JTA centennial gala honoring board members features French philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy

Josefin Dolsten

NEW YORK (JTA) — JTA hosted a gala celebrating its 100 years of operations featuring the prominent French philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy and honoring three board members for their contributions.

At the celebration, which took place Monday evening at New York’s Museum of Jewish Heritage-A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, JTA editor-in-chief Andrew Silow-Carroll interviewed Lévy about his views on anti-Semitism, Israel and the situation of Jews in Europe.

Ami Eden, CEO of JTA’s parent company, 70 Faces Media, spoke of the news agency’s historic legacy, including its groundbreaking reporting on the Holocaust in Europe as well as its direction in the 21st century.

“No one can say the world did not know; no one can say that the Western press did not know. Because, day by day, JTA doggedly reported every step in Hitler’s war against the Jews,” said Eden, who formerly served as JTA’s CEO and editor-in-chief. “Tonight we pay tribute to the JTA reporters and editors whose bravery and determination during the Nazi era elevated journalism to a holy calling.”

Eden said that JTA continues to play a vital role in providing credible bias-free reporting, adding that “today the role of a Jewish media organization cannot only be to inform the already initiated. It must be to engage new audiences, empower them as they explore their Jewish identity and think about what role Jewishness will play in their lives, and provide them with comfortable, open and authentic ways to connect with each other.”

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70 Faces Media and its brands — including Kveller, Nosher and My Jewish Learning — fulfill these expanded needs, Eden said.

Board chairman David Eisner and member Elisa Spungen Bildner introduced the evening’s honorees, Brian Sterling, Jane Weitzman and Mark Wilf, who were being recognized for their guidance and longstanding support of JTA and of the merger that created 70 Faces Media.

Sterling is the principal and co-head of the investment banking group of Sandler O’Neill + Partners, L.P. Weitzman is the former executive vice president of Stuart Weitzman and founding vice president of Stuart Weitzman Retail. Wilf is an attorney and partner in the real estate development firm Garden Homes and the owner of the National Football League’s Minnesota Vikings.

Founded in The Hague in 1917 by 25-year-old Austrian journalist Jacob Landau and renamed the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in 1920, JTA provides reporting to over 65 media outlets and directly to readers though its own website and social media.

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