ECAJ statement regarding the late Jeremy Jones AM Z”L
To download this statement in PDF format, please click here.
For more than four decades, Jeremy was a faithful servant of the Australian Jewish community and a consummate professional. There is hardly any area of Jewish communal life that did not benefit in some way from his expertise and dedication, and he worked in a range of key communal organisations.
He was a former President and Honorary Life Member of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ). He had a special passion for building relationships with other faith and ethnic communities and won over many friends, both personally and communally.
He was the first Australian to serve on the Board of the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations (the Jewish worlds interlocutor with the Vatican, World Council of Churches and World Muslim League) and was the Chair of Interfaith Dialogues representing the ECAJ nationally.
Jeremy was also a fearless opponent of antisemitism and indeed all forms of racism. He was a long-standing advocate of recognition and rights for First Nations Australians, and made a point of wearing kippot and ties decorated with indigenous artwork.
Jeremy’s work in promoting inter-communal harmony was officially acknowledged in 2007 when he was awarded the Australian Human Rights Medal, and again in 2016 when he was awarded New South Wales’ most prestigious honour, The Stepan Kerkyasharian AO Medal for Community Harmony. He was also made a Member of the Order of Australia.
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Stephen Rothman and I had the honour to represent Jeremy in a legal capacity in some long-running litigation which he pursued in the Federal Court on behalf of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry against two well-known antisemites. Both cases were won, and both defendants were effectively put out of business, but the strain took its toll on Jeremy work-wise and emotionally.
Jeremy’s untimely passing is sad news for all of us. He leaves a legacy that will serve as an example to the next generation of Jewish communal activists.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to his wife Naomi, his children, the whole Jones family and all those whose lives Jeremy touched. May his memory be a blessing.