New Brunswick—The children of real estate developer and philanthropist Arie Halpern and his wife Eva have donated $3 million to Rutgers University Hillel for a 33,000-square-foot building, to be known as The Eva and Arie Halpern Hillel House. It will be constructed in the heart of the University’s $300 million College Avenue redevelopment.
According to family spokesman Henry Stein, Eva and Arie, both Holocaust survivors, were also widowers who, met and married in the United States. Eva and her two sons, Henry and Ben, and Arie’s three daughters, Bella, Shelley and Nanette, became a close-knit family which included 16 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
“Our decision to commemorate our parents by naming the new Hillel House is a natural continuation of their lives as community leaders who wholeheartedly embraced Judaism, Jewish education, Israel and the Jewish community,” Stein said. “Our parents lived their lives committed to the same Jewish values espoused by Hillel. It is fitting that their names be indelibly connected to Rutgers Hillel and its mission for generations to come. We could think of no greater way to honor their legacy”
The $3 million gift from the Halpern Family brought the total raised thus far to $12 million. The Campaign was jump-started with a $2 million gift from the Wilf Family which enabled planning, design and land acquisition. Additional gifts of confidence soon followed, including $1.5 million from the late Eric F. Ross. Rutgers Hillel plans to break ground at its new location later this semester.