NET WORTH: Unknown
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Chieftain Capital Management
JEWISH FUNDING AREAS: Community & Youth, Religious, Human Services
OVERVIEW: John Shapiro and his wife Shonni move their philanthropy through the Shapiro-Silverberg Foundation, which earmarks funds for Jewish causes. Shapiro once served as president of the UJA Federation of New York, home to the Shapiro Family Fellowship, which works with Jewish young adults. The foundation does not accept unsolicited proposals.
BACKGROUND: John M. Shapiro graduated from Wesleyan University in 1974. Shapiro cofounded Brave Warrior Capital and currently serves as managing director of Chieftain Capital Management.
FUNDING PROFILE: Shapiro and his wife Shonni are major patrons of the UJA Federation of New York, where Shapiro once served as president. The organization operates the Shapiro Family Fellowship, "a highly selective, yearlong experience designed to cultivate future leaders of the New York Jewish community through high-level discussion with peers, leaders, and mentors in the United States and Israel." Candidates for the fellowship must be between 22 and 30 years old, live in the greater New York metropolitan area, and must have traveled to Israel at least once prior to application.
Apart from United Jewish Appeal, the couple has also strongly funded American Jewish Committee. The couple seems interested in Jewish human services outfits, too. Consider their steady support of Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, which "provides comprehensive social services to aid, sustain, and empower poor and near-poor New Yorkers." Shapiro sits on the board of The Jewish Museum, which the couple supports, too. Another important grantee is Washington Institute on Near East Policy, where Shapiro sits on the board of directors.
The couple has given more modestly of late to outfits like Hiddush - Freedom of Religion for Israel, The Jerusalem Foundation, and the Shalom Hartman Institute, "a pluralistic research and leadership center at the forefront of Jewish thought and education in Israel and the Jewish Diaspora." The family also supports synagogues like Kemp Hill Synagogue and Park East Synagogue.
The family has also supported Jewish causes in higher education. Shaprio and Shonni have given some of their strongest (if not their strongest) support to their alma mater Wesleyan University. While much of this funding involves writing programming at the school, Wesleyan is also home to the Gittel and Mervin Silverberg Visiting Scholar in Jewish Studies, and the Jeremy Zwelling Professor of Jewish Studies, which the couple helped create.
LOOKING FORWARD: Expect much of this family's support of the Jewish community to stay close to home and other places where they have personal connections. Shapiro's involvement on the policy end of things is worth watching, particularly at the Washington Institute.
The Shapiro-Silverberg Foundation does not provide a clear avenue of contact but below is an address:
New York City, NY 10018