It is with great sadness that we bid farewell to Abraham J. “Al” Green, who passed away on Friday, January 22, 2016, at Etobicoke General Hospital. Al, along with his late wife Malka, were visionary community leaders, who generously established the Al and Malka Green Professorship in Yiddish Studies. The Greens endowed the program at U of T to ensure the preservation and continued study of Yiddish language and culture. The Greens are also members of the Founders Circle of the Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies at U of T.
Al was a rare individual. As co-founder of Greenwin Property Development, he helped develop and shape the urban landscape of Toronto. Passionate about the arts, he enjoyed a successful second career as a sculptor, donating the proceeds from the sale of his work to various charities. A lifelong patron of the arts, he founded a non-profit sculpture studio and school to provide a nurturing environment for sculptors as they develop their craft. He also founded a gallery to showcase work by artists and was a principal benefactor to the Art Gallery of Ontario. Unfailingly public-spirited, the businessman donated funds and material used to build schools, theatres and community centres throughout the GTA, established treatment centres for people battling substance addiction, funded The Artists’ Health Centre at Toronto Western Hospital and donated furnished suites used by families of out-of-town patients at The Hospital for Sick Children. He and Malka are recognized on the Hospital’s “Hall of Honour.”
Al was honoured with the Order of Canada for his devotion to community service. Early in his life he received the nickname “Dream Maker” because of his boundless community involvement and patronage.
We are saddened by his loss and will remember him for what he has done to build a better community at U of T.