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Jacob Berkman
 
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Jews take 5 of top 6 spots in annual list of top U.S. givers

WorldPublished: 11 February 2011

America’s most generous citizens gave less in 2010 than they have over the past decade, but Jews remained among the top givers, according to an annual survey by the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

In 2010, the top philanthropists in the United States contributed approximately $3.3 billion to charity, according to the Chronicle’s Philanthropy 50, a list that tracks the largest gifts made by individuals each year. That number is some $800 million below 2009 and less than half of the total made up by the top 50 donors when the Chronicle first started keeping tabs a decade ago.

 
 

Can Jewish giving weather the transfer from one generation to the next?

WorldPublished: 04 February 2011

NEW YORK – The recent news that one of the country’s largest Jewish foundations will close in two years, its assets to be divided among the foundations of its founder’s heirs, is shining a spotlight on a major question in the Jewish philanthropic world:

How will Jewish philanthropic giving weather the transfer of assets from one generation to the next?

The San Francisco-based Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund, which has given out about $700 million since it was started by Richard Goldman in 1951, with most of the gifts benefiting environmental, health, and Jewish causes, will close at the end of 2012, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

 
 

Madoff ‘clawback’ lawsuits going after Jewish groups, others

Local | WorldPublished: 17 December 2010

NEW YORK – When Bernard Madoff’s multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme first came to light two years ago, several Jewish organizations suffered heavy losses, their assets devastated by the fraud.

Now with the filing of lawsuits by the trustee for Madoff’s estate, it is the winners — the Jewish organizations that inadvertently benefited from the scheme — that are at risk of losing money.

Among them are:

• The America-Israel Cultural Foundation, which raises money to support artists and cultural institutions in Israel. The foundation, which allegedly made $6.68 million in fictitious profit between 2002 and 2008, is being sued for just more than $5 million, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

• The American Committee for Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, which is being sued for approximately $7 million, according to the Forward.

 
 

American Jews plan relief efforts in wake of Israeli blaze

Published: 10 December 2010

With Israel in desperate need of aid to fight the fire ravaging its north last week, countries from four continents sent help, including those with whom Israel has been at odds lately, such as Turkey.

Now that the fire is out, the question is what will Israel’s close friends, the American Jewish community, do to aid in the recovery process?

Damage estimates are ranging as high as $75 million, and the American Jewish community has opened fund-raising mailboxes, started as emergency campaigns while the blaze was still burning.

 
 

For third straight year, Germany doubling up on funding for Holocaust survivors’ home care

WorldPublished: 09 December 2010

The German government is doubling the amount of money it will provide for home care for poor Holocaust survivors, the Claims Conference said.

The increase announced Monday to $145 million for 2011, doubling the amount given in 2010, is meant to meet a growing need among the elderly survivors, and it comes as the sources of Claims Conference funds for Holocaust survivor programs — derived from the sale of heirless Jewish property in the former East Germany — are drying up.

 
 

Local delegates laud this year’s GA

Cover Story Published: 12 November 2010

NEW ORLEANS, La. – After three days of schmoozing, sessions, and feel-good speeches, the 3,000 or so Jewish federation officials who came to the annual General Assembly may have left New Orleans feeling invigorated.

The view expressed by many top officials was that after two years of a tough recession, the worst is over.

The federations collectively raised about $900 million through their annual campaigns in 2009 and, with two months to go in 2010, they have raised $750 million — within about 4 percent of where they were last year at this time, according to the treasurer of the Jewish Federations of North America, Michael Gelman.

 
 

Federations, JCPA teaming to fight delegitimization of Israel

WorldPublished: 29 October 2010

The Jewish Federations of North America and the Jewish Council for Public Affairs are launching a multimillion-dollar joint initiative to combat anti-Israel boycott, divestment, and sanctions campaigns.

The JFNA and the rest of the Jewish federation system have agreed to invest $6 million over the next three years in the new initiative, which is being called the Israel Action Network. The federations will be working in conjunction with JCPA, an umbrella organization bringing together local Jewish community relations councils across North America.

 
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Jewish charities do poorly in annual list

WorldPublished: 29 October 2010

While economists say the recession ended more than a year ago, you wouldn’t know it to look at Jewish nonprofits.

In an annual list released earlier this month by The Chronicle of Philanthropy of the top 400 nonprofits in the United States, fund raising at the country’s largest Jewish charities had declined by an average of 18.5 percent in 2009 — nearly twice as much as the list as a whole, which showed a fund-raising decline of 10 percent.

Twenty-two Jewish organizations made the Philanthropy 400, which ranks the country’s 400 largest nonprofits by the size of their fund-raising totals.

 
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New study of emerging Jewish leaders shows class differences

WorldPublished: 15 October 2010

NEW YORK – When the Avi Chai Foundation released sociologist Jack Wertheimer’s long-awaited report on Jewish leaders in their 20s and 30s, the results of the survey did more to confirm what most observers of the organized world suspected than it did to reveal anything earth-shattering.

But between the lines there were some surprises.

For the study, titled “Generation of Change: How Leaders in Their Twenties and Thirties are Reshaping American Jewish Life,” Wertheimer and five other well-known Jewish sociologists surveyed more than 3,000 Jews aged 22 to 40 who identify as Jewish leaders and conducted interviews with another 250. The work took two years.

 
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JDATA, new platform could spark Jewish data revolution

WorldPublished: 15 October 2010

Brandeis University’s ambitious JDATA project has the power to transform the process of understanding and funding Jewish education. Or it could be an expensive bust.

Funded with $1.5 million from the Jim Joseph Foundation and developed over the past two years, JDATA essentially is a website that allows Jewish educational organizations — in this case day schools, part-time schools, camps, preschools and college campus organizations — to submit organizational information, from financial figures to school censuses. The idea is to create a comprehensive database about the field.

 
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