Endowment Book of Life

“Being the only Jewish child in class meant having to know and teach the Jewish holidays when asked. My Jewish identity was enhanced by Rabbi Marcus Breger, of blessed memory. I grew up learning to appreciate the gift of Jewish Identity– its freedom and responsibility. – Jane Ash, Endowment Book of Life signer
Congregation Or Chadash

Congregation Or Chadash members signed the Endowment Book of Life in the Sukkah on Erev Sukkot in 2016. L-r, back row: Jeffrey Kaufman, Matt Landau, Steve Landau. Front row: Rabbi Thomas Louchheim, Marcia Louchheim, Melissa Landau, Brenda Landau, Cantor Janece Cohen, Sandra Levkowitz, Christopher Size, Seneca Erman MD.

More than 20 years ago, Foundation leaders wanted to find new ways to encourage individuals to create legacy plans to support the community, as well as their own families.

So they asked: What if you had one more child to care for, nurture and protect and that child was your community? How would you ensure that child’s impending needs would be met while staying true to your vision for the future?

The result was the donor-centered Endowment Book of Life, an innovative process that begins with a promise and culminates with a legacy plan. By signing the Endowment Book of Life, you are simply stating that at some point in your life, you will take the time to create your legacy plan. The focus is on your dreams and passions, and simplifying the steps to supporting what you care about in the days to come.

Since its inception in 1991, nearly 700 people have signed our Endowment Book of Life and many of them have established endowment funds to help ensure the future of the Jewish and broader communities.

This project has been replicated in 40 Jewish communities across North America, many of which gathered in Tucson in 2009 for the first International Jewish Legacy Forum. It opened with a celebration of the 18th anniversary of the Endowment Book of Life and a signing ceremony for the JCF’s own Book of Life.

Photos from the 2014 Community Signing