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Michael Paterson and Gail Asper

Gail Asper and Michael Paterson Endow their CJA Gift

$1 million gift to benefit the community forever

November 18, 2013

With an unwavering belief in the power of endowment funds, and a deep commitment to the Jewish community of Winnipeg, Gail Asper and Michael Paterson have announced their pledge to endow their Combined Jewish Appeal gift. Their $1 million gift will be held in the CJA’s “Leave More than Memories Fund” at the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba.

Interest earned by the Fund will be distributed annually to the Combined Jewish Appeal campaign. By endowing their gift, Asper and Paterson will be able to support the community in perpetuity.

“Endowment giving is an important way to ensure the long-term viability of the community,” said Asper, President of The Asper Foundation and Chair of the CJA Annual Campaign. “Every year, the campaign loses some donors who pass away or whose circumstances change.  Sometimes the effects on the campaign are devastating. Endowments provide additional, much needed revenue, which strengthens the beneficiaries of the Campaign and grows the Campaign for the long term. Making an endowment gift with current donations or by bequest is the best way to ensure that OUR priorities in OUR community get the support they need. I’d be thrilled if other members of the Jewish community joined Mike and me in endowing their gifts!”

Asper is a well-known philanthropist and volunteer who has seen the impact of endowment funds as Chair of the endowment campaign for the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre: “I’ve learned that not only are endowment funds effective financial vehicles, but they also energize volunteers, staff, and donors as they look together to the future.”

Asper and Paterson also see their pledge as a message to their sons, Jonathan and Stephen. “They are already community-driven and philanthropic,” said Asper. “I hope that our endowment helps to reinforce those values that we are so proud to share with them.”

The Leave More than Memories Fund has assets exceeding $3 million. Asper would like to see that grow by many times to have an even greater impact.

“Funding our community for the long-term is a complex but incredibly important exercise. Our agencies’ revenues come from the fees and donations they generate on their own, and they come from allocated funds raised by the CJA campaign,” said Asper. “Those numbers vary every year, and they’re never guaranteed. With distributions from endowments, the financial picture becomes more solid.”

Asper added that she and her husband will continue to make an annual CJA gift – and increase it annually – as they continue to work to fulfill their endowment pledge.

“I am very happy that the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg/CJA and the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba are working collaboratively to encourage endowment giving,” said Asper. “The Jewish Foundation is a safe and stable place to hold endowment funds. They manage assets wisely and care deeply about the well-being of the community, just as we do!”

For more information on the Leave More Than Memories Fund, contact Elaine Goldstine at 204.477.7427 or [email protected] or David Greaves at 204.477.7522 or [email protected]


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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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