Mitchell Balk finds opportunities for philanthropy both in his personal and professional life. In his personal life, Balk said he’s motivated to build a strong Jewish future for Cleveland and beyond. As president of the Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation, he strives to perpetuate the work of Mt. Sinai Hospital and make a difference in the community.
“I’m very privileged to, both in my professional life and on behalf of the Jewish community, work to improve the health status of the general community with a particular focus on Cleveland’s youngest most vulnerable families,” Balk said. “I enjoy seeing the benefits of philanthropy throughout the community, in particular in our prevention and early intervention work.”
Balk credits his parents for instilling in him a strong Jewish commitment and a focus on synagogue life and supporting Jewish day schools. As for his career, he said he was motivated after working at the Mt. Sinai Hospital of Chicago, where the Jewish-sponsored institution served as a catalyst for improving the needy community surrounding the hospital.
At the Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation, Balk aims to carry forward the research and medical interests of the community. He’s also helped foster relationships with the Case Western Reserve School of Medicine, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District and MetroHealth.
“I’m really fortunate that I am in a position where I can identify needs, document those needs and then align this foundation’s grant making with those needs,” he said.
Balk said it feels “great” to be able to focus on philanthropic efforts and to make an impact on Cleveland’s Jewish and general communities.
“I think anybody who is in philanthropy kind of falls into it rather than creating a path to get there,” he said. “It’s just the nature of the work. You just have to be at the right place at the right time and have people trust you with not only their funds but with their aspirations for making an impact.”
– Kristen Mott