Inspire Action: Scholars Fighting for a Better World

Blog | 12/29/2022

Each day this week, we’re focusing on the ways in which Tillman Scholars inspire action across a variety of fields, including advocacy and humanitarianism. 

Inspiring action can mean many things, but one of the ways our Tillman Scholars do so is through their efforts in pursuit of justice, equity, and human rights. Whether it’s advocating for Afghan allies, ensuring equity for underrepresented populations, or working to fight poverty, these remarkable Tillman Scholars believe in a better future. These include: 

  • Safi Rauf, who spent more than 100 days in captivity by the Taliban beginning in December 2021. Freed in April, Safi came back home and immediately began leading efforts to support our Afghan allies, leading him to found the Human First Coalition
  • Bridgette Bell, who witnessed disparities and injustices in the military, motivating her to take action in empowering West Point grads through Do More Together, the Black and African American Alumni Association at West Point. She also fights for sexual assault survivors in the military by serving on the Department of Defense’s Independent Review Commission on Sexual Assault.
  • Elizabeth Tarbox, who worked for the Army Corps of Engineers to support humanitarian efforts after Hurricane Katrina and 9/11. A 2022 Tillman Scholar, she hopes to use her environmental engineering degree to aid in humanitarian crises, disaster relief, and solving human trafficking problems. 
  • Phil Caruso, an Air Force reservist who helped lead the response to COVID at the Javits Center in New  York and now chairs the board of No One Left Behind, which works to evacuate and resettle allies from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. 
  • Matt Miclette, who now leads ActionTank, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit cofounded by fellow Tillman Scholar Chris Diaz, which connects veterans with volunteer opportunities aimed at solving problems like food insecurity, gun violence, and period poverty in their community. 

The efforts of these remarkable Tillman Scholars — and so many more who lead through action on behalf of people who need help — are found in every walk of life, from grassroots volunteering to global organizations. 

You can continue to help them inspire action by donating today at