NET WORTH: $2.7 billion
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Chairman and CEO of Och-Ziff Capital Management Group
JEWISH FUNDING AREAS: Education, Community, Israel, Religious
OVERVIEW: Och and his wife Jane live in Westchester County, and their philanthropy centers around the New York City area. The Ochs steadily support a local Jewish day school. Other big winners include UJA Federation of New York and Birthright Israel. Many gifts to Jewish organizations of late are over $100,000. The foundation does not appear to accept unsolicited proposals and keeps a low profile.
BACKGROUND: Daniel Och grew up in New Jersey and attended Wharton, receiving a B.S. in Finance. Och spent 11 years at Goldman Sachs, starting out in the risk arbitrage department. Other roles included head of proprietary trading in the equities division and co-head of U.S. equities trading. In 1994, Och founded Och-Ziff Capital Management Group with an initial investment from the Ziff brothers.
FUNDING PROFILE: Daniel Och and his wife Jane move their philanthropy through the Jane and Daniel Och Foundation, a low-profile vehicle whose sole trustees are the couple. The professional services firm BCRS Associates LLC has handled most of the tax and financial services for the couple's foundation as well.
While their charity is not particularly accessible, it is a steady supporter of Jewish causes, mainly in New York City and surrounding areas. A key interest is education, and the couple kicked off their philanthropy a few years ago with a $15 million gift to Solomon Schechter Day School of Essex and Union, a grade school that Och attended. The school recently changed its name to Golda Och Academy and the ties here are strong. Not only did Och attend this school; Och's parents were among the founding families of the school in the 1960s. The couple continues to direct large amounts of money to the school via their family foundation. The family has also supported Hillel, Hebrew Academy of Morris County, and Camp Ramah in the Berkshires.
The Ochs have also given millions to UJA Federation of New York and Birthright Israel. The family has directed more modest support to community and cultural organizations like Facing History and Ourselves, National Museum of Jewish History, United States Holocaust Museum, and American Jewish Committee.
The family has also supported religious organizations like Congregation Beth-El and The Jewish Theological Seminary. As far as outfits that work for/in Israel, grantees have included Friends of Israel Defense Forces, and American Friends of Magen David Adom, which supports emergency medical, ambulance, blood and disaster services.
The Ochs give grants to a select number of organizations each year and do not accept unsolicited proposals according to recent tax returns.
LOOKING FORWARD: Och is only in his 50s and still engaged in business. According to the most recent fiscal year reported, the foundation held some $275 million in assets and gave away around $19 million. The Ochs have enormous wealth to tap, and should be watched for greater giving down the line. For a deeper look at this funder's work, read our Wall Street Profile of Daniel Och.
The Jane and Daniel Och Foundation doesn't provide a clear avenue of contact but below is an address:
77 Water St., 9th Floor