Today, Ralph Goldman turns 96. And he can still be seen, as active as ever, bustling around Jerusalem, Blackberry in hand.
Here in Israel, Ralph’s achievements are part of legend. He is the father of its JCC movement and founder of the Brookdale Institute and The Israel Center for Social Policy Studies, (now named the JDC Myers Institute and the Marilyn and Henry Taub Center for Social Policy Studies, respectively) and ESHEL. Before that he was a guiding spirit behind Malben, the program that gave Israel its first, rudimentary social services infrastructure in the early days of statehood. And before even that, he was the advisor to Prime Minister Ben-Gurion on relations with the U.S. Jewish community and the founder of the Israel Education Fund. Prior to statehood he was a member of Teddy Kollek’s team that worked tirelessly to evade the British blockade and, later, to prepare Israel militarily for the war of Independence. With that illustrious background Ralph became the professional head of JDC in 1974.
In honor of his birthday, JDC has collected some of their favorite Ralph pictures.
image: Ralph in Warsaw, Poland 1981; courtesy JDC