This month, the spotlight shines on ADL Mountain States Regional Board Member Doug Antonoff, with whom we spoke about his love of ice cream, golf, some fascinating reading selections and, of course, his long-time support of ADL.
How did you first become involved in ADL? How are you involved now?
I went through the Jewish Federation’s young leadership program and learned about several Jewish organizations. ADL’s mission really resonated with me. I started by getting involved in the education committee. Now, I support ADL financially and as an ambassador and I participate on some of the event host committees. I am also a legacy donor.
What do you do in your professional life?
I am in the real estate development, investment and brokerage business. Our focus is on retail properties primarily in the Denver metro area.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
As a kid, the world was full of so many possibilities. I did not know what my calling was going to be.
Where were you born? From where do your ancestors hail?
I was born in St. Louis, MO and moved to Denver when I was about a year old. My ancestors come from Russia on my dad’s side and Poland on my mom’s side.
What’s your favorite holiday?
Passover. I enjoy the traditions, the service, the food and the time with family and friends.
What’s your favorite food?
What are you reading?
What’s a special place you have visited?
Machu Picchu – it’s magical.
What’s one thing every person should know or experience?
Life is short. Don’t postpone things you want to do until this or that happens. Do the things you love now – you never know how many tomorrows you will have.
What teacher or class stands out to you the most in your education and why?
My property law professor at Boston College Law School. He was a fascinating and accomplished person and was able to bring real life experience to the classroom. He was able to simplify and explain complex concepts clearly. It also helped that I enjoyed the subject matter.
What are you passionate about personally?
I am passionate about learning and growing. I am also passionate about golf, the Nuggets, and travel.
What can’t you stop talking about?
These days, I can’t stop talking about the dysfunction in politics.
Where can we find you when you’re not working?
Golfing, traveling, exercising, and reading.
What would be impossible for you to give up?
Ice cream and golf.
If you had to teach something, what would you teach?
Real estate development.
Tell me a story that immediately pops into your mind that was a defining or significant moment for you.
I was working on a large development project in Lochbuie, CO in the 1990s and was embroiled in a dispute with the Town about approval of our development plans. The Town refused to communicate with me and forced me to file a lawsuit. It was a long and arduous dispute. I was able to get it resolved and learned the value of perseverance, patience and determination. Once the dispute was resolved, I was able to build a very successful project.
Why do you choose to make a financial investment in ADL?
I have personally experienced anti-Semitism and know the importance of ADL’s work and mission. The world has a lot to learn about respect and appreciation for differences.
If you are a legacy donor, why have you chosen to invest in ADL in this way?
As a legacy donor, I wanted to be able to continue to support this outstanding organization well beyond my lifetime. I am hopeful that my legacy gift will generate annual income to ADL to continue in perpetuity my longstanding tradition of giving a meaningful annual gift.
Complete this sentence: For me, the ADL is … a vital national and international resource whose mission unfortunately never loses its importance.