Library > News > Newsletter > Autumn 2013 > The National Library of Israel Establishes Salomon Judaica Endowment

The National Library of Israel Establishes Salomon Judaica Endowment

The National Library of Israel is pleased to announce the endowment of the Chaim and Chana Salomon Judaica Collection, a bequest from their daughter, the late Naomi Salomon. The endowment provides funding for the Judaica Collection, including the development of digital access to collections, promotion of scholarly research and the acquisition of new treasures.

According to Oren Weinberg, NLI Director, the gift from Naomi Salomon to endow the Judaica Collection is one of the largest private donations given to NLI. "In recent years NLI has made significant efforts to enrich its core collections and expand access to the intellectual and cultural assets of the Jewish people and the State of Israel. Naomi Salomon's contribution is an expression of the growing recognition from private donors, foundations and institutions of the importance of NLI in Israeli culture. "

Naomi Salomon, granddaughter of Rabbi Yoel Moshe Salomon, a pioneer of the 19th century Ashkenazi community of Jerusalem and founder of the first Hebrew Monthly Bulletin, HaLevanon, bequeathed 300 shares of Teva Pharmaceuticals, equivalent to approximately $12 million following her death in 2011. Her father, Chaim Salomon, had established Teva's earliest formation, as Salomon, Levin, and Elstein Ltd., a wholesale pharmaceutical distributor founded in 1901.

Born in 1914, in the Nachalat Shiva neighborhood of Jerusalem that was established by her grandfather, Naomi was influenced by her parents who worked tirelessly for the fledgling city of Jerusalem and its inhabitants.  She herself was an ardent Zionist, and during WWII, volunteered for the Royal British Air Force on the Egyptian front to protect her beloved country from the Nazis.  She spent her professional career at the Ministry of Justice and was the assistant of five attorneys general, including former Chief Justice Aharon Barak. Her niece, Ruth Cheshin, President of the Jerusalem Foundation remarked upon her death, "Naomi's love of Israel was planted deep within her and obvious to everyone who met her.  Anything related to life in Israel touched her personally."