Community connections are vital at every age—for mind, body, and spirit. That’s why, upon moving to Woodbridge in 2012 following 30 years in New York and San Francisco, Linda and Jesse Cedarbaum’s top priority was to build strong local ties.

Nowhere was the Cedarbaums’ involvement more welcome than at Tower One/Tower East (The Towers)—a diverse, active, affordable senior residence in New Haven founded upon Jewish values and traditions. From launching an intergenerational outreach program, to funding better transportation initiatives for residents, the Cedarbaums have made doing mitzvahs at The Towers a major part of making greater New Haven their home.

“Coming into an area where I had no ties—it was important for me to get involved right away,” explains Linda. “I was thrilled to discover The Towers. It’s truly an extension of the region’s robust Jewish community; its residents are foundational to Jewish New Haven overall.”

Shortly after discovering The Towers, Linda initiated an innovative outreach program called The Art of Baking Hamantaschen. Driven by her strong belief in doing intergenerational mitvah dor l’dor—together with her desire to help Jewish families embrace long-held, heartfelt traditions—this vital project enables local families to bake Hamantaschen together while sharing the fruits of their labor with Towers residents.

For Mark Garilli, President and CEO of The Towers, the Hamantaschen baking project fills an important need; isolated seniors become personally connected to the community, and the younger generation stays connected to The Towers. “The value is priceless,” he says.

Subsequently, upon moving her own mother to The Towers in 2013, Linda discovered that accessible transportation was missing from Towers living—which could help residents better enjoy all that New Haven offers.

“Towers residents are living longer and interested in politics, art, people and nature,” says Linda, “but many don’t drive, thus limiting their options for experiencing the breadth of New Haven and leading richer lives.”

In establishing an endowment through the Jewish Foundation of Greater New Haven expressly for transportation resources at The Towers, Linda and Jesse intend for residents to take full cultural advantage of their home city.

It’s a benefit that goes far beyond the latest show at the Shubert. “Our residents are educated and intellectual,” says Mark, “and there’s nothing like seeing live theater and art galleries around town. But without the ability of handicapped-accessible transportation, we can’t go. As a not-for-profit, our rent structure simply covers expenses—making Linda and Jesse’s contribution, and all funds received through the Jewish Foundation—so vital.”

“By providing for The Towers and getting involved personally and financially, we become a stronger community,” says Linda. “As for Jesse and I, we look at our giving as an opportunity to say thank you. I’d urge everyone to get involved with The Towers—I guarantee they’d feel the same.”

Linda and Jesse also established a PACE fund at the Jewish Foundation as an endowment for the Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven.


Type of Fund/Area of Need: Funds for Local Jewish Agencies

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The Jewish Foundation can help you explore charitable opportunities that work for you. 

The Jewish Foundation is a trusted and expert resource for charitable gift planning and endowments and serves as a partner and resource for synagogues, local Jewish agencies, professional advisors and donors.

When you make a current gift or leave a bequest to the Jewish Foundation of Greater New Haven, you not only benefit our community, but you can also support the causes that are important to you.  You can designate that your gift be used to provide unrestricted funds to help meet community needs now and in the future or to endow a permanent fund to aid identified programs, your synagogue, agencies, organizations, or initiatives (Jewish or not Jewish, in Greater New Haven, Israel or beyond) that are of particular interest to you and your family.

Lisa Stanger, Esq., Executive Director
Tiberius Halai, Grants and Gift Manager
Beth Kupcho, Scholarship and Philanthropy Manager
Stephanie Licsak, Controller

Jewish Foundation of Greater New Haven
360 Amity Road
Woodbridge, CT 06525
203-387-2424, ext. 382
203-387-1818 (fax)

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With the Jewish Foundation, you can establish a named Restricted/Designated Fund for your synagogue, for Jewish education, for the needy, for Israel, for the arts, or for any charitable program or organization that is important to you.

These funds can be established in honor of a family member, or in memory of loved ones, and will provide annual distributions, in perpetuity, to the designated organization(s). The Jewish Foundation will make annual distributions to the designated charitable organization and, in the fund agreement,  you can provide for a contingent beneficiary organization should the designated organization cease to exist, lose its tax-exempt status or substantially alter its mission.  Restricted/Designated Funds can be established with a minimum gift of $10,000.


ENDOWING YOUR JEWISH FEDERATION ANNUAL CAMPAIGN GIFT Designated/Restricted Funds for the benefit of the Jewish Federation’s Annual Campaign are called “PACE” (Perpetual Annual Campaign Endowment) or “LOJE” (Lion of Judah Endowment).

A PACE fund is a designated/restricted fund which endows a donor’s UJA-Federation annual campaign gift. A LOJE fund is a type of PACE fund which provides a permanent endowment to perpetuate a woman’s annual Lion of Judah campaign gift.

PACE and LOJE funds allow our community, through permanent endowment funds dedicated to the Jewish Federation Annual Campaign, to insure that we have funds available that will continue to provide for vital programs and services both in Greater New Haven, in Israel and overseas… for present and future generations.

A named PACE fund can be established with a minimum commitment of $10,000 or a LOJE fund with a minimum commitment of $100,000. Commitments of under $10,000 are pooled together in the Jewish Foundation of Greater New Haven’s Community PACE Fund.


DONOR ADVISED/PHILANTHROPIC FUNDS For individuals and families seeking active involvement in philanthropy, a Philanthropic Fund (also called a donor-advised fund) allows the donor to create a named fund that provides flexibility in charitable giving. A Philanthropic Fund allows the donor to recommend distributions to any qualified tax-exempt organization-think of it as a charitable checking account. The Foundation administers the fund, invests the assets, and the donor receives quarterly statements describing their fund’s activity. These funds are a wonderful way to involve the family in giving---the donor and his/her family can sit around the dinner table and decide to which charitable organizations they want their fund to distribute. These funds can be established with a minimum gift of $10,000.

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The Foundation administers and promotes the Build a Tzedakah program which enables young adults to establish their own Foundation endowment fund and also, in conjunction with the Center for Jewish Life and Learning, includes local programs, classes and projects on philanthropy.

The Build-a-Tzedakah program allows young adults to engage in charitable giving by contributing $600 from their Bar or Bat Mitzvah gifts, with a match of $400 from a community donor. With this, the young adult now has a $1000 named charitable fund at the Jewish Foundation—they, or others, can add to the fund at anytime and in honor of special occasions- and, every December (Hannukah time), they will be given the opportunity to choose to which charity(ies) they want to make a distribution (distributions are based on the Jewish Foundation’s spending policy and must follow IRS regulations which include that they must be charitable and can only be made to US based public charities).


As part of its Build a Tzedakah program, the Jewish Foundation of Greater New Haven held a Pop-up Jewish teen giving circle. The teens, part of JTE (Jewish Teen Education) program, invited local organizations to present concerning funding needs. The program included discussion of philanthropic values, why people give, and how to give. The Jewish Foundation provided monies to the teens for their allocation process. The teens awarded the following grants: IRIS (Integrated Refugee & Immigrant Services) for a teen civil rights travel program this summer; Jewish Family Service of Greater New Haven for their Stars of David program providing post-adoption social support to adopted Jewish teens; JCC of Greater New Haven for their Makerspace.


Individuals or families can establish a named Unrestricted Fund at the Jewish Foundation with a minimum donation of $1,000. Unrestricted Funds allow the Foundation to meet the changing needs of the Jewish community through our grants process and community initiatives. Many community members have established such funds in honor of a special anniversary or birthday, or in memory of a loved one.


The Foundation’s professional staff and its centrality to the Jewish Federation insure continuous, permanent, and secure fund management and enhance donor confidence and prestige. In addition, placing endowment assets with the Jewish Foundation can serve to insulate financial management of an organization’s endowment from the vicissitudes that can occur through the organization’s own corporate governance. Many local Jewish organizations have entrusted endowments to the Jewish Foundation for administration and management--these include: The Jewish Cemetery Association of Greater New Haven, Congregation Beth Israel (Wallingford), Beth Israel (Orchard Street Shul)Cemetery Assocation, Congregation Mishkan Israel, Congregation Beth El-Keser Israel, Temple Beth David, Ezra Academy, the JCC, Jewish Family Service, Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek, Congregation Or Shalom, Congregation B’nai Jacob and Temple Beth Tikvah.