Guenter Borg Foundation Sets Stage for Young Jewish Involvement

“In this COVID era, we are understanding that certain individuals and institutions are financially strapped,” said NextGen member Joe Glyn. “And to be able to help continue that work is important.”

Most recently, that help was provided to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia. As a Trustee of the Guenter Borg Foundation, Glyn made a generous $10,000 donation to the Jewish Community Fund. 

Joe Glyn previously co-directed the Foundation with his father, David Glyn, until he passed away earlier this year. An attorney, David Glyn had worked with Guenter Borg to help him fully actualize his philanthropic goals through the establishment of the Foundation. 

Guenter Borg’s story is a fascinating one. Born Jewish in Germany, he fled to the United States before the start of World War II. He enlisted in the army as an interpreter, where he served under General George S. Patton. With Patton, he was present for the liberation of the Ohrdruf Concentration Camp. Following his military service, Borg regained his Jewish identity, and with his return, came a passion for supporting Jewish life and the State of Israel.

As Borg’s attorney, David Glyn helped him establish the Foundation, “to help Mr. Borg to actualize his goals,” Joe Glyn said. The Foundation was set up using terms specified in Borg’s will.

Those terms state that the Foundation’s assets are to be devoted to institutions working towards the following goals for the Jewish people and the State of Israel:

  • To provide care and assistance for the needy and unfortunate;
  • To assist the victims of religious persecution, and to support institutions…which remind and teach the world of the horror of extreme anti-Semitism;
  • To help children who are orphans or who are mired in poverty or who are victims of dysfunctional families;
  • To help soldiers and others who are the victims of war or strife in the State of Israel;
  • To help new immigrants acclimate to life in Israel;
  • To save children’s lives in Israel; and
  • To assist in any other manner which promotes the Jewish Ideals of Justice, peace, mercy, and brotherhood.

It was to serve this final bullet point that Joe Glyn and the Guenter Borg Foundation agreed to make their donation to the Jewish Federation. The donation will be used to match up to 20 first-time $500 donors in NextGen (ages 21-45), in order to give them access to NextGen’s giving society for $1,000 donors, the Ben Gurion Society (BGS). 

Joe Glyn, like his father, is an attorney. While David Glyn worked primarily in estate planning at Cozen O’Connor, Joe creates programming to help law students and young lawyers prepare for working in today’s legal environment. Joe’s passions for mentorship and for carrying out the terms of Borg’s estate fostered his interest in this unique opportunity for young Jewish Philadelphians.

BGS is an international giving level for all Jewish Federations. In Philadelphia, its members receive access to exclusive events and networking opportunities. Recent events for BGS members include a talk from former Israeli Defense Forces lone soldier Jonathan Hirsch at Stateside Vodka; a discussion on the history of Jewish and Israeli fashion with Fashionating by Liri; and a lesson on the history of whiskey in Philadelphia from a master distiller at New Liberty Distillery.

Other organizations whose efforts are supported by the Guenter Borg Foundation include Yad Vashem, the Jewish Agency for Israel, and American Friends of Magen David Adom.

“We look for opportunities where we can make the most impact and we can stand out,” Joe Glyn said of the donation. “We see this as an opportunity to do that…to have a direct impact on people.”

For more information on the donation, the Ben Gurion Society match opportunity, or the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, please contact Max Moline at mmoline@jewishphilly.org.