar-for-dollar by The Fletcher School through the university’s Financial Aid Initiative. The program matches gifts of $100,000 or more to existing or new endowed scholarships made by June 30, 2016.
Meslin credits his Fletcher education with the development of CSP, founded with Mark Oderman, F80, and Peter Malone, F78, F83, A18P, and based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. “We took our Fletcher background and applied it to help translate the often arcane vocabulary of government contracting, national security, and defense programs into terms that investors could understand.”
Through the Stavridis scholarship fund, Meslin hopes to help Fletcher attract more top students, some of whom will follow nontraditional paths like he did. “Fletcher offers a unique multidisciplinary curriculum not replicated anywhere else,” he says. “But it is still at a disadvantage relative to other schools that can offer financial aid to more of the students they accept.”