Our founders, Ruth (z”l) and Gerard (z”l) Daniel held a vision of Progressive Judaism in modern Israel. Their passion for Israel and dedication to advocating for a pluralistic and inclusive Jewish Israeli society – rich in tradition and grounded in egalitarianism; led to an Israel Supreme Court challenge, granting the rights to build a non-orthodox synagogue on public land. This is the kind of determination carried across generations of the Daniel family.
Gerard Daniel was born and raised in Germany to a modern Orthodox family. His parents perished in the Holocaust. At eighteen he moved to British Mandate over Palestine where he married Ruth Feilchenfeld, whose family also moved from Berlin. Their two children, Ralph and Miriam, were born in Tel Aviv. In 1947, the Daniel family moved to the United States to join Gerry’s brother.
Gerald and Ruth established a manufacturing business and made significant contributions to aerospace technology. They were very involved in their synagogue and Jewish community. Gerald served as President and Ruth was Secretary of Larchmont Temple in Westchester County, New York. Ruth dedicated her life to others. She served on the Board of Directors for numerous Jewish Organizations. Gerald served as President of the World Union for Progressive Judaism, thus remaining involved in the movement for Progressive Judaism in Israel. He has served on many Jewish Federation Boards in the U.S. Through his leadership in Israel, the Mayor of Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Ron Huldai, gave him the title of Honorary Citizen, in 2010.
Through their legacy, their children, Ralph and Miriam, and son-in-law Larry Wolff, continue to give the Daniel Centers of Tel Aviv their time, love, and dedication. They have helped to create a strong and vibrant community with three Daniel Centers, and a 165 room guest house & community center in Jaffa, named in honor of Ruth: Mishkenot Ruth Daniel.
The Daniel Family has driven social change and impacted the lives of numerous Israelis over the past 30 years. They continue to be dedicated to supporting a pluralistic and egalitarian Israel.