An 84-year-old former real-estate mogul who has given tens of millions of dollars to Jewish causes is now trying to raise money for himself following the collapse of his business empire, says The New York Times.
Aaron Ziegelman has sent out solicitations in recent weeks to philanthropists, peers in real estate, and the parents of children attending Camp JRF, a Jewish youth facility in the Poconos to which he has given $1-million. He has given $30-million to charity, including $10-million to a rabbinical college in Pennsylvania.
Mr. Ziegelman, who made and lost a fortune on New York condominium and co-op conversions and a lending business, wrote in the letter that he is “faced with creditors who are trying to take away my home. I need your financial help to save my home and to clean up the mess so I can start making a living.”
A handful of creditors have sued Mr. Ziegelman, claiming he solicited investments from them as part of a Ponzi scheme to pay off older debts. He denied the allegations, saying there are no criminal investigations into his dealings, and said his personal appeal has raised close to $1-million in donations.