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COMMUNITY NEWS

FTER 42 YEARS OF COMMUNITY SERVICE, KNZC WISHES ANTONY ARKIN EVERYTHING OF THE BEST AS HE PURSUES A LIFELONG DREAM OF AL

By Lauren Shapiro


Prof. Arkin may have earned a Doctorate in Economics, but it’s his commitment to Jewish and Zionist organisations that will be his lasting legacy in our community.

The former Capetonian met his wife Marion Beit at Rhodes University and followed her to Durban in 1974. He had no aspiration to communal politics: “My ambition was to be assistant warden of Bnei Brit,” he chuckles self-deprecatingly at the low-key position, “and eventually I became the national vice president.”

Antony has since worn numerous “hats” in the community, many with a strong Zionist fit. He is chairman of the KwaZulu-Natal Zionist Council, Treasurer of the South African Zionist Federation and an ex officio member of the South African Jewish Board of Deputies. He is also a delegate of the Vaad Hapoel (working committee) of the World Zionist Organization, a member of the General Assembly of the Jewish Agency, and he sits on the executive of Keren Kayemet Le’Yisrael (the Jewish National Fund).

Congregationally, Antony has been very involved with Reform Judaism as president of the Durban Progressive Jewish Congregation and national vice chairman of the South African Union of Progressive Jewry, as well as chairman of Arzenu, South Africa. He has also been Editor of Hashalom, Durban’s monthly Jewish magazine, for the past 15 years.

Communal life presents its challenges. “I’ve tried to have good working relationships with everyone and to understand their viewpoints, as usually they are valid,” Antony asserts. He says the key to successful leadership is “learning to respect differences.”

Antony and Marion make Aliyah in December and join their children and grandchildren in Israel. “It’s not a push factor, but a pull factor,” he explains.

The KNZC wishes Antony and Marion everything of the best as they live the Zionist dream! They will be greatly missed.