The Mary and Samuel Hurwitz Social Justice Fund at the New Israel Fund was endowed in 2022 by their son Arthur, in their honor and memory.
Mary and Sam (z”l) were both first generation Americans and progressives, actively supporting a variety of social justice causes. They also began to support the State of Israel before 1948.
Mary and Sam lived at and operated a corner drug store in a racially diverse neighborhood for 40 years. Sam was the “Doc” they all came to first and, as they grew older, Mary and Sam were treated as respected elders of the community.
Mary (1907–1969) was known to be progressive in her thoughts and actions. In some respects, she was ahead of her time in her feminism and activism.
Immediately after World War II and the Holocaust, Mary obtained and made arrangements to transport food and clothes to a surviving family in Austria. She continued this work for a number of years, modifying what she sent as other aid became more readily available to them.
Sam (1904–1994) was very active in local professional organizations. He devoted time and energy to supporting Israel Bond drives and gathering weapons and supplies that were then sent to the Haganah prior to 1948.
Mary and Sam were very supportive of the founding ethos of the State of Israel. Today, they likely would be supporters of the New Israel Fund.
While other endowment funds provide support to diaspora Jews to be social activists in Israel, this endowment has been established to support Israelis, with the hope that they then will become lifelong social justice citizen activists.
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