Sam Steif
​Sydney, Australia
2013 Max Freilich Award recipient
At its recent Annual General Meeting, which took place on November 19 in Sydney, Australia, UIA NSW bestowed the Max Freilich Award on Sam Steif. The award was presented to him by Valmae Freilich and Sarah Freilich, daughter- in-law and great- granddaughter respectively of the late Max Freilich z”l.
Max Freilich (1893-1986) was one of the founding fathers of the United Israel Appeal in Australia, and the Max Freilich Award is the highest and most prestigious award presented by the UIA NSW for long-standing service to Israel and the Jewish people through the United Israel Appeal of NSW.
Sam Steif  with UIA Australia Federal President, Harold Finger OAM

Sam Steif was born in Romania in 1923. He spent three and a half years in forced labour camps, until the Russians liberated Romania from the Germans. Sam married his childhood sweetheart, Toni, in 1946. After their arrival in Australia, Sam and Toni were blessed with a son, Charles and a daughter, Sharon. Today, Sam is the proud grandfather of a granddaughter and grandson. 
Once settled in his new homeland, Sam became active in the Jewish community of Sydney, something that also helped to maintain a connection to Israel. In 1970 he became a Justice of the Peace.
Upon his retirement from the engineering department of a large woollen mill, in November 1989, Sam joined the UIA in a voluntary capacity as a host while also trying to secure bequests for the organization. Because of his persistence and hard work, the position of Director of Wills and Bequests was created for him in the UIA office in Darlinghurst. The UIA has reaped the benefits of Sam’s dedication and hard work over the past 24 years. The seeds he has planted will continue to bear fruit for many years to come.
UIA is most grateful to Sam - to date he has brought in the incredible amount of almost $38 million dollars from bequests.
Sam introduced the Seniors Mission to the UIA annual calendar and he has led nine successful Seniors Missions to Israel.
Sam’s involvement in the community and his connection to Israel is immeasurable. He contributes to communal organizations not only through the UIA but also through JNF, JCA and the Montefiore Home. He was President of Strathfield Synagogue for 11 years and was named Honorary Life President in 1986. In this capacity he was Strathfield Synagogue’s representative on the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies. He is the founder and Honorary Secretary of the Strathfield Yolanda Kramer Kindergarten. 
From left to right:  Ofir Gendelman, spokesman at PM Netanyahu's office; Sagi Ben Yosef, UIA NSW Executive Director, KH-UIA  Jerusalem Emissary; Sam Steif with the  Max Freilich Award ; Isabel Shur with the Janet Simons Award; Harold Finger OAM , UIA Australia Federal  President and  Roni Shorer, KH- UIA  North Shore and Federal Emissary.

Sam possesses a unique ability to communicate his passionate dedication to the UIA and the State of Israel and his commitment to the continuity of the Jewish people to others. His hard work is helping to ensure the continuity of the Jewish people and the Jewish state. Sam is a true asset to the UIA, the Sydney Jewish community and the Jewish people.
Those who know of the untiring devotion the late Max Freilich to the State of Israel and the UIA could think of no one more fitting than Sam to receive the Max Freilich Award, the highest and most prestigious award given by the United Israel Appeal of NSW.
The worldwide family of Keren Hayesod-UIA wishes Sam many happy returns and thanks him for everything he has done, and will no doubt continue doing, to benefit Keren Hayesod's activities in Israel as well as Jewish and Israeli causes in general!