WASHINGTON (Jan. 26)
Election of Gov. Theodore R. McKeldin of Maryland as president of the newly-formed America-Israel Society, and of F. Joseph Donohue as chairman of its board of governors was announced today. The Society was organized last Thursday at a founders’ dinner at Gov. McKeldin’s Executive Mansion at Annapolis.
Mr. Donohue, former President of the Board of Commissioners of the District of Columbia, will be the active head of the Society, which will have national headquarters in Washington. Election of the two leaders was by a telegraphic poll of the founders of the society, who include national leaders in the fields of religion, politics, education, literature and art, and business and labor.
At a press conference today, Mr. Donohue said the Society provides for the first time a medium through which Americans of all faiths can give continuous and non-political expression to the friendship which exists between the two countries. It will engage, he said, in a variety of activities concerned with cultural and intellectual interchange between the peoples of the United States and Israel, The Society will be supported by membership dues and voluntary contributions and will not engage in fund-raising for other purposes.
The Society, Mr. Donohue added, “has been brought into being by a group of American leaders of all faiths and in many lines of endeavor who believe that these is need for a non-sectarian, non-political all-American organization to work for the fullest interchange of ideas and cultural material between the oldest and youngest of the world’s present-day democracies. We hope that it will help Americans to a new appreciation of the culture of Israel, and encourage the people of that nation to a better understanding of America and its way of life, The Society will seek to interpret the spiritual tradition and democratic heritage that binds the two nations together and to give aided meaning to the unity of purpose that characterizes freedom-loving peoples.”