Israel’s Open University Hosts New York Gala

November 6, 2011 12:01 am 1 comment

Philathropist Ira Rennert (L) with New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly (R) Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

Over 270 guests attended a glitzy New York gala at the Pierre Hotel benefiting Israel’s Open University Foundation. A total of $620,000 was raised at the event which was hosted by Foundation President Ingeborg Rennert and Baron Robert de Rothschild. Guests in attendance included Police Comissioner Ray Kelly, Nobel Laureate and Algemeiner advisory board chairman Elie Wiesel, lawyer and political commentator Alan Dershowitz and Commonwealth Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks who addressed the gathering. Sacks spoke of the distinguished Jewish record of academic achievement and early historic pioneering in the fields of education and literacy.

Following dinner, a presentation and awards ceremony was emceed by jovial Foundation Chairman  Malcolm Thomson and an infectiously buoyant Mimi Perlman who awarded philanthropists Ronnie Heyman and David Sitt.

University President Hagit Messer Yaron told the Algemeiner that the funds raised allow the University to accept all applicants regardless of academic background or financial ability. “The University is multicultural,” she said, “the student body better represents Israeli society because people who attend often can’t afford to be supported by their parents.” “Charedim can get in,” she continued “as there is no policy for acceptance, we bring study courses to them so that they can study in their own environment.”

Another large constituency she says, are young married Arab women who are forbidden from leaving their homes without being accompanied by a male, “we bring our study centers to their vicinity so that they can come with their escort.”

Other notable gala attendees included Mitchell & Nina Rennert Davidson, Merryl & James Tisch, Darryl Roth, Evelyn & Leonard Lauder, Nina Rosenwald, Michael Lynne, Michael & Judy Steinhardt and Harry & Linda Macklowe.

Inge Rennert (L) and Dr. Patrica Cayne (R) Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

Barry (L) and Rebecca (M) Akrongold with Open University Foundation Chairman Malcolm Thomson (R) Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

Commonwealth Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks (L) and Dr. Michael (M) and Mrs. Sheila Reich (R). Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

Edward (L) and Rebecca Sugar (M) with Open University President Hagit Messer-Yaron (R). Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

From left, Ira Rennert, Ronnie Heyman and Mimi Perlman. Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

From left, Michael Gruss, Larry Leeds, Michael Jesselson and Malcolm Thomson. Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

Nira Abramowitz (L) and Nina Rosenwald (R), Board Members of the Open University Foundation. Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

Ronnie Heyman (L) and Daryl-Roth (R) Photo: Hughes Photography.

Sandra Justin (L) and Lori Harris (R) Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

The David Sitt Family. Photo: Lyn Hughes Photography.

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.

Current day month ye@r *


  • Arts and Culture Blogs 10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    Ten major film studios are currently in production on projects that promote a decidedly pro-Israeli narrative. In famously liberal Hollywood, such a development has left mouths agape and set tongues a wagging. Since the Jewish State began defending itself from the thousands of rockets that Hamas has hurled at it – as well as ongoing terror attacks and murders, the overwhelming number of Tinseltown’s producers, directors, actors, and studio moguls have remained indifferent to the plight of millions of Israeli [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Israel Sports So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    Israeli Judoka Yarden Gerbi (63kg), 25, of Netanya, on Thursday lost the final round at the Judo World Cup, and her world title to Clarisse Agbegnenou of France, at a match held in Russia. “I have mixed feelings,” Gerbi told Israeli Army radio. But, “I shouldn’t assume that I’d win the world Judo championship twice in a row,” she admitted. Gerbi won gold in Rio De Janeiro last year. “When I made my decision, I knew it was going to [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    “Jews Out!” was just the name of a child’s game that three little girls played in World War II Europe. But all is not as it seems because the three girls were Jewish, but hiding their true identities. In award-winning author R. D. Rosen’s riveting non-fiction work, Such Good Girls, “Jews Out!” wasn’t a game; it was a struggle for survival. The girls, Sophie, Flora, and Carla, grew up at a time and a place that did not allow them [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach – “He was part hippie, part yippie, part beatnik, and part New Age,” wrote Elli Wohlgelernter in a Jerusalem Post eulogy in 1994, following the Oct. 20 passing of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Twenty years later, more robust accounts of Carlebach’s life have come to the surface. Earlier this year, Natan Ophir published the book Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach: Life, Mission & Legacy. This past summer, Rabbi Shlomo Katz’s The Soul of Jerusalem hit the shelves. But even the authors will admit [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    As Hamas loses its grip on power in the Gaza Strip as a result of war, poverty and disillusionment, the Islamist terrorist group has developed an ingenious way to raise the morale of the 1.7 million Palestinian Arabs it was elected to serve. While currently focused on delivering a rocket into every Israeli home, Hamas has not left its own people behind. To gently wipe away the tears of children strategically placed inside kindergartens as human shields, the Hamas Interior Ministry [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    In a strong statement that challenges the historic divide between Christianity and Judaism, Pope Francis recently proclaimed, “Inside every Christian is a Jew.” But if you look at Renaissance artworks that depict Jesus, you will not find any evidence of a Jew inside the Christianized Jesus — even though the Gospels in the New Testament tell us that Jesus was Jewish to the core. Getting that point across to the public is a daunting task, as I learned in interviews I [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Recycling His Roots

    Recycling His Roots – Having started his career playing on his family’s pots and pans, Jewish musician Billy Jonas has maintained this homemade performance ethic while spreading his messages of simple living and environmentalism to a shared home throughout the world. After beginning in the kitchen, Jonas soon moved to the music room, where he picked up the piano, guitar, and trombone. These days, the multi-talented multi-instrumentalist plays on with pretty much anything he can find, including cans, bottles buckets, and other recycled-object [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Personalities Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living – Sara Davidson’s The December Project is a new book that should be read by all senior citizens, and by those who hope to live a long life, for it raises a question that most of us have not been taught how to answer: What should we do in that final stage of our lives? Many of us continue working past the traditional retirement age of 65, not because we need the money and not because we find the [...]

    Read more →

Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.