From Our Blog

What We Learned During Our Time in Israel – Part 2  

By Professional Team on September 3rd, 2015

Editor’s Note: As we shared previously, the Jim Joseph Foundation Board and professional team traveled to Israel this summer for a week of special immersion activities and our regular quarterly board meeting. Conducting a Board meeting in Israel was part of the Foundation’s ten-year anniversary and an important opportunity for the Foundation to pay respect to Jim Joseph, z”l. Upon returning, each member of the professional team was asked to share reflections on their time in Israel and visits with grantees. Sharing excerpts with you, we believe, offers insights to the field about the place of Israel in the Foundation’s grantmaking strategy; the knowledge gained from site visits; and the benefits of Board and staff engaging in an immersive experience together. Below ...More

What We Learned During Our Time in Israel

By Professional Team on August 14th, 2015

Editor’s Note: As we shared previously, the Jim Joseph Foundation Board and professional team traveled to Israel earlier this summer for a week of special immersion activities and our regular quarterly board meeting. Conducting a Board meeting in Israel was part of the Foundation’s ten-year anniversary and an important opportunity for the Foundation to pay respect to Jim Joseph, z”l. Upon returning, each member of the professional team was asked to share reflections on their time in Israel and visits with grantees. Sharing excerpts with you, we believe, offers insights to the field about the place of Israel in the Foundation’s grantmaking strategy; the knowledge gained from site visits; and the benefits of Board and staff engaging in ...More

Israel and Philanthropic Inspiration

By Chip Edelsberg on July 8th, 2015

"Israel" Say the word in a gathering of almost any diverse group of Jews, and the room divides. “Israel" Write the word for almost any Jewish audience of readers—as I have done here—and expect that each individual immediately conjures up a passel of highly personalized associations and passionate opinions about political matters. Proceed with caution and make no assumptions as an author that there is agreement on what Israel means to your readers. That in mind, the Jim Joseph Foundation Board of Directors and professional staff recently returned from a week in Israel that included special immersion activities and our regular quarterly board meeting. Israel embraced us with her people and landscapes, language and culture. For whatever differences of opinions exist among the Directors ...More

A Special Meeting for the Jim Joseph Foundation

By Chip Edelsberg on June 5th, 2015

Later this month, the Jim Joseph Foundation Board of Directors and Professional team will hold a special Board Meeting in Israel. The Foundation last held a Board meeting there in 2009, and Directors have elected to conduct another meeting in Israel as part of the Foundation’s ten-year anniversary. This is an important opportunity for the Foundation to pay respect to Jim Joseph, z”l, and to visit with grantees in affirming the prominent place of Israel in the Foundation’s grantmaking strategy. Jim Joseph passed away suddenly in December, 2003. He had a deep connection to Israel and, as he desired, his family buried him there. A year and a half later, the Foundation as it is structured today was formed. One of ...More

Reflections on Israel Education as 5775 Approaches

By Chip Edelsberg on September 2nd, 2014

With Rosh Chodesh Elul upon us and the High Holidays approaching, the Jim Joseph Foundation is preparing for the 40th meeting of its Board of Directors. The Foundation will devote the very first part of its two days of deliberations to discussing how the Foundation might respond, philanthropically, in the aftermath of the war in the Middle East – amid concerns about surging expressions of conspicuous anti-Israel and anti-Semitic sentiment. In anticipation of this upcoming Board discussion, the Foundation’s professional team took stock of the Foundation’s current funding of Israel education and Israel education-related programs and projects. The Birthright Israel Foundation is the beneficiary of $31M of Jim Joseph Foundation funding. Brandeis University’s Summer Institute for Israel Studies has received $1.8M ...More

Not Just Business as Usual

By on November 28th, 2012

In the aftermath of staggering devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy and now one week into a fragile truce between Israel and Hamas, it is difficult to focus solely on our usual grantmaking efforts without also examining a role the Jim Joseph Foundation might take in directing philanthropic dollars to Jews in need.  While the Foundation infrequently makes emergency grants, it is keenly attuned to Jews whose lives have been disrupted by a natural disaster or whose very existence has been assaulted by Hamas rockets. Thanks to the expert work and reporting of a variety of organizations that immediately act when a disaster strikes or when fighting breaks out in the Middle East, the Foundation understands the severity of these circumstances.  We ...More

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