Honoring His JDC Family: Steven Taub
When Steven Taub was in middle school, his father — the former JDC president Henry Taub — brought him to Morocco. Since then, Taub has traveled the world, learning about resilient Jewish communities big and small. Learn more about why he supports the next 100 years of vibrant Jewish life.
By JDC Staff | August 26, 2021
When Steven Taub — the son of former JDC President Henry Taub — was in middle school in the 1970s, he traveled with his family to Morocco. Decades later, now a JDC Board Member himself, he and his wife Benay began taking their own four children on trips abroad — visiting JDC programs in locations as diverse as Poland, Cuba, Estonia, and Israel.
“That’s how you pass values down from one generation to the next, and I think the younger generations are even better prepared than we are to carry it on,” he said. “I was raised to recognize that there is an ongoing need to support organizations like JDC, whose mission is to provide outstanding humanitarian services and care, and we have tried to raise our children with that same sense of awareness and commitment.”
For Taub, giving to JDC is a “pull from your heart” and a way to “remember and honor the past” — the many who sacrificed, worked, and strived to lay the groundwork for initiatives that would benefit others.
Contributing to the Second Century Campaign (SCC), JDC’s centennial endowment effort, is a way for his family to help guarantee that JDC has the resources it needs to meet whatever challenges the future may hold for Jews worldwide, he said.
“You can’t just focus on the needs of today. You have to invest in the future,” he said. “JDC has an unblemished record, I believe, in its genuine desire to help people into the long-term, and resources are needed to do that. The needs of our global Jewish family are not likely to disappear soon, and we have to be prepared for the challenges that lay ahead. And I’m also proud of JDC’s efforts to help communities of all faiths in times of crisis.”
Taub’s travels with JDC have helped him hone his admiration for the resilience of Jewish communities living in places with difficult histories. He recalled a trip about a decade ago to Poland, where a visit to Auschwitz was followed by a vibrant celebration of dynamic Polish Jewish life at the JDC-supported Jewish Community Center (JCC) in Kraków — all in the same day.
“Poland was the center of Jewish life for so many years. We all know what happened there, and now you have this miracle of revival amongst youngsters who were only just now learning they were Jewish after it was hidden for two generations,” he said. “These are people who’ve had very difficult pasts, and we’re in a position to make their lives a little bit better and fan those flames. JDC is the organization that does that.”
“You can’t just focus on the needs of today. You have to invest in the future.”
Taub’s own JDC leadership journey was sparked by a conversation his father had with JDC’s beloved Honorary Executive-Vice President about the need for younger people to get involved with some of the “100-year tasks” that JDC was committed to addressing for Jews in need.
“It was people like Ralph Goldman, real visionaries, who said that we’re going to have problems in our big family, in our community, for at least 100 years, and that maybe we needed less gray hair on the Board — even if my gray is really starting to pop out,” Taub said with a laugh. “Our good fortune leaves us in a position to help others, and JDC is the preeminent organization to do that and do that well.”