The South African Jewish Board of Deputies mourns the loss of Bertie Lubner, who passed away this morning.
Bertie was an extraordinary man contributing to so many worthy causes. His vision and leadership were responsible for the creation and development of some leading South African NGOs such as Afrika Tikkun and the Field Band Foundation. Whether in the business, philanthropic, educational, Zionistic or Jewish communal fields, he has made a huge contribution to poverty alleviation, capacity building and education in our country.
Bertie was Honorary Life Chairman of the SA Jewish Board of Deputies and served on the SAJBD’s National Executive Council for several decades. His warmth, insight, humour, anecdotes and valuable input at the meetings will be sorely missed.
Bertie received many prestigious awards, including the State President’s Award for Meritorious Service and the Order of Meritorious Service – Silver, and was recently honoured at the SAJBD conference in November 2015, when he was presented with the Eric Samson Mendel Kaplan Award for Community Service, for his lifetime of commitment to our community and our country. For his work on behalf of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, he received an Honorary Doctorate and a Lifetime Achiever’s Award.
On one of the occasions when he was being presented with an award, he stated: “One should never expect to be rewarded for doing the right things. The reward in one’s own soul is far greater.” Throughout his life, he was true to this stirring maxim, making him a source of inspiration to all he has known.
May his memory be a blessing to his family and all who had the good fortune of engaging with him.