Fred Bondy, philanthropist and businessman

Fred Bondy

Fred Bondy, of Wilmette, was recognized for his endeavors on behalf of the Jewish community, domestically and abroad. He was steadfast in his efforts to preserve Jewish heritage and life and to secure a vibrant community future. He embraced the broad spectrum of global issues facing the Jewish community and tenaciously worked to address fundamental issues of human dignity and sustenance. He provided leadership for decades, offering insights and business acuity that strengthened organizational efforts and service delivery. Bondy died at his home in Wilmette on July 20 from complications following a stroke.

Bondy was born in 1931 in Chicago and grew up in Rogers Park. After graduating from the University of Illinois, he served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War.

He and his brother, Bill, founded U.S. Pharmacal, a forerunner of Crown Drug Company, which later became Major Pharmaceutical Company, a national manufacturer and distributor of generic pharmaceuticals. He went on to work as the chief operating officer of Parkway Drugs, where he worked until March 2009.

He was a member of the board of the Jewish Federation/Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago for 16 years, serving as chairman in 2000-2001. He served as vice president and as a chairman of numerous JF/JUF committees. He also was vice president of the American-Israel Chamber of Commerce, a member of the board of the Chicago Friends of the Israel Defense Force, and a member of the Brookdale Institute.

Bondy supported efforts to promote peace and social justice throughout his life. In 1968 he marched in Washington, D.C. with Martin Luther King, along with Rabbi Arnold J. Wolf and other members of Congregation Solel.

“Volunteering brought him tremendous satisfaction and connected him with his faith and its people, and with the land of Israel,” said his wife, Lila.

In accepting an award from the JCC, Bondy said, “If you see something wrong that needs fixing, don’t depend on someone else to do it. Get off your butt and do whatever needs to be done to make it right.”

He is survived by his wife; children Pamela Bondy, Karen Schwartz and Cheryl Kaplan; six grandchildren; an extended family; and countless friends.

Memorials in his memory may be sent to the Jewish United Fund, 30 South Wells Street, Chicago, IL  60606, www.juf.org or to Congregation Solel. Chicago Jewish Funerals.

Posted: 7/21/2010 2:37:12 PM
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