JHFE Works to Create Opportunities for Louisville’s Jewish Community at Large

The Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence in December completed the purchase of 150 acres in eastern Jefferson County owned by Standard Country Club in a proactive effort to create future opportunities for the Louisville Jewish community. This move further diversified its asset portfolio and will ultimately add to the enrichment of the Jewish community, strengthening the mission of the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence’s grants initiative. Since its creation in 2012, the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence has already committed over $5 million in grants to the Jewish community at large and the medical research community

“A few months ago, our board was presented with an opportunity to take a leap of faith and make an investment in the future of this Jewish community,” said Louis Waterman, chairman of the Board of Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence. “This is an incredibly exciting opportunity to develop long-term plans within the Jewish community. Very rarely do you get a chance to do something transformational, and this is it.”

While golf club operations will continue as normal under the terms of a renewable five-year lease-back provision, a Phase I planning process is already underway to focus on the land and facilities not currently occupied by the existing golf course. “The goal is to figure out whether the property represents an opportunity to create an asset for the larger Jewish community here,” said Waterman.

To get a community consensus on the highest and best use for the property, The Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence has convened a special task force including rabbis, top officials at Jewish-oriented agencies and community leaders. The mission of the task force is to facilitate a Jewish community-wide planning process that will help determine optimal future uses for the location and the surrounding community.

The task force will survey as many community leaders as possible. Waterman sees an 18- to-24-month effort to try and drill down into community sentiment as to what to do with this prime piece of property. The idea is to engage key constituents across the Jewish community to participate in a collaborative planning process.

In its initial steps, the task force will hire a facilitator; meet with key constituents individually to outline a planning process and solicit input/feedback; and identify communities where similar initiatives have been successful, such as Cincinnati, and consider visiting.

The members of the Community Advisory Task Force are Dr. Roy Hyman, Anshei Sfard; Shelley Meyers, National Council of Jewish Women; Rabbi Stanley Miles, Temple Shalom; Mark Oppenheimer, The Temple; Michael Russman, Keneseth Israel; Stu Silberman, Jewish Community of Louisville; Rabbi Robert Slosberg, Adath Jeshurun; Mark Switow, Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence; Judy Freundlich Tiell, Jewish Family & Career Services; Steve Trager, Republic Bank and community leader; Jennifer Tuvlin, Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence; Louis I. Waterman, Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence; and William Yarmuth, Almost Family and community leader.

About The Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence

The Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence (JHFE) is a Louisville based 501(c) 3 organization with a mission to invest in the local healthcare market, foster innovative medical research and support the Louisville Jewish community. JHFE also provides governance oversight for a variety of health-related organizations, including KentuckyOne Health, Passport Health and the Cardiovascular Innovation Institute.

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