Bersson is a James Madison University emeritus professor who founded the Interfaith Initiative for Peace and Justice in Harrisonburg. He taught modern and contemporary art history, aesthetics, art criticism and art appreciation at JMU for 20 years. During this period, he wrote two art appreciation/art history textbooks, Worlds of Art (Mayfield 1991) and Responding to Art (McGraw-Hill 2004). He has studied Hebrew and Arabic and has visited Israel/Palestine several times, where he has family and friends - his longest stay being for six-months on a kibbutz ulpan (work-study) program shortly after undergraduate school at Brandeis University

After he retired from JMU in 2003, he spent 14 months in Egypt where he learned firsthand about various Muslim and Christian cultures of the region. Because of his work in local interfaith activities, he has strong connections to diverse communities in the Shenandoah Valley.

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