In 1999, Eugene and Marcia announced the largest capital gift in the history of Metro Detroit’s Jewish Community. The Eugene and Marcia Applebaum Jewish Community Campus was the centerpiece capital commitment of the Millennium Campaign.
The $5.5 million gift was given to expand and beautify the 195-acre campus. It helped to upgrade the physical structure of the campus and ensure the vitality of Jewish life at the “center” of the Detroit Jewish community—from the youngest to the oldest, from pre-school to senior services.
“The campus [needs to be] the place to congregate… a place used by children, adults, the whole Jewish community. We want to make this campus a place to be proud of…we want there to be structure to the campus. It should be clean, well lit and identified properly. We want people to come to the campus, and we want young people to want to go to it. We need to give them some impetus.”
Over $60 million was raised in this historic effort, with funds and capital gifts made by the leading pillars of the Detroit Jewish community including David and Doreen Hermelin, William Davidson, Bill and Madge Berman, Sam and Jean Frankel, Eugene and Marcia Applebaum, Nancy and James Grosfeld, and Penny and Harold Blumenstein.