Giffords named to Fulbright board

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Gabrielle Giffords was sworn in as a member of the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship board.

President Obama in May named Giffords to the board. Giffords, a centrist Democrat, retired from Congress in January 2012, a year after she was critically wounded by a gunman who killed six others during a shooting spree in her Tucson, Ariz. hometown.

Giffords, with her husband, Mark Kelly, this year started a group that advocates responsible gun use. She was a Fulbright scholar to Mexico in the 1990s.

“Ms. Giffords is known for her resilience and for her consensus-building leadership in Congress,” said the State Department in its statement Monday announcing Giffords’ swearing in.

The Fulbright Foundation, established by Congress and administered under the State Department’s aegis, grants scholarships for foreign students to study in the United States and American students to study abroad.

Giffords was the first Jewish women elected to federal office by Arizonans.