Michael Douglas awarded Genesis Prize

Actor and peace activist Michael Douglas will receive the 2015 Genesis Prize.

The $1 million prize, announced Jan. 14 by the Genesis Prize Foundation, will be awarded June 18 in Jerusalem by Jewish Agency chairman Natan Sharansky and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyuahu.

Douglas said he plans to use the prize money to promote activities designed to raise awareness of inclusiveness and diversity in Judaism, according to the foundation.

“I share this award with my family, who encouraged me in my exploration of the Jewish faith,” Douglas said. “I hope these teachings and values will be part of the legacy in the world that I leave for my children and those who follow.”

Douglas, 70, was not raised Jewish. His father, actor Kirk Douglas, is Jewish, and his mother is Anglican.

In recent years, however, Douglas has embraced the Jewish faith and said he considers himself a Reform Jew.

The first Genesis Prize, an annual award, was given to Michael Bloomberg, the billionaire businessman and former mayor of New York. It is meant to recognize an accomplished, internationally renowned professional who is a role model in his or her community and whose actions and achievements express a commitment to Jewish values, the Jewish community and Israel, and who can inspire the younger generation of Jews worldwide. — jta


Content distributed by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency news service.