LIVE: Today, helping new generations more crucial than ever, says TAU supporter

Dr. Garry Rayant, healthcare professional, entrepreneur, and philanthropist In conversation with Erica Schachne, editor, The Jerusalem Post Magazine.

Dr. Garry Rayant in conversation with Erica Schachne


Thursday, 1 June 2023 • 5 pm Israel Time|10 am EST

The iconic Jewish text Pirkei Avot (Chapters of the Fathers) reports that ancient Jewish sage Hillel used to say, “If I am not for myself, who is for me? But if I am for my own self [only], what am I?” 

According to the Chair of American Friends of Tel Aviv University Garry A. Rayant - a healthcare professional, entrepreneur, and philanthropist - this quote embodies the paradym that younger generations should follow when they think about their lives. 

Dr. Garry Rayant (Credit: Courtesy)
Dr. Garry Rayant (Credit: Courtesy)

“I think that in the first stages of life, everyone has to be for themselves,” he said in the first special video interview in honor of Tel Aviv University’s Board of Governors week-long meeting. “You have to get an education, you have to become self sufficient in many ways. But afterwards if there is just you, life becomes very empty.”

“When you're privileged enough to have some success, the older you get, the more it becomes all about community, and about giving something back.”

After the coronavirus pandemic, Rayant and his wife Dr. Kathy Fields were instrumental in launching the University’s Center for Combating Pandemics, something that they felt was incredibly needed. 

In addition, the couple established the Fields-Rayant Scholarship Fund in honor of Global Campaign Cabinet Chair Dr. Anita Friedman. 

“A major part of our community involvement is about the next generation,” Rayant said. “This means not only keeping the next generation strong, but also keeping the young generations between countries interconnected and connected with Israel.”

The philanthropist explained that when they heard that attracting students from Israel’s periphery represented a challenge for Tel Aviv University, he and his wife decided to act. 

“We thought it would be a great idea to start an endowment to encourage and allow students from the periphery towns to get educated at this wonderful institution,” he said.