The donation, which could potentially be claimed as a tax deduction, came in the midst of heavy trading of Kodak's stock that was sparked by the news that the company would receive a $765 million loan from the US government to help make drug ingredients.
A spokesperson for Kodak told CNN that donation by the Karfunkels is "within the scope" of that review. The Karfunkels could not be reached for comment.
Kodak's website describes George Karfunkel as an expert in financial planning and investment strategy who has served on the company's board of directors since 2013.
The day of his and his wife's donation, Kodak's stock hit a low of $17.50 a share and a high of $60, meaning the donation could be worth more than $100 million.
Laurie Styron, the executive director of the nonprofit CharityWatch, described the situation involving Karfunkel's donation as concerning. His position on Kodak's board may have given him "special knowledge that allowed him to predict likely fluctuations in Kodak's stock price," she said.
She also said many charities and religious organizations that offer tax deductions have controls in place to prevent the appearance of impropriety.
"With Karfunkel having one foot firmly planted in both Kodak and in the religious organization receiving the stock donation, it's unclear if enough board independence existed for this donation to be properly vetted and approved at arm's length prior to being accepted," Styron said.
New York charity filings from 2019 describe Congregation Chemdas Yisroel as an Orthodox Jewish synagogue that uses funds exclusively for religious, charitable and educational purposes. The documents list George Karfunkel as the congregation's president.
Representatives for Congregation Chemdas Yisroel could not be reached for comment.