Established in 1914 to aid Palestinian Jews caught up in the agony of World War I, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (known as the JDC or "The Joint") has brought aid to people all over the world - including Europe after World War II ("the Jewish Marshall Plan"), the State of Israel in the early days of its inception, and the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War. The JDC has a simple mission: to help those in need, whoever they are and wherever they are found. An activist and leader in Jewish affairs all his life, Ralph Goldman is the heart and soul of the JDC. From the 1940s through the 1960s, he assisted David Ben-Gurion during the founding of the State of Israel, and went on to serve as Executive Vice President of the JDC during the 1970s and 1980s. Under Goldman's leadership, the JDC established schools and community centers in Israel, brought aid to Jews trapped behind the Iron Curtain, and improved the lives of people around the world. Called "the ultimate insider" by former mayor of Jerusalem Teddy Kollek, Goldman is a vital part of Jewish life and an inspiration to people all over the world.
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