This first appeared in The Peoplehood Papers, volume 11—Jewish Peoplehood in Practice—published by the Center for Jewish Peoplehood Education.
When my late husband, Charles, and I embarked on our philanthropic journey 25 years ago, we were committed to doing our part to ensure a strong, vibrant future for the Jewish people and the State of Israel. We shared a vision of spreading the joy of Jewish living, giving and learning, and we sought to make our contribution where we could make the greatest difference.
Charlie and I identified our focus from the outset: we would invest in keeping the next generation of young Jews connected to and engaged with Jewish life and the Jewish state. “If you can get a bright and talented mind at a young age,” Charlie (z”l) wrote in one of his many notes, “you’ve got a lot with which to work.” To that he added: “If we are serious about Jewish renewal, we must make it more attractive to be Jewish.”