Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Newsletter

Nearly $800,000 raised at the UCLA Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies' 10-Year Anniversary Celebration

Photo for Nearly $800,000 raised at the...

The center's 2021/22 Roslyn and Abner Goldstine Undergraduate Fellows with Sharon S. Nazarian at the 10-Year Anniversary Gala.

At the UCLA Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies' 10-Year Anniversary Celebration on April 11, the center raised nearly $800,000, which will be matched by the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation.

May 12, 2022 — We are excited to announce that the UCLA Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies' 10-Year Anniversary Celebration raised almost $800,000, which will be matched by the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation. The generosity shown by our donors will help the center meet the Gilbert Foundation's $1 million matching challenge.

Major contributions were given by the Nazarian family, the community board members, and many other friends and supporters of the Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies. These charitable donations increase the center's endowment dedicated to teaching and will provide future generations of students with a deeper and more nuanced understanding of Israel’s history, culture, politics, and its role in the region and the world.

While accepting the Visionary Award on the Gilbert Foundation's behalf at the celebration, co-trustee Marty Blank said, "We have a leader at the center, Dov Waxman, who is amazing, and what we're asking for now is to get a number two, and number three, and number four at the center so that there will be more classes and more to learn about Israel."


The internationally recognized center also uses its funds to support research in the academic field of Israel Studies, organize public programs, and host visiting academics, policymakers and artists at UCLA.

"What started as a seed of an idea from the Nazarian family has in 10 years grown into a world-renowned home of critical inquiry serving thousands of students and scholars," said UCLA Chancellor Gene Block. "The center helps every member of our community embrace diversity and cultivate an informed worldview. It's brought Israel to life for our students through its visiting Israeli faculty, scholars, and artists. It's provided a space for robust, fair, and level-headed discussion about complex geopolitical issues."


If you would like to support the center's commitment to promoting Israel Studies at UCLA and abroad, you can donate here.

The 10-Year Celebration had around 300 guests in attendance and featured a program with plenty of memorable moments, accolades, and speakers — including a message from the President of Israel, Isaac Herzog, which opened the event. We were thrilled to present Sharon S. Nazarian, the center's founder, with a special Legacy Award and the Gilbert Foundation with the Visionary Award. These honors recognize their tremendous commitment to the center’s goals to educate about modern Israel in an academically rigorous and impartial way.

"The Gilbert Foundation is honored tonight, not only for the significant and invaluable gifts that the Foundation has provided the center, but also for the partnership that Richard [Ziman] and Marty [Blank] have offered every step of the way," Sharon S. Nazarian said during her acceptance speech for the center's Legacy Award.

We were also honored to host an engaging discussion between Editor-in-Chief of The Forward, Jodi Rudoren, and MK (Member of Knesset) Merav Michaeli, Israel's Minister of Transport and Road Safety, member of the security cabinet, and leader of the Israeli Labor Party. MK Michaeli illustrated her optimistic and inclusive vision for Israel’s future — a speech that was especially poignant during this sensitive time for the country and its government. Finally, we were grateful for having the timely and meaningful opportunity to celebrate Younes Nazarian’s remarkable life and legacy.

A recording of the 10-Year Anniversary program can be viewed on the center's YouTube channel.