J Street is deeply saddened by the passing of one of our earliest and strongest supporters, Elaine Hoffman.
Elaine backed J Street from day one — understanding from the moment she heard what we were doing, the importance of bringing pro-Israel, pro-peace voices into the political process. She was, after all, a former finance director of the Democratic National Committee and a veteran of Washington, DC and national politics.
Elaine did everything she possibly could to ensure J Street’s success. She joined our National Finance Committee as a founding member. She donated the space for our first regional office in Los Angeles. She traveled with us to Israel and the West Bank.
And last year, we were so fortunate to be able to honor her and her partner Arthur Greenberg with our Tzedek v’Shalom (Justice and Peace) Award at our annual Los Angeles lunch.
Elaine’s commitment to peace went back to her days in the Carter Administration and her involvement in some of the activities around the signing of the Camp David Accords. Later she was a member of the American delegation that monitored the first Palestinian national elections in 1996.
Elaine saw her commitment to a two-state solution as an expression of her love for Israel and her belief in the importance of diplomacy in resolving conflict. And she understood that that commitment needed to be given a political voice.
Elaine spent her life putting her deeply-held values into action. She sought to build a better future for Americans, for the Jewish people and for Arabs and Israelis.
We will miss Elaine dearly and send our thoughts and prayers to Arthur and to her family. Her memory will be a blessing for all of us.