BTCF Blog | Reflections on Moe England

BTCF Blog

Reflections on Moe England

By Justin Burke / August 16, 2021 / Donor Spotlight, News & Announcements
Reflections on Moe England

In 2014, Moe England opened a fund at Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation to support religious education at his synagogue.

Then he opened a fund for scholarships at Berkshire Music School. Then another fund, this time to support the Jewish Federation of the Berkshires.

For good measure, he finished by opening a scholarship fund for a student who, like him, would attend Colgate University and answer a call to heal the world – captured in the Hebrew phrase “tikkun olam.”

In each case, Moe wanted the causes he cared about to benefit from funds that would be invested and grow, now and long into the future. And the cause he cared about most was creating opportunities for young people.

“He was just so generous,” recalls BTCF Director of Philanthropic Services Jill Cancellieri, who worked with Moe and his daughter Elizabeth to establish these funds. “He always wanted to do more.”

And, Jill notes, he wanted to inspire his peers to do more, too.

Moe was often seen with his BTCF tote bag slung over his wheelchair at Kimball Farms. “Does he have a fund with you?” he would not-too-subtly ask Jill, pointing out prospects as he moved through the halls of the retirement community, where everyone knew and admired him.  

“His philanthropy was an extension of his personal caring about people and making the world better,” Jill says.

Moe died August 3 at age 90. A member of a storied Pittsfield family, he had travelled the country and the world, helping to launch the craft beer movement. Described by his daughter as always lending an ear, Moe is remembered fondly in a Berkshire Eagle story and in our own archival interview.

We remember Moe as a generous partner and friend who has opened doors for others – like stars, too many to count – for years to come.  

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