As an Olympic hopeful, my goal is to qualify Israel for the 2026 Winter Olympics. I am a World Cup athlete for Israel’s Bobsled & Skeleton Team in the sport of Skeleton, a lawyer, and co-founder of Advancing Jewish Athletics, Inc., a registered 501(c)(3) which distributes 100% of earmarked funds directly to its athletes, allowing them to serve as global ambassadors for the Jewish people and the State of Israel through sport. One of the goals of our non-profit is to be able to support our athletes, including myself, while doing a double-mitzvah - funding their athletic pursuits through Israel Bonds. Particularly for athletes that operate within 4 year Olympic cycle timeframes, shorter-term bonds would be a perfect vehicle to do just this. It would allow athletes to be confident that they will have available funds in future seasons, while also supporting the State of Israel.
Here is some more information on how my love for Skeleton and Israel began:
Raised in South Florida, I attended Scheck Hillel K-8 and Pine Crest High School where I was a high school district champion in the 100-meter dash, I was afforded the opportunity to continue in college as a member of the track & field team at Tulane University (LA’12). After which I attended the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University. During my first semester of Law School, I suffered a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA), effectively a “minor stroke”. Coincidentally, my recovery time fell during the 2014 Winter Olympics and is when I discovered the sport of Skeleton. I eventually completed my legal studies and am currently a licensed attorney in Florida and New York.
Aside from practicing law, my lifelong dream has been to represent Israel at the Olympic Games. This stems from my passion not only for athletics, but for Judaism and Israel, which began at Hillel and continued to flourish, particularly during my March of the Living experience. I found that I not only want to inspire young Jewish athletes by serving as a role model I could use my platform to educate people about the Holocaust. When I discovered Skeleton in 2014, I realized this was the perfect vehicle to fulfill this mission. After months of uncertainty following my mini stroke as to whether I’d be able to participate in sports again, I was cleared by doctors and committed to make my dream a reality.
Fast forward to 2022: I finished 3 places out of an Olympic berth in just my third competitive season. This included three podium finishes on the North America Cup in Lake Placid. I ended the season ranked 44th in the World, while earning the nickname “The Jewish Jet” from my fellow competitors.
An opportunity for you to share my journey and support Israel Bonds:
Participating in Skeleton as a “small nation athlete” is extremely expensive, with the average season costing $40,000 to attend a full season of races with a coach and updated equipment. The Israeli government does not provide funding for its winter sport athletes. Therefore, when I’m not training, which demands most of my time, I utilize the little time I do have fundraising and working as an attorney. Most competitors in this sport are heavily funded, however, I rely on my sponsors’ support to focus as much as possible on my Skeleton training, particularly during the season.
I am hoping to complete another four seasons and qualify a sled for Israel in the 2026 Olympic Games in Milan, Italy. With your support, this is an extremely attainable goal!
I need at least $20,000 to compete next season, which will be an exciting one with the return of World Cup races to North America, on the tracks where I perform best. This number will allow me to represent Israel in North America races and have a chance to win that elusive gold medal on the North America Cup! An additional $5,000 will allow me the opportunity to represent Israel in the World Championships in St. Moritz, Switzerland. Any funds raised beyond that will allow me to travel with a coach to races (~$5,000) and upgrade my equipment to keep up with my rivals from larger programs.
As a show of gratitude, I will place the names or business logos of any sponsor above $5,000 on my sled, visible in photos and World Cup races. Donations via gifts of Israel Bond are encouraged. After this coming season, I hope to have a majority of my future seasons funded by 1-3 year maturity Israel Bonds purchased in the name of Advancing Jewish Athletics, and for the other athletes in our program to be able to do the same.
I am always more than happy to further discuss any questions you may have. I can be reached via email firstname.lastname@example.org .
Jared “the Jewish Jet” Firestone
Israel Bobsled & Skeleton National Team
P.S. - check out one of my World Cup races here, from my rookie season: https://youtu.be/FI1eH0oJtFU?t=239