Nigel Savage

The teaching that speaks to me most deeply, at the moment, is the one about having two pieces of paper in our pockets. One says, ‘You are dust and will return to dust…” and the other says, “for you the world was made…”
—Nigel Savage
 
 

Nigel Savage   President & CEO

Nigel Savage, originally from Manchester, England, founded Hazon in 2000, with a Cross-USA Jewish Environmental Bike Ride. Since then, Hazon has grown the range and impact of its work in each successive year; today it has more than 60 staff, based in New York City, at Hazon’s Isabella Freedman campus, and in other locations across the country. Hazon plays a unique role in renewing American Jewish life and creating a healthier and more sustainable world for all.

Hazon is one of a tiny handful of groups to have been in the Slingshot 50 every year since inception, and in 2008, Hazon was recognized by the Sierra Club as one of 50 leading faith-based environmental organizations.

Nigel has spoken, taught, or written for a wide and significant range of audiences.  (A selection of his essays are at hazon.org/nigel). He has twice been named a member of the Forward 50, the annual list of the 50 most influential Jewish people in the United States, and is a recipient of the Bernard Reisman Award. He has given Commencement speeches at Wagner (NYU, in 2011) and at Hornstein (Brandeis, in 2014). In 2015 he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Jewish Theological Seminary.

Before founding Hazon, Nigel was a professional fund manager in London, where he worked for NM Rothschild and was co-head of UK Equities at Govett. He has an MA in History from Georgetown, and has learned at Pardes, Yakar, and the Hebrew University.  He was a founder of Limmud NY, and serves on the board of Romemu.

Nigel executive produced the British independent movies Solitaire For 2 and Stiff Upper Lips and had an acclaimed cameo appearance in the cult Anglo-Jewish comic movie, Leon The Pig Farmer.  He is believed to be the first English Jew to have cycled across South Dakota on a recumbent bike.

New York, NY | 212.908.2503 | nigel@hazon.org

Special Recent Posts

360 degrees / change your place

360 degrees / change your place

August 25th, 2016

by Nigel Savage "Shanah,” the Hebrew word for year, has two opposite meanings: change, and repeat. On one hand, we know the coming year will hold the same calendar, the same holiday cycle, and what seems like the same life situations as[...]

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The People of the Bike Redux

July 18th, 2016

by Nigel Savage A version of this email was due to go out on Thursday evening. But 85 people were murdered in Nice that evening, so we decided to hold off until this morning. Over the weekend - as we know[...]

The View From England

The View From England

June 30th, 2016

by Nigel Savage This has been a shocking week to be in England. I feel very sad. The overarching thread of the emails that I write for the Hazon list is our theme quote – “the Torah is a commentary on the[...]

The old and the new

The old and the new

June 16th, 2016

by Nigel Savage Na’aseh v’nishmah – “we will do and we will learn” – are the words with which the Jewish people received the Torah, which we celebrated last weekend. The words are famous because of their order: it is the[...]

Israel / leaning in

Israel / leaning in

June 2nd, 2016

by Nigel Savage Hazon will be in the Celebrate Israel Parade in New York this Sunday, riding bicycles alongside our Topsy Turvy Bus. Many people would not mind if we were not there; it’s 2016, nothing about Israel is uncontroversial, and[...]

Learning from Lubavitch

Learning from Lubavitch

May 20th, 2016

by Nigel Savage Hazon’s tag line, built into our logo, is “Jewish inspiration. Sustainable communities.” These four words are an imperfect attempt to summarize not only an ethos that underpins our work, but also some of its contradictions. Those contradictions have, if[...]

Organic Jewish life, now

Organic Jewish life, now

May 5th, 2016

by Nigel Savage It's spring, we're counting the omer, much is happening. I wanted to say something about the nature of Isabella Freedman as a Jewishly-inflected retreat center – why that is so unique and vital and also hard to define, and[...]

“Freedom to…..” / seder night in the age of Sanders & Trump

“Freedom to…..” / seder night in the age of Sanders & Trump

April 21st, 2016

by Nigel Savage What do we read? The vital lesson of Hillel in the 21st century. I was mooching around the internet, looking for a copy of the (excellently-named) Chazon Ovadia (the haggadah of Rav Ovadia Yosef, z”l) and I was thinking[...]

The rhythms of tradition

The rhythms of tradition

April 7th, 2016

by Nigel Savage The current iteration of ideas and programs that are encompassed by "Jewish Outdoor, Food, Farming & Environmental Education," ie "JOFEE" for short, is less than twenty years old. But Pesach – chag ha'aviv, the festival of spring – is[...]

Eggs

Eggs

February 25th, 2016

by Nigel Savage This is the week of the golden calf. This is the week where the children of Israel are described as the “stiff-necked people.” This is the parsha that describes Israel as “the land of milk and honey.” We take[...]

Sanctuaries, at a complicated moment

Sanctuaries, at a complicated moment

February 18th, 2016

by Nigel Savage This week's parsha includes the famous line: "Let them make for Me a sanctuary, and I will dwell amongst them." You can parse it, learn it, sing it, reflect on it. We hear words in different ways, in[...]

David Bowie, Reb Shlomo, Alan Rickman, Herman Wouk

David Bowie, Reb Shlomo, Alan Rickman, Herman Wouk

January 14th, 2016

By Nigel Savage Had he lived, today would have been the birthday of Reb Shlomo Carlebach, z”l. Like David Bowie and Alan Rickman – each of them, also, of blessed memory – he died at 69. Nowadays we think of the biblical threescore[...]

Light in the Darkness

Light in the Darkness

November 12th, 2015

Rosh Chodesh Kislev, 5776 I got back to the US on Tuesday, after a swirling Israel trip that was rich and intense and thought-provoking. I share with you a few provisional thoughts, many of them self-contradictory: The self-reinforcing mirror worlds we live[...]

Being in Israel this Week

Being in Israel this Week

November 2nd, 2015

I'm tired but feeling good. We rode today from Jerusalem to Ashkelon – 162 riders, on the first day of our 2015 Arava Institute Hazon Israel Ride. It was a good start. We took precautions against both rain and terrorism. As[...]

Towards a New Paradigm

Towards a New Paradigm

October 23rd, 2015

The name of this week's Torah portion, Lech Lecha, means both "go forth" or "go out" and, more literally, "go to you." It's the week in which Avraham and Sarah begin their great odyssey towards a new land and a[...]

Seven Years

Seven Years

September 24th, 2015

My Bobbie, as we called her in Manchester when I was a kid, (my father's mother, z"l) was born on this day – in 1892. How crazy is that? That's as far distant from today as the year 2138 –[...]

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Recent staff changes

August 10th, 2015

Recent staff changes (in alphabetical order!):​ Mark Bailey came on board in June as our new Design Fellow (in the Marketing & Communications branch)​ Judith Belasco is now Hazon’s Chief Program Officer Julie Botnick shifted to the position of Program Associate on August[...]

Hazon in the Bay Area...

Hazon in the Bay Area...

August 10th, 2015

I’m writing to Hazon stakeholders in the Bay Area to thank you for your support in the past and to let you know about the next evolution of our work here. Our work here began when I was in San Francisco[...]

Three Gifts from Jewish Tradition

Three Gifts from Jewish Tradition

August 10th, 2015

Nigel Savage's address at the Summit of Conscience for the Climate, Paris, 21st July 2015 | 5th Av 5775 Friends, I’m honored to be here, part of this incredible group of people. This has been a fascinating, inspiring, thought-provoking day. I want to say[...]

Bonna Devora Haberman, z

Bonna Devora Haberman, z"l

June 17th, 2015

I first met Bonna in London in late 1985. She and Shmuel and Tiferet were living on the attic floor of an old house in Hampstead while she finished her Phd. I had never met a couple like Bonna and[...]

How the Once-Every-Seven-Years Observance of Shmita is Changing Jewish Lives in The Huffington Post, September 2014

On Tribes, Food and Community in Jewish MegaTrends: Charting the Course of the American Jewish Future

Time for Jewish Evangelizing in The Jewish Daily Forward, June 2014