April 15, 2024
Close this search box.
Close this search box.
April 15, 2024
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Livingston Resident Takes the Reins as New Israel Bonds Chair

Israel Bonds’ delegation of medical professionals at Yad Eliezer, where they packed food for distribution to Israelis in need.

Twenty years ago, Israel Bonds wanted to honor Dr. Robert Hutter, a pathologist, who was very active in the organization’s local medical division and set to retire. Wanting to bring in the next generation, they decided to honor his son Dr. Andrew Hutter, an orthopedic surgeon, as well.

“It was very successful,” said Hutter. “Dr. Arthur Maron, who was the chair at that time, asked me to stay on and work with him as a lay leader.”

Over the years, his involvement with Israel Bonds evolved. Hutter was appointed the chair of Metro New Jersey Israel Bonds division. Then he was appointed to the national board and eventually to an officer of the board. He also co-founded the organization’s medical division.

Now he’s taking on the key lay leadership position in Israel Bonds, serving as the new national and international chairman of the board. Hutter succeeds Howard L. Goldstein of south Florida. The move comes at a critical time as Israel works to rebuild after the terrifying attacks of Oct. 7 by Hamas on residents of the south and Hezbollah flexes its military muscles in the north.

Noting that the connection between Israel and diaspora Jewry is more important than ever, he said, “the stronger we are the better. I think Israel Bonds is one of the most important ways to connect everyone to Israel because we are not a charity and we are not in competition with other organizations.”

Dr. Andrew Hutter

While anti-Israel demonstrators have clamored for divestment from Israel and Israel-related groups like Israel Bonds, many are doubling down on their support. The war that Hamas began, has led to an increase in bond purchases. As Hutter said, “Normally, for the last several years, we’ve seen about a $1 billion investment in Israel Bonds. We were just about at that level before the war.”

After the war began, that investment swelled to more than $2.7 billion over the course of 2023.

“People have really stepped up,” he added. “I think it’s a positive statement that the community wants to support the country. We understand the importance of our homeland.”

Also stepping up to support Israel are several states, local municipalities, and institutions with significant investments in Israel Bonds, including Florida and Ohio, which are increasing those investments.

There has certainly been much coverage of the aftermath of Oct. 7 on Israel and its population, but Hutter is set to see the reality of the attacks for himself this week, as he and his wife Barbara, who is on Israel Bonds National Women’s Council, are leading a mission of Israel Bonds’ leadership to the Jewish state.

“It’s important to hear the truth,” he said, especially given the amount of “bias, one-sided” anti-Israel information out there. “We need to hear what happened, how people are coping.

Just like we keep saying that we have to tell what happened during the Holocaust, we have to keep telling this story,” he said. “We have to show the human side of the people who were affected by Oct. 7 and will be affected for a very long time.”

If there’s one misconception Hutter hopes to dispel as Israel Bonds’ new chair, it’s the belief that the organization is a charity. “Israel Bonds is not a charity. It is an investment,” he said. “You are supporting the state of Israel by doing this. It’s a good thing to do, and it’s important.”

One of his goals as the chair is to increase the number of people buying Israel Bonds. “Over half the bonds that are bought are under $1,000 and every bond is important,” he said. “Every connection is important. Every bond is important and no bond is too small.”

Hutter spent much of his childhood in Yonkers, New York before his family settled in Connecticut for a short time. Then came the family’s move to Livingston when he was 14. And, as he said, he never left, except for medical school. A graduate of Livingston High School, he earned his medical degree from Howard University College of Medicine in Washington and did his residency in Newark. He worked as an orthopedic surgeon for some 40 years and has since retired.

He and Barbara were among the original members of Etz Chaim in Livingston. Hutter is a past president of the shul and they remain active members there. In addition, the couple was honored a few years ago by the Friendship Circle. Their children Jared, Melissa and Jessica are all graduates of what is now the Golda Och Academy in West Orange. They are also all involved in Israel Bonds, bringing in yet another younger generation of Hutters to help the Jewish homeland.

Faygie Holt is an award-winning journalist whose articles have been published worldwide and translated into several different languages. She is also the author of two middle-grade book series for Jewish children, “The Achdus Club” and “Layla’s Diaries,” both available from Menucha Publishers. A third series is set to be released in 2024. Learn more at faygieholt.com.

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles