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May 17, 2019 12 Iyar 5779 Volume 75, Issue 10

S O U T H E R N A R I Z O N A ’ S A WA R D - W I N N I N G J E W I S H N E W S PA P E R S I N C E 1 9 4 6

Arts & Culture .........................3 Classifieds ............................ 20 Commentary ..........................6 Community Calendar...........22 In Focus.................................24 Local ..............3, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12 News Briefs ......................... 20 Obituaries .............................26 Our Town ..............................27 Rabbi’s Corner ...................... 21 Synagogue Directory........... 21 SUMMER SCHEDULE The last print edition before our summer break will be July 12, 2019. Look for our next print edition on Aug. 16, 2019. GOING AWAY? Remember to stop delivery of the AJP at least a week before you leave town.


eople forget what you said, people forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” With these famous words from poet Maya Angelou, University of Arizona student and Chabad of Poway member Ariella Lee summed up the philosophy of Lori GilbertKaye, a close family friend who was killed April 27 when a lone gunman burst into the Chabad of Poway synagogue and began shooting. Three others, including Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein, were wounded in the attack. Choking back tears, Lee spoke at a community gathering at Chabad Tucson on May 1. “I went home for a celebration, and stayed for a tragedy,” she said,

night before she was killed. Gilbert-Kaye, a mainstay of the close-knit Chabad of Poway community, was like a second mother to her, Lee said, recalling that one of her many kind acts was giving tambourine necklaces, a symbol of Moses’ sister Miriam, to girls celebrating a bat mitzvah. She spoke of the outpouring of support from thousands in the Poway and San Diego communities who lined the streets on the day of Gilbert-Kaye’s funeral, which ended with people singing at the cemetery. “I could feel Lori dancing, shaking along with her tambourine. She would have wanted it no other way.” Lee encouraged everyone to “emulate Lori and do random acts of kindness that will drown

Ariella Lee, a University of Arizona student who is member of Chabad of Poway, speaks at Chabad Tucson May 1.

explaining that her family had gathered for her sister’s college graduation, and had shared Shabbat dinner with Gilbert-Kaye the

out the hate and make the world a better place.” Love instead of hate was the theme of speaker after speaker at the event, which Chabad Tucson sponsored along with Chabad at the UA, Chabad Oro Valley, Chabad on River and Chabad of Cochise County. The gathering was not a vigil but an evening of solidarity and prayer, said Rabbi Yehuda Ceitlin, outreach director of Chabad Tucson, who served as emcee of the event. People from within and beyond the Tucson Jewish community filled the pews and the benches lining the synagogue walls. Noting that “a single person with evil intent” killed GilbertKaye and injured Goldstein, See Chabad, page 2

Father’s Day Council Tucson to honor Federation’s Mellan PHYLLIS BRAUN AJP Executive Editor


he Father’s Day Council Tucson is holding its 25th Annual Fathers of Year Awards Gala next month, and the Jewish Federation’s Stuart Mellan is among the honorees. Mellan, JFSA president and CEO, is one of seven men who will be celebrated on June 1 for their success in combining career and family. The gala serves a dual purpose: to support family values by honoring exemplary fathers, and to raise money for type 1 diabetes research. Mellan and his wife, Nancy, have five children, all in their 30s. The two met in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and after both became widowed, started dating. Mellan had two kids; Nancy had three.

Photo courtesy Stuart Mellan

Mind, Body & Spirit........8-13 Restaurant Resource.... 16-19 Style.......................... 14-15

After Poway shooting, local Chabad event puts love before hate

Photo: Martha Lochert


w w w. a z j e w i s h p o s t . c o m

Stuart Mellan

They were married in 1992, and moved to Tucson in 1995, when Mellan took up his post at the JFSA. Family and Judaism have al-

Nancy and Stuart Mellan and their blended family at their 1992 wedding.

ways been mainstays of their relationship — Nancy told the AJP some years ago that Mellan had almost cancelled their second date because he and his children

had a long-standing plan to lead a Shabbat dinner and service for the residents at a local nursing home. She reminded him that

CANDLELIGHTING TIMES: May 17 ... 6:58 p.m. • May 24 ... 7:03 p.m. • May 31 ... 7:07 p.m.

See Mellan, page 4

Photo: Debe Campbell

Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild speaks at a community gathering at Chabad Tucson, May 1.

CHABAD continued from page 1

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8-year-old Noya Dahan, and her uncle, Almog Pertz, Ceitlin said, “Our bodies were shaken when we heard the news and frankly it still does now … Out of sorrow must come something better. This is a show of unity, solidarity, and strength. We are united, our community is united, and we will fill our hearts with love and not hate.” He acknowledged that Chabad centers worldwide will have to “balance between keeping our doors open and keeping them safe enough,” citing the shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh in October as well as the Poway incident. Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild called on those assembled to speak out against anti-Semitism, white supremacism, gun violence, and hate. While we wait for gun laws that will make it harder to purchase automatic weapons, he said, we can still work to make a difference. “We must commit ourselves to speak with each other, with our neighbors, and quite simply, ‘to bring God’s light into this world,’” he said, quoting from Goldstein’s April 29 article in the New York Times. “We cannot allow our hearts to be filled with fear,” even if that is a natural reaction, Tucson Police Deputy Chief Chad Kasmar said. “Let us fill our hearts with unwavering and unshaken faith, perseverance, unity, and courage because Miss Lori Kaye would expect no less from us.” Rabbi Ephraim Zimmerman of Chabad Oro Valley led a prayer, Rabbi Yossie Shemtov of Chabad Tucson taught a lesson from Torah, and Rabbi Yossi Winner of Chabad at the UA led the

crowd in singing “Oseh Shalom,” a prayer for peace. After the gathering, as attendees slowly exited the building, Ceitlin told the AJP, “It was good to see the amount and diversity of people that came out. The community recognizes good from evil and knows it is up to us to show it. We will work with law enforcement, but we need to step up our game with the community and others — human beings. We have to put people first.” “It’s heartwarming to see the support of our community, Jewish people and non-Jewish people,” said longtime community volunteer Karen Katz, the incoming campaign chair for the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Women’s Philanthropy. With the encouragement of Arik Shemtov, 15, son of Rabbi Yossie and Chanie Shemtov, UA student Michael Greenberg, 19, wrapped the straps of tefillin (boxes containing parchment with biblical texts) around his arm and forehead and chanted a prayer. Putting on or “laying” tefillin is considered the fulfillment of a great mitzvah (commandment). “I come from a secular family,” Greenberg said. “I didn’t grow up religious, but when events like this happen, I feel that I need to come and kind of go back to my roots.” Rabbi Robert Eisen of Conservative synagogue Congregation Anshei Israel agreed that the response to such tragedies should be to “be more Jewish,” to do, “as Chabad would say,” one more mitzvah. “I was moved and appreciative of the message that Judaism is about kindness,” said local doctor Stephen Wool. “We are all capable of that every day.” AJP Assistant Editor Debe Campbell contributed to this report.



Bio reveals adventures of refugee from Nazis


ate Stewart, the lead archivist at the Arizona Historical Society in Tucson, profiles the life of librarian Ruth Rappaport in her first biography, “A Well-Read Woman: The Life, Loves, and Legacy of Ruth Rappaport,” released this spring by Little A Publishing. Rappaport grew up in Nazi Germany, reading banned books. At age 15, she ran away from her parents at a Swiss train station, refusing to return to Germany. Her parents later died in concentration camps. After a journalism career in Seattle, she headed in 1948 to Palestine, where she took part in the War of Independence. In the early 1960s, Rappaport built a library system in Saigon for the U.S. military across Vietnam, dubbed “Ruthie’s Little Empire.” “I first heard about Ruth Rappaport while I was working at the Library of Congress and my coworker, Peter Bartis, invited me to Ruth’s estate sale after she died. Peter had been a very close friend of Ruth, who also had worked at the Library of Congress for many years. Peter told me many stories about her, which captivated

me and I felt that I had to seek out the answers to the questions I had, including, how did she survive through all of these wars, which were undoubtedly traumatic? What did her work as a librarian mean to her after growing up under severe censorship in Nazi Germany? I spent many years sifting through archival documents she left behind and in other collections from archives around the world to piece together and make sense of the extraordinary life she led.” Stewart, a third-generation librarian and native Oklahoman, holds a bachelor of arts in history and women’s studies from Vassar College and a master’s in history and library science from the University of Iowa. Previously, she was a librarian and archivist for ProQuest, the Library of Congress, and the U.S. Senate in Washington, DC. She joins her mother, Alice LaViolette, a librarian at the Salem Public Library in Oregon, to discuss the book Thursday, May 30, at the Dusenberry-River Library, 5605 E. River Road, #105. For more information, call 594-5345.

Chorus to present ‘Bless Our Show(tunes)’

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ri Slater will be lifting his voice as part of the Reveille Men’s Chorus when they present “Bless Our Show(tunes)” this weekend. Slater, office assistant at the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona, says he started out singing for fun at the Thursday night piano bar at the Dusty Monk, a downtown pub, but joined Reveille with the encouragement of some of its members. He and his partner, Sean Corin joined the chorus in August. “Bless Our Show(tunes)” will feature two “Fiddler on the Roof ” selections. “The dancing and energy for ‘L’Chaim’ is a blast,” says Slater, “but Reveille does a phenomenal job covering ‘Sabbath Prayer’ and I’m so excited for us to show it off at our concert.” Performances are Saturday, May 18 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, May 19 at 2 p.m.,

Ari Slater, left, and Sean Cronin after a Reveille Men’s Chorus outreach performance in November.

at the Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. Tickets, $20, can be purchased at www.reveillemenschorus.org.


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MELLAN continued from page 1

her late husband, Scott, had established the home’s Jewish wing when he was employed by the nursing home; that evening, Nancy and her kids helped Stuart and his kids lead the dinner and service at the nursing home. “Together, Stu and I have braved the adventure of this blended family, including daily routines times five, Shabbat and holiday tables that rival the look of a stretch limo, and the stumbles and celebrations of what it takes for five kids and two parents to grow up,” Nancy says, adding that the couple has tried to put all of this into context “with the use of one word: ‘abundance.’ “Stu’s calm demeanor, his strong value of truly listening to others, his sensitivity to inclusion, fairness and empowering others to voice their truths have all been visible in his work in the community and have been foundational in our family,” she continues. “There is a Jewish quote stating the father’s obligation to show his children how to swim. Stu has shown his children and so many in our community just how to swim, with love and perseverance, the currents and tides in this sea of life.” “I could tell from the time I was a kid,” says Jamie Mellan, 38, “that my dad was different than a lot of my friends’ dads in that he seemed more interested in playing with us, and he was more sensitive. “He put up with a lot raising five kids,” adds Jamie, who works as a nanny in Tucson. Her father is “extremely kind and compassionate. He genuinely cares about people. I thinks he makes just about everybody feel comfortable because he’s really who he is, and doesn’t put on a lot of pretenses,” says Jamie, describing qualities that make Mellan both an “incredible dad” and a successful Federation leader. The Mellans have two other children living in Tucson, Eric Mellan, an in-

surance agent, and Micah Etter, a doctor. Jonah Etter is a teacher in Spokane, Washington, while the youngest child, Suki-Rose Simakis, works in the entertainment industry in Los Angeles. The Mellans also have two grandchildren, ages 7 and 10. Federation leaders are pleased to see Mellan celebrated in the wider community. “This well-deserved honor Stuart has received from the Father’s Day Council provides an opportunity for our Jewish community to show our gratitude for the profound leadership Stuart has provided to us for nearly a quarter of a century and for his mentoring not only of his own children, but of ours as well. I hope each of us will help to make this recognition even more meaningful for Stuart and Nancy by supporting the event,” says Deborah Oseran, JFSA board chair. Stuart cites his own father, the late Judge Eli Mellan, as an inspiration, particularly in modeling a strong commitment to community work. Steve Rosenberg, publisher of BizTucson magazine, who created Father’s Day Council Tucson in 1994, was similarly inspired by his father, the late Howard Rosenberg, who served as chair of the Father’s Day Council Los Angeles in the 1980s and expanded the annual Fathers of the Year awards gala across the country. Since its inception, Father’s Day Council Tucson has raised about $3.7 million to support type 1 diabetes research and programs at the Steele Children’s Research Center at the University of Arizona. In 2008, the Father’s Day Council Tucson Endowed Chair in Type 1 Diabetes was established. The Father’s Day Council Tucson is unique in donating its money locally, notes Dr. Fayez K. Ghishan, director of the Steele Center and physician-in-chief at Diamond Children’s Medical Center. Other cities that hold galas raise funds for the American Diabetes Association. For more information about the gala, visit www.fdctucson.org.

The Arizona Jewish Post has an immediate opening for an Advertising Sales Representative.

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JWV Memorial Day poppy sales fund programs for vets DEBE CAMPBELL AJP Assistant Editor


arking this Memorial Day, you’ll find members of the Friedman-Paul Post 201 of the Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America offering traditional red poppy flowers for donations at Safeway supermarkets across Tucson. The post uses funds raised from twice-annual poppy sales to host monthly bingo sessions at the Southern Arizona Veterans Administration Hospital in Tucson, among other activities. The patients appreciate the distraction and the small cash bingo prizes, about $600 annually, says Sylvia Winner, the post’s sunshine chair. “It means so much to them.” In the past, post members have contributed toiletries and shaving kits for patients. They donated rocking chairs and yoga classes to the hospital, both tools for combatting post-traumatic stress disorder. They help annually with Arizona Veterans Standdown Alliance housing coalition and its assistance programs. The local post also has helped provide internet assistance for blind veterans to use GPS systems, donated furniture to the military lounge at Tucson Internation-

al Airport and a piano to the Arizona State Veteran’s Home, and supported Fisher House Foundation, which provides families temporary housing near VA hospitals. Jewish War Veterans was founded in 1896 and is the oldest active veterans’ organization in the United States. The local chapter has been active in Tucson since 1950. Its mission is to make it known that Jews served in the U.S. armed forces, by participating in public functions such as the Veterans Day parade and the Four Chaplains memorial service, serving as colorguard at other religious functions or activities, and fighting anti-Semitism whenever possible. “We are a shrinking organization,” Seymour Shapiro, the group’s membership chair, notes. Reliance on Memorial Day donations is critical. Membership is available to any Jewish veteran who served in the armed forces of the United States on active duty, in the reserves, or National Guard. Additionally, any Jewish veteran from a foreign nation that participated in a joint military operation with the United States is eligible for membership. Members meet monthly, and host a monthly breakfast, except for July and August (see Community Calendar, page 22). For more information, contact Murray Baker, post commander, at 747-1085, or Shapiro at 398-5360.

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Museum’s scholar-in-residence seeks interview subjects


he Jewish History Museum/Holocaust also will be collecting oral histories of Jewish History Center will welcome its first Latina/o/x people in Southern Arizona and scholar-in-residence, Maxwell GreenNorthern Sonora from May 28-31. The inberg of the University of California, Los Andepth interviews, open to Jews by birth or by geles, later this month. Greenberg, a doctoral choice, will explore such topics as ancestral candidate in UCLA’s Cesar E. Chavez Deand family background; rituals, traditions, partment of Chicano/a Studies, will discuss and food-ways; relationship(s) to significant his research in the museum’s final gallery chat historical and political moments; and perfor the season, “Jewishness & Latinidad at the sonal, familial, and communal significance of Maxwell Greenberg Border,” on Friday, May 31 at 11 a.m. Jewishness and Latinidad. As a complement to his doctoral research, which To participate, contact Greenberg at msgreenberg@ looks at the Jewish experience in Tijuana, Mexico, he ucla.edu or (415) 939-1295 (call or text).

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hether it’s a white supremacist targeting praying Jews, blacks, or Muslims, or an Islamic radical committed to killing Christians on Easter Sunday, it has become very trendy to attack houses of worship. In Europe, synagogues unfortunately have been targeted by terrorists for quite some time, including deadly attacks at the Great Synagogue of Vienna in 1981 and the Great Synagogue of Rome in 1982. In the past 15 years, Jewish institutions have been targeted by Muslim radicals in France, Belgium, and Denmark. In my own community, on the eve of Passover this year, a terrorist targeted the Torath Haim Yeshiva in a Moscow suburb, burning down an annex of the building. As a result of terror attacks against synagogues and Jewish businesses, many of Europe’s Jews have ceased to attend Jewish events or have made aliyah to Israel — something that might happen soon in the United States. In the wake of two synagogue shootings, the situation for Jews in the United States is unfortunately starting to look very much like the situation in Europe, where communities have increased the security of their synagogues, community centers, and schools. But unlike European synagogues, which are secured like fortresses, synagogues in the United States still often have little or no security. If U.S. synagogues want to improve this situation, then either the government or Jewish institutions must rise to

the challenge. Governments don’t always like to help. In Switzerland, the government balked at the need to chip in, claiming that the Jews are rich enough to take care of themselves. The Conference of European Rabbis had to convene side events at the Munich Security Conference to galvanize European governments to assist the Jewish communities of Europe with the additional security burden. In contrast, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany have been very helpful to their communities, and others are following suit. In the United States, the Secure Community Network, run by the Jewish Federations of North America and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, is one Jewish organization attempting to meet this challenge. However, during my last visit to the United States, I was dismayed at the extent to which U.S. synagogues are less secure than European ones. Often the best security measures and provisions require local communal efforts in conjunction with law enforcement agencies. And while law enforcement officers routinely work with important U.S. Jewish institutions, what is needed is a radical overhaul of all security measures in order to adapt to new realities. For example, to prevent another Pittsburgh or Poway, the entrance to any Jewish institution should be controlled to make sure that no unknown person can enter. The liberal gun laws in the United States are part of the problem, but they can also be part of the solution. If one or

3718 E. River Rd., Suite 272, Tucson, AZ 85718 • 520-319-1112 www.azjewishpost.com • localnews@azjewishpost.com The Arizona Jewish Post (ISSN 1053-5616) is published biweekly except July for a total of 24 issues. The publisher is the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona located at 3718 E. River Rd., Tucson, AZ 85718. Inclusion of paid advertisements does not imply an endorsement of any product, service or person by the Arizona Jewish Post or its publisher. The Arizona Jewish Post does not guarantee the Kashrut of any merchandise advertised. The Arizona Jewish Post reserves the right to refuse any advertisement.



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Arizona Jewish Post Advisory Board Damion Alexander, Myles Beck, Barbara Befferman Danes, Bruce Beyer (chairman), Roberta Elliott, Cathy Karson, Steve Weintraub Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Stuart Mellan, President • Fran Katz, Senior Vice President • Deborah Oseran, Chairman of the Board



Photo courtesy Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona

COMMENTARY United States synagogues need what Europeans have — armed guards

Collaborating to strengthen security in Tucson’s Jewish community are, (L-R) Graham Hoffman, president and CEO, Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona; Paul Patterson, Jewish community security director; and Stuart Mellan, president and CEO, Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona.

New director ups ante for local security The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona took a proactive stance to harden local vigilance, bringing on 23-year law enforcement and security veteran Paul Patterson in March as the Jewish community security director. Patterson is assisting all area synagogues and agencies with facility security assessments, ensuring best practices and up-to-date training. This latest security initiative was a direct response to recent tragic national events. While continuing its strong ties with area law enforcement agencies, JFSA collaborates with the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona to fund this vital and potentwo armed and trained congregants were on duty inside synagogues at all times, the immediate response to an armed attack might reduce the number of casualties. If a gunman could be stopped before creating carnage, copycat attackers might be deterred from following through with their murderous intentions. This is the practice in many of Europe’s communities that struggle to come up with the cash needed for security. Recruiting young professionals to this initiative could help give a sense of purpose and unity to many younger Jews still finding a place in the community, and also will help lower the cost of security for many congregations. The average cost of providing security eats up nearly 25 percent of the annual budget for a midsize community like Zurich and Munich, up to 50 percent for isolated communities like Helsinki. I remember arriving in Jerusalem following the attack against a synagogue in the Ramot neighborhood that resulted in terrible carnage. When I prayed in a little neighborhood synagogue and dozens of people gathered for prayers, I always

tially life-saving project. Patterson, who is serving in this capacity part-time, is linked into the national Secure Community Network, part of the American Jewish community’s response to heightened security concerns in the United States. Under the auspices of the Jewish Federations of North America and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, SCN is the only national Jewish organization exclusively dedicated to homeland security initiatives on behalf of the American Jewish community. Address local Jewish community security concerns to JFSA at 577-9393. asked myself, “and what if one of them just takes a knife from his pocket and starts stabbing everyone around him?” When a soldier with a gun joined the prayer, I calmed down. Of course, a major aspect of security is deterrence and control of who is entering the premises. In the Forward, columnist Peter Beinart recalled how he recently had to recite the Shema in order to enter a synagogue in Amsterdam. I don’t know how many Jews in the United States know the Shema (that’s a separate problem), but having members at the entrance to identify worshippers is a well-practiced tradition in many European communities. With God’s help and the right approach, we can meet this challenge headon and avert further crises. But it will require a hard look at how we secure our synagogues, and a commitment to investing the requisite time and resources.

Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt is the Chief Rabbi of Moscow and serves as President of the Conference of European Rabbis. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the AJP or its publisher, the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona.

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Native Tucsonan produces soulful entertainment through documentary, film DEBE CAMPBELL AJP Assistant Editor

Photo: courtesy Judy Ben-Asher


ocumentaries, feature films, and animation in production by native Tucsonan Judy Ben-Asher’s Starry Sky Films focus on her discoveries about health and wellness. “These are all passion projects with the cohesive thread to uplift and educate, resolve misinformation, and find answers,” she says. The “Truthseeker®” documentary film follows Ben-Asher’s exploration to help her mother, Bryna, conquer cancer. During this journey, and after her mother’s death in 2014, Ben-Asher says her own health tanked. She had her own cancer scare, was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s and Lyme diseases and trauma, possibly from mold exposure. “I took it as a gift,” she says, so she could explore more and meet a lot of “beautiful minds and talent for the film.” She strengthened her focus on integrated nutritional studies, which she feels bridge a crucial health gap. “It

Filmmaker Judy Ben-Asher and her Truthseeker alter-ego, Jude.

takes all of the tools we have to achieve the best health,” she says. After Ben-Asher graduated from Tuc-

son High Magnet School in 1987, she spent a couple of years doing volunteer stints with the Israeli Defense Forces,

repairing tank starters and working in a bakery. “It was a great education on serving people in difficult moments,” she recalls. Returning to Tucson, she studied martial arts at Pima Community College and attended the Desert Institute for the Healing Arts. “I knew I wanted to be an actor and to help people,” she says. When her sister Susan Ben-Asher Newton, a flight nurse, died in a medical helicopter crash in 1992, “it was a reminder that life is now. You need to love who you’re with, who you are and who you’re around.” She recalls how the Jewish community “just showed up” in a big way, with deep connection, during that time. She is a member at Congregation Anshei Israel and the Tucson Jewish Community Center. To heal herself, Ben-Asher took her dog and Jeep to Gates Pass, west of Tucson, every evening for sunset. She lay on a big rock, looking up at the sky until it was aglow with stars. “It was my synagogue. It grounded me,” she recalls.


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Happy Summer! In 1994, she headed to Los Angeles and Playhouse West Acting School & Repertory Theater, a Meisner acting academy founded by Robert Carnegie and Jeff Goldblum. There she studied with the likes of Academy Award nominee James Franco and Golden Globe nominee Scott Caan. She joined the Screen Actors’ Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), Actor’s Equity Association, and begin acting professionally on screen and stage. She appeared in films, commercials and did voiceover work for about 100 animated projects. She voiced an iron, a star, little boys and girls, and notably, a mollusk on “SpongeBob SquarePants.” She began film directing in 1996. She worked for 11 years as an actor in “Welcome Home Soldier,” an award-winning stage tribute to Vietnam veterans, about the effects of the Vietnam War and the subsequent homecoming on veterans and their families. It currently is the longest running play in Los Angeles and the longest consecutive-running drama in the country. Ben-Asher shuttled between Tucson and L.A. when her mother was in cancer treatment. Sensing the relationship between food and health, Ben-Asher completed a program with the Institute of Integrated Nutrition. The more she learned, the more she wanted to share. Rereading Dr. Andrew Weil’s books on integrated medicine, Ben-Asher wanted to make a documentary film to share her learning. “If we don’t start with believing we can have a specific outcome, you can’t get from A to B,” she says. “Otherwise, that takes possibility out of the equation.” She studied the brain and belief change alchemy with local neuro-linguistic programming trainer Terry Hickey, “finding ways to lift self-imposed limitations so we can make changes in our health.” And that’s how TruthSeeker® came about. “It is a journey, a map, to our best health and what it means to you,” she says, adding that it is targeted across the board, to any audience. Ben-Asher’s

animated alter ego, Jude, leads the film’s wide-ranging exploration. Putting her decades of acting, filmmaking, and direction skills into play, Starry Sky Films was born from those starry skies that grounded Ben-Asher as she healed from her sister’s death. “By the grace of God,” she says, the film company has fiscal sponsors, donors, and investors. Her husband of eight years, Dan Hirshfeld, gave up his day job as an analytical chemist and joined the creative team as CFO and associate producer. Also coming aboard were University of Arizona graduate and cinematographer Roger E. Cohen, and former Pixar animator Tim Crawfurd, who was involved in productions such as “Finding Nemo,” “Up,” “Ratatouille,” “Monsters, Inc.,” “The Incredibles,” “Toy Story 2,” and “A Bug’s Life.” “There is a lot of film production happening in Tucson,” says Ben-Asher. “We want to start our own studio for soulful entertainment. The team takes its time to make the information clear and well done.” Truthseeker®Way is a spinoff of the documentary. It offers ways to explore health and well-being improvement, including resources from selected and vetted worldwide providers. “Every person has a unique path to optimal health,” says Ben-Asher. “We may have different needs, financial availability, and access. It is about your own bio-individuality. Learning from others’ experiences can save time, expense, and energy in navigating the overwhelming number of resources in the wellness industry.” The program will share workshops and retreats in the future. “We are taking our time, not rushing to market. We want the documentary to be completed with grace and authenticity,” she says. Also in production are a documentary film on the life of Ted DeGrazia; a Tucson-based, animated series, “Tobi and the TesserCAT”; and two feature films. For more information on Starry Sky Films, go to www.starryskyfilms.com.

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Local mental health writer turns tragedy into healing, prevention DEBE CAMPBELL AJP Assistant Editor

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itchell A. Leutenberg had a mental illness. The first time he tried to die by suicide, he asked his parents not to tell anyone. He died at his fourth attempt eight years later in 1986. He was 30 years old. In the years since, Mitchell’s mother, Ester Leutenberg, has wanted to write a workbook on suicide. “I didn’t know how to start, and I knew it would be tough for me,” she says. In the meantime, she’s written more than 100 workbooks for health facilitators on topics such as erasing the stigma of mental illness, building resiliency, and coping with grief, and two self-help books, co-authored with her daughter Kathy Khalsa and other mental health professionals. “When Kate Spade died by suicide on June 5, 2018, and Anthony Bourdain died by suicide [three days later,] I knew I needed to begin work on the much-needed

Ester Leutenberg with her latest mental health facilitator workbooks

workbooks about suicide, for both teens and adults,” Ester says. That night in her dreams, her son Mitch sat next to her on the bed and said, “It’s time!” She decided

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chiatrists, and therapists, not for herself, but to find help for Mitchell. She used the serenity prayer to remind herself of what she could and could not control. She read Barbara Gordon’s “I’m Dancing as Fast as I Can,” about weeding through many therapists to find the right one, highlighting parts for Mitchell to read. Mitchell died in November 1986. By July 1987, Ester and Kathy, now a psychiatric occupational therapist, were writing their first workbook together, “Life Management Skills,” as a way of healing themselves and helping others. They cofounded Wellness Reproductions and Publishing, running it alongside the family printing business, and went on a writing streak. When managing the business got in the way of writing, they sold it to carry on with the important work — writing books to help mental health professionals help clients. About seven years later, Kathy was ready to take a writing break. “I was not done. The only way I can make sense of Mitchell’s suffering is

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that even though it might be difficult writing the workbooks, it would be worth it if she helped even one person. “Suicide & Self-Injury Prevention Workbook” and “Teen Suicide & SelfHarm Prevention Workbook,” both clinician guides to assist clients, are now published and available this month through Whole Person Associates and Amazon. Ester co-wrote these workbooks, and 60 others, with John J. Liptak, Ed. D., a counselor who teaches at Radford University in Virginia. For the eight years before Mitchell’s death, Ester and her husband, Jay, told no one, including his three younger sisters, about Mitchell’s three suicide attempts. “It was a shanda (Yiddish for shame or scandal) back then. He was afraid people would feel differently about him. And he was right,” says Ester. But during that time, she set about learning everything she could about clinical depression and mental health. She attended classes, visited psychologists, psy-

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to help others,” says Ester. She began cowriting books with several mental health therapists. “They have hands-on knowledge and training that I don’t.” She believes that if Mitchell had access to some of these materials, along with talk therapy, it would have helped him open up and talk about his feelings, which he was unable to do. She acknowledges that he may have died by suicide anyway. Ester’s workbooks run the gamut from life skills and well-being to selfesteem, relationships, body image, positive thoughts, stress, anxiety, surviving trauma, and more. They are teaching tools in universities and used among a variety of therapists. They target teens, adults, seniors, and other mental health niche audiences. “The value of all of our books is that the user doesn’t have to buy one for every client,” for a therapy group or multiple practitioners, Ester explains. The activities are reproducible. “I didn’t go into this for the money, but because I lost a son and didn’t want others to go through it.” Lately, some of her work targets gifted children. “Gifted kids are unique. They have many social and emotional issues,” she says. She has completed eight of a series of 10 workbooks in this genre. The remainder are among 12 workbooks she currently has in the works. Her husband of 65 years, Jay, gives her full support and “with his printer’s eyes” is one of her many reviewers and proofreaders. Ester and Jay moved to Sun City Oro Valley from Cleveland, Ohio, 12 years ago. They maintain a busy lifestyle and recently joined Congregation

Beit Simcha. “People used to ask me when I would quit writing books, and I’d say after I’ve written 100. Now, I say when I turn 100,” Ester, who is in her early 80s, chuckles. “I really just want to keep writing. I don’t consider it work — it’s just what I need to do. “We’ve come a long way in reducing the stigma of mental illness, but we still have a long way to go,” Ester says. About the loss of Mitchell, she says, “You never really get over it. It doesn’t get better; it gets different.” In Mitchell’s own words Mitchell Leutenberg shared a letter with his mother, Ester, that he penned in February 1985, to a family friend whose son had just died by suicide. Ester believes he shared it with her so she also would understand his own perspective. Excerpts from Mitch’s letter are shared here: “… in an act of desperation and thought, he chose not to live. The pain he was experiencing was more than he chose to continue with. Had he been physically ill with a cancer or something … this death might have made more sense, but you will have to accept his decision, you have no choice. …Consider his belief that this was his last best chance at peace or sanity. One’s mental health is more valuable than one’s physical well being, and without being at peace, little is worth it … Accept his decision as he intended and within Jewish doctrine, you and all of us will mourn his death, but we will continue.”

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At UA, Melamed humanizes medicine for future doctors

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Ellen Melamed instructs University of Arizona College of Medicine students on tools to build empathetic relationships with future patients.



llen Melamed’s medical humanities courses at the University of Arizona are encouraging medical students to develop empathetic relationships with their future patients. Melamed, the child of Holocaust survivors, draws on her family’s history of trauma and illness, as well as her own experiences in the arts, to inform her teaching. On Tuesday, April 30, first-year medical students sit in a roundtable forum for two hours in the UA Poetry Center to discuss some of the ethical questions that can overwhelm physicians and medical students. Each student is given an article or blog to read and analyze. The first few articles speak to the rise in physician suicide and mental health stigmas within the medical community. One student says her author highlights the overwhelming stigma attached to mental health deterioration in the medical community. She describes a domino effect of physicians being unable to talk about their mental health to their colleagues, thereby affecting the relationships they have with their patients. When mental health is stigmatized in the medical community, it stigmatizes patients, she says, thereby dehumanizing the practice of medicine. “It’s important that we are able to speak to people in need,” she says. Another student’s presentation includes some thoughtful reflections on the topic of physician suicide. “We suffer the knowledge that our mistakes cause people’s deaths,” she says. Melamed adds that physicians are pressured to rush through grief for their patients because of busy schedules and mental health stigma. They are not allowed the luxury of expressing grief. “Asking doctors how they’re doing is not a common practice,” Melamed says. Melamed’s medical humanities classes are part of a movement that has started at medical schools across the country, but she is pioneering its implementation at the UA College of Medicine.



She allows the students to reflect on their articles before bringing in her own experiences to enlighten their interpretation of the texts. Melamed was versed in the medical community’s problems from a young age, having a variety of hospital experiences with her family members. She matured quickly, being the primary caregiver for her parents, who were frequently ill. “My father died of a brain tumor when he was 52 and my sister had serious mental breakdowns; she was born in a displaced-persons camp in Germany with a serious heart problem,” she explains. “I’ve been around the medical world since I was 6 or 7.” Melamed was surprised by how doctors treated her and her family. They recognized and diagnosed the physical ailments her family experienced but never inquired about the mental traumas they carried. Her encounters with medical practitioners led her to feel dehumanized, she says, as they disregarded the deeply emotional aspects of being a patient or a caregiver. Her sister’s illness at birth and her parent’s survival of the Holocaust were never discussed by her physicians as a cause of their subsequent illnesses. The work she does in her medical humanities courses illustrates the experiences she had growing up and continues to have, she says. For example, Melamed uses her experience as a breast cancer patient to build on an article given to one of the students that focused on breast cancer awareness and the corporatization of the disease. Melamed chimes in after this student’s reflection to provide a relevant example, recalling one of the support groups she attended after being diagnosed, where she was given a gift bag that contained feminine products laced with harmful carcinogens and parabens. “We have sexualized this cancer and did something disproportionate,” she says, “and with all the propaganda, we forget about the person’s individual experiences.” In February, the first-year medical students met with Melamed for a different two-hour session that involved interpreting visual art created by physicians, patients, and caregivers.

Utilizing art, she says, helps enhance the students’ observation skills, which are incredibly important for making diagnoses in the future. Melamed, a former playwright, is a current artist-inresidence of the Alexander Technique at the UA College of Fine Arts. The Alexander Technique retrains students to move their bodies in a way that reduces chronic pain and prevents repetitive injuries. Melamed structured her medical humanities courses on a model of narrative medicine developed at Columbia University. Columbia offers a master’s degree in narrative medicine, an aspect of medical humanities that “seeks to strengthen the overarching goals of medicine, public health, and social justice, as well as the intimate, interpersonal experiences of the clinical encounter,” according to the Columbia website. “I knew the arts were a successful way of enabling people to understand empathy, because many people think empathy cannot be learned, but it can,” she says. Melamed teaches a semester-long class at the UA Honors College for pre-health sciences students who want to dive deeply into the study of medical humanities, while the two two-hour discussion segments are required for first-year medical students at the UA College of Medicine. Melamed says she is fortunate to be able to teach these courses as a requirement.

“It eliminates the idea that medical humanities are extra-curricular as opposed to integral to a medical curriculum,” she says. Melamed hopes that her required courses will continue to grow; in the meantime, she recently got approval to teach a semester-long enrichment elective course in medical humanities at the college. Students actively supported this course and were integral in creating the syllabus with her. “Two of the students who wrote some of the curriculum will not even benefit from it because they will be in their clinicals already, so they can’t take the elective, but they see the value,” she says. Melamed engages students in class discussions on future curriculum that they would like to see at the college, giving them a voice within their heavily structured coursework. By incorporating humanities into the study of medicine, Melamed is developing a new way of interpreting patient care at the college that will change how physicians build relationships and diagnose their patients, she says. “It cannot be stressed enough how important it is to incorporate arts and humanities into the medical curriculum, and I think people see it as primarily beneficial to patients. But I would like to emphasize that physicians and caregivers benefit a great deal because their jobs become more fulfilling,” she says.

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Style & Fashion

Fashions for spring and summer offer dramatic ways to play with color PHYLLIS BRAUN AJP Executive Editor


hether in psychedelic hues or more muted pastel tones, tiedye is one of the hot trends for summer 2019, according to Cosmopolitan magazine. Tie-dye hit the runway on sneakers, jeans, and even a breezy slip dress. Cosmopolitan also sees fringe popping up everywhere, whether on skirts or the straps of a bikini top, albeit with more subtlety than on Western-wear of old. Among the designers showing fringe: Tom Ford, Marcel Ostertag, and Oscar de la Renta. In home décor, fringe is showing up beyond the traditional rugs and throws, such as framing a statement mirror. Fans of ruching (isn’t everyone?) will be happy to hear that the ruched dress is number one this season, according to Harper’s Bazaar. Ruching has great figure-flattering potential, they point out, with the ability to enhance curves or stretch to elegantly de-emphasize them.

Pantone’s color of the year, Living Coral, works equally well in fashion and home décor.

Ruched swimsuits are helping to reinvent the one-piece, says Who What Wear. Designers showing ruching include Stella McCartney, Tory Burch, and Carolina Herrera. It may sound old-fashioned, but crochet is the new way to show a little skin (don’t forget the sunscreen!), with everyone from PopSugar to The Zoe Report to Glamour touting this trend. Crochet works in dresses, blouses, and swimsuit

cover-ups, but designers like Oscar de la Renta also are getting crafty with crocheted trousers. And, if you’re a DIY-er, you can check out www.interweave.com for crochet designs. Crochet shoes are another way to feel the summer breezes. Here’s more freedom for your feet: Elle says “Tevas are finally cool,” while for fall, Who What Wear says square toes will be the only silhouette that matters.

What about color? Whether we are talking about fashion or home décor, here’s the Pantone Color of the Year: Living Coral, “an affable and animating shade whose golden undertone gives it a softer edge.” Pantone’s other colors for spring and summer 2019 include Fiesta, a festive orange red; Jester Red, with deeper tones; Turmeric, a pungent orange; Pink Peacock, a glorious fuschsia; Pepper Stem, a zesty yellow-green; Aspen Gold, a joyous yellow; and Princess Blue, a gleaming royal blue. There’s also a luscious brown Toffee, Mango Mojito (gold with a hint of orange), deep green Terrarium Moss, and lavender-infused Sweet Lilac. Looking for a neutral? Pantone says Sweet Corn, a delicate off-white, “tempts with its soft and buttery attitude.” There’s also Soybean, a deeper hue than Sweet Corn; Eclipse, a deep, dark blue; and Brown Granite, a timeless classic. Other continuing fashion trends include animal prints; bows, whether delicate or bold; and feathers.

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Style & Fashion

SAACA to open maker space at Tucson Mall


n August, the Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance will open Catalyst, a 14,000 square foot maker and community creative art space, and a permanent home for the organization, at the Tucson Mall, 4500 N. Oracle Road. Catalyst will feature four distinct maker spaces, including an arts and crafts workshop and studio where community members can take, or teach, classes in painting, textiles and sewing, pottery, craft arts, glass lamp work, and other DIY projects. A robotics and engineering maker space will be fitted with 3D printers, laser cutters, engineering tools, electronics hardware, fabrication equipment, metal working tools, and other maker tools. A digital arts space will feature video, film, green screen, digital design, and music production studios. A culinary lab will provide space for

cooking classes and a test kitchen. Catalyst also will include a coworking space for creatives, a performance stage, and an arts exhibition space capable of showcasing both 2D and 3D sculptural and mixed media art. The space is supported as a signature arts and business partnership between SAACA and Brookfield Properties at Tucson Mall. It was designed in partnership with the dean of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture at Taliesin, Chris Lasch, a partner with the New York and Tucson-based firm Aranda/Lasch, a leader in “computational architecture,� or the application of the latest tools and theories coming out of computer-assisted design and manufacturing to architecture. For more information visit www.saaca. org/catalyst-maker-space.

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Did this beloved ancient Jewish scholar introduce the world to pizza? HENRY ABRAMSON JTA

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n 1983, the Italian-Israeli professor Sandra Debenedetti Stow stunned the scholarly world with an explosive article that proposed that Jews introduced pizza to the European diet. She cited Yehuda Romano, a 14th-century Hebrew scholar from Italy, who translated Maimonides’ use of the word “hararah” (a type of flatbread) in the Mishneh Torah with four simple Hebrew letters: peh, yud, tzadi and heh, or “pizza,” arguably the very first time the word was ever used in any language. Before the leaven could rise, a new scholarly sub-field was born. I tripped over this appealing historical fact while reading the catalog of the new National Museum of Italian Judaism and the Shoah in Ferrara on the intermediate days of Passover (no doubt that my gustatory interest was partially fueled by the holiday). I was intrigued by the possibility that while oblique references to the aromatic staple of adolescent diets can be traced to ancient times, it was the Jews who first gave a name to the global delicacy. The connection to Maimonides was also quite tempting — was his “hararah” really an Egyptian antecedent of Chicago deep-dish? A thousand questions erupted. Did Maimonides hold, asked Yechiel Goldreich on Twitter, with the “one slice mezonos, two slices hamotzi rule,” referring to the blessing for grain-based snacks that are not bread, and the blessing for bread said before a meal, respectively. And if Rambam ate pizza, wondered Professor Jared Ellias, how did we Ashkenazim get stuck with gefilte fish and stuffed cabbage? Even my wife chimed in: “Finally — the end of challah tyranny!” Unfortunately, it turns out the story is a little more complicated, and our ethnocentric glee was premature.

A 10th-century Latin code from Gaeta explicitly mandates the donation of “twelve pizzas” to the local bishop every Christmas and Easter, antedating Romano’s reference to the word by 400 years and, incidentally, providing evidence of the very first pizza delivery service. Writing in the journal Onomastics in Contemporary Public Space, Ephraim Nissan and Mario Alinei, perhaps hoping to redeem the Jewish antiquity of the doughy disc, pointed to the pizzarelle, possibly a cookie-sized version of pizza eagerly consumed by Jewish children in ancient Rome. The fact that pizzarele were served on Passover, however, diminishes its value for our purposes — if it isn’t chametz, it can’t be real pizza. Nissan and Alinei vehemently dispute Oxford Professor Martin Maiden’s argument that the word “pizza” is of

Germanic origin, deriving from the Old High German word “pizzo,” meaning “bite.” Maiden seems to give little credence to the obvious association with pita bread, suggesting instead that the Mediterranean food was also influenced by Gothic vocabulary. Seriously. After much research, I’m not much closer to really pinning down the origins of the word, but one thing is clear: Pizza, in one form or another, has been part of our diet as long as Jews have been turning over the kitchen after Passover. Who knows, even Maimonides himself might have enjoyed a slice or two.

Henry Abramson is a specialist in Jewish history and thought who currently serves as a Dean of Touro College in Brooklyn, New York. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the AJP or its publisher, the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona.

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NEWS BRIEFS Joyce Carol Oates’ grandmother was Jewish,

but the author wasn’t aware of that fact until after her grandmother’s death in 1970. After immigrating to America, Oates’ ancestor hid her Jewish heritage from the rest of her family. “I felt an immense loss and sympathy because I never really knew that my grandmother was Jewish, so my whole cultural inheritance was lost,” the acclaimed novelist told The Associated Press on Sunday in Jerusalem, where she received the prestigious Jerusalem Prize. Her grandmother, who fled persecution in Germany in the late 19th century, helped foster Oates’ love of books, giving her a copy of “Alice in Wonderland” and a library card at a young age. “No one else in my Hungarian and Irish family had any interest in books,” she said. “There’s a tragedy at the loss of my grandmother’s history, but then a joy in this connection.” Oates, who at 80 is still writing novels (she has published nearly 60 to date), said she has been inspired by her first trip to Israel. “I’m excited to be here, listening to the Hebrew language,” she said. “I’m very interested in that culture and identity … and trying to see how I could write about it.” Oates has won a National Book Award and been nominated five times for the Pulitzer Prize, but she told AP that the Jerusalem Prize is “the high point” of her career. Other writers who have won the prize — awarded biannually at the Jerusalem International Book Fair to authors who write about themes of human freedom — include Jorge Luis Borges, Susan Sontag, Arthur Miller, V.S. Naipaul, and Octavio Paz. ...

For critics of how the largest social media platforms have handled anti-Semitic and racist rhet-

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oric, it has been a long time coming: David Duke, Louis Farrakhan, Alex Jones, and their ilk are no longer welcome on Facebook. A statement from a Facebook spokesperson confirmed that several bigoted public figures have been removed from the social networking giant. The ban appears to extend to their personal and professional pages, as well as to many of their fan pages. The ban applies to anyone who issues violent threats, uses hate speech or ascribes to a hateful ideology. In addition to Duke, the former Ku Klux Klan leader; Farrakhan, the anti-Semitic leader of the Nation of Islam; and Jones, a conspiracy theorist who has said George Soros heads a “Jewish mafia”; the ban appears to include Laura Loomer and Milo Yiannopoulous, two prominent far-right provocateurs, and Paul Nehlen, a white nationalist who made anti-Semitic statements while running for Paul Ryan’s congressional seat in Wisconsin last year. Farrakhan and Duke are still on Twitter. Yiannopoulos, Loomer, Jones, and Nehlen are not. What it means: Activists who support the bans have said such “de-platforming” helps limit the spread of bigoted and extremist ideas, but social media companies have long resisted policing the limits of ideology in deference to free speech concerns (it can also be bad for a business in which outrage and heat boosts engagement). Facebook’s move signals that the tide in how these companies police hateful rhetoric is shifting in response to public criticism. The move also may be an effort to head off government regulations on social media speech, which have been proposed in Germany, Austria, and Great Britain.

RABBI’S CORNER Yiddish motto explains the counting of the Omer RABBI YOSSIE SHEMTOV CHABAD TUCSON


very day during the month of Iyar, we observe the mitzvah of Sefirat HaOmer, or counting the Omer. This mitzvah begins on the second day of Passover, and continues until the eve of Shavuot. The counting is practiced daily after nightfall with some counting from a Siddur (prayer book), while others rely on a mobile app to assist them. The counting of the 49 days corresponds to the time when, in the Holy Temple in Jersusalem, an “omer” or measure of barley was offered each day during this seven-week period. “You shall count … from the day that you brought the omer as a wave offering,” the Torah instructs us in Leviticus 23:15. We continue the tradition of counting even after the Temple’s destruction. What is unique about this mitzvah is that each day is equal in importance. Counting each one is necessary for the days that proceeded and the days that will follow. Each day contributes to the totality of the counting and carries a significance of its own. Kabbalists even offer a meditation that focuses on 49 inner traits and qualities to reflect on each day. “This seven-week period is not an ordinary one,” explains Rabbi Simon Jacobson, author of “Spiritual Guide to Counting the Omer.” “This counting expresses a Jew’s eager anticipation of receiving the Torah on Shavuot, 49 days after experiencing the liberation of Passover. This period is a time of personal refinement and introspection in preparation for receiving the Torah.” You would think that once the Jewish nation was liberated from slavery in Egypt, their new status would suffice (“Dayeinu,” as we say at the Seder). But G-d made it clear that we should never be spiritually satisfied. “When you take the people out of Egypt, you will worship G-d on this mountain,” the verse reads (Exodus 3:12). We always strive for new heights. This approach of emotional development and spiritual growth is perfectly encapsulated in the Yiddish motto attributed to Rabbi Shmuel Schneersohn, the fourth Rebbe of the Chabad-Lubavitch known as the Maharash (1834-1882). He said, “Tzi az gut iz gut - iz besser nit besser?” (If good is good, would better not be better?) Everyone and everything on this earth can be perfected. Things deteriorate and people slack off from time to time. It’s our nature. In fact, even a Torah scroll must be checked by a scribe from time to time to make sure all of its letters are intact. The Omer period reminds us of that need, to go from strength to strength in our faith and practice of it. And for that matter, we can always look more broadly at communal activities and institutions and ask ourselves, “If good is good, would better not be better?”

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5550 E. Fifth St., Tucson, AZ 85711 • (520) 745-5550 Rabbi Robert Eisen, Cantorial Soloist Nichole Chorny • www.caiaz.org Daily minyan: Mon.-Thurs., 7:30 a.m. & 5:30 p.m.; Fri., 7:30 a.m.; Sun. & legal holidays, 8 a.m. & 5:30 p.m. / Mincha: Fri., 5:45 p.m. / Shabbat services: Sat., 9 a.m., followed by Kiddush; Tot Shabbat, 1st Fri., 5:45 p.m.; Family Service, 3rd Friday, 5:45 p.m.; Holiday services may differ, call or visit website. / Torah study: every Shabbat one hour before Mincha (call or visit website for times) / Talmud on Tuesday, 6 p.m. / Weekday Torah study group, Wed., 11 a.m. beverages and dessert provided.

Congregation Bet shalom 3881 E. River Road, Tucson, AZ 85718 • (520) 577-1171 Rabbi Hazzan Avraham Alpert • www.cbsaz.org Shabbat services: Fri., 5:30 p.m. (followed by monthly dinners — call for info); Sat. 9:30 a.m., Camp Shabbat (ages 6-10) 10 a.m.-noon, followed by Kiddush lunch; 12:30-2 p.m. CBS Think Tank discussion led by Rabbi Dr. Howard Schwartz and Prof. David Graizbord; monthly Tot Shabbat (call for dates) / Weekday services: Wed. 8:15 a.m. / Hagim 9:30 a.m.

5150 E. Fifth St., Tucson, AZ 85711 • (520) 747-7780 Rabbi Israel Becker • www.tucsontorah.org Shabbat services: Fri., Kabbalat Shabbat 15 minutes before sunset; Sat. 9 a.m. followed by Kiddush. / Mincha: Fri., 1 p.m.; Sat., 25 minutes before sunset, followed by Shalosh Seudas, Maariv and Havdallah. Services: Sun., 8 a.m.; Mon. & Thurs., 6:50 a.m.; Tues., Wed., Fri., 7 a.m.; daily, 15 minutes before sunset. / Weekday Rosh Chodesh services: 6:45 a.m.

Congregation young israel/ChaBad oF tuCson 2443 E. Fourth St., Tucson, AZ 85719 • (520) 881-7956 Rabbi Yossie Shemtov, Rabbi Yudi Ceitlin • www.chabadoftucson.com Daily minyan: Sun. & legal holidays, 8:30 a.m.; Mon. & Thurs., 6:30 p.m.; Tues., Wed., Fri., 6:45 a.m. / Mincha & Maariv, 5:15 p.m. / Shabbat services: Fri. at candlelighting; Sat. 9:30 a.m. followed by Kiddush. Mincha, Maariv and Havdallah TBA.

ChaBad on river 3916 E. Ft. Lowell Road • (520) 661-9350 Rabbi Ram Bigelman • www.chabadonriver.com Shabbat services: Fri., Mincha at candlelighting time, followed by Maariv. / Sat., Shacharit service, 9:30 a.m. / Torah study: women, Wed., 2 p.m.; men, Tues. and Thurs., 7 p.m. Call to confirm. 1217 W. Faldo Drive, Oro Valley, AZ 85755 • (520) 477-8672 Rabbi Ephraim Zimmerman • www.jewishorovalley.com Shabbat services: 3rd Fri., 5 p.m. Oct.-Feb., 6 p.m. March-Sept., all followed by dinner / Sat., 10 a.m. study session followed by service.

ChaBad sierra vista 401 Suffolk Drive, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635 • (520) 820-6256 Rabbi Benzion Shemtov • www.jewishsierravista.com Shabbat services: Sat., 10:30 a.m., bimonthly, followed by class explaining prayers. Visit website or call for dates.

3001 E. Skyline Drive, Suite 117, Tucson, AZ 85718 • (520) 276-5675 Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon • www.beitsimchatucson.org Shabbat services: Fri., 6:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m., with Torah study at 9 a.m; monthly Shabbat morning hikes.

Congregation Chaverim 5901 E. Second St., Tucson, AZ 85711 • (520) 320-1015 Rabbi Stephanie Aaron • www.chaverim.net Shabbat services: Fri., 7 p.m. (no service on 5th Fri.); Family Shabbat, 1st Fri., 6 p.m. / Torah study: 2nd Sat., 9 a.m., followed by contemplative service,10 a.m.

Congregation Kol simChah

(Renewal) 4625 E. River Road, Tucson, AZ 85718 • (520) 296-0818 Mailing Address: 6628 E. Calle Dened, Tucson, AZ 85710, Shabbat services: 1st and 3rd Fri., 7:15 p.m.

Congregation m’Kor hayim

ORTHODOX Congregation ChoFetz Chayim/southwest torah institute

ChaBad oro valley

REFORM Congregation Beit simCha

3888 E. River Road, Tucson, AZ 85718 (Tucson Hebrew Academy) Mailing Address: P.O. Box 31806, Tucson, AZ 85751 • (520) 904-1881 Rabbi Helen Cohn • www.mkorhayim.org Shabbat services: 2nd and 4th Fri., 7 p.m. / Torah study, 2nd and 4th Sat., 9:30 a.m.

Congregation or Chadash 3939 N. Alvernon Way, Tucson, AZ 85718 • (520) 512-8500 Rabbi Thomas Louchheim, Cantor Janece Cohen www.orchadash-tucson.org Shabbat services: Fri., 6:30 p.m.; 1st Fri., Friday Night LIVE (Sept.-May); 2nd Friday, Tot Shabbat (Sept.-May), 6 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. / Torah study: Sat., 8:30 a.m.

the institute For JudaiC serviCes and studies Mailing Address: 36789 S. Golf Course Drive, Saddlebrooke, AZ 85739 Rabbi Sanford Seltzer • (520) 825-8175 Shabbat services: Oct.-April, third Friday of the month at 7 p.m. — call for details.

temple emanu-el 225 N. Country Club Road, Tucson, AZ 85716 • (520) 327-4501 Rabbi Batsheva Appel • www.tetucson.org Shabbat services: Fri., 7:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m./ Torah study: Sat., 8:30 a.m. except when there is a Rabbi’s Tish.

temple Kol hamidBar 228 N. Canyon Drive, Sierra Vista • (520) 458-8637 kolhamidbar.tripod.com Mailing address: P.O. Box 908, Sierra Vista, AZ 85636, Friday night Torah study group: 6 - 7:15 p.m. / Shabbat services: Fri., 7:30 p.m.


Beth shalom temple Center

seCular humanist Jewish CirCle

handmaKer resident synagogue

university oF arizona hillel Foundation

1751 N. Rio Mayo (P.O. Box 884), Green Valley, AZ 85622 (520) 648-6690 • www.bstc.us Shabbat services: 1st and 3rd Fri., 7 p.m. / Torah study: Sat., 10 a.m. 2221 N. Rosemont Blvd., Tucson, AZ 85712 • (520) 881-2323 www.handmaker.com Shabbat services: Fri., 4:30 p.m., led by Lindsey O’Shea, followed by Shabbat dinner; Sat., 9:30 a.m., led by Mel Cohen and Dan Asia, followed by light Kiddush lunch.

www.secularhumanistjewishcircle.org Call Cathleen at (520) 730-0401 for meeting or other information.

1245 E. 2nd St. Tucson, AZ 85719 • (520) 624-6561 • www.arizona.hillel.org Shabbat services: Reform, Conservative, Orthodox and alternative services two Fridays each month when school is in session. Dinner follows (guests, $8; RSVP by preceding Thurs.). Call for dates/times.



COMMUNITY CALENDAR The calendar deadline is Tuesday, 10 days before the issue date. Our next issue will be published May 31, 2019. Events may be emailed to office@azjewishpost.com, faxed to 319-1118, or mailed to the AJP at 3718 E. River Road, #272, Tucson, AZ 85718. For more information, call 319-1112. See Area Congregations on page 21 for additional synagogue events. Men’s Mishnah club with Rabbi Israel Becker at Cong. Chofetz Chayim. Sundays, 7:15 a.m.; Monday-Friday, 6:15 a.m.; Saturdays, 8:15 a.m. 747-7780 or yzbecker@me.com. Chabad of Sierra Vista men’s tefillin club with Rabbi Benzion Shemtov, first Sundays, 9 a.m., at 401 Suffolk Drive. 820-6256 or www.jewishsierravista.com. “Too Jewish” radio show with Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon on KVOI 1030 AM (also KAPR and KJAA), Sundays at 9 a.m. May 19, Tom Weidlinger, author of “The Restless Hungarian.” May 26, Nadine Epstein, author of “ELIE WIESEL: An Extraordinary Life and Legacy– Writings, Reflections, Photographs.” June 2, Michael David Lukas, author of “The Last Watchmen of Old Cairo,” winner of the Rohr Jewish Literature Prize. Beth Shalom Temple Center of Green Valley bagel breakfast and Yiddish club, first Sundays, 9:30 a.m. Members, $7; nonmembers, $10. 648-6690 or 399-3474. Southern Arizona Jewish Genealogy Society, second Sundays, 1-3 p.m. at the Tucson J. Contact Barbara Stern Mannlein at 731-0300 or the J at 299-3000. Tucson J Israeli Dance, taught by Brandi Hawkins, 2nd and 4th Sundays, partners, 4:456 p.m.; open circle, 6-7 p.m. Members, $8; nonmembers, $10. 299-3000.

Friday / May 17

11 AM: Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center gallery chat, “Neighbors,” presented by Dr. Margaret Redmond McFaddin. Co-sponsored by KXCI. Free. 564 S. Stone Ave. 670-9073 or www.jewishhistorymuseum.org. 5:30 PM: Temple Emanu-El Seeking Shabbat service, preceded at 5 p.m. by nosh. Register at 327-4501. 5:45 PM: Cong. Anshei Israel Family Shabbat Israel Night service and dinner. Dinner at 7 p.m.: members, $25 family of 2 adults and up to 4 children; nonmember family $30; adult (13+) $10. RSVP for availability at 745-5550. 6:30 PM: Cong. Or Chadash Family Shabbat with Birthday and Anniversary blessing, 512-8500. 9:30 PM: Temple Emanu-El Downtown Shabbat at Jewish History Museum, 564 S. Stone Ave., with Rabbi Batsheva Appel and Armon Bizman band. 327-4501.

Saturday / May 18

ONGOING Cong. Anshei Israel parent-tot class, led by Lindsey Embree. Mondays, 9-11 a.m. through May 20. Children up to 24 months and their parent(s). Free. Mandatory vaccination policy. Call Nancy Auslander at 745-5550 or visit www. caiaz.org. Temple Emanu-El mah jongg, Mondays, 10 a.m. 327-4501. Cong. Anshei Israel mah jongg, Mondays, 10 a.m.-noon. All levels, men and women. Contact Evelyn at 885-4102 or esigafus@aol.com. Tucson J current events discussion, Mondays, noon-1:30 p.m. Members, $1; nonmembers, $2. Bring or buy lunch, 11:30 a.m. 2993000, ext. 147. Cong. Bet Shalom yoga, Mondays, 4:30-5:30 p.m. $5. 577-1171. Jewish 12-step sobriety support group meets Mondays, 6:30-8 p.m. at Cong. Bet Shalom. dcmack1952@gmail.com. Spouse Bereavement Group, cosponsored by Widowed to Widowed, Inc. at the Tucson J, Tuesdays, 10 a.m. Contact Marvin at 885-2005 or Tanya at 299-3000, ext. 147. JFCS Holocaust Survivors group meets Tuesdays, 10 a.m.-noon. Contact Raisa Moroz

dash Lag B’Omer Picnic and Bonfire. At the Youngerman Ranch. Games, hayrides, kosher cookout, Havdalah. Dinner $8 per adult, $4 per child. For reservations, call 327-4501. 7 PM: Jewish History Museum and MOCA Tucson present “Help Us! Humor!,” readings and performances by Jeanne Vaccaro and Amelia Bande. Free. 564 S. Stone Ave. 670-9073 or www.jewishhistorymuseum.org. 7 PM: Reveille Men's Chorus presents “Bless Our Show(tunes),” includes selections from “Fiddler on the Roof” and other musicals. Also Sunday, May 19 at 2 p.m. $20 advance, $25 at door. At Temple of Music & Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. www.reveillemenschorus.org.

Sunday / May 19

NOON–3 PM: JFCS presents “Celebration of Caring for Tucson’s Children,” free, family friendly event with food, music, instruction in Hispanic and Jewish folk dances, and information from community nonprofits. At Scottish Rite, 160 S. Scott Ave. 795-0300.

1:30-3 PM: Secular Humanist Jewish Circle Lecture, “Jews in China,” with Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon, who served as the High Holy Days rabbi for a Shanghai congregation. Nanini Library, 7300 N. Shannon Road. RSVP to Becky at schulmb@aol.com or 296-3762. Bring snack to share.

2 PM: Beth Shalom Temple Center of Green Valley film, “HUMPHREY: The Art of Possible,” presented by Norman Sherman, press secretary to Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey. $10. 648-6690.

5 PM: Temple Emanu-El and Cong. Or Cha-

8:30-10 AM: Tucson Hebrew Academy



Tuesday / May 21

at 795-0300. Awakening Through Jewish Meditation — Discover Freedom, with Reb Brian Yosef, Tuesdays/Sundays at 10:30 a.m., at Cong. Bet Shalom. Free. www.torahofawakening.com. Tucson J social bridge, Tuesdays and Thursdays, noon-3 p.m., year round. Drop-ins welcome. Meets in library on second floor. 299-3000. Tucson J canasta group, Tuesdays and Thursdays, noon. Instruction available and a beginners’ table every week. Call or text Lisa at 977-4054. Cong. Anshei Israel Talmud on Tuesday with Rabbi Robert Eisen. Meets 6 p.m. 7455550. Weintraub Israel Center Shirat HaShirim Hebrew choir, Tuesdays, 7 p.m. Learn to sing in Hebrew. Contact Rina Paz at 304-7943 or ericashem@cox.net. Tucson J Israeli dance classes, Tuesdays. Beginners, 7:30 p.m.; intermediate, 8:15 p.m.; advanced, 9 p.m. Taught by Lisa Goldberg. Members, $8; nonmembers, $10. 299-3000. Cong. Anshei Israel gentle chair yoga with Lois Graham, Wednesdays, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Members of Women’s League, $6 per class;

Tuesday Tours. At THA. Contact Gabby Erbst at 529-3888.

Friday / May 24

10:30 AM-NOON: Spiritual Awakening through Jewish Meditation introductory workshop, with Reb Brian Yosef SchachterBrooks. At Jewish History Museum, 564 S. Stone Ave. 670-9073. 7:30 PM: Temple Emanu-El Confirmation Shabbat Evening Service. 327-4501.

Sunday / May 26

9:15 AM: Jewish War Veterans FriedmanPaul Post 201 breakfast meeting at B'nai B'rith Covenant House, 4414 E. 2nd St. Contact Seymour Shapiro at 398-5360.

Thursday / May 30

6 PM: Dusenberry-River Library presents a conversation with Kate Stewart, author of “A Well-Read Woman: The Life, Loves, and Legacy of Ruth Rappaport,” and Alice LaViolette, librarian at Salem Public Library. Free. At Dusenberry-River Library, 5605 E River Road. 594-5345.

Friday / May 31

11 AM: Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center gallery chat, “Jewishness & Latinidad at the Border,” presented by Maxwell Greenberg, doctoral candidate at César E.

nonmembers, $8 per class. Contact Evelyn at 885-4102 or esigafus@aol.com. Temple Emanu-El Talmud study, Wednesdays, 10-11:30 a.m. Text required, call 3274501. Next session is Sept. 4. Cong. Anshei Israel weekday Torah study group with Rabbi Robert Eisen. Wednesdays, 11:00 a.m. 745-5550. Chabad Tucson lunch and learn with Rabbi Yehuda Ceitlin, Wednesdays, 12:15 p.m. 2443 E. 4th St. Lunch available to purchase; email info@chabadtucson.com. Chabad of Sierra Vista women’s class with Rabbi Benzion Shemtov, last Wednesdays, 2 p.m., 401 Suffolk Drive. 820-6256 or www.jewishsierravista.com. Jewish mothers/grandmothers special needs support group for those with children/grandchildren, youth or adult, with special needs, third Wednesdays, 7-8:30 p.m. at Tucson J. Contact Joyce Stuehringer at 299-5920. “Biblical Breakthroughs with Rabbi Becker” at the Southwest Torah Institute. Fridays, noon, for men and women. 747-7780 or yzbecker@me.com. Jewish History Museum core exhibition, “Meanings Not Yet Imagined.” Holocaust History Center, “Call Me Rohingya,” photographs by Andrew Stanbridge, through May 31. 564 S. Stone Ave. 670-9073.

Chávez Department of Chicana/o Studies, and Skirball Fellow in Modern Jewish Culture through the Alan D. Leve Center for Jewish Studies at UCLA. Free. 564 S. Stone Ave. 670-9073 or www. jewishhistorymuseum.org.

Saturday / June 1

9 AM: Cong. Or Chadash Torah Cantillation class, with Cantor Janece Cohen, Saturdays for eight weeks. Basic Hebrew reading skills required. Members, free; nonmembers, $36. Register with Sarah at 900-7027 or sarah@octucson.org. NOON: Cong. Or Chadash Adult Beginning Hebrew Part II, with Cantor Janece Cohen, Saturdays for eight weeks. Members, $36; nonmembers, $50. Register with Sarah at 900-7027 or sarah@octucson.org.

Sunday / June 2

9 AM – 2 PM: Cong. Anshei Israel and American Red Cross blood donor drive. Age 16+. To reserve a time or volunteer, contact Fran Stoler at franstoler@gmail.com. 9:30 AM-3 PM: Tucson J One Day Adult Summer Camp — Color War Edition. Includes lunch. $40 per person/$75 per couple. Childcare available for $15 per child. Register at 299-3000. 3:45 PM: Cong. Anshei Israel Yom Yerushalayim program, showing film, “James’ Journey to Jerusalem.” Free. 745-5550.



JFSA NW Division Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life chair yoga with a Jewish flair taught by Bonnie Golden. 190 N. Magee Road, #162. Mondays, 10-11 a.m. $7 per class or $25 for four. 505-4161 or northwestjewish@jfsa.org. Northwest Needlers create hand-stitched items for donation in the Jewish community. Meets at JFSA NW Division Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life, Tuesdays, 1-3 p.m. RSVP to judithgfeldman@gmail.com or 505-4161. JFSA NW Division Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life mah jongg, meets

Wednesdays, 12:30 to 3:30 p.m., 505-4161.

Chabad of Oro Valley adult education class, Jewish learning with Rabbi Ephraim Zimmerman. Wednesdays at 7 p.m., at 1217 W. Faldo Drive. 477-8672 or www.jewishorovalley.com.

Monday / May 20

5-6:30 PM: Hadassah Southern Arizona/ JFSA NW Division Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life book club discusses “The Whole Town’s Talking” by Fannie Flagg. At JFSA NW Division Ruth & Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life, 190 W. Magee Road, #162. RSVP: 505-4161 or northwestjewish@jfsa.org.

Going Away?

Remember to stop delivery of the AJP at least a week before you leave town! Fill out the “delivery stops” form online at:

www.azjewishpost.com/print-subscription or call 647-8441 to leave a message with your name, address, zip code, telephone number and the dates you will be away.



IN FOCUS Tucson Hebrew High holds creative commencement

Front row (L-R): Erika Spivack, Natalie Feldman, Jillian Cassius, Michael Gross; second row: Geva Ozeri, Mallory Hulsey, Rachel Davenport, Rebecca Dubin, Maya Levy; Back: Yuval Barel, Aaron Green, Téa Weiner, Brandon Esbit, Rafael Herreras-Zinman. Not pictured: Isaac Hammer

Photo: Ariel Miklofsky/NW Division Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life

Photo: Martha Lochert

JCC Holocaust memorial is subject of NW remembrance

From left, Rabbi Billy Lewkowicz, Ken Light, Fred Steiniger and Emily Ellentuck helped lead the Yom HaShoah program at the Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life on May 2.

“Live, from Tucson, it’s Tuesday night!” The class of 2019 kicked off the 41st Tucson High School for Jewish Studies (Hebrew High) Commencement on April 30 in the rousing spirit of “Saturday Night Live.” The program, driven and written by the students, featured all the hallmarks of SNL, including an opening skit, “Senior Update,” video montage credits, and a selection of parodies. Among the jokes about Hebrew High dinners and strong personalities were meaningful moments of inspiration as well, including poems, a D’var Torah, and a personal blessing for each graduate from Hebrew High Director Rabbi Ruven Barkan. The 15 graduates received gifts from Senior Class Advisor Sarah Artzi and their congregational rabbis. Nine also were awarded certificates for Hebrew for Credit.

On Thursday, May 2, the Ruth and Irving Olson Center for Jewish Life held a Yom HaShoah Remembrance event. More than 40 attendees heard guest speakers Ken Light and Fred Steiniger talk about the Holocaust memorial at the entrance to the Tucson Jewish Community Center and watched a video of its artist, Israeli Ami Shamir, explaining his vision. He designed the large concrete tablet to be reminiscent of the Ten Commandments, but instead of commandments, it is inscribed with the names of death camps, concentration camps, and ghettos. The column rising from the reflecting pool is shattered at its peak, as was Jewish society throughout Europe. The event also featured a presentation by Ariel Goldberg from the Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center on the museum’s digital “Mapping Migration” photographic memoir project. Rabbi Billy Lewkowicz spoke about the recent shooting at a synagogue in Poway, California, and led Kaddish as participants lit yahrzeit candles. Emily Ellentuck, cantorial intern at Congregation M’kor Hayim, led the crowd in singing Hatikvah and El Male Rachamim.

Life before war focus of community Yom HaShoah commemoration

Holocaust survivor Walter Feiger, right, lights a candle with his partner, Nancy Alexander, and Rabbi Thomas Louchheim of Congregation Or Chadash.

The community-wide 2019 Yom HaShoah commemoration on Sunday, May 5 at the Tucson Jewish Community Center focused on highlighting Jewish life and culture before the Holocaust. Rather than rehearse the political miscalculations and complicity of European nations or the mechanics of Nazi genocidal violence, says Bryan Davis, executive director of the Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center, the commemoration focused on the diverse and vibrant Jewish culture that was destroyed. In an anteroom to the ballroom, a slideshow of photographs collected from local families presented a range of Jewish life, while a musician played Yiddishinflected motifs on a violin. Video testimonies from numerous local Holocaust survivors and their children were interspersed throughout the program. The testimonies represented the life, color, differences, and flavor of Jewish life in the early 20th century. A pianist played melodies from the pre-war Jewish songbook. A candle-lighting ceremony was at the heart of the commemoration. A six-armed candelabra representing the six million murdered Jews was lit by local Holocaust survivors. Additional candles were lit to acknowledge the unknown victims of Nazism and to honor the Righteous Among the Nations.



Photos: Debe Campbell/AJP

Photo: Marty Johnston

Congregation Or Chadash blesses all creatures great and small

Alice Mayoral, with Jordan the lizard, won most unusual pet.

Skylar Dehnert (left) and Riley Strizver wtih rabbit

Pets of all description were on parade at Congregation Or Chadash May 5 for the annual pet blessing. About 50 gathered with their beloved dogs, a rabbit, and a gecko to share the Prayer for Animals, led by Rabbi Thomas Louchheim. The blessing also culminated a monthlong b’not mitzvah project for Riley and Jenna Strizver. The sisters collected food, blankets, and cash donations to help homeless animals in Tucson. They judged the pet parade and awarded gift card prizes for most unusual animal to Alice Mayoral and her gecko Jordan, smallest dog to Ella and Lilah Winters with Ruby, and largest dog to Beverly Sandock with Bacchus. A rousing rendition of the “Arky, Arky” song was followed by recitation of the “Creature 10 Commandments,” which included instructions for owners such as thou shall provide shade and water, and for pets, including thou shall not nip, claw, or kick.

IN FOCUS Tucsonans celebrate Israel at 71

Tots celebrate Israel’s 71st birthday with Tucson shinshiniyot (Israeli teen emissaries) Rotem Rappoport (left) and Ron Benacot.

More than 250 people attended a celebration of Israel’s 71st birthday on Sunday, April 28, at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, enjoying food, music, an artisan fair, kids’ activities and Israeli film shorts. The Weintraub Israel Center, a program of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and the Tucson J, organized the event.

Phillip McCauley/THA

Photo courtesy Tucson Jewish Community Center

THA eighth-graders graduate, anticipate annual end-of-year journey

The Tucson Hebrew Academy graduating class of 2019

Tucson Hebrew Academy held its eighth-grade graduation on Wednesday, May 8. During the ceremony, graduates reflected on their time at the school, and looked forward to the future, including THA’s annual eighth-grade trip to Israel. “THA not only has helped me grow and further my education but has shaped who I am, as well. I will never forget the memories I have created here,” Hadlie Polonski said. Ben O. said, “I’ve had a lot of teachers and I learned something from each of them. Like it says in the Talmud, ‘He alone is poor who does not possess knowledge.’ Because of THA I feel rich.” And Davis Yalen said, “This has been the moment I have been anticipating for so long. Even though I’m really looking forward to high school, I’m learning to live in the moment, and appreciate moments like this, because the future will come and the present will pass … When I think about going to Israel in just a couple of days, I am ready. I am ready to open a new chapter in my life and put into practice all that I’ve learned these past eight years.” Other graduates are: Lila Dessen, Talya Fleisher, Isabella Garcia, Lily Goldberg, Rylee Herman, Eliyahu Kahana, Adamari Pasillas, Bodhi Teufel, Dahlia Tolby, and Carly Wright.




Marvin Fortman

Lori Joyce Ruben, 60, died April 19, 2019. Ms. Ruben was born in Los Angeles and moved to Tucson last year to be near her mother. She was a marketing/product manager at Accenture. A former horse owner, she won several awards for dressage. Survivors include her mother, Carole Culman of Tucson; sister, Diane Woolsey of Aliso Viejo, California; and life partner, John Hinton of Rancho Santa Margarita, California. A private service will held at a date to be decided. Memorial contributions may be made to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Samuel Oschin Cancer Center, Dr. Ronald Paquette. Arrangements were made by Oasis Cremation.

Marvin Fortman, J.D., 88, died May 7, 2019. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he was a professional musician (clarinet, sax, flute, bass) before moving to Tucson in 1950 and graduating from the University of Arizona with honors while co-owning “Tiny’s Circus Drive-In” with his brother and father. The Army band piccolo soloist in the Korean War, he returned to UA for his law degree and then New York University on a fellowship for a taxation LL.M. After practicing law in New York City and Phoenix, he joined the UA Eller College of Business and Public Administration faculty in the 1960s, practiced in Tucson, and authored “The Legal Aspects of Doing Business in Arizona,” retiring in his 70s. A lifelong Israel supporter, he was active in many Jewish and social action groups. A 32nd degree Mason, Lodge 4, he was a charter member of Sabbar Shrine. He served as BPA Student Council adviser at Eller College for 20+ years, was honored as the BPA Outstanding Teaching Professor, and a leadership award is given in his name. Survivors include his wife of 60 years, Soralé (Sorkey); children, Brian (Lisa) of Los Angeles, Anita of Sacramento, California, and Debbie of San Diego; sisters-in-law, Zita Fortman of Northbridge, California, Shirley Goldberg of Tucson, and Lois Bejerano of Phoenix; and three grandchildren. Services were held at Evergreen Mortuary with Rabbi Robert Eisen of Congregation Anshei Israel officiating, followed by interment in the Anshei Israel section of Evergreen Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to University of Arizona Hillel Foundation or Stand With Us.

Jeffrey Mendelsohn Jeffrey Mendelsohn, 67, died April 22, 2019. Mr. Mendelsohn was born in Kansas City, Missouri, to Archie and Marjorie Mendelsohn. He graduated from the University of Arizona in 1972. Survivors include his child, Seth (Adrienne) Mendelsohn of Longmont, Colorado; brother, Stephen (Karen) Mendelsohn; and two grandchildren. A service will take place in Colorado on a date to be decided. Arrangements were made by Evergreen Mortuary.

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OUR TOWN B’not mitzvah

People in the news

News brief

Riley Danielle Strizver, daughter of Brad and Susan Strizver, will celebrate becoming a Bat Mitzvah on May 18, 2019 at Congregation Or Chadash. She is the granddaughter of Paul and Judy Silverman, and David and Leah Peck, all of Tucson, and the late Robert Strizver. She attends Desert Sky Middle School where she is on the honor roll, a founding member of the dance club, and acts in the drama club. She enjoys cheerleading for the Vail Vikings Youth Football and Spirit Association. For her mitzvah project, she and her sister are collecting money, food, and pet supplies to donate to help homeless animals.

CIEE, a leader in international education and exchange, announced that Noah Richter, a rising senior at University High School, is one of 250 American high school students from across the United States awarded the prestigious Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Scholarship for the 2019-2020 academic year. CBYX is a bi-lateral exchange program co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and German Bundestag (Parliament). As a CBYX scholar, Noah will spend the school year in Germany living with a host family, attending a German high school, and participating in a four-week language and cultural immersion. Additionally, there will be the chance to visit the German Bundestag, meet with American and German government officials, participate in intercultural seminars, and explore the country through numerous excursions.

Barney M. Holtzman joined Mesch Clark Rothschild as a partner in the labor and employment law and commercial litigation practice group. Holtzman has been consistently recognized as a premier attorney in employment law and commercial litigation by Best Lawyers in America, Southwest Super Lawyers, and Tucson Lifestyle Magazine in his more than 20 years of practice. Prior to joining Mesch Clark Rothschild, he was the managing partner of Fennemore Craig’s Tucson office, in-house counsel for a privately held mortgage lender, and clerked with the Hon. Thomas A. Zlaket, chief justice of the Arizona Supreme Court. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of Arizona, James E. Rogers College of Law. Holtzman has held community leadership positions with the Tucson Jewish Community Center and Ben’s Bells, among others.

Jenna Evelyn Strizver, daughter of Brad and Susan Strizver, will celebrate becoming a Bat Mitzvah on May 18, 2019 at Congregation Or Chadash. She is the granddaughter of Paul and Judy Silverman, and David and Leah Peck, all of Tucson, and the late Robert Strizver. She attends Desert Sky Middle School where she is on the honor roll, a member of the National Junior Honor Society, and plays in the band. She enjoys cheerleading for the Vail Vikings Youth Football and Spirit Association. For her mitzvah project, she and her sister are collecting money, food, and pet supplies to donate to help homeless animals.

Engagement Nancy and Jeff DuBois announce the engagement of their son, Jeremy, to Hilary Bokoff, daughter of Allison Glickman and Marc Bokoff of New London, Connecticut. Hilary graduated from The Williams School and Boston University with a bachelor’s of business administration. She currently works in event marketing for a conference production company in Boston. Jeremy graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor’s of business administration and a master’s in public health. He currently works in finance at a hospital in Boston. A fall 2019 wedding is being planned.

Birth A daughter, Maya Klari Neuman, was born on April 8, 2019 to Eszter and Ariel Neuman of Los Angeles. Maya joins brothers Zev and Louis Neuman. Grandparents are Shlomo and Yael Neuman of Tucson, and Eva and Tamas Lengyel of Los Angeles.

Alma Hernandez was selected to model for ELOQUII’s campaign that highlights women who represent erasing stereotypes and who model authenticity, grace under fire, and compassion for those in need. Hernandez, 26, is the first Jewish Latina member of the Arizona State legislature.

Send news of your simchas to localnews@azjewishpost.com or call 319-1112

Randi Dorman will be a candidate on the August Democratic primary ballot. After a successful career in global branding, Dorman moved from New York City to Tucson, where she, her husband and partners purchased an old ice factory and converted it into Ice House Lofts. She was president of the Museum of Contemporary Art and chair of the Downtown Tucson Partnership. She has been voted Most Influential Woman in Tucson three consecutive years in Arizona Foothills magazine.

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Arizona Jewish Post 5.17.19  

Arizona Jewish Post 5.17.19