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In Gratitude: Jack Smorgon AO

2017 Goldstein Prize Recipient

​Melbourne, Australia

On May 3, 2017, at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, the prestigious Goldstein Prize for Distinguished Leadership was
conferred on former KH-UIA Australia National Chairman Jack Smorgon AO by Keren Hayesod leadership, in the presence of H.E.
Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin, President of the State of Israel, in tribute to the exceptional leadership and dedication to the State of Israel
and the Jewish people he demonstrated in his brilliant, decades-long career.

Jack Smorgon was involved in the Smorgon Group of Companies from 1954 until 1995, mostly in the meat Industry, where he was Managing Director of the Meat Division from 1976-1991. A Member of the Board of the Committee for Melbourne (CFM), he was appointed Chairman in 1995 and stepped down after 10 years. Jack spent 19 years on the Board of the CFM and was Chairman of their Future Focus Group (FFG) Sub-Committee from 1996 until relinquishing this role in November 2013 to become their Patron. He became interested in transport as Chairman of the CFM Infrastructure Sub Committee in 1992, pushing the Government to start the City Link Project and when the Kennett Government came to power he was appointed Chairman of the State Government’s Freightways Melbourne project.

He was appointed Chairman of the Australian National Railways Commission (AN) in 1995, until 1998, when the Federal Government agreed with the Board to privatise the railway. Jack was appointed by John Howard as chairman of the Federal Government Task Force, “Revitalising Rail” in 1999. Jack stepped down in December 2012 as President of the United Israel Appeal for Australia (UIA) after 6 years and before that was Chairman or President of the Victorian UIA for 12 years. He is a former Chairman of the Montefiore Homes Foundation.
He is also Chairman of the Jack & Robert Smorgon Families Foundation and a member of the Board of the family company, Escor. Jack served as Deputy Chairman of the Bionics Institute of Australia (formerly Bionic Ear Institute) for 15 years and stepped down in November 2011 and also as Chairman of their Investment Committee and a member of the Finance Committee. Jack is now a private member of the Investment Committee. He retired as a board member of the Australia Day Committee (Victoria).

He stepped down as Chairman of the Melbourne Chapter of the World Presidents Organisation (WPO) and retired from the International Board of WPO at the end of 2006 after 10 years. He is a member of the Board of Governors of the Jewish Agency for Israel, where he has been appointed as Chairman of the Partnership and Activism Committee, one of their major committees. Jack is also a member of the Executive of Keren Hayesod and a former Chairman of the Projects Committee.

He was Deputy Chairman for 6 years before being appointed as National Chairman of the Defence Reserves Support Council (DRSC) for 6 years, stepping down after the conclusion of his second term on 31 December 2014.Jack was appointed as Patron of The Victorian Association of Jewish Ex and Servicemen and Women Australia Inc (VAJEX) in March 2012.

Jack was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 1998 Australia Day Honours. In 2006 Jack was elevated to an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).
Jack is married to Val – they have 4 children, 19 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren.
The worldwide Keren Hayesod family wishes to thank Jack for decades of inspiring leadership and for his generosity, vision and dedication. May you enjoy many more years of good health and happiness with Val and all your loved ones, along with continued activity on behalf of Keren Hayesod, Israel and the Jewish people!

Proudly showing the Goldstein Prize certificate, as KH leadership and President Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin show their appreciation for his outstanding achievements. From left to right: KH-UIA World Board of Trustees Chairman, David Koschitzky; Julia Koschitzky, KH-UIA Honorary President; President Rivlin; Jack Smorgon AO; KH-UIA World Chairman, Eliezer (Moodi) Sandberg and KH-UIA Director-General, Greg Masel.


Jack Smorgon AO addresses the audience.


Jack Smorgon AO with his family at the President house in Jerusalem.