American Jewish Congress

The American Jewish Congress is an association of American Jews organized to defend Jewish interests at home and abroad through public policy advocacy, using diplomacy, legislation, and the courts.[1]

American Jewish Congress
Logo of the American Jewish Congress
Organisation logo
Founded1918
Registration no.13-1679610 (EIN)
PurposeAmerican Jews organized to defend Jewish interests at home and abroad through public policy advocacy - using diplomacy, legislation, and the courts.
Location
Key people
Jack Rosen (President), DR. Munr Kazmir (Vice President), Ben Chouake (Secretary), Dan Schori (Executive Director)
Websitehttp://www.ajcongress.org/

History

The American Jewish Congress was founded in 1918, and represented a "populist counterbalance to the American Jewish Committee, which was dominated by the wealthy and conservative German-Jewish establishment."[2] Leaders within the American Jewish community, consisting of Jewish, Zionist, and immigrant community organizations, convened the first American Jewish Congress (AJCongress) in Philadelphia's historic Independence Hall. Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, Felix Frankfurter, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, and others joined to lay the groundwork for a national democratic organization of Jewish leaders from all over the country, to rally for equal rights for all Americans regardless of race, religion or national ancestry.[3]

In addition to its stated goals of equal rights for all, it was founded to broaden Jewish leadership and to present a unified American Jewish position at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919. It became effective as a pressure group in 1928 under the leadership of Rabbi Stephen Samuel Wise, who remained the president and chief spokesperson of the AJCongress until his death in 1949. The current head of the AJC is Jack Rosen.

The 1930s

Throughout the 1930s, Rabbi Wise was vocal in his warnings about the dangers of Nazism. When Adolf Hitler was named chancellor of Germany on January 30, 1933, Wise organized a mass protest rally at Madison Square Garden, in New York City. He did this despite strong opposition by the German government, the U.S. State Department, and conservative Jewish organizations such as the AJCommittee and B'nai B'rith. The American Jewish Congress continued to organize protest rallies throughout the 1930s and 1940s. In August 1933 the American Jewish Congress led a general boycott of German goods.[4]

In 1934, Daniel Marks was named head of the AJC. He traveled to Germany and brought 5,000 Jews to America.

In 1936 the American Jewish Congress was instrumental in establishing the World Jewish Congress (WJC). Maintaining his position as president of the AJCongress, Rabbi Wise was also elected president of the WJC. During World War II, the AJCongress acted as a liaison between the U.S. government and the WJC on issues relating to rescue attempts made on behalf of European Jews.

The 1940s

In August 1942, Rabbi Wise received a cable from Gerhard Riegner,[5] the WJC representative in Switzerland. Riegner reported that the Nazis had planned, and were implementing a policy to exterminate all of European Jewry; the cable also referred specifically to the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp. After the State Department confirmed the accuracy of the information in the cable, now known as the "Riegner telegram," the AJCongress convened a Joint Emergency Committee.[6] The committee sought to coordinate the major Jewish organizations in the United States to lobby the Roosevelt administration to take increased measures rescuing European Jews.

In December 1942 the American Jewish Congress established a Planning Committee, which sought support for a variety of rescue proposals. The committee was never more than marginally successful in mobilizing American public support for rescue efforts. The most impressive of these projects was another rally at Madison Square Garden. Held on March 1, 1943, the rally drew a crowd of 70,000. Similar rallies were subsequently held in a number of cities throughout the United States.

In August 1943 Rabbi Stephen Wise met Jan Karski.

The American Jewish Congress was pro-Zionist in its platform. Its leadership overlapped with that of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA). As a result, the two organizations agreed to concentrate on different tasks during the war. The American Jewish Congress dedicated itself to rescuing European Jews, while the ZOA worked to establish a Jewish state in Palestine. This arrangement continued after the war, although its significance decreased after the creation of the state of Israel in 1948.

AJCongress was a pioneer in the struggle for Soviet Jewry, long before it became a popular movement.

Domestically, AJCongress became active as well. It was the first Jewish organization to use law and legislation to protect the rights of American Jews, at a time when other Jewish organizations were using appeals to good will to achieve this objective.

The 1960s

Rabbi Joachim Prinz (1902–88) was president from 1958 to 1966. He served as a founding chairman of the 1963 March on Washington and spoke at that event.[7]

The AJCongress was involved in legal proceedings that sometimes conflicted with other Jewish American organizations. In 1966 the AJCongress joined the New York Civil Liberties Union, the United Parents Associations and the United Federation of Teachers in filing suit against provisions of the Federal Education Act, which would provide support to religious schools. Jewish day school educators and leaders in over 30 states and over 100 communities representing 330 Hebrew day schools insisted that the American Jewish Congress did not speak for American Jews on religious or educational issues and is viewed by some in the Jewish community as primarily a secular agency. Then president of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America (also known as the Orthodox Union), Rabbi Joseph Karasick, said that the American Jewish Congress “speaks for itself only and is under no circumstances to be taken as representing the American Jewish community. The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, central spokesman for this country’s 3,100 Orthodox synagogues, as well as all Orthodox rabbinic bodies and every other Orthodox Jewish body, have given full support to the Federal Education Act and deem its provisions to be consonant with the principle of church-state separation.”[8]

The 1980s and 1990s

Following its heyday during the 1960s, when many of its activities coincided with the larger Civil Rights Movement, a drop-off in its membership throughout the 1980s and 1990s ensued.

In the late 1990s and into the 2000s, the AJCongress experienced the defection of a number of local chapters, including Boston, Philadelphia and Los Angeles. There were disputes over ideological issues and finances. Some of those chapters have since reestablished themselves as independent non-profits focused on liberal social and community issues. Finding the AJC had become too conservative, members of the Los Angeles chapter, for instance, created the Progressive Jewish Alliance (PJA) in 1999.[9] They sought to assert a Jewish interest in the campaigns for social justice in Southern California, which has the United States' second largest Jewish population. The Progressive Jewish Alliance expanded in February 2005 by opening a San Francisco Bay Area chapter.

The AJC has since regrouped and is actively engaged in constitutional issues domestically and supporting Israel and challenging anti-Semitism abroad.

2000–2010

In 2004, AJC led a successful effort to keep federal funds out of Catholic schools. U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler sided with the American Jewish Congress, which argued that federal funds were being used to pay for teaching of Christian values through programs such as the University of Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education. AmeriCorps argued that its funding based on a program’s secular activities, not the religious teaching. But Judge Kessler ruled that the religious and secular activities were not sufficiently separated or monitored.[10]

The AJC suspended its activities and laid off much of its staff on July 13, 2010 because it had run out of operating funds due to losses in the Madoff scandal.[11][12] It disclosed that it lost roughly $21 million of the $24 million in endowments it had invested through Bernard Madoff and his firm, money that supported the AJCongress and its programs. The endowments supported about one quarter of the AJC’s budget, which was $6.2 million in 2006. The AJCongress had connected with Madoff through Martin and Lillian Steinberg, supporters of AJCongress and friends of Madoff who invested with him, and Madoff became a trusted advisor of AJCongress on financial matters. The AJCongress increased its investments with Madoff in 2004, after it sold its New York headquarters for $18 million in 2003, and when the Steinbergs died they left approximately $17 million to the organization, which was also invested with Madoff. While the financial losses of the endowment were crippling, others noted that the AJCongress had long been in the shadow of larger American Jewish organizations such as the American Jewish Committee and the ADL. While the AJCongress focused on religious freedom in America, free speech and women’s rights, donors showed more interest in Israel and anti-Semitism.[13]

While the AJC had a long history of fighting aid to religious schools, the effort proved to be in conflict with Orthodox Jewish communities that were very successful in attracting government funds for students. An investigation by the Jewish Daily Forward showed that each year, tens of millions of dollars in federal Pell grants go to yeshivas, which typically focus on Talmud study, rather than secular subjects. For 2010, 63 of the 152 religious institutions that received Pell grants were Jewish, the data shows. The Jewish schools received 53% of the $84.5 million in Pell grant money that went to religious schools in 2010. Of the top 10 Pell grant recipients in dollar terms in 2010, six were yeshivas.[14]

2010–present

In 2012, the AJC spent 16.5% of its expenses on programs and services it delivered. It spent 71% on administrative expenses.[15] In 2013 the board restructured the organization; since then it has been working on incorporating new missions that are relevant to the times. Today, the American Jewish Congress is dealing with the following challenges: Strengthening the bond between the U.S. and Israel; Combating domestic and global anti-Semitism; Fighting to defeat the BDS movement (BDS movement (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions); Preventing a nuclear Iran; Promoting cooperation and trade between Israel and countries around the world.

Among its major programs are the International Mayors Conference, where the organization brings over 30 Mayors from around the world, to promote Israel back in their cities. some of the participants were the Mayor of NYC, President Mauricio Macri from Argentina when he was the Mayor of Buenos Aires, Former Prime Minister of Italy Matteo Renzi and more. Moreover, The Organization successfully fight the BDS movement (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions),[16] and believe that the BDS is not a purely anti Israel issue, but a human right issue. Moreover, in order to make the decision makers more accessible to the Jewish Community, the organization created the 500 club - an executive briefing meetings and conference calls with the decision makers and members of the Jewish Community.[17]

The First Amendment

The American Jewish Congress has been involved in hundreds of civil rights and religious freedoms cases, before local, Federal and the United States Supreme Court. Brown v. Board of Education[18] gave AJCongress its public entrée into the field of Constitutional defense agencies.

The group advocates removing religious symbols from public life, and thus filed a brief against allowing public displays of the menorah during Hanukkah in County of Allegheny v. ACLU.

Charitable choice

AJCongress monitors issues like "charitable choice" proposals, in which federal funds would be given to faith-based institutions to provide social services historically the responsibility of government.

Women's issues

AJCongress was the first mainstream Jewish organization with a membership of both men and women to devote considerable time, effort and resources to women's issues. The Women's Division, founded 1933, carried on these activities for approximately fifty years before it was discontinued as a separate section; the organization subsequently continued its support for women's rights and feminist perspectives under the auspices of the Commission for Women's Equality (CWE), which was established in 1984.[19]

CWE has turned its attention to the ethical, legal and medical issues arising from research revealing that Ashkenazi Jewish women have higher than average frequencies of gene mutations predisposing them to breast and ovarian cancer. The 1996 conference, Understanding the Genetics of Breast Cancer: Implications for Treatment, Policy and Advocacy, organized by national CWE, has been duplicated by AJCongress regions nationwide. In 2000, CWE presented Cancer Genetics in the Ashkenazi Community, to explore medical breakthroughs since the first conference as well as new developments in genetic testing. This follow-up conference was distinctly more upbeat than its predecessor, both in terms of medical preventive measures and in regard to legislation to ensure privacy and eliminate discrimination based on testing.

In 1988, AJCongress hosted "The First International Jewish Feminist Conference:The Empowerment of Women" in Israel to address women’s rights. More than 600 Jewish women from around the world attended, including former Congresswoman Bella Abzug and Betty Friedan. Some of the attendees visited the Kotel, Torah in hand and found that they were not allowed to pray in their fashion because of Orthodox restrictions on women wearing religious items, singing or reading Torah. A movement began, now known around the world as Women of the Wall, headed by Anat Hoffman. Polls show that in Israel "64 percent of the secular public, 53 percent of the traditional non-religious public, and 26 percent of the traditional-religious public support the group, Women of the Wall, and their quest to pray at the Kotel in their fashion. But their cause was unanimously rejected by the poll’s ultra-Orthodox respondents,” according to an article in the Algemeiner.[20]

The CWE most recently held a major women's conference in Tel Aviv, Israel in May 2006, bringing notable women of achievement like Anne F. Lewis, Lynn Sherr, anchor for ABC's 20/20, Irshad Manji, author of The Trouble with Islam, Bettina Plevan, Partner at Proskauer Rose LLP and former head of the New York Bar Association and others to a weeklong discussion on women's accomplishment and success.[21][22] Carole E. Handler was the CWE's most recent Chair.

Interfaith

AJCongress has participated in interfaith dialogue with the U.S. Bishops' Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.

Controversies

Israel Singer

In the fall of 2007, AJCongress announced that it had retained the services of Rabbi Israel Singer,[23] the former secretary general of the World Jewish Congress - who left the agency after claims of financial irregularities were levied following an investigation by the New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer[24] and followed up by accusations from then WJC President Edgar Bronfman[25] about alleged theft.

Ms. Magazine

On January 10, 2008, AJCongress released an official statement[26] critical of Ms. magazine's refusal to accept a full page advertisement[27] honoring three prominent Israeli women: Dorit Beinisch (president of the Supreme Court of Israel), Tzipi Livni (Foreign Affairs Minister of Israel), and Dalia Itzik (speaker of the Knesset). AJCongress press release states: "...'What other conclusion can we reach,' asked Richard Gordon, President of AJCongress, 'except that the publishers − and if the publishers are right, a significant number of Ms. Magazine readers − are so hostile to Israel that they do not even want to see an ad that says something positive about Israel?'...'Clearly Ms. has changed a great deal from the days when AJCongress members and leaders of the AJCongress' Commission for Women’s Equality − including Betty Friedan, Bella Abzug and Ms. co-founder Letty Pogrebin − were at the forefront of the Women's Movement that led to the creation of Ms. Magazine.'[26]

Katherine Spillar, executive editor of Ms. magazine responded to the AJCongress on Ms. magazine's website, denying an anti-Israel bias, stating that: "Ms. Magazine has been criticized for not running an ad submitted by the American Jewish Congress (AJCongress) featuring the photographs of three prominent Israeli women leaders with the statement 'This is Israel.'" She argued that the proposed advertisement was inconsistent with the magazine's policy to accept only 'mission-driven advertisements from primarily non-profit, non-partisan organizations', suggesting that the advertisement could have been perceived 'as favoring certain political parties within Israel over other parties, but also with its slogan “This is Israel,” the ad implied that women in Israel hold equal positions of power with men.'[11] Spillar stated that the magazine had 'covered the Israeli feminist movement and women leaders in Israel ... eleven times' in its last four years of issues.[12]

Location of materials for research on the American Jewish Congress

The Western Jewish History Center, of the Judah L. Magnes Museum, in Berkeley, California has a large collection of historical records and documents from the Northern California Division of AJCongress. Additionally, The American Jewish Historical Society has a large collection related to the American Jewish Congress. The American Jewish Historical Society has recently completed a National Endowment for the Humanities funded project to process a new accretion of organizational records and create a finding aid for the additional records, photographs, and audio-visual material related to the American Jewish Congress and its Executive Directors, Commissions, and Public Relations department.

References

  1. ^ AJCongress' Website
  2. ^ AJCongress Crippled by Madoff Scandal The jewish Daily Forward, 8 February 2009
  3. ^ Time Magazine, June 20, 1938
  4. ^ American Jewish Historical Society
  5. ^ JVL Website
  6. ^ Joint Emergency Committee
  7. ^ Papers of Martin Luther King, pg 517
  8. ^ Orthodox Groups to Defend in Court Federal Aid to Parochial Schools JTA, 5 December 1966
  9. ^ Cohen, Aryeh (2007). "Progressive Jewish Alliance Ed. Michael Berenbaum and Fred Skolnik. Detroit, 2007. 544. Gale Virtual Reference Library". Encyclopaedia Judaica. Macmillan Reference USA, 2nd ed. Vol. 16. p. 544. Retrieved 4 May 2014.
  10. ^ AmeriCorps sponsor must stop funding Catholic programs Archived 2014-09-29 at the Wayback Machine The First Amendment Center, 7 July 2004
  11. ^ Berkman, Jacob (20 July 2010). "AJCongress shutters quickly, pays debts slowly". Jewish Telegraphic Agency (jta.org). Archived from the original on 2010-07-28. Retrieved July 28, 2010.
  12. ^ "U.S. Jewish Group Eyes Merger With AJC After Losing Money in Madoff Scam". Fox News. 20 July 2010. Archived from the original on July 28, 2010. Retrieved July 28, 2010.
  13. ^ "AJCongress Crippled by Madoff Scandal" The Jewish Daily Forward, 8 January 2009
  14. ^ "Yeshivas Score Huge Pell Grant Windfall Jewish Religious Colleges Get Tens of Millions in Federal Aid" The Jewish Daily Forward, 31 October 2012
  15. ^ American Jewish Congress Charity Navigator, accessed 15 April 2015
  16. ^ [1]
  17. ^ [2]
  18. ^ Brown v. Board of Ed. Archived 2005-12-22 at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ Svonkin, Stuart. "American Jewish Congress." Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Encyclopedia. 1 March 2009. Jewish Women's Archive (jwa.org). Retrieved October 24, 2015.
  20. ^ AJCongress At the Wall…a History of Support for Women Archived 2007-02-06 at the Wayback Machine AJC, accessed 15 April 2015
  21. ^ AJCongress Release
  22. ^ CWE Article PDF Archived 2006-12-15 at the Wayback Machine
  23. ^ JTA Wire, (by way of the Baltimore Jewish Times), AJC Taps Israel Singer, December 2, 2007
  24. ^ NY Times, Spitzer Looking Into World Jewish Congress, By STEPHANIE STROM, December 31, 2004
  25. ^ Ha’aretz, World Jewish Congress fires chairman Israel Singer in surprise move, By Amiram Barkat, March 15, 2007
  26. ^ a b American Jewish Congress (2008-01-10). "Ms. Magazine Blocks Ad on Israeli Women". Archived from the original on 13 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-18.
  27. ^ American Jewish Congress (2008-01-10). "This is Israel. (PDF document)" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-10-23. Retrieved 2008-01-18.

External links

Alfred J. Marrow

Alfred Josephon "Jay" Marrow (March 8, 1905 – March 3, 1978) was an American industrial psychologist, executive, civil rights leader, and philanthropist.

American Jewish Congress v. Bost

American Jewish Congress v. Bost is an establishment clause lawsuit concerning the separation of church and state in Brenham, Texas. The case is the first constitutional challenge to a charitable choice contract.

Arthur Hertzberg

Arthur Hertzberg (June 9, 1921 – April 17, 2006) was a Conservative rabbi and prominent Jewish-American scholar and activist.

Carole E. Handler

Carole Enid Handler is an American lawyer who specializes in intellectual property litigation in the areas of trademark, copyright and antitrust laws, particularly those related to entertainment and media industry. She is commonly known as the "lawyer who saved Spiderman."

David Twersky (journalist)

David Twersky (February 19, 1950 – July 16, 2010) was a journalist, Zionist activist, and peace advocate in Israel and the United States. He was an editor for The Jewish Daily Forward and The New York Sun and a leader of the American Jewish Congress.

Twerksy was born and raised in the Bronx, New York, where he grew up in the left-leaning Sholem Aleichem cooperative housing project. He attended the Ramaz School in Manhattan and was active in the Labor Zionist youth movement Habonim. He attended City College of New York. In 1974, Twersky made aliyah (emigrated to Israel) and helped to re-establish Kibbutz Gezer.In Israel, Twersky worked for the Labor Party's international affairs department, where he dealt with the Socialist International. He edited Shdemot, the literary journal of the kibbutz movement, and Spectrum, an English-language political monthly. Twersky served in an artillery unit during the 1982 Lebanon War.Twersky returned to the U.S. in 1986 and became a full-time journalist. When the Yiddish Forverts started an English-language edition in 1990, he became deputy editor and Washington bureau chief. During his seven years at The Forward, Twersky was responsible for breaking many news stories. One of his best-known stories involved President Bill Clinton's associate Johnnetta B. Cole, who had been suggested as a possible nominee for Secretary of Education, and the fact that she had served on the national committee of the Venceremos Brigade. Another of Twersky's stories brought to light some views of Lani Guinier, a law professor whom Clinton had nominated to be Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights; those opinions were considered controversial and her nomination was withdrawn.After leaving The Forward, Twersky became editor of the New Jersey Jewish News. Later he joined The New York Sun as foreign editor and columnist. Twersky also worked as director of international affairs for the American Jewish Congress.

Felix Frankfurter

Felix Frankfurter (November 15, 1882 – February 22, 1965) was an Austrian-American lawyer, professor, and jurist who served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Frankfurter served on the Supreme Court from 1939 to 1962 and was a noted advocate of judicial restraint in the judgments of the Court.

Frankfurter was born in Vienna, Austria, and immigrated to New York City at the age of 12. After graduating from Harvard Law School, Frankfurter worked for Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson. During World War I, Frankfurter served as Judge Advocate General. After the war, he helped found the American Civil Liberties Union and returned to his position as professor at Harvard Law School. He became a friend and adviser of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who appointed him to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Benjamin Cardozo.

Frankfurter served on the Court until his retirement in 1962, and was succeeded by Arthur Goldberg. Frankfurter wrote the Court's majority opinions in cases such as Minersville School District v. Gobitis, Gomillion v. Lightfoot, and Beauharnais v. Illinois. He wrote dissenting opinions in notable cases such as Baker v. Carr, West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, Glasser v. United States, and Trop v. Dulles.

Henry Siegman

Henry Siegman (born 1930) is a German-born American. He is President of the U.S./Middle East Project (USMEP), an initiative focused on U.S.-Middle East policy and the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, launched by the Council on Foreign Relations in 1994, and established as an independent policy institute in 2006 under the chairmanship of General (Ret.) Brent Scowcroft. As of July 1, 2016 Siegman will assume the title of President Emeritus of the USMEP.

He is a former non-resident visiting research professor at the Sir Joseph Hotung Middle East Program of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, a former Senior Fellow on the Middle East at the Council on Foreign Relations, and a former National Director of the American Jewish Congress.

History of the Jews in Brenham, Texas

The history of the Jews in Brenham, Texas, covers a period of over 140 years. As one of the first areas in Texas, outside of major population centers, to develop a sizable Jewish population, the community boasts many things of historical note. The Brenham community was formally organized in 1885.

Institute for Jewish Policy Research

The Institute for Jewish Policy Research (JPR), founded as the Institute of Jewish Affairs, is a London-based research institute and think tank. It specializes in contemporary Jewish affairs, with a particular focus on Jews in Britain and across Europe. It is responsible for most of the recent data that exist on Jews in Britain, and one of its reports is a study of Jews in Britain based on the 2001 UK Census data, an analysis of the attitudes of Jews in Britain towards Israel, an extensive study of child poverty and deprivation in the British Jewish community and the first National Jewish Student Survey. Its recent think-tank activities have included "Res Publica: The European Common Good," and "New Conceptions of Community." JPR also runs a public education programme, and has hosted lectures from Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks, James Wolfenson, Professor Jonathan Sarna and Professor Zygmunt Bauman.

Its current programme includes a National Jewish Community Survey in the UK, and a European Union sponsored study of Jewish perceptions and experiences of antisemitism across Europe.

The Institute was founded in New York in 1941, under the auspices of the World Jewish Congress and the American Jewish Congress. It moved to London in 1965, and was refounded as the Institute for Jewish Policy Research in February 1996.It is a registered charity under English law and it exists to provide "policy-related research and analysis for individuals and organizations concerned with the enhancement of contemporary Jewish life." Its honorary president is Jacob Rothschild, 4th Baron Rothschild, its chairman is Stephen Moss, and its executive director is Dr Jonathan Boyd. Previous directors of the institute include Professor Barry Kosmin, and Antony Lerman.

Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center

Not to be confused with the California-based "Terrorism Information Center".The Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (ITIC), also known as Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center in honor of Meir Amit, is an Israeli-based research group with close ties to the Israel Defense Forces and the American Jewish Congress. The organisation is part of the Israel Intelligence Heritage and Commemoration Center (IICC).

Jack Rosen

Jack Rosen (born 1949) is an American businessman, investor, philanthropist, and activist. He is chairman of the American Jewish Congress. He is chief executive of a New York Real Estate firm, Rosen Partners LLC. and an international board member of Altimo.

Joachim Prinz

Joachim Prinz (May 10, 1902 – September 30, 1988) was a German-American rabbi who was outspoken against Nazism and became a Zionist leader. As a young rabbi in Berlin, he was forced to confront the rise of Nazism, and eventually emigrated to the United States in 1937. There he became vice-chairman of the World Jewish Congress, an active member of the World Zionist Organization and a participant in the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

Julian Mack

Julian William Mack (July 19, 1866 – September 5, 1943) was a United States federal judge and social reformer.

Justice for Jews from Arab Countries

Justice for Jews from Arab Countries (JJAC) is a political advocacy organization founded in New York in 2002, which was formed by the Conference of Presidents, the World Jewish Congress, the American Sephardi Federation, and the World Organization of Jews from Arab Countries. Today, JJAC works with the American Jewish Committee, American Jewish Congress, Jewish Council for Public Affairs, the World Sephardic Congress.

Mir Yeshiva (Brooklyn)

The Mir Yeshiva (Hebrew: ישיבת מיר‎, Yeshivas Mir), commonly known as the Mirrer Yeshiva, is officially registered with the College Board as the Mirrer Yeshiva Central Institute. It is a prominent, Haredi yeshiva located in Brooklyn, New York known for talmudic studies.

Its long-time Rosh Yeshiva was Rabbi Shmuel Berenbaum, who died on January 6, 2008. Rabbi Berenbaum was a son-in-law of the founder of the Brooklyn branch of the Mir Yeshiva, Rabbi Avraham Kalmanowitz. Mayor Michael Bloomberg issued a statement praising Berenbaum, noting that he built the Jewish academy "into one of the largest centers for Torah study in the world." Steven Bayme, national director of contemporary Jewish life at the American Jewish Congress said the yeshiva helped preserve "a world that was otherwise lost."

Pinhas Rutenberg

Pinhas Rutenberg (5 February 1879 – 3 January 1942; Russian: Пётр Моисеевич Рутенберг, Pyotr Moiseyevich Rutenberg; Hebrew: פנחס רוטנברג‬) was a Russian Jewish engineer, businessman, and political activist. He played an active role in two Russian revolutions, in 1905 and 1917. During World War I, he was among the founders of the Jewish Legion and of the American Jewish Congress. Later, through his connections in Palestine, he managed to obtain a concession for production and distribution of electric power and founded the Palestine Electric Company, currently the Israel Electric Corporation.

A vocal and committed Jewish Nationalist, Rutenberg also participated in establishing the Haganah, the main Jewish militia in pre-war Palestine, and founded Palestine Airways. He subsequently served as a President of the Jewish National Council.

Richard Gordon

Richard Gordon or Dick Gordon may refer to:

Richard Gordon (English author) (1921–2017), English novelist, screenwriter and doctor

Richard Gordon (lawyer), president of the American Jewish Congress

Richard Gordon (American football) (born 1987), American football player for the Denver Broncos

Richard F. Gordon Jr. (1929–2017), American astronaut

Richard J. Gordon (born 1945), Filipino politician, civil servant and journalist

Richard Gordon (film producer) (1925–2011), British film producer

Richard Gordon (broadcaster) (born 1960), Scottish sports broadcaster

Richard Gordon (Scottish author) (1947–2009), Scottish author

Richard G. Gordon, geologist, winner of the Arthur L. Day Medal

R. H. Gordon (1844–1917), American politician

Richard Gordon (photographer) (1945–2012), American photographer

Richard Gordon (theoretical biologist) (born 1943), American theoretical biologist

Stephen Samuel Wise

Stephen Samuel Wise (1874–1949) was an early 20th-century American, Progressive Era, Reform rabbi, and Zionist leader.

Will Maslow

Will Maslow (September 27, 1907 – February 23, 2007) was an American lawyer and civil rights leader who fought for full equality in a free society for Jews, blacks, and other minorities at positions he held in government and as an executive of the American Jewish Congress.

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.