JNF creates $100 million Israel advocacy center via landmark gift

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — The Jewish National Fund has created a $100 million center to advocate for and educate about Israel, saying it “is needed now more than ever.”

The JNF Boruchin Israel Education Advocacy Center announced earlier this month aims to strengthen all Americans’ connections to the land and people of Israel, now and in the future, JNF said in a statement.

The center was founded through an estate gift of John and Dora Boruchin of California — the largest estate donation in JNF history. John Boruchin made his fortune in the United States in real estate, becoming one of the largest tract home builders in California. The couple, who met in Russia following World War II, are survived by their son, Isak.

“The Boruchins wanted JNF to undertake bold initiatives connecting Jewish youth to Zionism and advocating for the Jewish state,” said Mike Lederman, the center’s chairman. “The Boruchin Israel Education Advocacy Center is their living legacy, and their gift comes at a critical period in history as Israel and world Jewry face serious challenges with rising anti-Israel sentiment and anti-Semitism. This center is needed now more than ever.”

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The center will partner with individuals, foundations and other nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations to match funds on a multi-year basis, according to JNF. It will fund both JNF Zionist advocacy and education programs and non-JNF programs.

John Boruchin, who was born in Poland, lost most of his family in the Holocaust. Dora’s immediate family survived and now live mainly in Canada and the United States.

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