Millie Phillips: more tributes

July 21, 2021 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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As the news spread of the passing of businesswoman, grandmother and mother Millie Phillips on Monday, tributes continue to flow in.

Millie Phillips

Tel Aviv University

Millie Phillips was a long-time friend of Tel Aviv University

A self-made entrepreneur, Mrs Phillips was one of Australia’s most prominent businesswomen and philanthropists of Jewish causes. Mrs Phillips was resolutely committed to fighting antisemitism and strengthening Jewish heritage, identity and continuity through educational and community programs in Australia and Israel.

Mrs Phillips was a staunch supporter of the State of Israel and an ardent TAU benefactor devoted to bolstering campus life and higher education. In recognition of her trailblazing accomplishments and magnanimous philanthropy, TAU awarded Mrs Phillips an Honorary Doctorate in 2014. Her generous contributions backed myriad projects at the University over the years, notably including the Millie Phillips Student City housing complex, the Millie Phillips Lobby at the Steinhardt Museum of Natural History, and the Millie Phillips Floor at the Check Point Building.

Mrs Phillips rose to the top echelons of Australia’s mining and property industries from humble beginnings. She was born in Poland in 1929 and immigrated to Sydney, Australia with her family in 1938. There, she joined the newly-formed Jewish Zionist youth movement, Habonim.

In 1960, she launched her inspiring career path by establishing a boarding house. She went on to build up a conglomerate of motels, nursing homes and retirement facilities, later diversifying into mineral exploration and floating several public companies. Throughout the years, the formidable business magnate continued to build and develop land, as well as to own and operate assisted-living facilities and retirement villages.

Mrs Phillips’ support of community organizations in Australia included the JCA, Emanuel Synagogue, WIZO and Masada College in Sydney, where she was a Life Governor.

Tel Aviv University sends its heartfelt condolences to her family and friends.

May her memory be for a blessing.

Community identity Harry Triguboff said: “I will miss Millie. I always admired her as she was the most successful person in nursing homes. She started from nothing, with no help from the government, unlike others who had help, and she was the best.

I always saw her as a great example of a strong woman, entrepreneur, a true leader and a very generous donor for so many great causes both in Australia and Israel.

I always enjoyed meeting with Millie, we always had a few good laughs because we were both very different from the rest of the community.

She will be missed.”

Darren Bark, CEO of The New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies said: “Millie Phillips will always be remembered as a passionate supporter of our community and a devoted backer of, amongst other areas, Jewish education and the fight against antisemitism.

The NSW Jewish Board of Deputies greatly benefitted from her generosity and her ongoing legacy will leave a lasting impact.

We wish her family a long life, and may her memory be a blessing.

Jason Sandler, President of JewishCare: “Millie was a very generous donor to JewishCare over very many years. This culminated in the 2010 Capital Appeal,  in which Millie was the largest single donor. This Appeal enabled JewishCare to build its current headquarters in Saber Street, Woollahra which allows us to help thousands of community members each year.  She will be remembered for many years to come.

Doron Lazarus, CEO of Save a Child’s Heart: On behalf of Save A Child’s Heart Australia and Israel, we express our deepest sympathy and condolences to the family of Millie Phillips, on her passing. Millie was a founding board member of Save A Child’s Heart Australia and a wonderful supporter of our life-saving mission. She leaves a true legacy of passionate support for our community and Israel, with an impact that will be felt for many generations to come.

May her memory be a blessing and her legacy continue.


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