Press Release

Eight Resilient Horatio Alger Scholars Awarded Dennis Washington Leadership Graduate Scholarships

August 30, 2021


Carly Colombo


Eight Resilient Horatio Alger Scholars Awarded Dennis Washington Leadership Graduate Scholarships

In partnership with the Horatio Alger Association, the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation provides scholarships of up to $120,000 to Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars who wish to pursue masters, professional, or doctoral degrees

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 30, 2021)Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, Inc., a nonprofit educational organization honoring the achievements of remarkable individuals and encouraging youth to pursue their dreams through higher education, announced the eight recipients of the 2021 Dennis Washington Leadership Graduate Scholarship. Endowed in 2008 and funded by the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation in partnership with the Horatio Alger Association, the scholarship provides financial assistance to Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars who aspire to obtain graduate, professional, or doctoral degrees in business, engineering, law, medicine, applied sciences or education. Since 2008, the program has awarded more than $8 million in scholarships to more than 100 Alumni Scholars. In 2021, the eight recipients will be eligible to receive up to $120,000 each.

The Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation was established in 1988 by Dennis Washington, chairman emeritus of the Horatio Alger Association, and his wife, Phyllis. The Foundation, which supports deserving individuals to better society as a whole, established its Leadership Graduate Scholarship program to provide financial assistance exclusively to Horatio Alger undergraduate scholarship recipients who are committed to obtaining a graduate degree. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA and have exemplified leadership, integrity and perseverance in overcoming personal adversity. They should also exhibit a passion for entrepreneurship and a commitment to community service.

“This year’s scholarship recipients are truly inspirational as they remain committed to pursuing a graduate education despite unprecedented obstacles,” said Phyllis Washington, co-founder, the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation and chair of the selection committee for this scholarship. “We are proud to support the mission of the Horatio Alger Association by helping these outstanding students continue their educational journeys.”

The following Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars will receive up to $120,000 each in their pursuit of a master’s, doctoral or professional degree:

  • Iman Baharmand, University of British Columbia, Doctor of Medicine, 2014 British Columbia Scholar
  • Alisha Birk, Stanford University, Doctor of Medicine, 2015 National Scholar
  • Catherine Cascavita, David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles, Doctor of Medicine, 2014 National Scholar
  • Victoria Garrow, Deferred, Doctor of Medicine, 2017 National Scholar
  • Jessica Moore, New York University, Juris Doctor, 2017 National Scholar
  • Nicoly Santos, Harvard College, Juris Doctor, 2017 Florida State Scholar
  • Rana Thabata, Deferred, Juris Doctor, 2016 National Scholar
  • Zariah Tolman, Montana State University, Master of Science, 2016 Wyoming Scholar

“We are grateful for the ongoing support from Mr. and Mrs. Washington and their incredible Foundation, which enables our Scholars to continue pursuing their dreams,” said Terrence J. Giroux, executive director, Horatio Alger Association. “Their contributions open doors for these students and we look forward to witnessing all that these recipients will achieve in the future.”

Since the establishment of its scholarship programs in 1984, more than 35,000 students from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada have received more than $235 million in scholarships for undergraduate, graduate and technical studies. In 2000, 16 years after the establishment of its National Scholarship Program, the Association began funding scholarships concentrated in each state to further its mission of assisting deserving young people to pursue higher education. Additionally, Horatio Alger Members fund a series of Specialized Scholarships, which target students attending specific academic institutions or pursuing certain degree programs.

For more information about the Horatio Alger Association, please visit or follow the organization on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


About Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans:

Founded in 1947, the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, Inc. is dedicated to the simple but powerful belief that hard work, honesty and determination can conquer all obstacles. The Association honors the achievements of outstanding leaders who have accomplished remarkable successes in spite of adversity by bestowing upon them the Horatio Alger Award and inducting them as lifetime Members. Horatio Alger Members support promising young people with the resources and confidence needed to overcome adversity in pursuit of their dreams through higher education. Through the generosity of its Members and friends, in 2021, the Association will award more than $20 million in undergraduate and graduate need-based scholarships to 2,000 students across the United States and Canada and provide college support and mentoring services to its Scholars. Since 1984, the Association has awarded more than $235 million in undergraduate, graduate, military veteran and career and technical education scholarships to more than 35,000 deserving students. For more information, please visit

About Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation:

Founded in 1988, the Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation is the major philanthropic organization for The Washington Companies and the Washington family. Funding for the Foundation comes primarily from personal contributions from the Washington Family and profits of The Washington Companies. The Foundation focuses in the areas of education, arts and culture, health and human services, and community service. The Foundation website is located at

Our Members

Horatio Alger Members are part of a select group of individuals who have experienced a wide spectrum of what life can offer. Similar to characters in stories by Horatio Alger, Jr., they traditionally have started life in “humble” or economically challenging circumstances.

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Our Scholarship Programs

The Association administers more than 70 undergraduate and graduate need-based scholarship programs.

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