It is with deep sadness and a profound sense of loss that I write to inform you of the passing of Edgar M. Bronfman, Sr. He died today in his home surrounded by family and loved ones. Edgar was a giant among Jewish leaders, and a mentor and friend to everyone associated with The Samuel Bronfman Foundation.
In his active and full life, Edgar never tired of learning, exploring and doing. He was the first of his kind, a titan of industry that dedicated himself fully to advocating, advancing and encouraging the Jewish people. Edgar showed how vision and long-term thinking can impact the entire landscape of Jewish life.
When Edgar started his philanthropic journey, pluralism in the Jewish community was not a widely discussed idea, much less a living reality. Edgar taught the Jewish community in word and deed that our Jewish brethren across the world and religious divides are connected and that there are ways to reach and serve one another.
As you know, he was deeply committed to making Judaism relevant to all those who were seeking it. He sought to build a big tent, open for vigorous debate, impassioned questioning, and full of joy. He loved the energy and exuberance of young people, and took them quite seriously because he recognized that they would be the ones shaping their own Jewish future.
Edgar's philanthropic legacy will continue long after this day, and the Jewish world will continue to be shaped and served by his vision.
Please join me in extending sympathy and condolences to the entire Bronfman family and those around the world touched by his passing.
Edgar lived by his values, and he sought the same opportunity for others.
May his memory be a source of blessing for the world and may his family be consoled among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.
Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life
Bronfman Youth Fellowships
Bronfman Center at NYU