Page 1

B U I L D I N G I S R A E L . O N E C H I L D AT A T I M E .


MAINSTREAMING STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES. International icons for physical disabilities and autism. s u m m e r 2 0 1 3 : : k a y i t z 5 7 7 3 : : Vo l . L X X X V : : N o. 3


SMR13_cvr_v5.indd 1

7/18/13 2:52 PM

SAVE THE DATE! AMIT ISRAEL ANNUAL DINNER Monday, September 16, 2013 Ramada Renaissance Hotel Jerusalem, Israel

For more information, please contact Miriam Gold at

Stakes, Steaks, Stogies and Scotch

AMIT 6th Annual Guys Night Out Wednesday, October 2, 2013 The Bowery Hotel in New York City

For more information, please contact contact Liz Klibanoff at or 212-477-4737


November 3, 2013 Chelsea Piers

For more information contact Amy Oppenheim at or 212-477-1207

2013 AMIT ANNUAL DINNER November 10, 2013 Pier Sixty at the Chelsea Piers

For more information contact Robin Rothbort at or 212-477-4725

2013 LEADERShIp MISSION TO ISRAEL December 7th – December 14th

For information, please contact Miriam Kaplan at or 212-477-5690

SMR13_Save_Dates_page2_v3.indd 1

7/18/13 12:40 PM


summer2013 By Debbie Isaac

A FEW WEEKS AGO, WE WERE INFORMED THAT AMIT was to be the recipient of the Ruderman Prize in Disability, the only organization in Israel to be so honored. We were awarded this $50,000 prize for our work in mainstreaming more than 1,000 students with disabilities in our various schools around the country with full inclusion in classes, social activities and extracurricular programs. These schools range from comprehensive, community elementary and junior/ senior high schools to high-level yeshiva high schools. In keeping with our mission to instill all our students with a commitment to serve the State of Israel, we also ensure that many of these young people will be able, in some capacity, to enter a unit of the Israel Defense Forces or perhaps perform some type of National Service. It is a source of pride to the AMIT Network that more than 95 percent of our graduates enroll in the IDF, often in the most prestigious combat and combat support units, or enter National Service. Service to the state - as a value - can be found throughout the AMIT Network. This year, we inaugurated, a special Military Cadet Program at the AMIT Ramle Technological High School. The young cadets, who dress in full uniform at school, will enlist in the IDF Logistics Corps after they complete the program. AMIT Ramle is one of our “last chance” schools for those who have not succeeded in the regular high school environment. The Military Cadet Program will guarantee that these students do meaningful and fulfilling service in the IDF and even reach senior and officer positions. We were particularly pleased to learn that this year 100 percent of the graduates of the AMIT high school in Karmiel had enlisted in the IDF. The student population at Karmiel is a mix of veteran Israelis and new immigrants, and many of the students and their families face economic and other challenges. These young people’s willingness to serve their country is a testament to the values they imbibed with their AMIT education.

At the AMIT Beatrice and Irving Stone Meysharim School in Shoham, our boarding school for teenagers and young adults who are behaviorally and emotionally challenged, we run a special program in coordination with the IDF which allows some of the students to serve in the army in uniform in their own way. Our newest program, which educates Haredi youth who have opted out of their community’s yeshiva system, aims to prepare the participants to eventually enter the job market as well as serve in the IDF. At the AMIT Junior College in Petach Tikva, studies are coordinated with the IDF and are under the supervision of the Ministry of Education. Some students acquire a prestigious technician’s diploma, which will serve them well in the military, while others are enrolled in our new prearmy preparatory leadership program. At AMIT, of course, we never forget our female students. One of our most unique programs is Midreshet Be’er in Yerucham. Midreshet Be’er is a hesder yeshiva program for girls that attracts religious girls from all over Israel. Midreshet Be’er integrates intensive Judaic studies, community involvement, engagement in social issues and full service in the IDF. The current enrollment consists of 30 students and 56 active soldiers. One hundred women have graduated from the program thus far. We are proud of Midreshet Be’er’s leading role in empowering women as involved, creative and productive members of the community and as leaders of Israeli society. An AMIT education has an impact on our students far beyond graduation. Our holistic approach to learning, our emphasis on Jewish values as well as on educational fundamentals, produces an AMIT graduate imbued with a sense of service to their country, as well as a deep attachment and love of the Jewish people. It is an outcome in which we can all take great pride. Enjoy your summer and think of helping to make this next academic year the best ever for our 26,000+ students.  Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 3

SMR13_pres_p3_v3.indd 1

7/19/13 10:55 PM



summer 2013 kayitz 5773 Vol. LXXXV No. 3


AMIT programs for handicapped and autistic children. By Michele Chabin


The growth of Midreshet AMIT over the past six years. List of 2013 graduates and incoming class of 2014. By Ilana Gottlieb


AMIT Magazine’s newest section. Points of Interest will highlight and discuss Jewish exhibits, landmarks, and events from around the world. In this issue: Herod the Great: The King’s Final Journey at the Israel Museum and the oldest Jewish home in the United States, The Gomez Mill House. By Menachem Kaiser and Barbara Cole Feiden

About The Cover

B U I L D I N G I S R A E L . O N E C H I L D AT A T I M E .


MAINSTREAMING STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES. International icons for physical disabilities and autism.

s u m m e r 2 0 1 3 : : k a y i t z 5 7 7 3 : : Vo l . L X X X V : : N o. 3


SMR13_cvr_v5.indd 1


International disabilities icon and autism icon. The puzzle design represents the complexity of autism.

On June 2nd, AMIT marched in the 65th Annual Celebrate Israel Parade. Tens of thousands of on lookers lined 5th Avenue to support the State of Israel.


7/18/13 2:52 PM

AMIT OFFICES National Office 817 Broadway New York, NY 10003 1-800-989-AMIT (2648) 212-477-4720 Fax: 212-353-2312 email:

Chicago 3856 B West Oakton Skokie, IL 60076 847-677-3800 847-372-8702 Fax: 847-982-0057 email:

Baltimore/Washington, D.C. 2800 Stone Cliff Drive, Unit #112 Baltimore, MD 21209 410-484-2223 410-370-9411 Call for Fax: 410-484-2223 email:

Cleveland 23743 Greenlawn Avenue Beachwood, OH 44122 216-382-4441 email:

Boston 7 Brady Road Westborough, MA 01581 Phone & Fax: (call for Fax) 508-870-1571 email:


SMR13_toc_p4_v3.indd 2


Southeast Region 2700 N 29 Ave, Suite 203 Hollywood, FL 33020 954-922-5100 Fax: 954-922-5199 email:

Los Angeles 1122 S. Robertson Blvd., #9 Los Angeles, CA 90035 310-859-4885 Fax: 310-859-4875 email: Philadelphia P.O. Box 342 Wynnewood, PA 19096 Phone & Fax: (call for for Fax) 410-484-2223 Cell: 410-370-9411 email: AMIT UK Friends of AMIT Women UK 152/154 Coles Green Rd. London NW2 7HD Phone: 44-208-438-6353

AMIT FRANCE c/o: Mrs. Carole Hannaux20 Chemin des Brasseurs, 57500 Saint-Avold, France phone: +33-611-487-314 email: AMIT SWITZERLAND c/o: Adv. Jennifer Osborn Unter Altstadt 10 6301 Zug, Switzerland Phone: + 41-41-729-0808 email: AMIT Israel – Petach Tikvah 28 HaMaccabim Street Petach Tikva 49220 Phone: 03-912-3101 AMIT Israel – Jerusalem Hechal Shlomo Building 58 King George Street, 1st Floor, Jerusalem Phone: 02-673-8360 Fax: 02-673-8359

7/18/13 2:57 PM



:: Eshet Chayil – Myra Lanter

20 :: The AMIT Network and map 22

:: Highlights

24 :: Dvar Torah



:: President’s Message


:: Interview from Israel

An interview with Rabbi Shai Piron, Minister of Education for the State of Israel and former principal of Yeshivat AMIT Kfar Ganim in Petach Tikva

Robert E. Sutton


DEVELOPMENT NEWS 26 :: AMIT Mitzvah Program 28 :: 2013 Annual Assembly 29 :: South East Council Board of Governors 29 :: Miami Beach Geulah Shalvah Luncheon 29 :: NewGen Boca


30 :: Bryk Family Dedication 30 :: AFLI Celebrates Israel’s 65th!



:: Mad for AMIT


:: Purim Concert Gala


:: Baltimore Youth Aliyah Luncheon


:: Café AMIT in Baltimore


:: Sip – Dip – Nosh Philly Style

34 :: President’s Circle

AMIT enables Israel’s youth to realize their potential and strengthens Israeli society by educating and nurturing children from diverse backgrounds within a framework of academic excellence, religious values and Zionist ideals. Some 70 percent of AMIT students live in development towns or other “peripheral” areas of the country. AMIT approaches each child as an individual, maximizing his or her potential, and enabling our students to become vital, productive members of Israeli society. The AMIT schools promote religious tolerance, service to the state and the recognition that every child is blessed with unique talents and abilities. Founded in 1925, AMIT operates 108 schools, youth villages, surrogate family residences and other programs, constituting Israel’s only government-recognized network of religious Jewish education incorporating academic and technological studies.

SMR13_toc_p4_v3.indd 3

President Debbie Isaac Vice President, Marketing and Communications Chana Shields Director of Communications Barbara Goldberg Editor Emerita Micheline Ratzersdorfer Editor in Chief/Creative Director Robert Ephraim Sutton Design Game6Media Signed articles do not necessarily represent the opinion of the organization. Reproduction of any material requires permission and attribution. To view us online visit AMIT Magazine (ISSN 1085-2891) is published quarterly; Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer by AMIT. AMIT National Office: 817 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10003. 1-800-989-AMIT, 212-477-4720, Fax 212-353-2312 email: Periodicals postage paid at New York, N.Y., and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to AMIT: 817 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10003.

AMIT, founded in 1925, has a proud history of service to Israel and the Jewish people.

Our name, in English, stands for “AMericans for

Israel and Torah.” In Hebrew, AMIT is an acronym for “Irgun Mitnadvot l’ma’an Yisrael v’Torata” (Organization of Volunteers for Israel and Her Torah).

7/18/13 1:39 PM

chai society members Anonymous, IL

$1,800 - $2,499 Anonymous, Israel

Anonymous, MA

Anonymous, Israel

Phyllis and Edward Berkowitz, NY

Anonymous, NY

Michael Cleeman, NY

Anonymous, PA

Selma and Sydney Daye, CA

Sarah and Maurice Aghion, MA

The Families of Rabbi Judah Feinerman, z”l and Carol Feinerman, z”l, NY

Beth and Brad Alter, IL

Shira and Gadi Goldress, NY

Yaela and Neil Baine, PA

Myrna and Charles Alpert, NY

Batya and Ezra Levin, NY

Joan and Joel Betesh, PA

Fradelle and Jeffrey Milrad, FL

Lois and Avi, z”l, Blumenfeld, NJ

Mindy and Ira Mitzner, TX Jennie and Avi Rothner, IL TWINCO, Inc., TX

Rivkah and Shmuel Brandman, IL Yardena and David Brickman, NY Jill and Jonathan Brickman, NY

Elaine and Saul Schreiber, Israel

Elaine and Seymour Brief, FL

Shirley Weinstein, Israel

Dr. Leila and Rabbi Joseph Bronner, CA

Baila and Stanley Weiss, NY

Sharon and David Butler, MD

Linda and Stanley Weissbrot, IL

Esther Cardash, IL

Marguerite and Ronald Werrin, PA

Chava and Ephraim Casper, NJ

$2,500 - $3,599

Marc Cerf, France Robyn and Jeremy Charlton, MD

Anonymous, Israel

Glicka and Bernard Creeger, MD

Shawni and Jeff Astrof, CA

Seema and Sol Davis, TX

Roslyn Besdine, NY

Sonia Diamond, MD

Adrianne and Leon Brum, FL

Debra and Marc Dubroff, NJ

Capstone Equities, NY

Jean Ehrenberg, NY

Carol Clapsaddle, Israel Hedy and Morris Cohen, PA Renee and Harvey Doglen, Israel

Vera and Bernard Ehrlich, MD Laura and David Eisenberg, MA

Laurie and Bernard Hasten, IL

Dana and Michael Petrover, FL

Ellin and Samuel Heilman, NY

Pia and Stuart Pollack, PA

Ayala and Joseph Helft, NY

Daniel B. Post, FL

Janet and Ken Hoffman, NJ

Karen Presser, MD

Shulamit and Joakim Isaacs, Israel

Daphna and Daniel Raskas, MD

Robin Isaacson, FL Faigie and Neil Isler, NY Edith and Herman Itzkowitz, PA Elaine and Mervin Jacobs, FL Debra Jakubovitz, CA Tirza and Sam Kahan, IL

Susan and Fred Raven, NY Shlomo Reutlinger, Israel Ronni and Elliott Robinson, IL Shulamit and Avi Rockoff, MA Judith and Rabbi Marvin Rosen, NJ

Livia Kahn-Tandler, Switzerland

Rachelle and Eyal Rosenthal, NY

Marilyn and Edward Kaplan, FL

Marilyn and Larry Rubin, Israel

Francine and Aaron Katz, FL

Hedda Rudoff, NY

Olivier and Laurence Katz, France

Betty Atlas-Rumelt and Owen Rumelt, NY

Judy and Abraham Keehn, NY

Michelle and Mark Saks, NY

Ruth Kellerman, CA

Nechama and Daniel Saks, NJ

Gloria and Sanford Kestenbaum, Israel

Shirley and Leo Schachter, Israel

Sue and Jordan Klein, IL

Shirley and Matthew Schein, Israel

Shirley Knox, FL

Rachel and Ian Scheinmann, PA

Heidi and Isaac Kohane, MA Iris and Shalom Maidenbaum, NY Monica Rasch and Menashe Kohn, PA Rachel and Bryan Koplow, MA Mila Kornwasser, CA Phyllis and Ted Kosloff, PA

Barbara and Irving Schnipper, MI Julie and Jacob Schorr, MD Dassie and David Schreiber, NY Keryn and David Schreiber, IL Michelle and Dov Schwartz, NJ

Joyce and Bernard Kosowsky, MA

Judith Schwed-Lion and Philippe Schwed, Israel

Susan and Saul Koss, MD

Marion and Andre Seligman, Luxembourg

Suri and David Kufeld, NY

Sarah P. Shane, Israel

Edy and Jacob Kupietzky, IL

Sara and Mitchell Shapiro, NY

Esther and Harvey Felsen, NY

Diana and Michael David Epstein Family Foundation, MD

Estelle Fink, Israel

Shana and Steve Erenberg, IL

Rachel and Shawn Langer, NJ

Carole Shnier, CA

Linda and Norman Garfield, PA

Amy and Daniel Erlbaum, PA

Cheryl and Lee Lasher, NJ

Yaffi and Joseph Shmidman, Israel

Darryle and Michael Gillman, IL

Cara and Andrew Ernstein, KS

Vivian and Oscar Lasko, PA

Donna and Robert Simons, OH

Eudice Greenfield, IL

Molly and Joel Felderman, NY

Emma Leaf, NY

Ellen and Saul Singer, MD

Grunberger/Cohen Family, MD

Jeanne and Alfred Finkelstein, FL

Barbara and Elliot Lebowitz, MA

Marilyn and Jamie Sohacheski, CA

Carole and Didier Hannaux, France

Frieda and Sam Fogel, NY

Helen Leiderman, NY

Gertrude and Gershon Fox, CA

Gertrude Levine, z”l, NY

Marilyn and Moish Stadtmauer, NY

Barbara and George Hanus, IL Ellen and John Hellman, Israel

Shani C. and Rabbi Samuel Frank, NY

Simcha and Michael Levine, NY

Donna and Robert Hoenig, NJ

Adina and Dovid Frankel, NY

Barbara and Tobias Levkovich, NY

Robin and Mark Hoenig, NJ

Sally and David Frenkel, NY

Lori Levmore, Israel

Susan Julius, CA

Reva and Mark Friedman, Israel

Susan and Barnet Liberman, Israel

Nancy and Lloyd Karp, NY

Sandy and Myron Friedman, TX

Aviva and Nathan Lichtenstein, IL

Naomi and Ira Sved, PA

Riki and Mordecai Koenigsberg, NY

Sharon and Jeffrey Frieling, NY

Roslyn and Joel Linderman, CA

Gil Taieb, France

Debbi and Lee Krantzow, NJ

Iris and Bob Frisch, MA

KC and Leslie Littner, Israel

Hope and David Taragin, MD

Shelly and Stanley Kroll, IL

Debby and Steven Gage, NY

Rita Lowi, CA

Sandra and Israel Teitelbaum, MD

Malka Lozowick, Israel

Susan Galiounghi, France

Melvin Lubin, NJ

Arielle and Aton Teitelbaum, MD

Elsa Macks, IL

Malki and Gary Gartenberg, NY

Annette and Marc Lumbroso, France

Deena and Jonathan Thurm, NJ

Esther Miller, FL

Barbara and Steve Geller, IL

Iris and Shalom Maidenbaub, NY

Sheila and Louis Train, TX

Judy and Albert Milstein, IL

Debbi and Marc Geller, IL

Fegi Mauer, IL

Orlee and Joey Turitz, MD

Galina and Mark Moerdler, NJ

Rita and Howard Geller, IL

Naomi and Shlomo Mayer, NY

Judy and Mark Tykocinski, PA

Vera and Robert Moreen, PA

Esther and Arnold Gerson, NY

Sema Menora, IL

Sharon and Seymour Gertz, IL

Jenny Michael, NY

Claudine and Ira Unterman, CA

Miriam and Bernard Neuman, IL Bobbie and Jerry Nussbaum, IL

Ruth and Isidore, z”l, Gibber, FL

Maxine Miller, Israel

Hedy and Paul Peyser, MD

Shulamit and Abraham Gittelson, FL

Elana and Shami Minkove, NY

Penny and Claudio Pincus Foundation, Israel

Michelle and Justin Goldberg, NY

Rhonda and Michael Mont, MD

Huti and Jay Pomrenze, Israel

Naomi and Stanley Goldis, PA

Denise, Steve, and Michael Moore, TX

Carina and Henry Rascoff, CT

Laura and Joseph Goldman, MD

Miriam Muskin, OH

Sharon and Bill Rothchild, NY

Connie and Michael Goldstein, FL

Caroline and Eric Namrow, MD

Lucy and Leon Winchel, NY

Gale and Eric Rothner, IL

Shulamith and Allen Goldstein, NY

Barbara and Bob Neustadter, NY

Marcia Ruderman, MA

Susan and Steven Goldstein, NY

Rochelle and Erwin Nosenchuk, PA

Carrie Zlotnick Woldenberg and Roberto Woldenberg, NY

Doris Russo, NY

Aviva and Justin Gordon, IL

Bernice and Oscar Novick, IL

Sharon and Scott Seligsohn, PA

Beth and Michael Gottesman, IL

Myrna and Monte Nussbaum, NY

Mona and Marc Yudkoff, PA

Marion Talansky, Israel

Sonia and Joshua Greenspon, MD

Sarah and Paul, z”l Okon, MA

Elizabeth Zeltser, NY

Lillian and Sherwyn Weiss, FL

Judith and Martin Grumet, NY

Elissa Shay Ordan and Daniel Ordan, NY

Bibsi and David Zuckerbrot, Israel

Rachael and Jonathan Wernick, CA

Lillian and Elliot Hahn, FL

Brenda and Ed Parver, NY

Steve Zuller – Franklin Printing, NY

Libby and Moshe Werthan, Israel

Deborah and Jonathan Hamburger, MD

Robbie Pearlstein, MD

SMR13_chai_p6_v2.indd 1

Naomi and Gary Stein, NY Lillian and Milton Steinberg, NY Helen Stoll, NY Chaya Bressler Subar, Israel

Rachel and David Vorchheimer, NY Jenny and Max Weil, Israel Barbara and Michael Weiss, NY Audrey Whitman and Paul Newman, PA Sharon and Joseph Wiesel, NY

Marilyn and Noah Wolff, IL

*As of June 26, 2013

$3,600 +

7/18/13 12:42 PM


interview from israel

Rabbi Shai Piron, Minister of Education By Robert E. Sutton

Rabbi Shai Piron, the former principal of Yeshivat AMIT Kfar Ganim in Petach Tikva, was elected to the Knesset in January 2013 and was appointed Minister of Education by Yair Lapid, chairman of the Yesh Atid Party, in March 2013. Mr. Minister, can you give us a brief history of your experience as an educator? I have had the privilege of being involved in education all of my adult life, including my years as the principal of Yeshivat Kfar Ganim in Petach Tikva, I was an educator for over twenty years; a member of the Dovrat Committee for reform in the education system; a member of the Religious Education Council; a member of the Education Committee of the Ministry of Education; and the director of HaKol Hinuch Movement, which engages in policy research and formulation for reform in the public education system. Do you think that having a Minister of Education who comes from the field of education will significantly affect the entire school system? I have not found anything more meaningful than being involved in education, and I think the fact that I come from the field of education will significantly affect what happens in schools. A person who has been a classroom teacher, who has spent recess with his students, who has visited students in their homes, who has touched the hearts of his students–certainly brings these experiences to the position of Minister of Education. Everything I have done in education and for education I bring with me to the Office of the Ministry of Education. What, in your opinion, are the biggest challenges to the education system in Israel? 1) Closing gaps and mutual responsibility; 2) changing the essence of learning and adapting it to the 21st century so that it is meaningful and relevant to students; 3) recruiting the best teachers – passionate teachers who are driven by their sense of mission and deep commitment; 4) redefinition of the structure of the Ministry of Education and 5)adapting to the needs of education in Israel. Why did you decide to join the AMIT Network? I joined the AMIT Network because of my identification with its educational and professional approach. The AMIT Network is a deep expression of my worldview, and it was a privilege to be part of its broad and welcome endeavors. As a former principal at an AMIT school, what is your overall assessment of the AMIT Network? AMIT is a professional network that leads the country in educational innovation. The choice of the Network to serve all levels of the population, with an emphasis on Israel’s periphery; the choice of the Network to be a leader in the professional training of principals and teachers; the choice of the Network to address a sense of mission, responsibility and dedication; attest to the Network more than anything else. The fact that AMIT is in the forefront of scholastic success, instilling Jewish values and strengthening the Zionist Ideal, reflects the power and strength of the AMIT Network. 

Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 7

SMR13_Shai_p7_v3.indd 1

7/18/13 1:37 PM



etach Tikva, Israel – By the end of the school year, not many high school students have the desire to sit and study in a classroom while the sun is shining outside, but the six young men learning about the Israeli economy in a bright classroom at Yeshivat AMIT Kfar Ganim in Petach Tikva were fully focused on their teacher just three weeks before the start of summer vacation. The 17-and 18-year-olds, who were discussing why immigrants move to Israel and the contributions they make to the economy, looked like any other AMIT Kfar Ganim students studying for a Bagrut (matriculation exam). It was only later, while talking with the students during a break, that some seemed just a bit socially awkward, perhaps due to their being on the autism spectrum. Watching his classmates play ping-pong, Moriel Ever, 18, said he began to study at a regular class at AMIT Kfar Ganim in the ninth grade, but transferred to one of the school’s special classes for high-functioning students with autism “because my behavior was extremely problematic.” Despite those adjustment problems “at first I didn’t want to go to this class,” Ever said. “But now that I look back, I know it was the best choice for me.” “I feel that I absorb more here than in a regular class,” added Naftali Elkins, 18, one of Ever’s classmates. “The materials are geared toward us and I’ve made friends. We’re like brothers.” AMIT Kfar Ganim’s program for students on the autism spectrum began modestly seven years ago, at the initiative of Rabbi Shai Piron, the school’s former principal who left his position this year to become the country’s Minister of Education. (Read the Q&A with Minister Piron on page 7.) The rabbi’s goal “wasn’t to help only the disabled students. It was so the normative students could learn tolerance and respect,” explained Rachel Tzedakah, director of the school’s ASD (autism spectrum disorder) program, during a tour of the school’s building for kids with special needs. Tolerance and respect are the guiding principles behind the AMIT Network’s special education classes. More than 350 middle school students and nearly 600 high school students with learning disabilities attend classes especially tailored to their needs. Additionally, five students with cerebral palsy study in a special class at the AMIT Atidim Junior and Senior High School in Or Akiva. “Junior and Senior High School in Or Akiva. continued on page 10

SMR13_handicapped_p8-11_v4.indd 2


7/18/13 1:03 PM

By Michele Chabin


SMR13_handicapped_p8-11_v4.indd 3

7/18/13 1:03 PM

therapeutic for people with autism and other disorders. “We believe that every child deserves During the June visit, a good, quality education in our schools,” teachers and aides taught said Dr. Amnon Eldar, AMIT’s director several older boys how to general. “Some have bigger challenges affix labels on plastic “goody” and need special tools, and that’s what bags that, they knew, would we’re trying to give them. The goals are later be filled with treats and the same, but the way to achieve them distributed to needy children. depends on the child.” Taking a break from Every child in AMIT’s special ed applying stickers, Ori framework is thoroughly assessed Engleman, 17, proudly and subsequently provided with an recounted how he recently individualized program that combines paid 12 shekels for cheese at secular and religious studies with a his local grocery store, “and I wide range of therapies: music, art, received 8 shekels change.” He occupational, psychological, gardening. said his teachers had taught At AMIT Kfar Ganim the highhim how to make purchases functioning ASD students prepare not and calculate the change. only for university studies but also for Every week, the highthe IDF – where some volunteer – or functioning boys volunteer National Service. at the Beit Noam Center for The teachers and teachers’ aides spend severely physically disabled a great deal of time on life-skill training adults, an activity that boosts Giving a helping hand to a CP student “because knowing how to pass a Bagrut the student’s self-esteem, social doesn’t mean the students know how to skills and understanding of “It depends on the level of the student. make a sandwich,” Tzedakah noted. others while performing volunteer The higher-functioning boys are often That skill is taught – both to high- and mainstreamed in specific subjects and low-functioning students - in the special work – something required of Kfar Ganim students. are involved in the life of the school education building’s training kitchen. The fact that the kids with autism whenever possible.” The building, part of which resembles study on a mainstream campus The school maximizes the interaction a small home, features classrooms, a affords them a degree of integration between the students in special ed by virtual-reality room with a video game many disabled children never enjoy, mainstreaming, when that is an option, console, a lounge and specially-built according to Rabbi Chagai Gross, the and by requiring the “regular” kids – as Snoezelen – a controlled multisensory school’s principal. they’re referred to in Hebrew – to spend environment (MSE) that has proven 60 hours per year volunteering their time to the students with autism. “I help them with their homework and work with them in class,” said Shlomo Ellinger, an 18-year-old senior who has also accompanied the special ed students on outings. “It was rewarding to see them make progress, and I think it made me more mature.” Tzedakah said Kfar Ganim goes to great lengths to ensure that the boys in special ed participate in the same school activities as their non-disabled peers. Orna Raphaeli, director of the school’s five special education programs (four are for the learning disabled), said the school maps out school trips that, when not fully accessible, include multiple meeting points where the students with disabilities can join up with their ablebodied peers. Main entrance - Yeshivat AMIT Kfar Ganim Petach Tikva continued from page 9

10 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_handicapped_p8-11_v4.indd 4

7/18/13 1:03 PM

How much the students with CP, some of whom use walkers or wheelchairs, are integrated into regular classes depends on the child. All are very bright and inquisitive, but their physical limitations impede their ability to take notes and answer questions, necessitating extensive adaptation and assistance from teachers and aides. The students with CP receive occupational and physical therapy. Twice a week they travel to a nearby kibbutz, where they take therapeutic riding lessons. The students spend roughly 10 hours out of their 33-hour school week in their own classroom, where they receive individualized help with specific subjects. Male and female aides help some of the kids with personal hygiene. Raphaeli said the three-year-old program, begun at the request of the Or Akiva municipality, has encouraged many of the able-bodied students to overcome their preconceived notions about people with disabilities. To facilitate integration and break the ice, the five teens with CP went with Raphaeli from class to class and answered the other students’ questions and, to give those students a sense of what it’s like to have CP, asked them to

try to write with their hands tied. Despite this integration, it’s taken time for the students to form lasting friendships. “I saw that they were sitting kind of on their own, and I wanted to get to know them better so AMIT math teacher Irit Bard teaching students with CP I approached them,” Molly Istafarov, a 15-yearchildren with CP since its inception. old able-bodied classmate, said of the Liat, who uses a walker to get around, students with special needs. “I realized said she is grateful for “extra help and that they’re not different and are fun to therapies” she receives. hang out with.” “I’ve made good friends here, in Asked how the school funds the the small class and in the integrated inclusion program, Etti Laredo, AMIT classes,” she said. “I’m happy.” < Atidim’s principal, smiled and sighed. Although it is largely funded by the Michele Chabin began her career editing municipality and various government women’s magazines in New York. In ministries, the incidentals add up, 1987 she moved to Israel, and has been she acknowledged. a reporter there ever since. An awardThe students may not know exactly winning journalist, Michele frequently how much effort goes into their special contributes to the New York Jewish Week, program, but they do appreciate it. Religion News Service, USA Today and “It’s great for me here,” said Liat, 15, many other publications. who has been a member of the class for

AMIT AWARDED $50,000 RUDERMAN PRIZE IN DISABILITY Only Organization In Israel To Be Honored


MIT is the proud recipient of the $50,000 Ruderman Prize in Disability, presented by the Ruderman Family Foundation of Boston and Israel. The prize recognizes organizations operating innovative programs and services dedicated to the full inclusion of people with disabilities in their local Jewish community. “All of this year’s winners around the globe are organizations not focused on the issue of disability but have developed innovative programs to include people with disabilities in the overall mission of their organization,” said Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation, in a statement.

More than 1,000 children with disabilities are mainstreamed in AMIT schools throughout Israel, with full inclusion in classes, social activities and extracurricular programs. These schools range from comprehensive, community elementary and junior/ senior high schools to high level yeshiva high schools. “All of us at AMIT are very grateful for this generous grant,” commented Debbie Isaac, president of AMIT. “It is a priority throughout the AMIT Network to mainstream children with special challenges so that they receive valuable skills, a quality education and are prepared for adult life. This prize will help AMIT continue to fulfill these important goals.” Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 11

SMR13_handicapped_p8-11_v4.indd 5

7/18/13 2:45 PM


Reaching Higher and Moving Forward By Ilana Gottlieb


ooking back on the last six years, the AMIT family can take great pride in the incredible growth of Midreshet AMIT. Starting with just 18 students in 2007, we are now at full capacity, with nearly 50 students both this past year and registered for the upcoming school year. This incredible achievement is a testament to our talented administration and faculty, the valuable assistance of AMIT’s professional staff in both New York and Petach Tikvah, and the wonderful support we receive from the AMIT Board of Directors – all of these pieces working harmoniously together have made Midreshet AMIT the success that it is today. Due to the number and variety of students – coming

from 17 different communities across the United States, Canada, and England – we made numerous changes this past year so that all of our students could take full advantage of the “Live Torah, Live Chesed and Live Israel” that Midreshet AMIT is famous for. Regarding Torah study, our newly expanded academic program now offers classes in each period which allows each student to select the courses that are best suited to her level and interest. Even for required courses, such as Hilchot Shabbat and Women and Jewish Law, we now offer multiple options, which vary in teaching style and rigor. “I came to Israel with an open-minded attitude and very ready to learn. I wanted to truly understand why I do what I

12 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_midreshet_p12_v3.indd 2

7/18/13 1:31 PM

do. I think I have done just that. With the help of my rabbeim and teachers I feel more confident in what it means to be a Torah observent Jew.” Mimi Boim, Queens, NY We are also very proud that this past year we launched an “Advanced Track” for more intensive, text-based studies in Talmud and Tanach. In addition to the demanding lectures, these courses also incorporated some chavruta style learning which allowed the students to explore the texts more independently.

These additions to our already dynamic course offerings – all taught by dedicated and talented teachers – enabled our students to immerse themselves in learning in a way that they never did before! Our increased enrollment also led to our expansion of the important Mechanechet program so that it now includes four teachers who each led a group of 12 students. Each mechanechet met with her entire group once a week for an interactive and creative night seder class on a timely topic. Additionally, every student was required to set up a weekly individual meeting with her mechanechet, either to talk about a personal issue or to learn together.

“At Beit Hayeled you connect with many kids, and if you make an effort, you have the potential to make an impact on all of the children. Every

The chesed program at AMIT continues to be as special and rewarding as ever! With more students working with each foster family, we decided to assign each of our students a “little brother and sister” to ensure that a unique bond between students and children would be created. Not surprisingly, our students were beloved for their roles as English tutors, and the children of Beit Hayeled waited

Midreshet AMIT student came here to make a difference and knowing that we actually made an impact on the children’s lives is remarkable.” Rachel Silver, Los Angeles, CA Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 13

SMR13_midreshet_p12_v3.indd 3

7/18/13 1:31 PM

anxiously for their 3:00 PM meetings with the AMIT students to help them with their English homework. Of course, without even realizing it these young children became the Hebrew tutors for our students, helping them increase their fluency in conversational Hebrew! “At Beit Hayeled you connect with many kids, and if you make an effort, you have the potential to make an impact on all of the children. Every Midreshet AMIT student came here to make a difference and knowing that we actually made an impact on the children’s lives is remarkable.” Rachel Silver, Los Angeles, CA

With all the changes, however, some things stay the same and as in years past, many of the most special experiences took place during the more informal times spent together, either on Sunday afternoons or on Shabbat spent together at Beit Hayeled. We continue to make it a priority to develop the connection that our students have with the land and the people of Israel. To accomplish this goal we expanded our program of Shabbatonim to include visits to many communities across the country such as Tzfat, Sederot, Efrat, Kochav Hashachar, Yad Binyamin and of course, the Old City of Yerushalayim. In addition, we have also increased the number of overnight tiyulim and traveled to the Golan, Eilat and the Galil for overnight trips filled with history, inspiration, adventure, and fun! In addition to all that has already been mentioned, what makes Midreshet AMIT truly unique is that our students feel that they are part of something bigger and which goes beyond their year in Israel– they become part of the AMIT family. Throughout the year our students are educated about the vision and all of the wonderful work of AMIT. Last but not least, with each passing year our alumni base continues to grow and we remain committed to maintaining our connection with all of our students. This past year, in addition to spending time with many students at a reunion in New York, we especially enjoyed hosting alumni who come back to visit us at Midreshet AMIT. With much to be proud of, our energies remain focused on the future as we work to ensure that future students can similarly benefit from Midreshet AMIT’s unique combination of academic excellence and unrivaled chesed, all in an environment of love for and identity with the State of Israel. We look forward to another amazing year! <

Mrs. Ilana Gottlieb has been the Director of Midreshet AMIT since the summer of 2009. Mrs. Gottlieb earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, both with high honors, from Yeshiva University. She currently lives in Ramat Shilo, a suburb of Beit Shemesh, with her husband and four children.

14 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_midreshet_p12_v3.indd 4

7/18/13 1:31 PM

We are proud to welcome the Midreshet AMIT class of 2014 Rebecca Alenick - Cedarhurst, NY Jordana Alpert - Lawrence, NY Gabriela Alter - Skokie, IL Ariella Applebaum - Teaneck, NJ Eliana Applebaum - Teaneck, NJ Frieda Benun - Brooklyn, NY Raquel Bodner - West Hempstead, NY Jordana Braverman - West Orange, NJ Sophia Brener - Aventura, FL Elli Cohen - Winnipeg, MB Olivia Cumsky - East Brunswick, NJ Ariella David - Atlanta, GA Sarah Dimbert - Highland Park, IL Samantha Frank - Lincolnwood, IL Lindsay Frucher - Lawrence, NY Malka Garber - Riverdale, NY Rachel Gindi - Beverly Hills, CA

Zoey Glaubach - Woodmere, NY Melissa Goldsmith - Teaneck, NJ Sophie Gothold - London, Sydney Hecht - North Woodmere, NY Liba Hornstein - Highland Park, NJ Lily Jacobs - Atlanta, GA Natalie Jacobs - London, UK Rebecca Jedwab - Lawrence, NY Natasha Kaplan Marans - Lawrence, NY Arianna Kaufman - Staten Island, NY Taylor Kornstein - Scarsdale, NY Tamar Kuritzky - Teaneck, NJ Emily Lederman - New Rochelle, NY Brooke Levine - Suffern, NY Emily Levine - Suffern, NY Lauren Levy - Scarsdale, NY Sarah Levy - Englewood, NJ

Rebecca Linker - Boca Raton, FL Mushkie Meyer - Edgware, UK Rebecca Muller - Boca Raton, FL Eliana Ogorek - Lawrence, NY Amanda Povman - Scarsdale, NY Elise Rosenthal - Edison, NJ Brooke Schiff - Woodmere, NY Lauren Schneider - Lawrence, NY Nicole Schneider - Lawrence, NY Abigail Seidman - Hillside, NY Kerri Shapiro - Woodmere, NY Danielle Hennie Silverman - Fair Lawn, NJ Alison Stiel - West Orange, NJ Rachaeli Weintraub - Woodmere, NY Devorah Winfield - Suffern, NY

Tsetchem Leshalom and Bâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;hatzlacha to the class of 2013 Gabriela Attias - Stern College Simha Barrocas - Stern College Chana Leah Batt - Stern College Alexandria Bell - NYU Nicole Berlin - Stern College Abigail Blinder - NYU Miriam Boim - Stern College Devora Braun - Stern College Marcelle Breitbart - NYU Arielle Brenman - York University Rebecca Cherson - Queens College Jillian Cumsky - Baruch College Carly Factor - York University Ilana Falick - University of Maryland Samantha Felder - Boston University Michele Freund - NYU

Amanda Gordon - Touro College Aliza Grant - University of Maryland Sarah Isaacs - Touro College Rachel Krieger - MCC Gemma Levart - Stern College Maya Levy - England Tami Liebman - Queens College Abigail Major - LIM Susan Menashe - Brooklyn College Sarah Mendlowitz - Nassau College Daniella Moffson - Barnard Rachel Montag - Queens College Jordana Mostel - FIT Eliana Porgess - Stern College Jenna Reich - NYU Nicole Reich - Brandeis

Deena Rothman - Queens College Stacy Schlesinger - NYU Rena Sidlow - NYU Rachel Silver - Stern College Erica Silverman - Queens College Naomi Silverman - University of Maryland Lauren Silvermintz - NYU Ariella Spievack - Barnard Sarah Veltman - Queens College Danielle Wachs - Boston University Meora Weingarten - Brooklyn College Tzivia Wise - NYU Debra Zauderer - Rutgers

Midreshet AMIT is a post high school seminary which combines challenging Torah study, meaningful volunteering and an unforgettable Israel experience. To learn more about Midreshet AMIT go to

Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 15

SMR13_midreshet_p12_v3.indd 5

7/18/13 1:31 PM


Footed marble basin. A gift to Herod from Emperor Augustus

Herod the Great: The King’s Final Journey By Menachem Kaiser


erod the Great: The King’s Final Journey,” currently showing at the Israel Museum, seeks to reexamine and contextualize the history and legacy of King Herod (73 BCE – 4 BCE), who ruled Judea from 37 BCE until his death. This is the largest architectural exhibit ever undertaken by the Israel Museum, which seems appropriate: Herod was one of the great builders of all time; his structures – which include Masada, the Second Temple in Jerusalem, the Herodium palace, and the town and port of Cesearea – form the backdrop of seemingly every storyline of 1st Century Judea. To this day, Herod remains a polarizing figure – though responsible for some of the most astonishing architecture of his time, he was a ruthless (if efficient) ruler who viciously suppressed uprisings, murdered his wives and children, and spent his entire life attempting to legitimize his Jewish roots. The exhibit, with over 250 artifacts – many of which were excavated from Herod’s seemingly infinite palaces and fortresses – is simultaneously dense and accessible. For those

SMR13_points_interest_p16_v3.indd 2

less familiar with 1st Century Judean history, a walk through the exhibit is an excellent and immersive introduction to the architecture, design, art, and even politics of Herod’s Tomb Herod and his era; for those with more of a background, the exhibit, representing the largest collection of Herod-related material ever assembled, is a revelation. The displays are wonderfully and precisely catalogued and curated, and include never-before-seen artifacts (such as Herod’s recently discovered mausoleum and sarcophagus), and excellent and creative use of digital imagery.

7/18/13 1:33 PM

The exhibit begins in the reconstructed Throne Room, from Herod’s Jericho palace-fortress where, according to Josephus, Herod died. The restored plaster and pigments –cracked, speckled tiles of faded crimsons, pinks, harvest browns – are a startling indication of ancient opulence. On the floor, in the center of the room – where Herod’s coffin presumably lay – there is a coffin-shaped projection with an introductory text inviting the visitor to follow Herod’s final journey: Herod was carried from this room to Herodium, where he was buried. (As the exhibit culminates with Herod’s mausoleum and sarcophagus, visitors thus follow Herod’s own path.) It’s a nice touch: a literal overlay of digital onto the historical: Herod’s journey, enhanced. And indeed, the most impressive aspects of the exhibit – where the care and imagination of the curators are most apparent – are the videos, which strive to impart just how massive, expensive, and opulent Herod’s structures were. On large projection screens throughout the exhibit, digital models of Herod’s palaces are superimposed on actual, live footage, allowing the viewer to literally see the startling dimensions and design of structures long since destroyed. Masada, perhaps the best-known and visited of Herod’s structures, can be, once properly visualized, appreciated for the immense architectural achievement it represents: a fortified and self-sufficient threetiered palace on the side of a cliff. There is, as well, a video of the Second Temple, filmed at the Museum’s own ancient Jerusalem model. Watching the footage, in fact, is arguably more instructive than visiting the model: the close, panning camerawork brings out the majestic scale and detail to such a degree that you forget you’re looking at a model. The last room holds the centerpiece of the exhibit: a reconstructed section of Herod’s mausoleum, from Herodium. It is nothing short of wondrous: pieces of Ionic columns and curved cornice rebuilt to original dimensions and placements. It is, by design and in effect, a grand, royal gesture – here marks the body of the King. Yet at the same time it is marked by incompleteness – pieces are missing; there was no effort to camouflage the reconstruction. The mausoleum is a ghost of what it once was; the imagination must fill in what is missing, and is thus transported. The story behind the mausoleum is as interesting as the mausoleum itself: the archaeologist Ehud Netzer searched for forty years before finding the mausoleum on the side of Herodium. (Netzer tragically died at the site, when a railing collapsed and he fell nine feet). The exhibit has a loving, interesting video dedicated to Netzer and his work.


SMR13_points_interest_p16_v3.indd 3

The sarcophagus and mausoleum – as well as many other items in the exhibit – are as much an achievement as artifact: the restoration efforts here are remarkable, careful, exact; both the artistry and science involved are apparent. 

The Oldest Jewish Home By Barbara Cole Feiden


omez, the onions begin to smell.” More than three centuries ago, King Philip IV of Spain sent that coded message to Isaac Gomez. It was a pre-arranged warning signal that the Inquisition had threatened the life of the Sephardic Jew and that he must flee the country immediately.

The Gomez Stone Mill House built in 1714 Gomez, who had been a financial advisor to the King, escaped to France with his wife and young son, Luis Moses. Although the father was imprisoned for several years, the family finally got to England and eventually to the New World. There, Lewis (the Anglicized version) Gomez became a fur trader and in 1714, just short of 300 years ago, built a stone blockhouse in New York’s Hudson Valley. That house, the oldest remaining residence of Jewish settlers, still stands. It is the Gomez Mill House and Historic Site, located some 65 miles north of New York City, a comfortable day trip. For a while, Gomez lived in New York City where he prospered as a merchant and was chosen as the parnas (president) of the Spanish and Portuguese Congregation Shearith Israel. In 1705, Queen Anne granted him denization, the right to do business and live freely within the colonies without an oath of allegiance to the Church of England. continued on page 18

Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 17

7/18/13 1:33 PM

continued from page 17 In 1714, Gomez bought about 6,000 acres of land in what is now Orange County, and built his sturdy stone house, a grist mill, an ice house and a root cellar. The original one-story structure still has its thick massive stone walls, fireplaces, trading counter and beamed ceiling.

19th Century dining room in the Gomez Stone House

The Gomez family, which had been forced to convert to Christianity in Spain, maintained a strong Jewish identity. Their descendants include Emma Lazarus (“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free”); and Supreme Court Justice Benjamin Nathan Cardozo. The last private owners, Mildred Starin and her husband, Jeff, bought the Gomez House with a GI Bill loan in 1947. By this time, the old house was badly in need of repair, as were many of its artifacts. Ms. Starin, an interior decorator, worked tirelessly for many years to restore the house and furnishings and to research its history, while raising four children and caring for countless cats, dogs, geese and ducks. Mildred Starin succeeded in having the Gomez House placed on the National Register of Historic Places in January 1973 and sold it to the Foundation for Mill House in 1984, remaining for some years as resident manager. 

Gomez Menorah

Sundays at Mill House 2013 programs start at 1PM unless otherwise indicated. Aug. 25 Transition into the 20th Century. Aug. 25 Exhibit Mapping the Gomez Mill House: The Founding and Evolution of the Gomez Mill House Property; through Nov. 10, 2013. Sept. 8 “The Extraordinary Activism of Martha Gruening. The Gomez Mill House is located off the old Albany Post Road (NY Route 9-W) in Marlboro, 6 miles north of Newburgh, NY, and about 65 miles from New York City. Phone - 845-236-3126. Email - The historic house, which will shortly celebrate its 300th anniversary, is open from mid-April until mid-November on Wednesdays through Sundays, excluding holidays, with tours at 10:30 AM, 1:15 PM and 2:45 PM. Admission is $8 for adults; $6 for seniors 55 and over; and $3 for those 6-18. The grounds may be visited any time without charge.

18 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_points_interest_p16_v3.indd 4

7/18/13 1:33 PM

by Dawn Sherry



yra Lanter’s personal devotion to AMIT began in Forest Hills, Queens, when she joined the Ilana Rena Chapter in 1968. At the time, Myra already had enjoyed firsthand exposure to AMIT and its mission through her mother, Rose Nelson, z”l. Rose was an active member and dinner chair of the Tova Chapter in Borough Park, Brooklyn. This level of commitment from generation to generation is one of the reasons for AMIT’s success. Myra is an extremely dedicated woman who has rolled up her sleeves for the organization on every project with which she has been involved. She is now a member of the Golda Meir Chapter in Staten Island where she and her committee currently produce an extremely attractive and quite eagerly awaited calendar each year. Myra has been involved with every aspect of Golda Meir’s Celebrating Jack Winkler’s Bar Mitzvah achievements. Whether it in Israel was overseeing membership, Top row ( l-r) Myra Lanter, Bernard assisting in programming, Lanter, grandson Justin Winkler, son-inselling raffles, planning law Avi Winkler holding grandson Ryan special events, managing Winkler, daughter Jennifer Winkler, the sale of greeting cards, Myra and Bernard’s son Andrew Lanter. or generating interest in Front row, grandson Ethan Winkler and the chapter cook book, she the Bar Mitzvah grandson Jack Winkler. always managed to display her passion toward chesed and for the children of Israel. She and her husband, Bernard, have been married for 46 years. They have been blessed with two children and four grandchildren. Myra and Marching in the Israel Day Parade - circa 1970 Bernard have dedicated a garden park in the AMIT youth village of Kfar (l-r) Myra Lanter, Rose Nelson, Florence Cohen, Batya in Ra’anana in memory of her mother and father, Rose and Jack Evelyn Meltzer and Elissa Chessir Nelson, z”l. Other family dedications include a plaque from Myra’s aunt, Ann Weinstock in memory of her uncle Joe, z”l, at AMIT Beit Hayeled, Jerusalem, and also in Beit Hayeled, a dedication of a Speech Resource Room in memory of Hindy Weinstock, z”l, from Myra’s cousin Norman Weinstock and children. Myra currently is co-president of the Golda Meir Chapter along with Brenda Kellerman. The chapter, with a mailing list of over 800 households, formed in Myra’s home in 1973. Vera Cohen, z”l, regional director and Holocaust survivor, spoke about the children of Beit Hayeled and motivated the group to support AMIT’s mission. Among some of the participants in that first grassroots meeting were Norma Holzer, Alice Novick, Judy Brand, Joan Finkelstein, Elaine Jacobs, Myra Mitzner, Sheila Zachter, Fran Harris and, of course, tMyra’s mother. And Mazal Tov to the Lanter family on the marriage of their son Andrew to Sandy Roth. 

STAY TUNED AS WE REVEAL TO YOU OUR BIG PLANS! • Big changes are coming to our kids in Israel • Plan are being made and the excitement is building • Our children cannot wait • We hope that you will join us as we look towards the future!

We Hope That You Will Join Us! For more information, contact Liz Klibanoff, Associate Director of Major Gifts, at 212.477.4737 or Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 19

SMR13_eshet_chayil_p19_v3.indd 1

7/18/13 12:59 PM

ACCO AMIT Rambam Religious Elementary School AMIT Kennedy Junior and Senior High School AFULA AMIT Yehuda Junior and Senior High School and Yeshiva AMIT Yeshivat Hesder ASHDOD Yeshivat AMIT Ashdod AMIT Mekif Bet Ashdod AMIT Mekif Yud Ashdod ASHKELON AMIT Fred Kahane Technological High School BEERSHEVA AMIT Rambam Elementary School AMIT Torani Madai Netivei Am Elementary School AMIT Afikim B’Negev Elementary School AMIT Hazon Ovadiah Elementary School AMIT Or Hammer Elementary School Neot Avraham Elementary School AMIT Junior and Senior High School AMIT Daisy Berman Yeshiva Dina and Moses Dyckman Ulpanat AMIT AMIT Elaine Silver Technological High School BEIT SHEMESH AMIT Shachar Junior and Senior High School for Girls AMIT Dvir Junior and Senior High School for Boys AMIT Beit Shemesh Yeshiva High School AMIT Beit Shemesh Ulpana High School AMIT Bellows Ulpanat Noga GIVAT SHMUEL Ulpanat AMIT Givat Shmuel HAIFA AMIT Anna Teich Ulpanat Haifa HATZOR HAGLILIT AMIT Honi HaMe’agel Elementary School for Girls AMIT Shevet Sofer Elementary School for Boys AMIT Hatzor Haglilit Junior and Senior High School AMIT Hatzor Haglilit Ulpana Track AMIT Hatzor Haglilit Yeshiva Track JERUSALEM AMIT Frisch Beit Hayeled Reishit Yerushalayim Elementary School AMIT Nordlicht Religious Technological High School AMIT State Technological High School Midreshet AMIT

20 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_schools_p20_v2.indd 2

7/18/13 12:41 PM




More than 26,000 students in 108 schools and programs in 29 cities and towns

KARMIEL AMIT Karmiel Junior and Senior High School KIRYAT MALACHI AMIT Etzion Elementary School AMIT Harel Elementary School AMIT Netzach Israel Elementary School AMIT Kiryat Malachi Junior and Senior High School AMIT Kiryat Malachi Ulpana Track AMIT Kiryat Malachi Yeshiva Track MA’ALE ADUMIM AMIT Tzemach HaSadeh Elementary School AMIT Sde Hemed Elementary School AMIT Yaffe Nof Elementary School AMIT Wasserman Torah, Arts and Sciences Junior and Senior High School for Girls AMIT Junior and Senior High School for Boys MATEH YEHUDA AMIT Lavi Elementary School AMIT HaElah Elementary School AMIT Matityahu Elementary School AMIT Even HaEzer Elementary School Yeshivat AMIT Nachshon Junior and Senior High School MEITAR AMIT Chemdat Elementary School MODI’IN AMIT Modi’in Arts and Sciences Junior and Senior High School NETANYA AMIT Rambam Religious Elementary School AMIT Bar Ilan High School for Boys OR AKIVA AMIT Rabbi Akiva Religious Elementary School AMIT Etzion Religious Elementary School AMIT Hannah Senesh State Elementary School AMIT Rothschild State Elementary School AMIT Nechemia Tamari State Elementary School AMIT Atidim Junior and Senior High School AMIT Ofek Technological High School PETACH TIKVA AMIT Kfar Blatt Youth Village AMIT Wurzweiler Agricultural and Technological High School Yeshivat AMIT Eliraz High School Yeshivat AMIT Kfar Ganim Yeshivat HaHesder Orot Shaul Petach Tikva AMIT Junior College AMIT Menorat HaMaor Haredi Track

RA’ANANA AMIT Kfar Batya Youth Village AMIT Noam Elementary School AMIT Schiff Junior High School AMIT Gwen Straus Junior and Senior Science High School for Boys and Yeshiva AMIT Gruss Agricultural and Technological High School AMIT Bienenfeld Hevruta Yeshiva and Kollel AMIT Renanim Junior and Senior Science and Technology High School for Girls AMIT School of Society and Law RAMAT GAN AMIT Ginsburg Bar Ilan Gush Dan Junior and Senior High School for Boys RAMLE AMIT Ramle Technological High School REHOVOT AMIT Gould Junior and Senior High School for Girls AMIT Hammer Junior and Senior High School for Boys Yeshivat AMIT Amichai ROSH PINA AMIT Pre-Army Religious Studies Program SDEROT AMIT Haroeh Elementary School AMIT Torani Mada’i Elementary School AMIT Torani Chadash Elementary School AMIT Sderot Religious Junior and Senior High School AMIT Sderot Yeshiva Junior and Senior High School AMIT Sderot Ulpana Junior and Senior High School AMIT Sderot Gutwirth Junior and Senior High School Ulpanat AMIT Shirat Yeshivat Hesder of Sderot, AMIT Track SHOHAM AMIT Beatrice and Irving Stone Meysharim School TEL AVIV AMIT Eisenberg Junior and Senior High School for Girls TZFAT AMIT Florin Taman Junior and Senior High School for Girls AMIT Florin Taman Junior and Senior High School for Boys AMIT Tzfat Yeshiva Junior and Senior High School AMIT Tzfat Evelyn Schreiber Ulpana Junior and Senior High School YERUCHAM AMIT Kol Yaacov Elementary School AMIT Kamah Junior and Senior High School Midreshet Be’er Yeshivat AMIT B’levav Shalem Junior and Senior High School

Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 21

SMR13_schools_p20_v2.indd 3

7/18/13 12:41 PM

HIGHLIGHTS AND SUCCESSES Because of your generous donations, more than 26,000 students at 108 AMIT schools are being educated and nurtured within a framework of academic excellence, traditional Jewish values and Zionist ideals. Here are a few ways your generous gifts made a difference. For more information visit or call 212-477-4720.

CongratUlationS to prinCipal raBBi Yoni BErlin of aMit ginSBUrg Bar ilan gUSh dan

Congratulations to Rabbi Yoni Berlin, principal of AMIT Ginsburg Bar Ilan Gush Dan Junior and Senior High School, who has been awarded the Outstanding Principal Award by the City of Ramat Gan. Rabbi Berlin won the award for his educational leadership, innovations he has introduced at the school, and the renewed spirit of Torah values and chesed he has inspired. The school is among the top schools in the country in terms of Bagrut success and numbers of students who graduate with honors. AMIT Gush Dan also has the highest percentage of all the country’s religious schools of graduates who are accepted into the Israeli Defense Force’s academic reserve program (Atuda). This program enables high school graduates to complete their university degree prior to military service. <

Rabbi Berlin (left) is shaking hands with Ramat Gan mayor Zvi Bar.

aMit raMlE laUnChES CadEt prograM

This year AMIT Ramle Technological High School launched a military cadet program, in cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces Logistics Corps. The young cadets will enlist in the IDF Logistics Corps after they finish their logistics track studies at school. At a recent ceremony, the cadets swore their allegiance to the Logistics Corps and the State of Israel, and vowed to devote all of their energy to their studies.

AMIT students receiving commendation pins

This special track, which requires students to dress in full IDF uniform at school, motivates students and keeps them focused on a goal. This is particularly important for AMIT Ramle students, who have not met academic requirements at regular high schools and have instead enrolled at a vocational high school. The program also ensures that students will do meaningful and fulfilling service in the IDF, and even reach senior and officer positions. <

YEShivat aMit B’lEvav ShalEM WinS JUdgES’ aWard at intErnational CoMpEtition

Congratulations to Yeshivat AMIT B’levav Shalem. Students who, together with their partners from ORT Sapir High School in Yeruham, received the Judges’ Award at the FIRST Robotics International Championship held in St. Louis, Mo. < The AMIT Robotics Team

SMR13_highlights_p22_v3.indd 2

7/18/13 1:29 PM

By Cheryl Shaanan and Robert E. Sutton aMit girlS adopt a StrEaM

AMIT students embarked on an exceptional environmental venture – in cooperation with the Hatzor HaGlilit Local Authority, the JNF and the Israel Water Authority’s Adopt A Local Stream. Students at AMIT Honi HaMe’agel Elementary School for Girls in Hatzor HaGlilit got to know the stream that passes through their town of Hatzor by hiking along it a number of times. They decided to make it accessible to other hikers and nature lovers, and create rest areas and information signs along the length of the stream. <

AMIT Students hiking along “their” stream

YEShiva alUMnUS

Congratulations to Yacov Edri, 21, AMIT Bienenfeld Hevruta and Kollel Yeshiva alumnus who, this past Yom Ha’atzmaut, received The Presidential Excellence Award for his service as an Israel Defense Forces tracker. Until just recently, only Bedouin soldiers have served as trackers; but now the IDF is encouraging Jewish soldiers to become trackers as well, alongside their Bedouin counterparts. The IDF is recruiting students who have a passion for nature, the outdoors and alumni of schools that have “field” programs. Edri, an alumnus of the AMIT Hevruta environmental track, was a perfect match for this challenging position. Today Edri serves in the Shahar battalion of the Home Front Command in the southern region. “I wanted this job because I’m fond of hiking and want to be a field guide. Studying alongside the Bedouin, I learned their customs and culture and a unique bond was formed,” he commented. <

Yacov Edri receiving the Presidential Excellence Award from President Shimon Peres and IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz

UnitEd StatES aMBaSSador to iSraEl viSitS aMit afUla

United States Ambassador to Israel Daniel B. Shapiro recently paid a visit to AMIT Yehuda Junior and Senior High School in Afula. The visit was an opportunity to meet with students and discuss the American Embassy sponsored English enrichment program at the school. After greetings and introductions, Ambassador Shapiro met with school, AMIT and Ministry of Education representatives. The school principal, Boaz Giladi, gave an overview of AMIT Afula. Rahel Rogers, chair of the AMIT Israel Executive Committee, reviewed AMIT’s long history and activities in Israel and abroad; and Dr. Mor Deshen gave an overview of the AMIT Network, including its educational innovation in English language instruction.

Ambassador Daniel B. Shapiro and Principal Boaz Giladi

The Ambassador met with 10th, 11th and 12th grade students. The students shared their experiences in the English enrichment program and then had the opportunity to engage in a question and answer session with the Ambassador. < Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 23

SMR13_highlights_p22_v3.indd 3

7/18/13 1:29 PM



hould we determine for ourselves what is right and wrong, or should we ask society to do it for us? Most of us probably would immediately vote for the former. We highly value our autonomy and personal freedom and do not want others making these important decisions for us. And yet, without laws that embody a sense of right and wrong, we would have chaos and anarchy. How are we to balance the needs of the society with the rights of the individual? The Torah, unlike much of Western society, prioritizes our communal responsibilities. In Parashat Re’eh, as in much of Devarim, Moshe prepares the Children of Israel to enter into the Land and to turn it into a country. They must build the institutions, the systems, and the infrastructure to make it a well-functioning society that embodies the values of the Torah, both religious and moral. Idolatry and idols must be abolished. There is to be one Temple, a single place where all gather to worship in a prescribed manner. On the moral front, the poor will not be left vulnerable to individuals’ decisions whether or not to give charity, but will be supported by society as a whole through obligatory tithes and the Sabbatical year.

What we have is a whole society built on the Torah. What we don’t have is a focus on, or even a concern for, the individual and his or her personal religious experience or moral convictions. In fact, spiritual yearning could present a threat. When there was not yet a Temple, people would offer on their individual bamot, private altars. This allowed for a full subjective, personal act of worship. But it could lead to idolatry. They - the idolaters - worship “on the high mountains and the hills and under every leafy tree” (Devarim 12:3). But you “shall not do this to the Lord your God” (Devarim 12:4). A single God must be worshipped in a single place. When you follow your own path, who knows where it might lead? But are religious yearnings always bad? We find in the Talmud that if someone makes a vow - a personal, selfinitiated religious act – and carries through on it, such an act is praiseworthy and considered as if he has built his own altar and offered a sacrifice upon it (Nedarim 22a). This is exactly the tension - this yearning might lead to idolatry, but it also might lead to the fullness of the religious experience.

24 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_dvartorah_p24_v2.indd 2

7/18/13 12:55 PM

By Rabbi Dov Linzer

This tension exists in the moral realm as well. Prior to the creating of a structured society, it was ish kol ha’yashar be’einav, each person doing what is right in his or her own eyes (Devarim12:8). Thus, after Moshe lays out the basis for such a society, he urges the people to do “what is good and right,” ha’tov vi’ha’yashar, “in the eyes of the Lord your God” (Devarim 12:28). Doing what is right in God’s eyes, the Torah tells us, can only be achieved at the collective level once the societal structures in place.

that of the larger society? Should I disobey unjust laws? And yet, if channelled correctly, this yearning can also lead to a more fully moral life. For it is from the verse of doing what is right and good in the eyes of God that the Rabbis derive that we must strive to live not just according to the letter of the law, but its spirit. If the yearning can be faithful to what is right in God’s eyes, then it will lead us to the most profound morality, not just of following laws, but of also being true to their values.

But just as there can be religious yearning, there can also be moral yearning. It is all well and good that we live in a society of laws. But what about my own sense of morality? Should I just live in the letter of the law and no more? This autonomy can be threatening - what if my sense of morality is at odds with

Different societies live out these tensions in different ways. Some may argue that we in America overemphasize individual freedoms at the expense of societal values or goals, at least as some would define them. This occurs on both ends of the political spectrum, just as an example – think gun control and

gay marriage. But looking across the Atlantic, it seems that in modern-day Israel the emphasis is too often in the other direction. Is there truly no place for anything other than Haredi prayer at the Kotel? Is religious freedom to be completely denied? Whether in the States or in Israel, we must strive to create a just, Godcentered, society, that at the same time gives room for the individual and his or her deepest moral and religious yearnings. This is truly what it means to do what is right in the eyes of God.  Rabbi Dov Linzer is the Rosh HaYeshiva and Dean of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School, a groundbreaking Orthodox semikha program. The four year program provides its students with rigorous talmud Torah and halakhic study integrated with sophisticated professional training, in a religious atmosphere which cultivates openness and inclusiveness.

Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 25

SMR13_dvartorah_p24_v2.indd 3

7/18/13 12:55 PM

For expanded coverage of this event log onto:

DEVELOPMENT NEWS AMIT Mitzvah Program for members … and AMIT professionals too! Tova Ben-Ami

This past April, Tova Ben-Ami of Woodmere, New York, celebrated her Bat Mitzvah at AMIT Frisch Beit Hayeled in Jerusalem along with her Bat Mitzvah Twin, Rachel. To celebrate the Twinning, the Ben-Ami family joined students from AMIT Frisch Beit Hayeled in a special art project decorating door placards. The Ben-Ami family gave Rachel a gold necklace in honor of her Bat Mitzvah. Tova’s grandmother, Jane Blinder, a lifetime member of AMIT, presented Rachel’s mishpachton with a digital camera in honor of Tova’s Bat Mitzvah. “Meeting Rachel and her family was very inspiring and doing the project with the whole group was a lot of fun. Both the kids and the adults enjoyed and were moved by the experience,” said Tova’s mother, Pesha Ben-Ami. 

Sasha Astrof

Sasha Astrof, a sixth grade student at the Maimonides School in Los Angeles, participated in the AMIT Mitzvah Program for her Bat Mitzvah chesed project. “I’m so blessed to have the opportunity to celebrate my Bat Mitzvah with all my family and friends, but I know there are a lot of girls who aren’t so fortunate,” Sasha commented. Sasha raised money through her Bat Mitzvah Twinning webpage on the AMIT website. The donations helped fund the Bat Mitzvah party of an AMIT student in Israel who otherwise would not have been able to celebrate this important and meaningful day. 

Talia Gill

This past February, Talia Gill and her classmates in the sixth grade class at the Maimonides School, in Los Angeles, gathered at the Gill home to prepare 100 Marvelous Mishloach Manot Baskets while enjoying a pizza party. Proceeds from the sale of the baskets went towards the Bat Mitzvah of Talia’s AMIT Mitzvah Program “Twin,” Mae, a resident at AMIT Frisch Beit Hayeled. Larry and Andrea Gill, Talia’s parents, generously matched the amount raised through the sale of the baskets. The Purim baskets were in such high demand that they sold out within one week. Since the baskets were so popular, the excess of the amount raised for Mae went towards supporting the summer camp at Beit Hayeled. 26 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 2

7/18/13 12:53 PM



A M I T BA R/B AT M I T Z VA H PRO G RAM Maya Klibanoff - daughter of Associate Development Director Liz Klibanoff and Ben Klibanoff

Maya Klibanoff and her friend Leora Pineles took part in the AMIT Mitzvah Program this past February. Traveling to Israel for the first time with her mother, Maya experienced firsthand the role AMIT plays in helping the children at AMIT Frisch Beit Hayeled. Maya was “twinned” with a young AMIT student named Rachel. Maya and Rachel formed a unique bond when they participated in arts and crafts activities with other children at Beit Hayeled. This preceded Beit Hayeled’s annual Purim Party which was sponsored by the Klibanoff and her friend Leora Pineles family in honor of Maya’s Bat Mitzvah. 

AMIT offers several twinning opportunities for children celebrating their Bar/Bat Mitzvah in the US as well as for families planning to travel to Israel.

CU ST O M I ZE YO UR SI M CH A WITH AMIT Our staff will design and print a variety of materials including letters, invitations, inserts and tent cards.


Kayla Americus - daughter of Israel Fundraising Donor Relations Coordinator, Karen Americus and Philip Americus

After packaging gifts as part of the December Chanukah AMITzvah event, Kayla Americus was determined to do more for the children at Beit Hayeled. As part of her Bat Mitzvah celebration, Kayla and her friends decorated 150 cookies. The cookies were packaged and delivered to Beit Hayeled. The children at Beit Hayeled were thrilled to receive a sweet surprise after supper that night. Kayla emphasized that, “The AMIT Mitzvah Program is a wonderful way for children to connect to other children who do not have the many advantages they themselves have.” 

Together with AMIT’s dedicated professional staff, each child works to incorporate his/her personal interests or ideas into an individualized Mitzvah Project. AMIT’s professional staff in New York, across the U.S., and Israel will work with you and your Bar/Bat Mitzvah to customize your twinning experience. For more information please contact MIiriam Kaplan at (212) 792-5690 or e-mail


SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 3

7/19/13 11:53 AM

DEVELOPMENT NEWS 2013 AMIT annual assembly by bill rothchild

The 2013 AMIT Annual Assembly, held at the AMIT National Office in New York, was a day filled with updates, learning and a renewed connection to AMIT’s history and mission. This year’s program began with a message of welcome and a D’var Torah by Ruth Krasner, the chair of the 2013 Annual Assembly. Next, AMIT President, Debbie Isaac presented a Ted Talks-style report, highlighting the achievements and accomplishments of the AMIT Network in Israel. The 100 attendees enjoyed a brief message from Dr. Amnon Eldar, the director general of the Reshet, who relayed some highlights from the schools made possible by their donations. Audrey Trachtman delivered the Treasurer’s Report, Debbie Moed provided information on Financial Resource Development and Robin Isaacson, National Director of Planned Giving presented the new Planned Giving website. Past President Francine Stein presided over elections for the two year period of 2013-2015. Following a buffet lunch, guest speaker, Dr. Shuly Schwartz, a professor at the Jewish Theological Seminary, spoke on the topic, “From Jewess Jeans to Juicy Japs: Clothing and Jewish Stereotypes,” discussing how clothes reflect the place of contemporary Jewish women. The day concluded with a moving tribute to AMIT founder, Bessie Gotsfeld, z”l, by Naomi Max. 

Highlights Presented By AMIT President, Debbie Isaac New Schools:

• Ashdod - Yeshivat AMIT Ashdod, AMIT Mekif Bet Ashdod and AMIT Mekif Yud Ashdod • Netanya - AMIT Bar Ilan High School and AMIT Rambam Religious Elementary School - A full 80 percent of our high school students are now passing their Bagrut examinations

- Our Reshet now encompasses 108 schools and programs and more than 26,000 students

- Five students at the AMIT Wasserman Junior and Senior High School in Beersheva were prize winners in the National Young Entrepreneurs Competition

- A team composed from Yeshivat AMIT B’levav Shalem in Yerucham, together with their partners at ORT Sapir High School, won the Israel National FIRST Robotics Competition.

- Wasserman Junior and Senior High School in Beersheva won the National Education Award for the 2012 to 2013 school year.

- 95% of our graduates go on to serve in the Israel Defense Forces or perform National Service.

- The AMIT TopTech Initiative has received a commitment from the Ministry of Education for an initial matching gift of two million shekels per year for five years.

28 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 4

7/18/13 12:53 PM

(l-r) Adrianne Brum, Dr. Trudy Abramson

florida board of governors


n February 20, 2013 at Young Israel of Hollywood in Florida, the annual combined meeting of the Board of Governors and Southeast Council took place along with a Day of Learning. This exciting, uplifting and always well-attended, daylong meeting included an opportunity to hear from AMIT leadership all the news on the national scene and the latest information from our AMIT Reshet in Israel. 

(l-r) Barbara Nordlicht, Marilyn Kaplan (l-r) Evelyn Ellenbogen, Elaine Brief, Barbara Rascoff


geulah shalvah luncheon

he Geulah Shalvah Chapter of Miami Beach, Florida, held its Annual Winter Luncheon in February. Shula Ben-David delivered the invocation and Yaacov Selanikio spoke about his experience attending an AMIT school. Rena Turoff and Ibolya Wiesel were the lunch’s Eshet Chayil Awardees. 

(l-r) Dr. Norman Turoff, Rena Turoff, Francine Katz, president, Geulah Shalvah Chapter, Mati Deutsch, Ibolya Wiesel and Joseph Wiesel

(l-r) Rachel Petrover, Adina Hoffman, Kayla Petrover

(l-r) Melanie Jaffe, Cara Freedman and her mom Helen Cohan, Robin Isaacson

SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 5

newgen in boca presents the jews of asia!


ast February, the skies opened up and Florida was in the midst of monsoons! However, an elegant evening of Asian treats and education went on as planned. The speaker was world-renowned Rabbi Marvin Tokayer, who lectures and travels the world as one of the leading experts and authors on the Jews of Asia. More than 30 determined attendees braved the weather and came to the magnificent home of Cara and Ben Freedman in Boca Raton. Everyone was mesmerized with the presentation and learned about AMIT from Dana Petrover. We look forward to many more NewGen Boca events under the stars or in the sunshine. 

7/18/13 12:53 PM


(l-r) Eli with grandaughter Grace Kollander and Laurie with granddaughter Caroline Kollander

the bryk family dedication


his past Pesach, Laurie and Eli Bryk and their entire family traveled to Israel to dedicate a beautiful outdoor atrium at the AMIT Givat Shmuel Ulpana. The generous gift, dedicated in loving memory of Laurie’s father, Cyrus Wolf, z”l, and Eli’s mother, Doris Bryk, z”l, will ensure that the young women at this prestigious school have the opportunity to study math, science, and computers–preparing them to become the business leaders of tomorrow. Givat Shmuel is the centerpiece for the AMIT TopTech Initative, which is already transforming the process of learning by bringing educational innovation and technology to the Reshet.

AFLI celebrates israel’s 65th!


he DL on the Lower East Side was the place to be in April during AFLI’s Fifth Annual Yom Ha’Atzmaut Social. About 200 college-age AMIT supporters gathered for an evening of great music, food and drinks. One of the most popular parts of the evening was a raffle which offered over 30 amazing prizes. The proceeds from the event will be used to dedicate a library at the AMIT Yeshiva Track in Sderot. 

(l-r) Ariella Fried, Lizzy Markovitch, Gaby Markovitch, Arielle Struhl

(l-r) Tal Daleyot, Ayelet Schabes, Keren Daleyot

(l-r) Jacob Couzens, Aviva Mansbach, Andrew Berger

(l-r) Sivan Shahar, Talia Thurm

(l-r) Matthew Greif, Michael Abramson, Jon Moed, David Baruch, Julia Straus

30 :: Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE

SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 6

7/18/13 12:53 PM

mad for AMIT!


(l-r) Jill Ellman, Caryn Golombeck, Michelle Goldberg, Meir Rotenberg, Rachel Saks

MIT Young Leadership came together for the Fourth Annual March Madness Event at a new location – The Village Pourhouse Uptown. While watching the games and mingling, guests enjoyed food from Carlos & Gabby’s Riverdale, Chopstix, Eden Wok, Five Star Caterers, Golan Heights, Gotham Burger, Noah’s Ark and Smokey Joe’s Kosher BBQ. Along with a great committee, Event Chairs Jill Ellman, Michelle Goldberg, Caryn Golombeck, Meir Rotenberg, Chevy Rubinstein and Rachel Saks pulled off the most successful March Madness event to date! 

(l-r) Matt Russo, Ben Rozyn (l-r) Avi Adelsburg, Leora Pollack

(l-r) Deena Moskovic, Sarit Spindler, Michael Riegel, Ryan Khordipour

(l-r) Ronit Appel, Shira Silton

AMIT purim concert gala by ellen hellman & chava ashkenazi


his past February, AMIT Israel held its Fourth Annual Purim Concert, chaired by Dr. Nico and Dr. Suzy Sprecher and Clement and Lea Bouhnik. The French-speaking group organized their best concert yet!

The band from the AMIT Bienenfeld Hevruta Yeshiva of Ra’anana warmed up the crowd. Rabbi Benveniste of the AMIT Bienenfeld Hevruta Yeshiva spoke about the school…in French! The featured musicians were the Saxophone Ensemble from the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, under the direction of Professor Gersh Geller. The evening featured a little Vivaldi, a little Klezmer, and a lot of jazz. As an added bonus, the young women of Midreshet AMIT came to enjoy the music, and added much ruach to the evening! Proceeds from this successful evening will be allocated to the Tochnit 80 program for the students at the AMIT Wasserman Junior and Senior High School in Beersheva, which has been the flagship program of AMIT France for the last three years.  Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 31

SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 7

7/18/13 12:53 PM


For a comprehensive look at planned giving, including access to forms, e-brochures and many other resources and tools, visit our website The AMIT Legacy Society is our new program in planned giving. Through this initiative you have the ability to shape the future of Israel and its most important asset – the children. You become a member of the AMIT Legacy Society when you make a planned gift, a contribution that has a long-lasting and exponential benefit for the children of AMIT. One of the easiest and least expensive ways to benefit AMIT and reduce your estate taxes is to include a bequest provision in your will or revocable trust. Since it is simple to update or revise your will, bequests allow you the most flexibility and security should your circumstances or plans change. The AMIT Legacy Society ensures that AMIT programs and services that have been funded throughout the years will extend well into the future. THE AMIT LEGACY SOCIETY Any planned gift, will or bequest entitles you to the following benefits: • Listing in AMIT Magazine • Listing on the AMIT Website • Special recognition at AMIT dinners and luncheons If you have made a provision in your estate plans for AMIT, please allow us to inspire others and list your name in our AMIT Legacy Society Roster.

For more information or to let us know that you have already included AMIT in your estate plans, please contact Robin Isaacson, National Director of Planned Giving, at 954-922-5100 or All inquiries will be kept strictly confidential and imply no obligation to make a gift. SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 8

7/18/13 12:53 PM


Standing: Gail and Norris Horwitz, seated, Emily Lipsitz and Sandy Katz

(l-r) Elaine Lowenstein, Gail Horwitz, Liebe Diamond

youth aliyah luncheon in baltimore


his past March, the Sarah Ribakow/Tikvah Chapter of Baltimore held its annual Youth Aliyah Luncheon at the Royal Kosher Restaurant. Honoree Gail Belaga Horwitz has been instrumental in organizing and moderating the chapter’s book club. She spoke passionately about her recent tour of AMIT Frisch Beit Hayeled and the Midreshet AMIT program, both of which had immense impact on Gail and her husband, Norris, and brought them closer to the mission of AMIT and made them proud to be part of the organization. 

(l-r) Rachel Meisels, Gail Horwitz, Rose Cohen Isabel Levinson

café AMIT

Lisa Jacobs


his past winter, NewGen in Baltimore hosted a fundraiser called “Cafe AMIT: A Night of Israeli Flavors,” at the Lakeside Clubhouse at Quarry Lake. Over 100 guests enjoyed Israeli delicacies including freshly baked pita, falafel, Moroccan cigars, borekas, humus, tahini, Goldstar beer and Arak liqueur.  DeeDee Shiller (l-r) David Dannenbaum, Louis Schwartz

(l-r) Sharon Joshowitz, Sara Bleier, Rachel Scheinmann

sip-dip-nosh philly style


his past spring, the Philadelphia Council/ Shira Chapter hosted Sip, Dip and Nosh, a wine-tasting event, at the home of Rachel and Ian Scheinmann. Ruvane Ribiat of Rosenberg’s Wine was the informative and delightful keynote speaker. 

Ruvane Ribiat from Rosenberg’s Wine (l-r) Joel Betesh, Ron Werrin, Jack Ludmir

SMR13_devnews_p26-33_v4.indd 9

Summer 2013 :: AMIT MAGAZINE :: 33

7/18/13 12:53 PM


Mollie Baller, z”l, FL Debbie and David Isaac, NY Ellen and Meyer Koplow, NY Matanel Foundation, Luxembourg Barbara and Jules Nordlicht, NY Dahlia Kalter Nordlicht and Mark Nordlicht, NY Robyn Price Stonehill and David Stonehill, NY Ellen and Stanley Wasserman, NY

$75,000 - $99,999 Laurie and Eli Bryk, NY

$50,000 - $74,999








An Invitation To Join Me In

President’s Circle As a parent and a long time devoted AMIT donor, I know how important a good education is to the development of children. Many of the 25,000 students at AMIT in Israel do not have the advantages that our own children enjoy and which we may easily take for granted. President’s Circle gifts provide the foundation upon which our network of schools is built. These annual gifts are sustaining funds that we rely on to support our excellent programs. In order to guarantee the continuation of programs which nurture Israel’s children and instill within them strong values and academic excellence, we rely on our members whose annual donation ensure Israel’s future by providing these opportunities. All successful endeavors require a strong foundation. Please join me. The circle will not be complete without you. Co-Chairs: Brenda Kalter and Deena Shiff For further information regarding President’s Circle, please contact Robin Rothbort at 212-477-4725, 1-800-989-AMIT (2647), or email

SMR13_pres_circle_p34-35_v3.indd 2

Joan and Shael Bellows, IL Hadassah and Marvin Bienenfeld, NY Suzanne and Jacob Doft, NY Eric Herschmann, NJ Ellen and Emanuel Kronitz, Israel Leon and Gloria, Edward, Sari and Howard Miller, NY Ingeborg Petranker, z”l, CA Harriet and Heshe Seif, NJ Adina Straus, NY Joyce and Daniel Straus, NJ Zahava and Moshael Straus, NJ Bethia Straus-Quintas and Paul Quintas, IL

$36,000 - $49,999 Anonymous, Israel Ike, Molly and Steven Elias Foundation, NY Michele and Ben Jacobs, NY

$25,000 - $35,999 Anonymous, NY Anonymous, Israel Thelma, z”l, and Harvey Berger, MA Mozes Borger, Israel Sherry and Neil Cohen, NY Michael Foley, NY Mitzi Golden, NY Mildred and Alvin Hellerstein, NY Brenda and Albert Kalter, NY Stacey and David Kanbar, NY Gitta and Richard Koppel, Israel Millie and Lawrence Magid, NY Debbie and Samuel Moed, NJ Micheline and Marc Ratzersdorfer, Israel Shirley and Morris Trachten, FL

$18,000 - $24,999 Nicole Schreiber Agus and Raanan Agus, NY Sara Beren, z”l, OH Jewel and Ted Edelman, NY Pnina and Jacob Graff, CA Amy and Jimmy Haber, NY Russell Jay Hendel, MD Sarah Liron and Sheldon Kahn, CA Amy and Todd Kesselman, NY Sharon and Solomon Merkin, NJ Shari and Jacob M. Safra, NY Adrianne and Avi Shapira, NY Marilyn and Herbert Smilowitz, NJ Carrie and Ilan Stern, NY Trudy and Stanley Stern, NY

7/18/13 1:34 PM

Ruth and Daniel Krasner, NY Esther and Motti Kremer, NY Ria and Tim Levart, NJ Mindy and Seymour Liebman, NY Aliza and Steven Major, NY Zipporah and Arnold Marans, NY Etella and Haim Marcovici, NY Marilyn and Leon Moed, NY Nataly and Steve Neuwirth, NY Judith and Daniel Ottensoser, NY Regina Peterseil, NY Lauren and Mitchell Presser, NY Jerald Ptashkin, CA Barbara and Joel Rascoff, NY

Joyce and Stanley Raskas, NY Jan and Sheldon Schechter, NY Charlotte Schneierson, NY Rita and Eugene Schwalb, NJ Erica and Rob Schwartz, NY Deanne and Leonard Shapiro, NY Judy and Isaac Sherman, NY Ronnie and William Slochowsky, NY Sondra and Myron Sokal, NY Francine and Aaron Stein, NJ Jody and Ari Storch, NY Audrey and Chaim Trachtman, NY Ina and David Tropper, NY Paula Yudenfriend and Arlin Green, PA

Anonymous, Israel Anonymous, Israel Anonymous, MA Anonymous, NY Anonymous, Switzerland Trudy and Ted, z”l, Abramson, FL Leah and Jonathan Adler, NJ Ann and Hy Arbesfeld, NY Myra Balinson, CA Rachel and Martin Balsam, NY Yael Balsam, NY Lee and Louis Benjamin, NY Tamar and Ethan Benovitz, NY Bea Berger, NJ Vivian and Stanley Bernstein, NY Dahlia and Arthur Bilger, CA Laurie Bilger and Eli Epstein, NY Sandra and Howard Blank, NJ Devorah and Melvyn Bleiberg, NY Sari and Stuart Braunstein, NY Adele and Jules Brody, NY Tamar and Hillel Bryk, NY Carol and Arnold Caviar, KS Margaret and Chaim Charytan, NY Beth Chiger, NY The Philip Citron Charitable Trust, MA Trina and Paul Cleeman, NY Sara Clemons, TN Florence Cohen, z”l, NY Shevi and Milton Cohen, NY Diane and Howard Cole, NY Peggy and Philip Danishefsky, NJ Elaine and Lewis Dubroff, NY Hattie and Arthur Dubroff, NJ Susan Ederson, NY Linda and Barry Eichler, PA & NY Sherry and Aaron Eidelman, NY Judith and Allen Fagin, NY Vivian and Bernard Falk, NY Evelyn and Larry Farbstein, NY Ruth and Gene Fax, MA Iris and Stephen Feldman, NY Sheila and Kenneth Fields, NJ Saradee and Stanley Fortgang, NY Gwen Buttnick Francis, NJ Gabriella and David Fridman, NY Sura and Burt Fried, NY Rena and Michael Friedman, IL Marisa and Andrew Gadlin, NY Shifra and Perry Garber, NY Randi and Alan Gelman, Israel

Leelah and Joseph Gitler, Israel Abigail and Ari Glass, NY Ilana and Stuart Goldberg, NJ Paulette and Max Goldberg, NY Esther and Jack Goldman, NY Judith and Matthew Goldsmith, NJ Zelda and Sheldon Goldsmith, NY Anne and Sheldon Golombeck, NY Louis Gordon, TX Judith and Gabriel Gross, France Sharon and Melvin Gross, NY Phyllis Hammer, MA Nicole and Jacques Hanau, France Felicia Hanfling, NY Debbie and Robert Hartman, IL Debbie and Eddie Herbst, CA David and Barbara B. Hirschhorn Foundation, MD Gail and Larry Horowitz, NY Aviva and Fred Hoschander, NY Peggy and Robert Insel, NY Elaine and Robert Jacobs, NY Malky and Bezalel Jacobs, NY Barbara and Manfred Joseph, NY Connie and Alan Kadish, NJ Chavie Kahn and Heshy Kofman, NY Ilana and Mitchell Kahn, NY Robin and Simon Kahn, Israel Danna and Gilad Kalter, NY Ruth and Jerome Kamerman, NY Miriam and Shopsy Kanarek, NY Ruth and William Kantrowitz, NY Harriet and Joel Kaplan, NY Karen Kaplan, IL Marisa and Daniel Katz, NY Gloria and Harvey Kaylie, NY Rona and Ira Kellman, NY Rochelle Stern Kevelson, NY Diane and Barry Kirschenbaum, FL Susan Alter Klaperman, NY The Klibanoff Family, NJ Jane Klitsner, Israel Laurie and Robert Koppel, NY Evelyn and Lawrence Kraut, NJ Rochelle and Seymour, z”l, Kraut, MA Dorothy Kreiselman, NY Bertha, z”l, and Henry Kressel, NY Seryl and Charles Kushner Family Foundation, NJ Debra and Dov Lando, NJ Esther and Stanley Landsman, NY Linda and Murray Laulicht, FL & NJ Donna and Jeffrey Lawrence, MD

Sara and Moishe Leifer, NY Diane and David Lent, NY Ellyn and Alan Lerner, NJ Kari and Joshua Levine, NY Sylvia and Norman Levine, FL Dorothy and Robert Lewis, NY Ruth and Robert Lewis, NY Sharona and Michael Loeffler, FL Audrey and Haskel Lookstein, NY Naomi and Carl Lopkin, MA Rita Lourie-Galena, PA & NY Marie-Nicole and Georges Lumbroso, France Randie and Arthur Luxenberg, NY Rhonda and Jeffrey Luxenberg, NY Meira and Solomon Max, NY Manette and Louis Mayberg, MD Benay and Ira Meisels, NY Caroline and Marcelo Messer, NY Joan, z”l, and Leon Meyers, NY Lois and Jonathan Mills, IL Myra Mitzner, NY Galina and Mark Moerdler and Family, NY Chani and David Moss, NJ Jessica and Jason Muss, NY Miriam and Bernard Neuman, IL Gloria and Burton Nusbacher, NY Reva and Martin Oliner, NY Bea and Irwin Peyser, NY Suzy and Paul Peyser, NY Esther and Donald Press, NY Tzippi and Ira Press, NJ Judy and Jerry Pressner, NY Robin and Jules Reich, NY Evelyn Reichenthal, TX Sheila and Sidney Rimmer, NY Shelley Rindner, NY Fritzie and Sheldon Robinson, IL Sandra and Evan Roklen, CA Kristina and Len Rosen, Israel Vivian and Solomon Rosen, FL Miriam and Howard Rosenblum, NJ Elizabeth Rosenkrantz and Steven Lancman, NJ Maks Rothstein, NY Michele and Barry Rubin, NY Herbert Rudnick, NY Ellen Scheinfeld, NY Iris Schneider, NY Esther and William Schulder, NJ Debbie and Daniel Schwartz, NY Miriam Seltzer, NY Esther, z”l, and Jacques Semmelman, NJ

Renee and Elliot Schreiber, NY Sharon and Rony Shapiro, MA Chana and Daniel Shields, NJ Deena and Adam Shiff, NY Nechi Shudofsky, NY Mollie Siegel, NJ Sharon and Morris Silver, CA Karen and Roy Simon, NY Ruth Simon, NY Lorraine and Mordy Sohn, NY Sara and Gabriel Solomon, MD Mahla and Hilton Soniker, NY Melanie and Matthew Sosland, NJ Sheryle and Theodore Spar, FL Sydelle Spero, Israel Kaaren Staschower, CA Shirley and Bruce Stein, TX Deborah Stern-Blumenthal and Michael Blumenthal, NJ Richard Stone, NY Edith Sussman, MD Ethel and Lester Sutker, IL Lilly Tempelsman, NY Sandra and Max Thurm, NY Eva and Evan Torczyner, NY Bertie and Fred Tryfus, NY Judith and Morris Tuchman, NY Audrey and Max Wagner, NY Joseph Walder, IL Paula and Leslie Walter, NY Anne and Mark Wasserman, NY Suzanne and Stuart Weilgus, NY Judy and Morry Weiss/Sapirstein-StoneWeiss Foundation, OH Marion and William Weiss, NJ Linda and Steven Weissman, NY Roselyn and Walter Weitzner, NY Diane and Michael Werner, NY Joyce and Jeremy Wertheimer, MA Booky and Jerome Wildes, NY Phyllis Wind, NY Florence Wolf, NY Mireet and Joseph Wolf, Israel Stella and Samy Ymar, MD Hilde and Benjamin, z”l, Zauderer, NY Esther and Dov Zeidman, NY Tamar and Benjamin Zeltser, NY Helene and Gerald Zisholtz, NY Corinne and Neil Zola, NY

SMR13_pres_circle_p34-35_v3.indd 3

$5,000 - $9,999

*As of June 26, 2013

Jone and Allen Dalezman, MA Selma and Jacob Dyckman, NY Chaiki and Ziel Feldman, NJ Lilly and Alfred Friedman, NY Joseph and Rae Gann Charitable Trust, MA Andrea and Larry Gill, CA Miriam and Felix Glaubach, NY Harwit Charitable Trust, CA Laura and Jonathan Heller, NY Norma and Emanuel Holzer, NY Suzanne and Norman Javitt, NY Kirkland & Ellis LLP, NY Nancy and Joshua Korff, NY Sylvia and Leon Korngold, NY

president’s circle of honor

$10,000 - $17,999

Anonymous, NY Randi Schatz Allerhand and Joseph S. Allerhand, NY Joseph Anmuth, CA Jonathan Art, NY Lolly and Harris Bak, NY Zelda and Solomon Berger, NY Daisy Berman, NY Anne Bernstein, CA Evelyn and Isaac Blachor, NY Beth and Reuben Blumenthal, NY Ethlynne and Stephen Brickman, MA Lotte and Ludwig Bravman, NY Marion Crespi, NY

7/18/13 1:34 PM


the past


the future

At your time of loss, AMIT will be there to provide: • Daily Kaddish for the first eleven months, including memorial plaque, annual Kaddish and notification of the Yahrzeit - $650 • Memorial Plaque and annual Kaddish recited, plus notification of the Yahrzeit - $500 • Daily Kaddish for the first eleven months, annual Kaddish and yearly Yahrzeit notification - $300

Memorials are for the living! For more information please contact Robin Rothbort at 212-477-4725, or visit us online at


8/21/09 1:39:11 PM

AMIT Summer 2013 Magazine  

AMIT Mainstreaming Students With Disabilities In This Issue: The Year At Midreshet AMIT Q&A With Rabbi Shai Piron, Minister Of Education Poi...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you