Jewish Funders Network Creates Award to Recognize Philanthropic Collaboration

The Jewish Funders Network said today a prestigious award named after one of its founders would be redefined to recognize accomplishments by philanthropists who work together to further a common mission or goal.

The first Sidney Shapiro Prize for Excellence in Philanthropic Collaboration will be given March 9th at the 2014 JFN International Conference in Miami Beach. It had previously been named the Sidney Shapiro Tzedakah Award.

Shapiro, who died in 2007, was known for a pattern of giving that was responsive to pressing societal needs. An award in his name has been given by JFN since 1997. Spokoiny said the revamped prize is designed to honor philanthropists who engage in a similar style of grant-making.

The criteria for the award require nominees to have:

  • Formed a philanthropic collaboration with a common mission, vision or goals; and demonstrated success in reaching those goals
  • Pooled financial resources as an investment toward their philanthropic vision that includes a meaningful contribution from each partner
  • Formed a philanthropic collaboration to strategically resolve a problem or further a specific purpose or field

JFN works with funders, at the individual and collective levels, to improve the quality of their giving and maximize its impact. Its members include independent philanthropists, foundation trustees and foundation professionals from across the globe.

“One thing we do at JFN is provide a forum to discuss the big questions facing the Jewish community and the larger world,” Spokoiny said. “This award will help recognize philanthropists who have come together to provide answers to those questions.”

The nomination form can be found at At least one member of the collaboration must be a JFN member to be eligible.