Profile: All People Are Responsible for One Another
Who: Steven B. Nasatir, president, Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago for 25 years. Chicago’s largest social-welfare organization, JUF/Federation raises funds to bring food, refuge, healthcare, education and emergency assistance to 300,000 Chicagoans of all faiths and 2 million Jews worldwide, conducting an annual campaign of $70 million and generating total revenues of approximately $200 million annually.
Grew up in: Lifelong Chicagoan and die-hard White Sox fan.
Education: Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois; master’s degree from Roosevelt University; Ph.D. from Northwestern University.
Role model/hero: “My father. He worked hard for his family, and he was an honest man.”
Why fundraising: “I didn’t [plan on going into fundraising]. I saw myself as a future university president. Of course, as president of JUF/Federation or president of a university, the development role is crucial. At JUF, we view fundraising as a community-building enterprise. Since Sept. 11, 2001, I think that all Americans have developed a deepened understanding of the unending strength and spirit that comes from a united community. JUF/Federation works to translate that sense of solidarity into action.”
Proudest moment: “Since I’ve been at the helm of the organization, I am proud to say we have raised an aggregate $5 billion through annual and special campaigns, endowments, and private and public funding.”
Major responsibilities: “As the professional leader of a large not-for-profit organization, I am the chief public spokesperson who represents our institutional interests in the general community. It’s up to me to express the organization’s vision and oversee strategic planning and implementation, and all resource development efforts.”
Major challenges: “Finding enough hours in the day, and balancing ideologies and interests to forge a collective consensus.”
Favorite causes: Our own, and nearly any and all things involving Israel.
Personal views: “The Jewish tradition holds that all people are responsible for one another. That is the guiding principle of this organization and also for my own life.”