N.Y. Mayor Bloomberg becomes first 'Jewish Nobel Prize' winner


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New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg will be named Monday the winner of a $1 million "Jewish Nobel Prize," the New York Times reported Sunday.

Bloomberg will be the first recipient of the Genesis Prize, which is sponsored by a Jewish charity in partnership with Israel's government, the report said, adding that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will present him with the award in Jerusalem in May.

The Genesis Prize was established by the Genesis Philanthropy Group, a charity founded by Jewish Russian billionaires, with the aim of honoring individuals "whose values and achievements will inspire the next generations of Jews," according to The New York Times.

Bloomberg was chosen for his "track record of outstanding public service and his role as one of the world's greatest philanthropists," the report quoted the prize committee as saying.

The panel includes Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor and a Nobel laureate who has written some 60 books, and Meir Shamgar, a former justice on Israel's Supreme Court.

Bloomberg said he was honored to be named the award winner.

"Many years ago, my parents instilled in me Jewish values and ethics that I have carried with me throughout my life, and which have guided every aspect of my work in business, government, and philanthropy," he said in a statement quoted in the report.

"The Genesis Prize embraces and promotes those same values and ethics — a common thread among the Jewish people worldwide that has helped move humankind forward for centuries."