Many of the important things in Melanie Moreno’s life come in twos. She has two children. She has studied both biology and financial management. Now she’s found a wonderful way to double the impact of a single philanthropic gift — buying Israel Bonds in the name of the American Technion Society (ATS).
“It’s a double mitzvah, a win-win,” she said. “I’m investing in Israel by purchasing the bonds and supporting the Technion at the same time.”
Israel Bonds were first issued by Israel in 1951 to provide the nascent state with loans to develop its infrastructure, agriculture, and manufacturing. Since Israel Bonds’ inception, it has never missed a payment of interest or principal to investors. In the “double mitzvah” program, all payment is sent to the Technion instead.
The “double mitzvah” program is attractive to all parties involved.
Donors find that giving through Israel Bonds is easy to do and offers tax advantages. Tying Israel Bonds to the cause of your choice also makes your investment in Israel more meaningful. And double mitzvah participants simultaneously build gift credits and benefits in both the Technion and Israel Bonds.
For the Technion, the interest payments provide a steady stream of income that can be used immediately. And the Technion can budget for future initiatives, assured it will receive the full worth of the bond when it comes due.
The ATS benefits by bringing new supporters into the pipeline. “Some people might be Bond buyers but do not realize that the ATS takes Israel Bonds for donations,” said Melanie, who has been the local campaign chair for Israel Bonds for the past six years. “It’s a great way to build the donor base. And there’s no competition for donor dollars because Israel Bonds is not a charity and the ATS gets the principal and interest when paid out,” she added. Melanie buys a bond each year so the Technion always has one coming due.
Melanie became involved with the ATS after serendipitously meeting Technion supporter Agota Kuperman at a breakfast in Washington D.C. hosted by the Jewish National Fund. Kuperman was seated next to her and started to talk about the ATS. The Technion resonated for Melanie as her father, Bernard Frishman, hired a Technion graduate for his architectural firm in Washington D.C. and had taken her to Technion events when she was younger.
“I have a science background, so hearing the professors explain their research makes me want to go back to school,” said Melanie Moreno, incoming ATS President for the ATS National Capital Region Board.
Today, Melanie is proud to be a second-generation Technion supporter and the next president of the ATS National Capital Region Board.
“This is an easy group to lead,” she said somewhat modestly. Melanie is forever making connections to bring newcomers into the organization. She is a graduate of the ATS 21st Century Leadership Program, a two-year-long series of seminars about the Technion’s global impact that empowers donors to become ambassadors for the Technion and Israel. Melanie is also a member of the ATS National Board and its Advisory Committee, and the current chair of the local programs committee. Though she won’t step up as the ATS’s Washington D.C. president for another six months, she is already thinking about strategic partnerships with other non-profit organizations that could build on the Technion’s most promising research.
Why support the Technion among the many competing Jewish and Israeli causes?
Melanie ticked off three key reasons. “It’s just so cutting-edge,” she said. “If you’re interested in science and technology, there’s always someone at the Technion taking a creative and innovative approach to solving problems. You get access to research and professors on a very personal level.
Melanie also appreciates the Technion’s diverse student body. “That the student population mirrors that of Israel is very telling,” she said. “It speaks for itself in so many ways.” Lastly, Melanie has been impressed by the Technion’s ingenuity and resourcefulness. She tells the story of a time when the Technion didn’t have a supercomputer it needed but improvised by connecting many smaller computers. “The Technion does so much with so little, so you know that whatever you’re giving has an impact.”
Make Your Double Mitzvah Online at israelbonds.com
Perform a double mitzvah by supporting ATS with an Israel Bond. Log into your account at israelbonds.com. Click the “Purchase” link and follow the instructions. Then, please choose “Corporate/Partnership,” and enter the following:
Legal Entity Name: American Technion Society
Entity Address: 55 East 59th Street, 14th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Authorized Contact Name: Anita Enriquez