Our History and Our Founders

The Ottawa Jewish Community Foundation was founded in 1971. Far-sighted community members Bernard Shinder, Gilbert Greenberg, the Jewish Federation of Ottawa (formerly known as the Vaad Ha’Ir) and Executive Director Hy Hochberg foresaw the need for a financial resource to maintain the Jewish community’s fiscal structure and safeguard its future.

Above is a photo of Israel’s Prime Minister David Ben Gurion visiting the Ottawa Jewish Community Centre Left to Right: Alex Betcherman, David Ben Gurion, Lawrence Freiman and Bertram Loeb May 1961.

The Founders of the OJCF and subsequently, the first Directors were:

Alex Betcherman z"l
Hyman Bessin z"l
Gilbert Greenberg z"l
Hy Harris z"l
Hyman Soloway z"l
David Loeb z"l
Abe Palmer z"l
Harold Shenkman z"l
Bernard Shinder
Casey Swedlove z"l
Sam Taller z"l
Norman Zagerman z"l
Hy Hochberg z"l


Our first President was Gilbert Greenberg, and for over twenty years, Casey Swedlove served as volunteer Executive Director of the Foundation – raising funds for the future of the community.