Israel Englander

NET WORTH: $5.2 billion

SOURCE OF WEALTH: Millennium Management

FUNDING AREAS: Education, Health, Art & Culture, Jewish Community

OVERVIEW: Englander has a passion for giving to Jewish groups, both in Israel and his native New York. But he has also given a lot of money to medical research facilities and to the arts, as well.

BACKGROUND: Englander grew up in Brooklyn in an Orthodox Jewish family, and graduated from NYU with a degree in finance. Trading stocks since high school, he went to work on Wall St., briefly enrolled in NYU's MBA program, and eventually founded Millennium Management, which started with $35 million in 1990, and now manages assets of more than $33 billion.

ISSUES:

JEWISH COMMUNITY:  If you’re a Jewish congregation or a yeshiva, there is an excellent chance of getting Israel “Izzy” Englander’s attention. That goes double, if you’re based in Brooklyn. Englander, an Orthodox Jew, attended a yeshiva in Brooklyn, and he and his wife, Caryl, have given millions to dozens of such institutions.  Not all the gifts are equally sizable, and while there are some large ones, many range between $500 and $2,500. Englander is also on the board of the Metropolitan Jewish Council on Poverty. 

HEALTH: Englander sits on the board of the Cornell Weill Medical Center, where he gave $8 million to fund the Englander Family Research Suite in Dermatologic Oncology, apparently in honor of their daughter Laura’s intention to specialize in dermatology. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center has also received recent funds, including at least $250,000 in 2013.

ARTS & CULTURE: Englander's wife Caryl, a photographer, is the Chairman of the International Center of Photography, and the Englanders have funded exhibits at the Guggenheim and the Edward Steichen Archives at MOMA; they also made the cut on ARTnews’s Top 200 Collectors in 2012. (Perhaps surprisingly, they only gave between $10 and $15 thousand to The Jewish Museum in 2011.) Token amounts have been given to the Brooklyn Academy of Music. 

LOOKING FORWARD: There have been no rumors of a Giving Pledge in the future, even though the Englanders rub elbows with Bill and Melinda Gates as donors to the Hudson Institute, a public policy think tank. Perhaps the $30 million Englander paid personally in a settlement with the SEC in 2012 took some of the wind out of his sails; he was more fortunate in the early 2000s, when Millennium Management was cleared after the SEC charged it with fraud.

In addition to his family foundation, Englander has put at least $12.2 million into a Fidelity Charitable Trust fund, which has become a major depository for charitable money that is difficult to track, and could sit for years, so it may be difficult to know the full scope of what Englander is doing in his philanthropy.

CONTACT:

Englander Foundation

740 Park Avenue

New York, New York, 10021

(212) 841-4148