Yesterday, Team Schusterman—represented by myself (center-right) and our Director of Network Initiatives, Seth Cohen, (far-right), pictured with Israel’s Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren (center-left) and Shawn Landres of Jewish Jumpstart (far-left)—had the opportunity to attend the White House celebration of Jewish American Heritage Month. Read More »
Lisa Eisen is the National Director of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation.
This month, I had the pleasure of celebrating the tenth anniversary of a 90-year old organization. It was exactly 10 years ago that BBYO established itself as an independent organization, leaving its birthplace at B’nai B’rith International and starting a journey to reinvent itself into the thriving, energetic force that today is reaching and engaging more than 36,000 teens annually.
When our foundation got involved in 2000, BBYO had just over 12,000 teen members, and the numbers were dwindling precipitously. Morale was low, the organization had many staff vacancies, and it was in serious financial distress. The outlook was bleak, and many had written off BBYO as a failure of the organized Jewish community.
But where others saw failure, Charles and Lynn Schusterman recognized the potential that BBYO had to impact the lives of tens of thousands of Jewish teens. Read More »
Passover begins at sunset on Friday, so it is time to make the final preparations and think about this year’s seder. To help us make this year’s Passover different than all others, our good friend Rabbi Josh Feigelson has cooked up some unique ways to create a memorable Passover Seder. Friday, so it is time
Read on and be sure to send us your stories, tips and photos from your Passover seders.
Wishing you a Passover filled with meaning and joy! Read More »
As part of eJewishPhilanthropy’s crowdsourced conversation, What is Jewish Philanthropy?, I share why I am more optimistic than ever about the future of Jewish philanthropy. I invite you to comment below. Do you agree that the future of Jewish philanthropy looks brights? Do you believe that the greatest philanthropists are those who give both time and money?
Ask anyone to name the greatest philanthropists of all time—Jewish or otherwise—and they will invariably identify people known for giving away huge sums of money. From Rockefeller to Rothschild, from Buffet to Blaustein, from Morgan to Montefiore, most of us have come to equate philanthropy with the charitable contributions of people of immense wealth. Read More »
As events continue to unfold across the Middle East, with particular focus on Syria, we are excited to be co-hosting this event with NYU’s Taub Center for Israel Studies!
Itamar Rabinovich, who served as Israel’s ambassador to the United States and chief negotiator with Syria during the Rabin government, will deliver a public lecture “From Waging Peace to Lingering Conflict” on Monday, April 2, 5:30-7 p.m. at NYU School of Law’s Greenberg Lounge, Vanderbilt Hall, 40 Washington Square South (between Sullivan and MacDougal Sts.).
The lecture, sponsored by NYU’s Taub Center for Israel Studies and the Charles & Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, is free but an RSVP is required to firstname.lastname@example.org or 212.998.8981. Subway Lines: A, B, C, D, E, F, M (West 4th Street).
The term Jewish Peoplehood may be a modern formulation, but the belief in an underlying unity that makes an individual part of a Jewish people dates back millennia. As the Haggadah will remind us in a few short weeks, “In each generation every individual should feel as though he or she had actually been redeemed from Egypt.”
In the 21st century, however, the challenges the Jewish community faces in ensuring we remain a group of people bound together by a common set of values and beliefs—and in finding agreement on the question at the heart of it, why be Jewish—have become increasingly complex. Read More »
As part of Philanthropy Magazine’s Winter 2012 issue on global giving, 13 of America’s leading international donors and development experts responded to a series questions:
- “What have you learned that changed the way you give internationally?”
- “Tell us about a really smart international grant.”
- “What’s an unsung organization doing great work in the field?”
This article first appeared on the Huffington Post.
This past summer, I had the opportunity to spend time with nearly 60 Teach For America corps members taking part in our Foundation’s REALITY Israel Experience, a program that enables corps members to travel to Israel to explore the values that undergird their commitment to public service.
When I asked these passionate young people what motivated them to apply for the program, I heard a wide variety of responses, some inspiring, some empowering, some soulful—and one in particular that was heartbreaking.
“I applied,” one participant told me, “because I knew it would be the first time since I decided to live openly as a gay person that I would feel equal and accepted by the Jewish community.” She desperately wanted to find a place where she could be herself.
Her story is one I have heard far too many times from Jews everywhere—in Israel, in the U.S. and in countries around the world—who feel excluded from our community because of their sexuality. Despite some progress, the pace of change within the faith-based world in general has simply been too slow in this area. Read More »