Monday, May 30, 2005

Rabbi Scot Berman, paid mouthpiece for convicted felon Kushner, says generosity has not slaked. JWB: Why are Jewish orgs taking this crooks money?


At 8:41 AM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

see also:

Jailed Kushner misses deadline on donations
$1 million pledged to Livingston school
Thursday, May 26, 2005
Star-Ledger Staff
Millionaire developer Charles Kushner, who last month began serving a prison term on fraud charges, has been slow to pay a $1 million pledge to the Livingston school that bears his mother's name and has halted talks to donate the landmark Puck Building in Lower Manhattan to New York University.

Administrators at the Rae Kushner Yeshiva High School agreed to rename the school after Kushner promised the donation before his arrest last summer. Three board members, who asked not to be identified, said Kushner has since missed at least two self-imposed deadlines to pay the money, prompting concern that his legal troubles have derailed his philanthropy.

Officials at the school and at Kushner's charitable foundation say they are confident the donation will be paid, although they declined to discuss a timetable. They say Kushner will continue as a key benefactor and that the school remains financially secure.

"We have a long history of contributions from many sources and we fully anticipate to continue to receive substantial contributions from many people in the future," school president Sid Sayovitz said.

The issue over the pledge arose at the same time Kushner's family foundation ended discussions to hand over the Puck Building to NYU , where Kushner had served as a trustee. An NYU spokesman said last week the proposal is indefinitely "on hold."

Last month, Kushner reported to an Alabama prison camp to begin serving a 24-month term for tax fraud, illegal campaign contributions and retaliating against an FBI witness -- his sister -- during an investigation of his financial dealings.

Before his downfall, the 50-year-old Livingston resident presided over a real estate empire that owned or managed $3 billion worth of property. He also was a prolific philanthropist.

Kushner spokesman Howard Rubenstein and Rabbi Scot Berman, executive director of the C. Kushner Companies Foundation, say the generosity has not slaked.

"Charles Kushner has and will continue to meet all his philanthropic commitments," Berman said in an e-mail.

Among the notable beneficiaries of Kushner's largesse were NYU and the Orthodox Jewish schools in Livingston that now bear his parents' names.

An NYU law school graduate, Kushner joined the university's board of trustees in October 2002. The next summer, the Kushner Family Foundation agreed to lease the 118-year-old Puck Building to the school. The three-story building, named for an old satire magazine whose offices once occupied it, fills a city block at Houston and Lafayette streets and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

It is not clear how much rent the university pays. Details of the 15-year lease were not released, but one report said the 75,000-square-foot property could fetch $35 per square foot.

NYU's Robert Wagner Graduate School of Public Service took two floors in the building last year. But university spokesman Josh Taylor said last week that plans for the Kushner family to donate the building were "never a done deal" and fell apart after Kushner resigned as a trustee last August.

At 8:44 AM, Blogger jewishwhistleblower said...

1) Will the RCA ever see this money?
2) More importantly: Why would they even take it or associate in any way with someone of Kushner's character?

Endowments to R. Dworken Continuing Rabbinic Ed Program
Benefactor ($10,000 and above)
Mr. and Mrs. Charles Kushner


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