BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Source: Jewish Federation) — The Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County President and CEO, Matthew C. Levin, has announced a magnanimous endowment gift of $10 million from Boca Raton residents and philanthropists Toby and Leon Cooperman.
Mr. Cooperman is a Forbes 400 Member, Founder and Chairman of Omega Advisors, Inc. and Former Chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management. He and Mrs. Cooperman are prominent benefactors to an array of Jewish causes, as well as to human and health care services, education and health research. They have maintained their residence in St. Andrews Country Club in Boca Raton for nearly 20 years, and became full-time Florida residents in 2011.
“Toby and Leon’s vision and generosity have raised the bar with their shining example of extraordinary compassion and commitment to our Jewish community and our people,” said Anne Jacobson, Federation Board Chair. “We are grateful for their confidence in our Federation’s 37-year record of galvanizing this community to provide resources for vital programs and services when and where they are most needed. The Cooperman endowment through our Jacobson Jewish Community Foundation will have tremendous impact today, and be part of their legacy for generations to come. We are honored that they have chosen our community as their home.”
“This transformative gift to our community will provide significant income to meet vital Jewish needs locally, in Israel and overseas, through our Federation’s Annual Campaigns,” said Matthew C. Levin, Federation President and CEO. “We are proud to be among the distinguished institutions through which Toby and Leon, renowned longtime leaders in Jewish philanthropy, have invested in the Jewish people. They have taken their place as the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County’s single largest Annual Campaign donor, and as members of our prestigious Ketubah Society for cumulative giving.”
Revenue generated by the Cooperman gift will also provide considerable ongoing support to PJ Library® of South Palm Beach County. Among the Coopermans’ many contributions to ensure future Jewish generations, they have been instrumental in bringing this renowned Jewish family outreach and engagement program to the local community.
In honor of the couple’s generosity and commitment to South Palm Beach County, the new 650,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art luxury Continuing Care Retirement Community, for 450 seniors on 23.5 acres of the 100-acre Federation campus, has been named the Toby and Leon Cooperman Sinai Residences of Boca Raton.
“Sinai Residences offers its fortunate residents the most enriching senior lifestyle in the most beautiful setting, and we are proud to give our names to such a wonderful asset for our community,” said Leon. “Of course, we are delighted that our gift will help our Federation provide assistance to those in need now and in the future.”
As a planned Life Care community, Sinai Residences guarantees access to a seamless, top quality continuum of care, with 234 independent living apartment homes, 48 assisted living apartments, 60 skilled nursing suites and 24 memory support studio suites. Seniors enjoy a blend of luxurious amenities and services amid independence and privacy, including hospitality, recreational, religious and social services, cultural and academic pursuits, fitness programs, and gourmet dining – amid all the Federation’s multigenerational campus has to offer.
“We are delighted to name Sinai Residences for such beloved neighbors and foremost philanthropists,” said Wes Finch, Chair of the Board of Managers that governs Sinai Residences. “Just as Sinai Residences is committed to caring for people as needed today and into their futures, the Cooperman gift will help our Federation sustain our community now and in the future.”
The names of Leon and Toby Cooperman are well-known by many Jewish, education, human services and medical nonprofits throughout the country. Proud of their heritage, they often cite their Jewish upbringing as the basis of their philanthropy by quoting the Talmud, “A man’s net worth is measured not by what he earns, but rather what he gives away.”
The Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County joins an array of major Cooperman beneficiaries including, in New Jersey, the Cooperman College Scholars Program, Cooperman Family Fund for a Jewish Future and St. Barnabas Hospital. They are also prominent supporters of their alma maters in New York City: Hunter College, where they met, and Columbia University, where Leon earned his MBA.
Leon and Toby are signers of the Giving Pledge, initiated by Warren Buffett in “an effort to help address society’s most pressing problems by inviting the world’s wealthiest individuals and families to commit to giving more than half of their wealth to philanthropy.” And last year, Leon was inducted into the Horatio Alger Society for having overcome his humble beginnings to achieve success on Wall Street and for his commitment to philanthropy and higher education.
“The fact that Toby and I are even candidates to make the Giving Pledge is a testimony to the American Dream, and we have a moral imperative to give others the opportunity to pursue the American Dream by sharing our financial success,” said Leon, whose parents emigrated from Poland and raised him in a small apartment in the Bronx where he attended public schools. “My father was a plumber who worked six days a week. His example shaped my work ethic and he showed me how to treat people.”
“While I worked hard, I must say I had more than my share of good luck,” said Leon.” He joined Goldman Sachs the day after receiving his Columbia MBA, with “a National Defense Education Act Student Loan to repay, no money in the bank and a six month old child to support.” After 25 years of service, Leon Cooperman retired in 1991 from his positions as general partner of Goldman, Sachs & Co. and as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs Asset Management in order to organize Omega.
After raising their two sons, Toby worked for 35 years as a learning specialist, consultant and school administrator on behalf of neurologically impaired children.