David Levinson, Son of Longest Held U.S. Hostage, Joins Board of James W. Foley Legacy Foundation

WASHINGTON (Nov. 10, 2022) – David Levinson, one of seven children of Robert “Bob” Levinson, considered to be the longest held hostage in American history, has joined the board of the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation.

The elder Levinson, a retired FBI agent who was on a mission for the CIA, was taken captive by Iranian authorities in March 2007. The United States government concluded in 2020 that he had died in captivity. David Levinson and the Levinson family advocated relentlessly for his safe return. Their efforts, with help from the Foley Foundation, resulted in Congress passing the Robert Levinson Act in 2020, which strengthens government resources to bring home American hostages.

James Foley, a conflict journalist, was captured and beheaded by ISIS in 2014. After his death, his family created the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation to advocate for the safe return of Americans held hostage or wrongfully detained abroad and to improve safety for journalists working in conflict areas.

“I am honored to join the board of directors of the Foley Foundation,” David Levinson said. “It is my fervent desire that no families suffer as the Foleys have or as my family has, and I pledge to do all I can to help Americans who have been unjustly held or wrongfully detained abroad. I look forward to supporting this important and impactful organization as we work to reunite families, hold captors accountable and push those in power to do more.”

JWFLF President and Founder Diane Foley said he will be a crucial member of the foundation’s board. “We are delighted to welcome David Levinson to Foley foundation board as he continues his father’s legacy of service to fellow Americans and his country,” she said.

David Levinson began his professional career in the classroom as a Teach For America corps member, as did James Foley. He continues to work with the organization today, leading hiring and retention initiatives as the Managing Director of Strategy, People, and Operations. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Emory University and has a Master’s of Education from Hunter College. He and his family live in Connecticut.