November, 2007
AJCOP 2007 Mandelkorn Distinguished Service Award: Phyllis Cook

Phyllis Cook (R) is presented her AJCOP Mandelkorn Distinguished Service Award by Maxyne Finkelstein, AJCOP Awards Chair for 2007.

Jeffrey L. Klein (R) is presented his AJCOP Mandelkorn Distinguished Service Award by Jacob Solomon.

Phyllis Cook has been the Executive Director of the Jewish Community Endowment Fund and Associate Director of the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties since 1983. The Endowment Fund assets have grown in that time from $27 million to $2.8 billion in 2007 and annual grants to the community have increased from $4 million to more than $200 million. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Michigan with graduate study at the University of California, Berkeley. She presently serves on 4 private foundations and oversees the Federation’s 72 supporting foundations, 868 philanthropic funds and restricted funds. She serves on the Advisory Board of the Brandeis University Steinhardt Social Research Institute. After nearly a quarter-century at the helm, Phyllis Cook has announced she will step down as executive director of the S.F.-based Jewish Community Endowment Fund and as associate executive director of the Jewish Community Federation. Her departure is set for June 30, 2008. A native of Idaho Falls, Idaho, Cook joined the endowment as director in January 1983. At the time, the fund had less than $28 million in assets, and distributed $4 million in grants. At last count, the endowment claimed more than $2.6 billion in assets and allocated more than $200 million in grants over the past year. "During her tenure, Phyllis has created one of the largest, if not the largest, federation endowment funds in the country, as well as numerous innovative programs associated with endowment," said endowment committee chair Richard Rosenberg. "Fortunately, she has also had the ability to attract and retain a superior staff, so when Phyllis retires, the federation has the people to carry on the legacy she established." Cook says she will continue working privately with donors and institutions, Jewish and non-Jewish, to "help them achieve their philanthropic objectives, and help them repair the world."

Jeffrey Klein has been the Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County since April 1986, and is one of America’s senior chief executives. During this period, the Federation has grown substantially from a campaign of $6.6 million to a Campaign that exceeded $32 million in 2007. Foundation assets have increased more than 25 fold. Several times during his tenure, the Federation has won national awards as the best Federation/UJA Annual Campaign in the country. The services in the community have grown geometrically under Jeffrey’s leadership, while the Federation has remained strong in support of overseas needs. During his tenure, the community has built its central facilities, including state-of-the-art Campuses in West Palm Beach and in Boynton Beach/Lake Worth. Many of the agencies and services that exist today were created during his tenure. The Federation has also been expanded with the commencement of the Fund for Jewish Continuity, Partnership 2000, Israel Program Center, educational initiatives, lay and professional leadership development and this year, both collaborative fundraising and strategic planning initiatives. In recent years, major initiatives for Ethiopian Jewry, Youth Futures, and a broad array of programs in St. Petersburg, Russia have been added to our successful Partnership 2000 relationship. One of the major Federations in the country, the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County is now one of the largest elective overseas funders in the national system and is highly regarded as a model of excellence on a national and international level. As Chief Executive Officer, Jeffrey is principally responsible for execution of the policies established by Federation’s Board of Directors for the community’s Central Fund Raising, Planning and Allocating body. On a national level, Jeffrey has served as Chairman of the Large City Executives Group for North America Federations, as a member of the United Jewish Communities’ Executive Committee, as a member of its Israel and Overseas Pillar, currently serves in Renewal and Renaissance, and has served as one of four associate professional members of the Jewish Agency Executive. An attorney by background, Jeffrey previously practiced real estate and corporate law for a number of years.

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