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Beth Jo Zietzer

George Weisz

Melissa Spiller Shiner

Eddie Chavez Calderon

Beth Jo Zeitzer

Judy Laufer

Stu Turgel

Tikkun Olam

TOP 10 Change Makers Unsung Heroes Influencers


Robin Meyerson


Karolyn Benger

Bob Roth

CO N TE N TS Arizona Jewish Life December 2020 Kislev-Tevet 5781 Volume 9/Issue 1




FEATURES COVER STORY Tikkun Olam Top 10 JEWS WITH ATTITUDE Farming a food haven in the desert BUSINESS Judaica Joy Ins & Outs

24 10 12 14

CHARITABLE GIVING Mazon: A Jewish response to everyone’s hunger Jewish Free Loan transitions to unrestricted giving model JCRC Machloket L’shem Shemayim Project Brighter Tomorrow goes virtual Support Jewish education in Arizona with a tax credit Giving guide



16 18 18 20 20 22




FRONT & CENTER The Glass Ribbon Project promotes healing through art Tucson International Film Festival celebrates 30 years

30 32

AC TIVELY SENIOR Conversations with Maury Digital banking workshops for seniors Israeli duo’s Alzheimer’s detection test Engaging and enriching virtual programs for older adults

34 36 38 42

ISR AEL Tag Along: Street arts as seen in Israel



HANUKK AH How do you spell it? The sweet history of Jews and doughnuts Krispy Kreme glazed doughnut recipe (copycat) Hanukkah Happenings Gift Guides: For her, him, kids, home, pets and garden

COVER 2020's Top Ten

48 50 52 54 56

Beth Jo Zietzer

George Weisz

Melissa Spiller Shiner

Eddie Chavez Calderon

Beth Jo Zietzer

Judy Laufer

Stu Turgel

Eric Schindler

Robin Meyerson

Tikkun Olam Beth Jo Zietzer

TOP 10 Change Makers Unsung Heroes Influencers


Karolyn Benger

Bob roth




At a time when our shoulders are heavy with the weight of the world. When masks cover our faces, and our eyes truly become the windows to our soul. When a sense of community gives way to divisiveness and when fear often overtakes understanding – the light of compassion, healing and love still shines bright. For me, this is the Hanukkah miracle this year.

On behalf of our small but mighty team at Arizona Jewish Life, we wish all of you and your loved one's a healthy, safe, joyous and meaningful Festival of Lights.



Join us every Thursday for the best in local Jewish events, business news and personalities mixed with Shabbat and holiday ideas, celebrities, and the best in Jewish food trends, and videos.

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DECEMBER 2020 Arizona Jewish Life • Kislev-Tevet 5781 • Volume 9/Issue 1



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A DV E R TI S I N G A N D E D ITO R I A L D I R EC TO R Cindy Salt zman

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Arizona Jewish Life magazine is distributed on the first of the month. Story ideas for features and special sections are due 45-60 days prior to publication. BIZ INS & OUTS: Business news is due 4 weeks before publication. FACES & PLACES: Photos from past events are due about 20 days prior to publication. EVENTS: Information about upcoming events is due about 20 days prior to publication. CALENDAR: Please post events on our online calendar. Relevant events that are posted by the 10th of the month before publication will be included in the magazine. To request first-time authorization to post events online, go to azjewishlife.com and scroll down to the “calendar access request” link under “Quick Links” on the right. After you submit the form, you’ll receive an email with instructions for posting future event. A Prince Hal Produc tion ( TGMR18)

2020-2021 MediaPort LLC All rights reserved The content and opinions in Arizona Jewish Life do not necessarily reflec t those of the publishers, staf f or contrac tors. Ar ticles and columns are for informational purposes only and not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Although ever y ef for t is made to ensure the accuracy of our published materials, Arizona Jewish Life, and its agents, publishers, employees and contrac tors will not be held responsible for the misuse of any information contained herein. The publishers reser ve the right to refuse any adver tisement. Publication of adver tisements does not constitute endorsement of produc ts or ser vices.




EDUCATION ISSUE What will education look like in 2021? School as we knew it changed in 2020. What will schools be doing to prepare themselves for 2021? Contact your account executive today. azjewishlife.com advertise@azjewishlife.com 602.538.2955


Farming a food haven in the desert By Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim


he first frost came to the Verde Valley School Farm in Sedona in October, five weeks ahead of schedule. The following day, as the sun beat down from a serene sky, Michael Spielman stood amid the wreckage and pulled out blackened stalks of cherry tomatoes, shriveled carrots and limp, feathery tulsi (commonly known as holy basil) to make space to plant new winter crops. Then he picked up a tall stalk of corn and peeled back the papery skin to reveal a rainbow of jewel tones. “This Tie Dye corn I was able to save,” Michael says. He is especially proud of this variety that was gifted to him by a fellow independent farmer in nearby Cornville, who bred it over the course of 20 years, combining a variety of Zuni blue corn, heirloom sweet corn from Colorado’s Olathe region, and Hopi agricultural wisdom. Michael plans to set aside at least half of the kernels for seed. “I save things for flavor and abundance,” he says, “but also for their cultural history.”  The farm Michael created on under one acre of red dirt desert on this international boarding school campus has flourished in just eight years. It provides nearly all the fresh staples for the school’s cafeteria as well as regular shipments to food-insecure communities in Yavapai County. Students help make teas and salves out of herbs, which are sold at the local farmer’s market, along with seasonal delicacies. 10


Michael Spielman. PHOTO COURTESY LUCY SPIELMAN. But just as importantly, the farm has become a haven for students who come here to forage for strawberries or gaze at Cathedral Rock from the shade of a peach tree. “There is genuine excitement,” Michael says. “We are recognizing it is not just about food; it is about (the) experience.” He says that even though Verde Valley School has been able to offer in-person classes, students feel the loss of traditional leisure activities amid the increase in screen time.    “You have to balance that with direct immersion,” he says. “Seeing, touching, tasting – getting stung. Viewing where we came from.”  Michael stumbled into farming almost by accident. A native of Queens, NY, and the grandson of immigrants from Ukraine and Poland, he dreamt of becoming a poet, but his degree in creative writing led to an odd assortment of jobs including janitor, roofer, night watchman, bread MICHAEL SPIELMAN PORTRAIT BY LUCY SPIELMAN

An ear of Tie-Dye corn, developed from Zuni and Colorado varieties. PHOTO BY CORINNA DA FONSECA-WOLLHEIM

Cathedral Rock overlooks the Verde Valley School Farm in Sedona.

delivery man and kayak ranger (in Alaska.) When his wife, Meg, a teacher, took a position at Verde Valley School, he seized the chance to start a farm. The school’s composting program had become so successful that it was producing more humus than could be used in the existing small garden. At this point, Michael had grown no more than a few tomatoes and snap peas for his young family. But the landscape inspired him. “I call it getting Bell Rock’d,” he says in reference to one of the natural landmarks. “There is a deep, longstanding power in Sedona. And I got walloped by it.”  It took him a year to dig a gopher-proof perimeter fence. He read up on the history of the area, tasted heirloom crops from neighboring farms. But he says he did little systematic study.  “I approached it how I would a painting or a poem,” he says. “I didn’t want any noise, any input. I believed in this.”  He befriended a Hopi farmer who gave him corn, melons and beans to seed his dream. “I recognized what a responsibility that was,” says Michael. “To have been gifted something that has been passed down for a thousand years.”  As the farm began to flourish, Michael’s commitment to seed preservation deepened. He has come to believe that seeds can learn. He gave an example of a variety of tomatoes that an Iraqi refugee had brought to America. Touched by the story, Michael gave them a try, but the first harvest was disappointing: the yield puny, the fruit mealy. The second year was just as bad. But something made Michael give it one more try, and the third year the Iraqi tomato became the star of the farm: plentiful and flavorful.  “Growing the same seeds every year, the plants adapt to

your techniques,” says Michael. “They think.” Saving and replanting seeds – mixing seeds from multiple seasons and harvests in a single planting – is more work than buying commercial seed packets. But Michael believes it helps crops adapt to the changing climate in a particular soil. “It means coding things into our seeds that will then allow them to trigger survival responses at other moments in time – probably when I’m long gone,” he says. Melissa Baskin, a senior boarding student from Phoenix, says she has seen the farm’s strawberries become more abundant and flavorful in the years she has been at the school. “I’ve been able to see how the fruit has evolved,” she says. “The farm has always been a place to explore and advance my knowledge, not only about food, but also other cultures.”  For Sukkot this year, she helped Michael erect the sukkah on the farm. With the restrictions caused by the coronavirus, she says, “I’m seeing it in a different light. It’s become more mystical.” Beginning in February 2021, The Verde Valley School Farm will be offering a virtual series titled “Building a Desert Edible and Medicinal Backyard Forest” that will be open to the public. Verde Valley School is located at 3511 Verde Valley School Road in Sedona. The co-educational, International Baccalaureate boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 has been educating global citizens since 1948. To learn more about Verde Valley School, visit vvsaz.org. Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim is a contributing music critic for the New York Times and the founder of Beginner’s Ear, a series of meditation-based listening experiences. She is the mother of a current 10th grader at Verde Valley School. ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 11


Judaica Joy By Lila Rose Baltman


ou had me at Shalom.” “I love you a latke.” “Challah if you knead me.” If witty, clever, Jewish-themed greeting cards and holiday cards make you smile, you’ll have a terrific time shopping online at Modern Mitzvah – a new, digital, Scottsdale-based Judaica boutique. Not only will you find the perfect, schmaltzy sentiments to send, you’ll also discover a wide variety of beautiful Judaica art to celebrate a wedding, bar or bat mitzvah, bris, baby naming, or a move into a new home. There is even a card specially designed to welcome a new baby or if you wish to congratulate someone on converting. The words on the card are the same: “A New Jew!” Founded by Scottsdale graphic designer Laura Bercovich, Modern Mitzvah was born in 2018 – the same year Laura gave birth to her first child – a now 2-year-old daughter named Elsie. A 2005 graduate of Chaparral High School, Laura earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in public relations with a minor in religious studies from Gonzaga University. It was while she was working as a public relations intern for the JCC in Scottsdale that she first discovered a natural talent and enormous interest in graphic design. She recalls being asked to design a promotional flyer for an upcoming event, and she immediately fell in love with the graphic design work needed to create a dynamic, eye-catching flyer. “It all happened by accident. Graphic design became my favorite part of the job, and by the end of my internship, “



A floral letter bar & bat mitzvah certificate, one of the many designs offered at Modern Mitzvah.

it was clear to me that graphic design was what I was meant to pursue,” says Laura. She enrolled in the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and, after four years, earned a master’s degree in graphic design. Her first job after graduation was an impressive one. She was hired by Lucasfilm in San Francisco to design “Star Wars” logos, emblems and patterns for licensed goods like lunch boxes, bedspreads, pajamas and T-shirts. It was also in San Francisco where she met her husband, Justin, who now handles the finances for Modern Mitzvah and helps Laura run their wholesale division and partnership program. The couple married in Napa Valley in 2016 – the same year Laura converted to Judaism. “Neither of my parents are Jewish, but my stepfather is, so I was raised in a Jewish home. I enjoyed growing up learning about Jewish values, celebrating the Jewish holidays, and observing many of the Jewish traditions,” says Laura. “I had been saying I wanted to convert since I was 11 but didn’t make it official until right before I got married. I wanted to be Jewish when I stood under the chuppah.” The idea to start an online Judaica shop happened as a result of Laura and Justin attending Jewish Baby University together. This program, offered by the Bureau of Jewish Education, offers helpful parenting classes to expectant Jewish and interfaith couples.

“Our class had just learned about the various Jewish blessings and special celebrations to welcome a new baby, including the very sweet idea of hanging up a ‘baby ketubah’ or a baby naming certificate in a nursery,” Laura recalls. “One of my friends in the class asked if I could create one for her…Soon several more friends were asking for baby naming certificates, then for home blessings, and I decided to start a small online shop.” “Laura customized the perfect baby naming certificate for my daughter to help celebrate her Hebrew name and its meaning,” says Megan Zweig, also of Scottsdale. “She provided such creative ideas and worked with me to create a one-of-a-kind piece of art that will always be something very special to our family.” Laura explains on her Modern Mitzvah website that a baby ketubah or baby naming certificate is a new-age tradition. Although not a contract, these certificates are similar to a ketubah in that they are signed by the parents and Rabbi and are displayed afterward in the home as a memory of the special event – be it a bris or a Hebrew baby naming ceremony. She has also designed a special line of personalized bar and bat mitzvah certificates that have become popular gifts to give among the teen set. For wedding couples, Laura created a product line, “Blessings for the Home,” that can be sent as special Judaica wedding gifts. She designed three different styles of Blessings for the Home: a bright and colorful Pomegranate Blessing, a Leafy Star of David Blessing, and a Botanical Blessing. She has plans to offer wedding ketubahs in the near future. Most recently, Laura has designed a line of customizable holiday photo cards for people who wish to send family photos and greetings this holiday season. With greetings like “Happy Holidays,” “Happy Everything,” and “Fa La La La Latke,” these cards are versatile enough for all different types of families and faiths. All of Modern Mitzvah’s customized Judaica certificates and home blessings are designed in Laura’s home office, printed on thick, top-quality paper, and then placed in a beautiful glass picture frame. Receiving and unwrapping a Modern Mitzvah gift has become an exciting treat for all ages. "There are so many products geared toward Christian holidays that I wanted to carve out a special space specifically for Jewish and interfaith celebrations,” says Laura. “I strive to create unique and modern designs, one-of-a-kind keepsakes for special events, and spread a little joy through beautiful art.” For more information about Modern Mitzvah, visit shopmodernmitzvah.com. ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 13



Bryan Solomon "Sol" Davis

Gugulethu Moyo

Lilach Mazor Power

Jordan Schnitzer

Director changes at the Jewish History Museum and Holocaust History Center

Lilach Mazor Power named new board member at ADA

Bryan Solomon “Sol” Davis, Ph.D., has been the executive director of the Jewish History Museum and Holocaust History Center in downtown Tucson for the past five years. He oversaw the expansion of the Holocaust History Center, which first opened in 2013 as a one-room exhibit focusing on the lives of the more than 200 survivors who resided in Southern Arizona. He previously served as director of the Jewish Community Relations Council and as the director of Holocaust education and youth education coordinator at the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona. As of Jan. 1, 2021, Sol will become the executive director of the Jewish Museum of Maryland in Baltimore. “I’m honored to be selected for this position and excited by the possibilities as a way to bring people together,” Sol told JMORE Baltimore Jewish Living. “My overall museum vision is activating historic spaces, which hold so much power and possibility. … I believe in participatory programs. I view visitors not as audiences but part of the museum community.” Upon Sol’s departure, Gugulethu Moyo will become the Jewish History Museum and Holocaust History Center’s new executive director. She currently serves as the director of operations for the museum and has over a decade of managerial and board experience in nonprofits and corporations. She started her career as a lawyer in the pensions industry and was the founding executive director of the Media Legal Defence Initiative, a London-based organization that defends press freedom by delivering legal aid to persecuted journalists around the world. jewishhistorymuseum.org

Lilach Mazor Power, founder and managing director of the Giving Tree Dispensary, was recently named as a new member of the Arizona Dispensary Association. Lilach opened the Giving Tree in 2013 to serve patients with medical marijuana cards. The ADA’s mission is to promote and advocate for a safe, patient-focused cannabis industry in Arizona. They develop and promote best practices and effectively represent the industry with a constant legislative and regulatory presence. There is much work ahead of the association as they simultaneously serve the 300,000 qualified patients enrolled in the medical program while preparing to serve all Arizonans 21 and up when dispensaries become licensed to sell recreational marijuana in a few months. givingtreedispensary.com



Portland-based company acquires Scottsdale Airpark Commerce Center Portland-based Harsch Investment Properties announced its acquisition of Scottsdale Airpark Commerce Center for $17.5 million. The property features four buildings totaling 120,433-square-foot of rentable space on 10 acres with and is 90 percent occupied by multiple tenants at the time of sale. Located at 8212 and 8224 E. Evans Road and 14555 and 14557 N. 82nd Street in the heart of the Scottsdale Airpark, one of metro Phoenix’s most prestigious and desirable submarkets, Scottsdale Airpark Commerce Center has immediate access to the east-west and northsouth branches of the Loop 101 Freeway which allows strategic access to one of the most educated and qualified

Sam Fox

workforces in Arizona. “We are very excited about adding the Scottsdale Airpark Commerce Center to our Phoenix holdings,” said Jordan Schnitzer, president of Harsch Investment Properties. “We will begin construction soon on 563,000 square foot project in Chandler, as well as a 250,000 square foot project in Goodyear. Phoenix continues to have solid and steady growth, even during the COVID-19 pandemic.” harsch.com Sam Fox to open two new restaurants Sam Fox, restaurateur and founder of one of Arizona’s most prominent restaurant groups, Fox Restaurant Concepts, confirmed it’s launching two new restaurants for online to-go ordering this winter. One is Fly Bye, a new concept in Phoenix serving pizza, chicken tenders and wings. The other is a takeout-only version of Flower Child, set to open in early 2021 in Tempe. Both restaurants will not offer a brick-and-mortar building for dining; instead, the food will be prepared in a commercial kitchen, and customers can order food online for pickup or delivery. Fly Bye is scheduled to open on Dec. 9 and will operate out of The Yard in central Phoenix, a converted motorcycle garage that houses Culinary Dropout. According to a press release, menu items will include Detroit-style pan pizzas, hand-breaded chicken tenders, crispy wings, salads and mozzarella sticks. There will also be 10 house-made dips, including spicy buffalo and Culinary Dropout’s cheese fondue. People will be able to order food for curbside pickup and contact-free delivery via the restaurant’s website or thirdparty delivery apps. foxrc.com

HAVE BUSINESS NEWS TO SHARE? Send your "Biz Ins" to editor@azjewishlife.com ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 15




A Jewish Response to Everyone’s Hunger By Mala Blomquist


or more than 35 years, MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger has been working with policymakers and engaging in broad-based advocacy to solve and fix the systemic problem of hunger in America. MAZON was founded by Leonard “Leibel” Fein (z”l) and Irv Cramer in 1985, to build a bridge between the relative abundance of the American Jewish community and the desperate need felt by millions of hungry people. “We work with people across the country,” says Tucson resident Liz Kanter Groskind, board chair of MAZON. “It’s a Jewish response to hunger, but it’s a Jewish response to everyone’s hunger.” MAZON is working on many different efforts, including hunger among active-duty military, food-insecure veterans, LGBTQ seniors and Native American populations. Most people don’t know that there are food pantries or food banks on or next to every major military base in this country. “It is a fact that they are not being compensated enough to support their families,” says Liz. “They include 16


their housing allowance in their pay, which keeps them from being able to be eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).” MAZON has been working on this issue for nearly a decade. On July 21, 2020, the U.S. House of Representatives passed its Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes a provision to address hunger among currently serving military families. The bipartisan Military Family Basic Needs Allowance, championed by MAZON, is a targeted provision that aims to eliminate common barriers to nutrition assistance for military families, including shame, stigma and fear of retribution. Another vulnerable community MAZON works with is Native American populations, as well as those who live in rural and remote communities. MAZON is deeply concerned about access to fresh and nutritious foods in these communities, where the nearest grocery store could be an hour away. But there is a new cause of hunger in America – the pandemic. Food banks provide the immediate need of food, but the number of people they serve has doubled and tripled, depending on the area, as a result of COVID-19. “The hardest thing isn’t the mechanism or process of doing our work – we know what we do, and we do it well – it’s that first time you saw 10,000 cars waiting hours and hours at the food bank,” says Liz. “That breaks my heart to see those folks who are food insecure who don’t need to be. If the system worked, they wouldn’t have had to do that.” MAZON is used to working on a federal level, but they have begun to work with individual states since it’s up to the governors to request additional SNAP benefits. SNAP is also commonly referred to as food stamps. “Most people are on food stamps only a short time, not more than 3-6 months,” says Liz. “This federal program was set up to be a food safety net, but unfortunately, often times the people who need it can’t get it.” During the pandemic, it has been difficult for people to sign up for help because the agencies have been closed and not everyone has computer access to sign up online. Another vital facet of the SNAP program is that it stimulates the economy. The latest COVID-19 relief bill to

pass did not include critical improvements to SNAP. “For congress to boost the benefits is proven to be one of the quickest ways to stimulate the economy,” states Liz. “The statistic we’ve heard time and again, especially during a recession, every SNAP dollar generates between $1.50 and $1.80 in economic activity.” People get the funds on an EBT card and often spend it right away for dinner that night. It would help people put food on their table immediately, and with a sense of dignity, but it would also help stimulate local economies. “One of the first things we did with COVID was create a directory,” says Liz. “So that we could refer anybody to our home page where there’s a directory to refer them to local service providers.” MAZON also works directly with anti-hunger partners around the country, some of which also operate food pantries, as well as Jewish community partners who are committed to the cause of ending hunger. “I refer to it as MAZON in a box,” says Liz. “Where we offer our staff time and knowledge to these nonprofits that are first and direct response folks.” MAZON has developed partnerships with 900-1,000 different synagogues around the country. They have a national synagogue organizer who works to build local coalitions in communities around the country and educates leaders about the circumstances that lead hunger to persist in this country. There are also educational resources and opportunities for

bar/bat mitzvah projects and other simchas on MAZON’S website. “About four years ago, we commissioned a photojournalist to go across America,” says Liz. “We wanted people to see what the face of hunger looks like.” The result of this project was “This Is Hunger.” It was a traveling, interactive exhibit that featured first-person accounts of individuals touched by hunger. Housed inside a 53-foot-long travel trailer, “This Is Hunger” stopped at synagogues and Jewish institutions on a 16-month, 50 city tour in 2016. After the tour, “This Is Hunger” found a permanent home in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley where the space provides a gathering place for social justice organizations to meet, plan or host events (pre-pandemic). Currently, “This Is Hunger” is being offered as an immersive digital experience, exploring who struggles with hunger in America and why. “Camps and Jewish educators use it as a virtual field trip,” says Liza Lieberman, director of communications with MAZON. There are also companion materials, including a facilitation guide, wrap-around activities and additional resources. MAZON has also established a COVID-19 Response Fund. “Donations to this fund support MAZON’s efforts to ensure that all Americans can feed themselves and their families with dignity,” says Liza. For more information, visit mazon.org.



Jewish Free Loan Transitions to Unrestricted Giving Model


ewish Free Loan, a provider of interest-free loans to Jewish Arizona residents, dedicated to helping create a thriving and financially secure Arizona Jewish community, would like to remind the public about the establishment of the Founders Society as part of its transition to an unrestricted giving model. “As the needs of the community evolve and change, including immediate demands created by the COVID-19 pandemic, JFL is adjusting its giving model so we can be as responsive as possible to the ever-changing needs of the community,” says Ellen Friedman Sacks, Executive Director of JFL. As part of this transition, JFL will be sunsetting the establishment of new Named Loan Funds. All existing Named Loan Funds, including those created by December 31st, 2020, will become part of the Founders Society. This society honors the individuals and families that help strengthen the foundation of our interest-free loan programs. All Named Loan Funds will continue to exist in perpetuity and donors will continue to have the ability to make contributions to these loan funds. Establish your loan fund today! For more information, contact JFL Development Associate, Aviva Levine at avivalevine@jewishfreeloan.org​ or 602-230-7983. For more information about Jewish Free Loan and our interest-free loan programs, please call the office at 602-230-7983 or email ​​info@jewishfreeloan.org.

JCRC Machloket L’shem Shemayim Project


ews can disagree. That’s what we do. The Jewish Community Relations Council asked rabbis in and around the Phoenix community to tell us how they envision unity for the Jewish community. They asked them to share their messages for healing after

the turbulent political season. “The JCRC was honored to work with such a wide spectrum of rabbinic voices across the community to help bring a message of healing and unity after a difficult period,” says Paul Rockower, executive director of the JCRC of Greater Phoenix. “The video project is all about remembering that we can disagree with civility, which is innately part of our Jewish traditions.” Our differences of opinion must come with civility and respect. Let us re-engage with our friends and neighbors. Let us celebrate our differences. Let us continue to argue. And let us come together as Klal Yisrael. To watch the video, visit https://youtu.be/ iSu7W4sPJdA. Rabbi Pinchas Allouche of Congregation Beth Tefillah in Scottsdale was one of the leaders asked to share their messages of healing for the JCRC project.





Brighter Tomorrow Goes Virtual


he Brighter Tomorrow Virtual Event is Jewish Family & Children’s Service’s annual event showcasing the impact on the wellbeing of more than 40,000 people in the Valley of the Sun. JFCS strengthens the community by providing behavioral health, healthcare and social services to all ages, faiths and backgrounds – staying ahead of the curve on trends and societal changes that impact children, youth and families. The keynote speaker for the virtual event held on Jan. 29, 2021 at noon is Robert Sarver, managing partner of the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury. Robert, an Arizona native, is also the executive chairman of Western Alliance Bancorporation. Alliance Bank of ROBERT SARVER Arizona, a division of Western Alliance Bank, is the largest locally-headquartered bank in Arizona. Robert is a dedicated philanthropist who is committed to supporting Arizona’s local community, both through Phoenix Suns Charities and his and his wife’s own personal contributions. Under Robert’s leadership, Phoenix Suns Charities has granted more than $21 million to Arizona nonprofits in the areas of education, healthcare and sports.

For more information, to donate or register for the free event, visit jfcsaz.org. 20


Support Jewish education in Arizona with a tax credit


he Jewish Tuition Organization (JTO), is a certified school tuition organization (STO). The JTO raises money for Jewish day school scholarships through Arizona’s dollar-fordollar private school tax credit. The tax credit is available to both individual and corporate Arizona tax payers. “The private school tax credit is a wonderful way to support Jewish education for the children in our community,” explains JTO Executive Director Linda Zell. For tax year 2020 individuals can take up to $1,183 if filing single, and up to $2,365 for married couples filing jointly. The deadline for individuals to support the JTO is April 15, 2021 or whenever they file their taxes, whichever comes first. Corporations do not have a maximum limit of support, however the state has a cap on the total amount they allow for the overall corporate tax credit. At this time there is approximately $20 million still available for the corporate tax credit. Corporations cannot apply directly for the tax credit, an STO must apply on their behalf. Corporations are approved on a first come first serve basis until the cap is met or June 30, 2021.


For more information visit jtophoenix.org or call 480-634-4926. ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 21



602-492-4989 azkosherpantry.org

The Arizona Kosher Food Pantry is dedicated to serving all surrounding communities with the ever increasing challenges of food security regardless of religious orientation. The AKP provides specialty kosher Items to the Jewish community in a consolidated “pantry” format.


602-428-9206 beatitudescampus.org

Since 1990, the Beatitudes Campus Foundation has been the philanthropic partner of Beatitudes Campus senior living community. Our Foundation helps continue our nonprofit mission to serve seniors at Beatitudes as well as in the local community and the greater Phoenix area. Whether you choose to donate your time or give to one of our special charitable funds, you’re helping to make an impact in the lives of seniors.


602-230-7983 jewishfreeloan.org

JFL provides interest-free loans to Jewish families and individuals. Please consider making a charitable donation and/or taking advantage of the Arizona Charitable Tax Credit to make a difference in the lives of Jewish Arizonans.


480-634-4926 jtophoenix.org

Support the Jewish Tuition Organization’s Jewish day school scholarships through the dollar-for-dollar private school tax credit and help fund Jewish education. The tax credit is available to individual taxpayers and corporations.


480-629-5343 gesherdr.org

Gesher Disability Resources serves children and adults affected by a disability through inclusion assistance in classrooms/camps, resource referral, residential support and social groups. Over 3000 community members benefit from the agency’s events and services each year. Tax id 86-0626273; QCO Code 20748. 22


480-250-5400 limmudaz.org Limmud AZ provides a local pluralistic Day of Jewish Learning annually with a varied program and presenters from far and near. Entirely run by volunteers. Associated with Limmud North America, which provides programming all year long.


480-668-3347 GetScreenedAZ.org

Prenatal genetic screening for those of child-bearing age to identify genetic risks and provide options to have healthy children. We also provide screening and referral services regarding the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 gene mutations associated with inherited cancers found in the Jewish community.



Tikkun Olam



n 2019, we published our first “Tikkun Olam Top Ten.� We are continuing the tradition with what we intend to be an annual homage to the people in our community who embrace the true meaning of tikkun olam and work to make the world a better place. These are people who, outside of their professional careers, make sacrifices and contribute their time and other resources to help not only the Jewish community flourish, but society as a whole. We know that there are many people out there doing wonderful things, especially during this challenging time, but here is our list of unsung heroes, influencers and changemakers for 2020.




Chairman of the board of Scottsdale Community Bank, Arizona’s first new community bank in 12 years, is just one more title that George Weisz can add to his extensive list of business accomplishments. These include co-owner of two minor league baseball teams, a partner in a start-up technology firm, government affairs consultant, interests in the film industry, biotechnology and other ventures. George’s public service includes serving as a member of the Arizona House of Representatives, deputy chief of staff and senior advisor to two governors, senior advisor to the mayor of Phoenix, and special agent investigating organized crime and corruption for four attorneys general. George was also an original member of the team that investigated Arizona Republic reporter Don Bolles’ murder from a car bombing. He has served on the boards of numerous charitable and civic organizations and has been recognized with some of those organizations’ highest awards. George’s involvement includes the Anti-Defamation League Board, serving on the National Council of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, serving as President of the 100 Club, which provides resources for the families of fallen police officers and firefighters, serving on the Board of the Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped, being a member of the Governor’s Commission on Adolescent Suicide, being appointed by the Chief Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court to serve on the prestigious Arizona Judicial Council and establishing the Grand Canyon State Games.


Step Up to Justice is a full-service free civil legal center for low-income individuals and families in Pima County. A public service by private citizens, SU2J harnesses the energy of volunteer attorneys and channels that resource to members of the community such as the working poor, seniors, veterans and people with disabilities who need but cannot afford legal services. In 2019, Melissa Spiller-Shiner was selected to serve as associate director of SU2J. In this capacity, she works with the executive director and the board of directors to develop and implement the vision and direction for SU2J. Melissa has worked in civil legal services since 2010. She has a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Binghamton University, a Master of Arts in ethics, peace and global affairs from American University, and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arizona.  Prior to joining SU2J, Melissa worked as a staff attorney at another Tucsonbased civil legal services provider, Southern Arizona Legal Aid, Inc., in their consumer, housing and public benefits unit, assisting low-income clients with landlord/tenant and bankruptcy matters. She then moved to the organization’s Volunteer Lawyers Program as their staff attorney and law student coordinator. Melissa managed the student-based clinics – an opportunity that allowed her to get to know more than 100 student volunteers each year. Before her current position, Melissa was the director of community outreach for SU2J and was responsible for recruiting and training volunteer law students, coordinating and managing off-site clinics, and reaching out to various community partners to build and maintain relationships.



Eddie Chavez Calderon is a social justice activist and the campaign organizer for Arizona Jews for Justice and Uri L’Tzedek. Arizona Jews for Justice is the fastest-growing Jewish social justice organization in the Southwest. Born in Michoacán, Mexico, Eddie’s family arrived in the United States when he was four years old. He is a DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) recipient, and since he was a teenager, he has been deeply involved in social justice work. He continues to fight for the Latino community as well as LGBTQ+ acceptance and inclusion, woman’s rights, economic justice, workers’ rights, citizenship and civic engagement, voter equality and much more. Eddie worked to educate, engage and register young voters before the election, even leading a team to send texts to 50,000 people. All this work to protect people’s right to vote, something he couldn’t even participate in due to his current citizenship status. In the last year and a half, Arizona Jews for Justice has directly impacted the lives of 40,000 asylum seekers through donations of food, clothes, medical supplies and toys. Through their grassroots efforts, they’ve been able to create a pipeline of volunteers from all over the community (and the country) to step up and do the difficult work to help asylum seekers during their most pressing hour of need. Eddie believes he has both a humanitarian responsibility to provide for asylum seekers and a personal need to help them.


Beth Jo Zeitzer is involved with organizations to ensure an enduring legacy for the Jewish community. She is a past board chair of the Jewish Community Foundation and sits on the Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix board and has been involved with its NowGen program. In the broader community, Beth Jo takes part in professional groups like Arizona Commercial Real Estate Women and the Arizona Trustee Association. She is a licensed attorney in Arizona and California and president and designated broker of R.O.I. Properties, a full-service commercial and residential brokerage firm. Beth Jo started R.O.I. Properties in 2003 and is experienced in commercial development, including planning, entitlement, infrastructure delivery, budgeting and financial oversight, marketing analysis, sales and marketing, contract negotiation, design review and construction monitoring. An Arizona resident since 1971, Beth Jo graduated from Central High School in Phoenix and attended the University of Arizona before heading over to the University of San Diego Law School. In 2013, AZ Business Magazine named Beth Jo as one of Arizona business’s most influential women. She was also one of the state’s highest-ranked women in business and featured on the cover of Who’s Who in Business, May 2016. She looks for ways to share her knowledge and experience with other women in her field and makes it a point to mentor women in the commercial real estate community.




Working as a kindergarten teacher when her father passed, Judy Laufer was looking to help her niece better understand what happened. When she couldn’t find any books at the library for young children about a person dying, she decided to write her own. Where Did Papa Go was the first book she published as J.E. Laufer under Little Egg Publishing (a nod to her maiden name, Egett). In her next book, Last Night I had a Laughmare, Judy introduced the characters of the town of Gigglyville, turning another difficult situation for children – nightmares – into a positive. Judy has written five books for young children, and in 2017, she ventured into the young adult genre. Choices, The True Story of One Family’s Daring Escape to Freedom is the true story of Judy’s mother, Kati Egett, who escaped communist Hungary with her family to find a home in Canada when Judy was almost two years old. After the popularity of Choices, Judy decided to write the story of her mother-inlaw, Pearl, who was a hidden child during the Holocaust. Hidden Pearl: A Story About Courage, Hope and Resilience was published in 2019 and won the 2019 Moonbeam Children’s Book Award gold medal in the Pre-Teen Fiction-Historical/Cultural category. With the help of corporate partners and individual sponsors, Little Egg Publishing has donated thousands of books to children’s charities to promote childhood literacy.


After decades of working in philanthropy, marketing communications, nonprofit management and communal service, Stu came to the Valley in 2006 to join the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Phoenix, where he worked tirelessly to strengthen local Jewish nonprofits. He retired from JCF as president and CEO in 2013 and joined Radio Phoenix in May 2016. Stu started his broadcast career in college at radio station WCMO-FM in Ohio. During the Vietnam War, he joined the Army and graduated from the military broadcast journalism program at the Department of Defense Information School in Indianapolis. He was news director for the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service on Johnston Island in the Pacific, broadcasting on both radio and TV. Today, you can find Stu weekly on Tuesday evenings from 6:30 to 7 pm hosting The Phoenix File, broadcast on Radio Phoenix, where he engages guests in compelling conversations about the people and programs making a positive difference around the Valley. Stu has provided fundraising consultation to numerous non-profit organizations (which he continues to do in his retirement) and has been a frequent speaker on philanthropy, strategic positioning and child advocacy in the nonprofit sector. He has produced more than a dozen record albums, which have raised millions of dollars to benefit pediatric hospitals in North America and was a founding member of the Board of Trustees of the Children’s Miracle Network Telethon. Throughout his career, Stu has led professional fundraising organizations to raise nearly $1 billion.



Dr. Eric Schindler received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Arizona in 1982. After internship training in child and family psychology at U.C. Davis and postdoctoral training in pediatric psychology in Chicago, he spent more than 30 years working in the Tucson community as an administrator, director, teacher and practitioner. A licensed psychologist since 1984, he also served as an adjunct instructor in Family Studies at the University of Arizona for many years.  Since 2005, Dr. Schindler has been the President and CEO for Child & Family Resources, Inc. Child & Family Resources is a private, community-based, nonprofit organization with a long history of serving children, youth and families, addressing unmet needs and gaps in social services. The agency was originally known as The Tucson Association for Child Care in 1970. The agency offers programming for childcare professionals, families, parents, guardians, mentors and school-age children. The goal is to build healthy communities where children can reach their full potential. They achieve this goal by using effective prevention and education strategies with families, teens and early educators. Child & Family Resources employs more than 300 people in Apache Junction, Bullhead City, Casa Grande, Douglas, Kingman, Lake Havasu City, Nogales, Phoenix, Safford, Sierra Vista, Tucson, and Yuma.


In the “about” part of Robin Meyerson’s LinkedIn profile, the last line states, “Today my focus is on kiruv.” Kiruv is the act or practice of bringing secularized Jews closer to Judaism. Everything that Robin is involved with does just that. She is a motivational speaker, teacher, author and the co-director of Project Inspire Arizona. Project Inspire’s mission is to “create a dedicated group of men and women that grow together with their fellow Jews through learning, social programs and trips to Israel.” Project Inspire has also partnered with MyZuzah to ensure that every Jewish home has a mezuzah – free of charge – that Robin delivers to homes across the Valley. She also chairs the Shabbat Project Arizona, which hosts the annual Great AZ Challah Bake, joining women across the state, and the world, together to do the mitzvah of making challah. Over the last decade, Robin has become involved with chevra kadisha – a group of committed Jews who prepare the body for burial and perform tahara, or ritual purification. This involvement led her to become the West Coast director for the National Association of Chevra Kadisha. Robin also has a nonprofit, Peaceful Return (peacefulreturn.org), that “is dedicated to sharing information about the importance and beauty of burial.” She has done extensive research, given speeches, written brochures and has cowritten a book called, From This World to the Next: Amazing True Stories about Jewish Burial and the Afterlife, which shares stories highlighting the wonders of Jewish burial.




In 2018, Karolyn Benger created KB Enterprise after organizations sought out her help for projects. She is a consultant to nonprofit organizations and small businesses, assisting them in achieving their goals with her many years of experience in membership and recruiting, grant writing, programming and fundraising. Before starting her own business, Karolyn was the founding executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council in Phoenix and served as the executive director of the Jewish Interest Free Loan of Atlanta. Karolyn is a graduate of Emory University with a degree in political science and a specialization in the Middle East, where she studied social movements, organizational development and Arab and Islamist opposition groups. She has taught courses in Comparative Politics, Political Islam, and Politics of the Middle East at Emory University, Georgia Tech and Emerson College. She is passionate about interfaith dialogue, race relations, and the peace and security of minority communities. As a public speaker and author, she has addressed social movements, democratization in the Middle East, Islamist organizations, anti-Semitism, Orthodox Judaism and women in Islam. Karolyn is a member of the Phoenix Police Department Community Relations Advisory Board, the Arizona Interfaith Movement and the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance. Her volunteer work includes the East Valley JCC, Arizona Faith Network, Phoenix Hebrew Academy and Jewish Women’s Leadership Institute. Her latest project is as a board member of The Albert Einstein Academy, which will offer a STEAM-based (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) education and a focus on languages including Hebrew and Arabic. Currently, no other public schools are offering these languages. The school is scheduled to open in August 2021.


Bob Roth is the managing partner of Cypress HomeCare Solutions, a company created in 1994 after his family became caregivers for their mother, Joan S. Roth, in the last 18 years of her life. Cypress is the only home care agency in Maricopa County to provide highquality in-house training in the Joan S. Roth Caregiver Training Lab, their stateof-the-art training lab named in honor of his mother. Over 12 years, they have trained nearly 1,000 families with free family caregiving seminars. In 2017, Bob was appointed to the Governor’s Advisory Council on Aging by Arizona Governor Doug Ducey; this was the first time in the council’s history that a home care or home health care agency owner or manager has served on the council. Bob is highly involved in the local community. Some of his past and present service positions include Arizona Geriatric Society, Taskforce Against Senior Abuse, Banner Alzheimer’s Foundation, Banner Health Foundation, Alzheimer’s Association, Governor’s Advisory Council on Aging, Aging 2.0 (Phoenix chapter), DUET Partners in Aging and many others. Nationally, Bob serves on the Board of Directors for the Home Care Association of America. He also regularly writes columns for local publications on aging topics and hosts a radio show called “Health Futures, Taking Stock in You.” This program airs every Friday from noon to 1 pm on Money Radio 1510 AM, 105.3 FM.


The Glass Ribbon Project promotes healing through art By Mala Blomquist



bout a year ago, artist Gary Rosenthal was contemplating retirement when he received some devastating news. He had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. “I figured I had one to three years to live,” says Gary. “Instead of talking about retirement or crawling into a shell or something like that, I said, ‘How can I take my art and use it as a catalyst to do good?’ ” Gary has been creating art for more than 40 years and is best known for his custom line of Judaica, combining copper, brass and steel with brilliantly colored fused glass. Using his art as a “catalyst to do good” is not a new concept. He started more than twenty years ago donating materials and working with high school students and women in shelters to create Christmas tree ornaments that they could sell to raise money. He also worked with a group after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, 30


FL, to make 100 candlesticks for families of the high school kids impacted. “Fighting darkness with light,” says Gary. Then in 2005, Gary created The Glass Ribbon Project. He was inspired by the story of breast cancer survivor, oncology nurse and patient advocate, Lillian “Lillie” Shockney. He had read an article where Lillie was walking on the beach with her mother, and she bent down and picked up two stones off the sand. She gave one to her mother and told her to hold onto the rock and say a prayer when she was undergoing chemotherapy, and she would do the same. Gary decided to make glass “strength stones” to support breast cancer patients out of pink and white mosaic glass. He creates giant sheets of mosaics that get fired in a kiln. The fused glass is then cut into 1-inch squares and re-fired to create the very tactile finished stones. People can order

a kit where they produce the initial mosaic sheet, send it to Gary, and he will return 50 stones to them. “I would send 50 stones back to someone, and they would give them to their children, friends, whoever,” says Gary. “The strength stones become a connection between the person who created them, who is under treatment, and their special people.” It wasn’t until his own treatment during the time of COVID-19 that Gary realized the real connection of the strength stones. When he first started chemotherapy, before the pandemic, things were very different. “I would go to the infusion center, and it was a cheery place,” Gary remembers. “One of my best friends would come in, we would have lunch together, and it was wonderful.” He had surgery on March 20, 2020. The hospital went into lockdown, and his wife could no longer be by his side. He had to spend time in intensive care and recovery alone. When he returned for his second round of chemotherapy, it was not the friendly place he initially visited. “The infusion center nurses were wearing masks, and you could sense the tension,” he says. “There’s no friend to come and take care of me – it’s so isolating, so different.” He wants to give strength stones out to people who are starting chemotherapy. “I’m telling them that your friends are not going to be able to come, but you still can be connected, and this is a way to create that spiritual connection,” says Gary. He wants to create a six-pack of strength stones available in various colors to represent different types of cancer. Gary has set up a nonprofit and hopes to get underwriting for the six-packs of stones so that no one going through treatment will have to pay for them. Gary has begun collaborating with a couple of national organizations, one being Project Purple out of Connecticut. They support patients with pancreatic cancer by sending them a big purple blanket. He wants to include a bag of six purple strength stones with a description of what they are in each blanket delivery. He also wants to add a note about the positive outcome he is experiencing. “I had a wonderful attitude from like day three of knowing because that’s just the way I am,” says Gary. They caught his cancer early, and when the surgeon removed the tumor he had clear margins. Biopsies on 18 lymph nodes have all been negative. “I have a wonderful prognosis, and as far as I’m concerned, it’s almost as if I never had cancer. Attitude counts for a whole lot, but luck counts for even more.” Gary finished his treatment at the beginning of June this year.* “I used to always tell people that my fingerprints stay on

what I make forever,” says Gary. Recently, I was corrected by a rabbi who said, ‘It’s not just your fingerprints that stay on your work forever, it’s your soul print.’ ” Of all the Judaica he has made over the years, he thinks about the Shabbat candlesticks and how he feels part of the tradition and “invited” into thousands of homes across the country every Friday night. Gary has always felt a spiritual connection to the pieces he creates, and the strength stones have always been a passion project. “It gives me personal pleasure that I can work with people in a time of need, and we are creating something that is making a difference for these people, for the patient and the friend.” He’s hoping to be able to take the program nationally or even internationally. “For me, to put all my energy behind this, I had to get pancreatic cancer for it to happen! It’s the silver lining,” he says. “I’m more excited about what I’m doing than I ever have been.” For more information on The Glass Ribbon Project, visit glassribbon.com. To see Gary Rosenthal’s artwork, visit collectgaryrosenthal.com. *UPDATE: The original interview with Gary was over the summer and when we checked in with him at the beginning of November, he shared this message, “I am feeling great. My last CT scan showed no evidence of disease, so I feel like I won the cancer surgery and chemo lottery – first prize!”  Gary, his daughter Sophie Rosenthal, and friend Mark Cackler work on a glass mosaic while Gary receives a treatment.



Tucson International Jewish Film Festival celebrate 30 years


he Tucson International Jewish Film Festival will run this year from Jan. 3-27. The TIJFF is one of the longest-running Jewish film festivals in the country and one of the longest-running film festivals in Arizona. Being 2020, all the films this year will be virtual but there is a silver lining – there will be pre-festival films and a post-festival film line-up quarterly in February, April, August and November of 2021. Post-Festival films are available as part of a 12-pack pass now (which includes all 8 of the main season films); they can also be purchased individually. The festival will be using Eventive (https://watch.eventive.org/tucsonfilm), a technology platform created by independent film lovers and designed specifically to enhance all aspects of film screening from ticking to virtual cinema. Through this site, you will find information on how to purchase tickets and how to set up viewing on your televisions or devices. You will also find the dates and times available to watch each film and how to join in post film programming. In January, TIJFF will stream eight films and two shorts using Eventive and post-film interviews and discussions will be held on Zoom. When you purchase a ticket, you will be sent the Zoom link to watch the post-film experience. The last pre-festival film, “Monkey Business: The Adventures of Curious George’s Creators,” will be available Tuesday, Dec. 8. The documentary tells the story of Hans and Margaret Rey, a German-Jewish couple who narrowly escaped Nazi-occupied France on makeshift bicycles, secretly carry the unpublished Curious George manuscript with them. Forced to live in Brazil while they await visas to the United States, the couple eventually sail into New York harbor to start life anew and create a children’s book classic. For more information or if you have questions, visit tucsonjcc.org/events/tucson-internationaljewish-film-festival or reach out to the Tucson J team at filmfest@tucsonjcc.org or 520-299-3000.

Monkey Business: The Adventures of Curious George's Creators FILM AVAILABLE DEC. 8 AT 4 PM

Post-film program: Sunday, December 13 @ 4pm via Zoom

Hans and Margaret Rey, a German-Jewish couple who narrowly escaped Nazi-occupied France on makeshift bicycles, secretly carry the unpublished Curious George manuscript with them. Forced to live in Brazil while they await visas to the United States, the couple eventually sail into New York harbor to start life anew and create a children’s book classic. Film maker Ema Ryan Yamazaki in conversation with cartoonist, Nat Scrimshaw. 32



Picture Of His Life

Standing Up, Falling Down

Douze Points



Those Who Remained

The Samuel Project

The Keeper

Joseph Pulitzer: Voice of the People

Mrs. G

When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit

An Irrepressible Woman




Conversations with Maury By Karen Supman Karen Supman was diagnosed with plasmacytoma with amyloid, abnormal plasma cell growth that is cancerous, in 2006. The following piece is a continuation of her healing journey. Karen Supman in 2018.


fter the chemo and radiation did not work on my tumor (plasmacytoma with amyloid), I went to see a surgeon. Looking at my records, the surgeon informed me that he didn’t want to perform surgery due to the complexity of the procedure, and the radiation I had received before would impact healing. He also said I probably wouldn’t survive. It was at that time, I heard about a Qi Gong Master that assisted cancer patients. I had read an article in the New York Times that Qi Gong helped with pain management. Qi 34


Gong is an ancient Asian practice of movement, breathing and meditation used to balance the “qi” or “life energy.” I found out that the hospital I went to brought in a Qi Gong Master monthly as part of its wellness program for cancer patients, so I made a private appointment. At that first meeting, Master Hong asked me a series of questions and told me that I held a lot of sadness and stress in my body. I started to cry and felt embarrassed. He motioned for me to come and sit next to him. He took a piece of paper and a pencil and started a child-like drawing, creating a stick figure of a woman standing next to a tree. The woman was crying. “I know that you believe in Western medicine and that it is good to talk to doctors about your problems, but I want you to find a tree to talk to every day. I want you to talk to it for 30 minutes and I don’t care if you cry. I want you to talk to it every day and then come back to me,” Master Hong told me. With many trees to choose from near my home, I chose a towering cottonwood tree situated along the man-made lake in front of my condo. Its majestic branches gave refuge to the heron and egrets perching on its massive limbs, as it gently expanded over the duck filled pond, grassy knoll and sidewalk. Grabbing a cup of coffee, cell phone and Zoe, my Maltese, I headed towards the tree and sat down on the boulder next to it. If I was to have an intimate relationship with a tree, I decided it should have a name. I named it Maury. I imagined Maury as a person with a worn-out loose cashmere sweater who was always relaxed. Someone who was always calm and comfortable in his own skin. I noticed Maury was significantly larger and separate from the other cottonwoods that were nestled together. Like the tree, I still felt solitary in dealing with the fact that I was alone in my cancer. I was dealing with the possibility of dying and that you did alone. Looking up through the thick branches of the tree, I observed its massive trunk. It might sway its limbs during an Arizona monsoon, but the sturdy trunk held everything together. I looked at its roots. They, too, were strong, reaching several feet in all directions and toward the water for

Maury the cottonwood tree. nourishment. As I thought about the tree, I realized that while my physical core was damaged, the real core was my ability to think. I compared the tree’s roots to my thoughts. If I was going to survive this cancer, I had to be firmly committed. I had to start over again with a renewed attitude to live and have the right kind of thinking. It turns out that Maury was talking to me as opposed to me talking to him. As I talked to my life coach a few days later, she offered a suggestion. She told me I should place each issue or concern weighing on me on a separate branch of the tree. She pointed out that since God created the tree, I was giving him control of the problems. I only hoped God would take them. I went back to Maury the next morning and gently placed all that was concerning me – my health, my children’s wellbeing, my finances – on his strong branches. Talking with Maury allowed me to release the fear that I had been carrying around. Maury stood there when I finished, quite calm and peaceful as if nothing had changed. No matter what issue I threw at him, he was unaffected by my concerns. Maury taught me that “core training” was really in your head. Where the mind goes, the body follows. I realized my survival had nothing to do with the disease and everything to do with my thoughts. I would create my recovery. I changed my thoughts to what I wanted to accomplish and erased all the fear and doubt from my mind. I shared what I learned from the tree when Master Hong returned the following month. He smiled at me and said, “You have not gotten better for a long time, but you will see that now you will get better.” He helped move the “qi” through my body and taught me simple breathing and meditation techniques to do daily. In the days and weeks to follow, I sat on the boulder adjacent to Maury every morning and focused my thoughts on affirmations of the outcome that I wanted to happen. I drew strength from that ritual, and it helped me start my day to finding peace, hope and determination. I could be like Maury and be strong with my thoughts firmly anchored to the outcome that I wanted. I became open to new ideas and ways through my daily practice, and I researched offerings at MD Anderson Cancer Center. I finally chose a team of doctors who agreed to try a surgery that they had never performed before. On August 7, 2007, the surgeons removed a sizeable potato-shaped tumor from my spine as well as part of my eighth rib. They reconstructed my spine with many pins and rods. I have been cancer-free ever since! I wanted to share this true story of mine for you to have hope and realize that none of us are alone.


Digital banking workshops for seniors




cottsdale-based Early Warning Services, LLC, the network operator behind Zelle, the U.S.-based digital payments service, offers free e-learning classes aimed at older Americans. These classes are developed through a partnership with social change nonprofit Older Adults Technology Services (OATS). OATS online, interactive courses, offered through its award-winning technology training program, Senior Planet, educate older adults on safe digital banking habits, including using personto-person (P2P) payments. Zelle has worked with Senior Planet to co-create workshops for older adults to learn to use digital banking tools safely during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.   According to the latest Zelle data, more than one-third of baby boomers, ages 55-74, shared they are concerned about their risk of being targeted by financial scams or fraud. In addition, more than 20% responded that since the COVID-19 crisis began, they have adopted or plan to adopt a P2P payment services. This data combined with a recent survey from Senior Planet – finding more than 75% of older adults would like to take part in online learning – further showcases the necessity for easily accessible and inclusive digital education tools that meet the older adults’ unique needs. “The current global pandemic has forced changes in consumer behavior,” says Rose Corvo, Chief Marketing

Officer for Zelle. “By partnering with OATs, we are helping older adults transition safely to digital banking services through education. Understanding how to use these services will help seniors transact safely from the comfort of their homes.” The FBI and FTC have issued warnings regarding scams related to the COVID-19 outbreak, noting that the rise in scams has included a range of tactics, including email phishing campaigns, robocalls, fraudulent goods, and disinformation campaigns. In the era of self-isolation, older adults must understand how to use digital banking tools safely. "We know that people 60 and older are among those most vulnerable to the financial scams that have cropped up since COVID-19, capitalizing on the culture of uncertainty,” says Tom Kamber, OATS executive director. “It's more important than ever for older adults to build the skills and tools needed to stay financially secure, so we're delighted to partner with Zelle to support older adults in connecting with their loved ones online and building digital financial literacy."  The free, online courses are available via the Senior Planet website. For more information, visit seniorplanet. org. For additional resources on safe payments, visit zellepay.com/pay-it-safe.

Recent Zelle data finds that in light of COVID-19 ONE


Two-thirds (66%) of seniors are concerned about their long-term finances

Nearly half (45%) of seniors have increased their frequency of online/ecommerce shopping



One third (33%) of seniors are concerned about their risk of being targeted by financial scams or fraud

Almost all (93%) of seniors are concerned about the length of time until things get “back to normal”



Israeli duo’s early Alzheimer’s detection test brings cure one step closer By Robert Sarner


sraeli expatriate biomedical engineers Eliav Shaked and Roy Kirshon may be far from old age but one of its dreaded curses – Alzheimer’s disease (AD) – figures prominently in their lives. As business partners in an artificial intelligence medical imaging start-up in Toronto called RetiSpec, they’ve developed a new way for early detection of AD, the main cause of dementia among older adults. In recent years, the World Health Organization has signaled the growing scourge of dementia (attributed mostly to AD) as a global epidemic. Tied, in part, to an aging population, an estimated 47 million people around the world now suffer from AD or related dementia. “The problem today is the point at which you diagnose Alzheimer’s,” Shaked, 37, told The Times of Israel during a recent interview with him and Kirshon at a Toronto outdoor cafe. “By then, there’s already a neurodegenerative process that’s affecting the way the person thinks and reasons, which 38


is caused by a pathological change in the brain that started 10 or 20 years before those clinical symptoms.” An irreversible, progressive brain disorder with no known cure, AD is one of the main causes of death among adults over 65 in the United States. In the past 20 years, deaths from AD there have increased significantly faster than those from other major causes. It now afflicts 6 million Americans and is expected to reach 14 million by 2050. The Alzheimer’s Association of Israel says around 150,000 Israelis have the disease while in Canada the current number is almost 600,000. Given AD’s growing death toll and the massive social and economic burden of caring for millions of patients, the disease looms large on society’s agenda. That’s heightened the interest and support RetiSpec has attracted for its work to replace current diagnostic procedures for identifying AD which are costly and impractical.

RetiSpec’s diagnostic tool, named RS1, differently. There’s a lot to be done when you provides a far simpler, less expensive make an early diagnosis. It helps get on with alternative to the discomfort and the business of preparing appropriate care inconvenience of current practices – a and improving the quality of life and support spinal tap or PET scan – for detecting AD for patients and their families. It also helps early. It’s hoped this will help in developing facilitate research into treatment and finding RetiSpec COO Roy Kirshon, more effective treatments and, ultimately, a a cure.” left, and CEO Eliav Shaked. prevention for AD. PHOTO COURTESY “By the time Alzheimer’s is now THE BALL IS ROLLING ROBERT SARNER/ TIMES OF ISRAEL diagnosed, it’s already way too late,” says Founded in 2016, RetiSpec is a Canadian Shaked. “The horse is out of the barn. This is the reality company with eight employees, including Shaked as CEO clinicians and neurologists face today. If COVID has taught and Kirshon as COO. Another Israeli, Alon Hazan, recently us one thing, it’s that early, accurate diagnostics are key in joined as Head of Artificial Intelligence. assessing epidemiological cases and supporting therapeutics.” Beyond their partnership, Shaked and Kirshon are Dr. Sharon Cohen, a behavioral neurologist specializing longtime close friends, having met in 2008 at Tel Aviv in diseases of memory and cognition who is an expert on University where both were studying biomedical engineering. Alzheimer’s research and clinical care, echoes Shaked’s In the latest boost for their company, Shaked and Kirshon view. As the medical director of Toronto Memory Program, concluded a partnership agreement in October with Gentex a medical facility established in 1996 dedicated to the Corporation, a major US-based global hi-tech electronics diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s and related disorders, firm, to engineer, manufacture and commercialize RS1, she’s the principal investigator in a current validation study of which uses retinal imaging to look at the back of the eye as a RetiSpec’s technology. small window to the brain. “Early diagnosis is important,” says Cohen, “even if some It was the most recent in a series of auspicious people say, ‘why diagnose early and just extend the time developments for RetiSpec. Last November, it won the that a person lives with bad news.’ But we think about it annual iGan Partners’ Pitch to Heal Event, securing a



The RetiSpec RS1 diagnostic device. PHOTO COURTESY RETISPEC $250,000 investment from iGan. A month earlier, it received an award from the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation to accelerate commercialization of the company’s retinal imaging technology. Supported by Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, among others, the award of up to $500,000 includes a direct investment in the company. In 2019, the Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization chose RetiSpec as one of several high-potential health science companies for its Capital Access Advisory Program. RetiSpec has also received funding from the Torontobased Ontario Brain Institute and Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation. Recently, Shaked and Kirshon completed a second successful funding round with both Canadian and Israeli investors. “What we’ve developed is non-invasive, quick, easy-touse and allows for the user, the clinician, to get the results right there on the spot,” says Shaked, who received his BA and MA in bioengineering at Tel Aviv University and has long been passionate about the human brain. “We’ve focused a lot on ensuring the device’s user-friendliness and addressing key needs from a clinical perspective for this to be a successful clinical utility.” RetiSpec’s RS1 consists of a hyperspectral retinal camera and attached software involving artificial intelligence. It analyzes how light reflects off the back of a person’s eye to identify bits of harmful amyloid proteins and other evidence that indicate AD, even before the patient shows symptoms. The device draws on technology developed by Robert Vince and Swati More at the University of Minnesota’s Center for Drug Design. In contrast to current options, RS1 provides a painless, more accessible biomarker screening done in only 10 minutes. It’s intended for use in the office of an eye doctor whose retinal cameras would be modified with the addition of RetiSpec’s software and supersensitive camera mounted on standard machines now used by optometrists and ophthalmologists for routine retinal exams. 40


“Retinal imaging is something that exists today,” says 36-year-old Kirshon. “You do it when you go to your optometrist. What we know how to do is to make those cameras smarter, with a little accessory and software that can acquire images much richer in data allowing us to see things that beforehand were impossible to see using normal retinal imaging.” “Preliminary results and findings from our current clinical validation studies really boost our confidence and help us understand the incredible potential in bringing this device to market,” says Shaked, whose participation in 2015 in the Google-supported Singularity University’s Global Solutions Program for entrepreneurs in California’s Silicon Valley inspired him to create RetiSpec. “We’ve brought together a lot of serious, global partners who believe in what we’re doing, believe in our team and are helping us get to the point that we’ll be in the market, but it’s not an easy process.” Shaked and Kirshon hope all the final testing necessary for the regulatory process will be completed by the end of next year, with the device available for purchase by clinicians in 2022. “So far, what we see is very promising,” Cohen told The Times of Israel. “Interim results suggest an accurate diagnostic, comparing well against the gold standard of Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis which is a spinal tap or PET scan. Of course, we await the final data, which we expect by January, but we’re encouraged by the preliminary analysis. The rationale for it makes a lot of sense and in terms of patient acceptance and tolerating the retinal scan, the results have been excellent.” The hope is that earlier detection of AD provides an opportunity for timely therapeutic intervention that can slow or even somehow halt the disease’s progression. It’s taken on greater relevance following news in August that American pharma giant Biogen won a US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) priority review of its muchanticipated but controversial AD drug, with a decision expected in March. If approved, it would become the first treatment to reduce clinical decline in people with AD. “If you’re able to either tackle the pathology at the stage before it gets too late or prevent it from even getting there from the get-go, that’s what’s missing in Alzheimer’s disease,” says Shaked, who was born in Beersheba but spent most of his youth in the Tel Aviv suburb of Ganei Tikva. “That’s when you can turn it into a chronic disease from something that’s now fatal.” This article was excerpted from The Times of Israel article from Nov. 21, 2020. Read the article in its entirety at timesofisrael. com/israeli-duos-early-alzheimers-detection-test-brings-cureone-step-closer.

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oin the Jewish Family & Children’s Service Center for Senior Enrichment during the month of December for Zoom programming exploring music, movement and more. “When COVID became a reality and JFCS had to close our physical CSE, we worried about the isolated older adults in our community,” states Jennifer Brauner, CSE director. “We are thrilled to present online, enriching programs and to extend our reach throughout the Valley.” Mondays will showcase Movement with Michelle Dionisio and offer a Schmooze Parlor as well. Everyone is invited to bring information and ideas to share with others at the Parlor, which is hosted by Janet Rees. Tuesdays offer a different class each week, including Marshall Shore, Arizona’s Hip Historian, the Curriculum Theatre Company, Jane Przelica presenting Southwest lore, creative writing and also a Yiddish club; Wednesdays include weekly chair Yoga classes; Thursdays focus on the arts, with music from Nicole Pesce and the Phoenix Conservatory of Music, talks from the Phoenix Art Museum, and an intriguing three-week program on opera, as well as a book club. Friday mornings will include a Shabbat program with inspiration offered from local rabbis and leaders of the Jewish community. There will also be a special Noon Year’s Eve Celebration on Dec. 31 from 11 am to noon featuring Tom LaGravinese, comic impersonator and musical impressionist. All classes are open to the community. Most are free and all are available on Zoom. For additional information or to register, please contact Jennifer Brauner at seniorcenter@jfcsaz.org or 602-343-0192. The JFCS Center for Senior Enrichment is partially funded by the Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix, the Area Agency on Aging and individual donors. Jewish Family 42


& Children’s Service strengthens the community by providing quality behavioral health, health care and social services to all ages, faiths and backgrounds.

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Preplanning is truly the greatest gift one can give to their family. ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 43



Street art as seen in Israel So, when I take a trip somewhere new, I like to explore by just walking around, you never know what you might find. If you are lucky enough to be traveling to Israel next year, I recommend some fantastic street art, or graffitti, to stimulate the senses and boggle the mind. JERUSALEM

World War II hero Hannah Szenes in her military uniform. This captivating spraypaint is the work of 25-yearold British-born artist, Solomon Souza.

Pilpeled uses monochrome designs to achieve powerful dramatic effect. (PHOTO BY MARC ISRAEL SELLEM) . Right: Pilpeled.

The image pictured above was fashioned by Haifa native Maayan Fogel.

WALKING TOURS: authentic-jerusalem-tours.com • touristisrael.com/day tours/tel aviv street art tour • ohsoarty.com 44



Dede Bandaid

Street artist Dede or Dede Bandaid, and one of his many examples that can be found in Tel Aviv. (PHOTO BY YOVA LITMAN )

Giraffe head graffiti on wall at Neve Tzedek in Tel Aviv by artist Michael Rubin. One of many pieces of street art by Murielle Street Art in the Florentin neighborhood in Tel Aviv. Artist Murielle Cohen.

An eye-catchingpiece of street art. Big Walls By Skount - Tel Aviv-Yafo. Far right - Skount



Above: Street artists PichiAvo. "Meet Anacreon" new work by PichiAvo in Tel Aviv-Jaffa.

HAIFA Sleeping Beauty by Klone Portrait of Addam Yekutieli, a.k.a. “Know Hope,” Klone Piece by Brothers of Light, Elna and Gab. PHOTO BY




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A mesmerizing example of street art by Tipa Graphic Art aka Vadim Sverdiov.

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Un g

a Broken Fingaz are a world-renowned psych-pop collective from Haifa, Israel. Since their founding in 2001, its members Unga, Tant and Deso have worked prolifically on the international art scene. Like some street artist, anonymity is key.

Fingaz Railways – Broken Borders by Broken Fingaz.




How do you

SPELL IT? By Mala Blomquist


anukkah, Chanukah, Hanukah, Chanukkah, Hanukka, Chanukka. During a recent Google search for the word “Hanukkah,” I found more than 15 variations on how to spell the Festival

of Lights. Every year when we are working on the issue that includes Hanukkah, we go back and forth between spelling it Hanukkah or Chanukah. The only easy decision, once you pick a spelling, it has to be that way throughout the issue. This year, as in most, we are going with Hanukkah. We follow the AP Stylebook and that is what is recognized by them. Also, Hanukkah is the most widely used spelling, although Chanukah is more traditional. But why so many different ways to spell it? The Hebrew word Chanukah means “dedication,” and this holiday commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. The simple answer (which is really not that simple) comes down to transliteration. Unlike translation, transliteration is when you “change (letters, words, etc.) into corresponding characters of another alphabet or language.” In Hebrew, the word for Chanukah is not easily transliterated into English. This accounts for why there are so many spelling variants. Hebrew does not use the Latin alphabet, which is the standard script of many languages, including English. When used in an English context, the sounds of the different letters have to be converted, or transliterated, into Latin letters. Here’s the catch, the Hebrew word for the holiday uses sounds that aren’t found in the Latin alphabet. And this is where things start to get tricky. The difficulty begins with the first letter of the word, which is the eighth letter of the Hebrew alphabet – chet (also spelled ches and het – are you starting to see a theme here?). It

is pronounced with a guttural sound that is similar to “kh.” So, when the Hebrew word was transliterated in the 17th century, the chet became ch (Chanukah). However, when the English ch appears at the beginning of a word, it sounds quite different than the Hebrew chet. Thus, in the 18th century, another spelling appeared – Hanukkah – even though the h doesn’t really sound like chet either. Transliteration issues also arose over other letters – such as one or two k’s – resulting in all the different spelling variations. No matter how you choose to spell the Festival of Lights, the holiday’s significance remains the same. Around 200 B.C., Judea – also known as the Land of Israel – came under the control of Antiochus III, the Seleucid king of Syria, who allowed the Jews who lived there and continue practicing their religion. His son, Antiochus IV, proved less benevolent: Ancient sources recount that he outlawed the Jewish religion and ordered the Jews to worship Greek gods. In 168 B.C., his soldiers descended upon Jerusalem, massacring thousands of people and desecrating the city’s holy Second Temple by erecting an altar to Zeus and sacrificing pigs within its sacred walls. Following the destruction of the Second Temple, Jewish priest Mattathias, his son Judah Maccabee and their army (The Maccabees) revolted. They successfully forced Antichos IV out of Judea. and reclaimed the Temple and rebuilt the altar, which included relighting the menorah. With only enough oil to light the menorah for one day, the flames burned for eight. This wondrous event inspired the Jewish sages to proclaim a yearly eight-day festival, and the holiday as we know it was born. However you spell it, may you find the wonder in the miracle of Hanukkah when you light your menorah, or do you call it a hanukkiah? Sigh.



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The sweet history of Jews and doughnuts By Mala Blomquist

A "Donut Lassie" from World War I.




uring Hanukkah, doughnuts or sufganiyot are a traditional food to eat. The deep-fried dessert is symbolically prepared to remind us of the miracle of the Hanukkah oil. For as long as most of us can remember, doughnuts have been around. But have you ever thought of who might have been the first person to drop raw dough in hot oil, making one of the best treats ever? Archaeologists have turned up fossilized remains of what resemble doughnuts in prehistoric Native American settlements. Ancient Greeks and Romans fried strips of dough in olive oil and then sprinkled or spread them with ingredients to add flavor. Fried dough, either savory or sweet, is found in almost all cultures and cuisines. In the United States, doughnuts can be traced back to the 1700s, with Dutch settlers bringing their olykoeks or “oily cakes” to New Amsterdam (now New York). And why the hole? People have long questioned how exactly the hole got in the middle of the doughnut, but the Smithsonian Magazine shares an elaborate story in its archives. “Fast-forward to the mid-19th century and Elizabeth Gregory, a New England ship captain’s mother who made a wicked deep-fried dough that cleverly used her son’s spice cargo of nutmeg and cinnamon, along with lemon rind. Some say she made it so son Hanson and his crew could store a pastry on long voyages, one that might help ward off scurvy and colds. In any case, Mrs. Gregory put hazelnuts or walnuts in the center, where the dough might not cook through, and in a literal-minded way she called them doughnuts. “Her son always claimed credit for putting the hole in the doughnut. Some cynical doughnut historians maintain that Captain Gregory did it to stint on ingredients, others that he thought the hole might make it easier to digest. Still, others say that he gave the doughnut its shape when, needing to keep both hands on the wheel in a storm, he skewered one of his mom’s doughnuts on a spoke of his ship’s wheel. In an interview with the Boston Post at the turn of the century, Captain Gregory tried to quell such rumors with his recollection of the moment 50 years before: using the top of a round

liam Rosenb Wil erg


tin pepper box, he said, he cut into the middle of a doughnut ‘the first doughnut hole ever seen by mortal eyes.’” The popularity of the doughnut took off after soldiers returned home from World War I. During their service in France, Salvation Army women volunteers – called Donut Lassies – would deliver doughnuts to the men on the front lines. When they returned to the U.S., they craved the breakfast pastry and more shops started selling the sweet treats. The Jews surprisingly had quite the influence on American doughnut culture. A Jewish refugee from czarist Russian named Adolph Levitt is responsible for inventing the first automated doughnut machine in 1920. Hungry theater goers would crowd his bakery in New York and pushed him to make a gadget that churned Left: As the popularity of the doughnut increased, Adolph Levitt opened a donut shop on Times Square, where people would stop and watch his new invention churn out donuts, often stopping traffic.

Krispy Kreme Glazed Doughnut Recipe



INGREDIENTS For the donuts 1 1/4 cups whole milk 2 1/4 teaspoon instant (quick-rise) yeast (one packet) 2 large eggs


8 tablespoons unsalted butter – melted and cooled

Who can resist an original glazed doughnut fresh off the conveyor belt at Krispy Kreme? Now you can make them at home with this copycat recipe adapted from a recipe originally shared by Mark Bittman of The New York Times.

1/4 cup granulated sugar 1 teaspoon salt 4 1/4 cups bread flour (plus more for rolling out the dough) oil (for frying) For the glaze 4 cups powdered sugar 1/2 cup milk 1 pinch salt

HANUKKAH out the tasty rings faster, and he did. The Wonderful Almost Human Automatic Donut Machine churned out doughnuts at an unprecedented pace. Doughnuts starred as the featured food of the Chicago World’s Fair in 1934, where they were touted as a symbol of American progress because they were made using a machine. Author Gil Marks, in his book, Encyclopedia of Jewish Food, shares a story of a Jewish man that started the largest doughnut shop chain in the world. “William Rosenberg (1916-2002), the son of immigrant Jewish parents, was operating an industrial catering business in which he sold snacks in converted secondhand trucks near factories around his native Dorchester, MA. He noticed that doughnuts and coffee accounted for 40% of his sales, and in 1948 launched a doughnut shop called the Open Kettle in Quincy, MA, the heart of America’s original doughnut country, aiming for a blue-collar clientele… “This unassuming store would eventually become, in Rosenberg’s words, ‘the world’s largest coffee and baked goods chain.’ Two years after opening, Rosenberg

INSTRUCTIONS To make the donuts In a medium bowl, heat the milk in the microwave until it is warm to the touch, about 45 seconds. Add in the yeast and give it gentle stir. Let the mixture sit until there is some foam on top, about 5 minutes. Using a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, beat together the yeast mixture, the eggs, butter, sugar and salt until combined. Add in about half of the flour and mix until combined. Add in the remaining flour and mix until combined. During the mixing process, you may need to stop the mixer and scrape down the sides. If the dough is too wet to handle, add in flour 1 tablespoon at a time. Cover the bowl with a large kitchen towel, and leave it in a warm place to let it rise until it doubles in size, about 1 hour. When the dough is done rising, pour it onto a well-floured surface and roll it to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut the donuts with a donut cutter, or with 2 different sized round cookie cutters (the large cutter should be about 3-inches in

changed the store’s name to Dunkin’ Donuts and five years after that, he arranged the first franchise in nearby Worcester… By 1963, there were 100 Dunkin’ Donuts shops, and by 1979, there were 1,000. “By the time of Rosenberg’s death, there were more than 5,000 Dunkin’ Donuts shops, including about 40 outlets under kosher supervision, in nearly 40 countries, and serving nearly 2 million customers per day.” The Wonderful Almost Human Automatic Donut Machine churned out doughnuts at an unprecedented pace. The machine became a local spectacle in Levitt’s neighborhood in New York City and soon, his business became a city-wide and then a country-wide phenomenon. Doughnuts starred as the featured food of the Chicago World’s Fair in 1934, where they were touted as a symbol of American progress because they were made using a machine. Whether you are a purist and just like a plain glazed, or go more gourmet with fancy fillings and toppings, the next time you enjoy a doughnut, thank your Jewish ancestors.

diameter). Save the donut holes. Knead scraps together, being careful not to overwork the dough, and repeat the process of rolling it out and cutting the donuts. Place the cut donuts on parchment paper, leaving room to rise between each one. (TIP: Place each donut on an individual piece of parchment paper, so it is easy to transfer into the hot oil for frying.) Cover the donuts with a kitchen towel and let them rise in a warm place until they are puffed up, about 45 minutes. About 15 minutes before the donuts are done rising, heat oil in a deep-fryer or large heavy-bottomed pot to 375°F. Place cooling racks on top of sheets of paper towels parchment paper, or line plates with paper towels. When the donuts are ready and the oil is hot, carefully add the donuts to the oil, a few at a time without overcrowding your deep-fryer or pot. (TIP: It’s easier to place the entire parchment paper in the oil with the donuts, so you don’t accidentally “stretch” out the donuts. Once the donuts are in the oil, you can easily

remove the parchment paper with tongs.) When the bottom of the donuts are golden, about 45 seconds, flip the donuts over using a spatula. Cook until the other side is also golden. Donut holes will cook quicker. Remove donuts with a tong or slotted spatula, and place on the prepared racks or plates. Repeat with the remaining donuts, making sure to keep the oil at the right temperature. To make the glaze In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, milk and salt until smooth. If you prefer a thinner glaze on the donuts, add in more milk one teaspoon at a time. To serve Place a cooling rack on top of paper towels or parchment paper for easy clean up. Dip one side of the fried donuts into the glaze. Flip the donut over using a fork. Carefully transfer the glazed donut to the prepared cooking rack. The glaze will slowly drip off the donuts as it sets. Repeat with remaining donuts.


PJ LIBRARY HANUKKAH IN A BAG Each bag contains eight Hanukkah activities to enjoy with your family. $8 (one bag per family). Bags will be available for drive thru pickup at the following locations:

Hanukkah Happenings Hanukkah begins at sundown on Thursday, Dec. 10. Although there are not the usual amount of celebrations happening, there are still a few events hosted locally to participate in.

Temple Emanuel of Tempe, 5801 S. Rural Road, Tempe: Dec. 1 from 4-5 pm Beth El Congregation, 1118 W. Glendale Ave, Phoenix: Dec. 2 from 2-5:30 pm Martin Pear JCC, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale: Dec. 4 from 3-5 pm Temple Beth Shalom of the West Valley, 12202 N. 101st Ave, Sun City: Any time after Dec. 2 If you can’t make the drive thru dates/times, bags will be left at each location for pick-up. There are a limited supple available, register at jewishphoenix.regfox. com/eight-crazy-nightshanukkah-in-a-bag. THE GREAT DREIDEL HUNT Dec. 6 at 10 am, 1pm or 4 pm at The J, 12701 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale Grab your family and come to The J fields for a Hanukkah adventure. Music, dreidel hunt, prizes, sufganiyot, latkes and activities for the whole family presented by Shemesh. Pick the time that works best for your family. Family will be able to be socially distant while celebrating Hanukkah with the community. Masks are required. Cost per family: $30 members; $45 guests (up to



2 children), $12 additional child. All children must be 3 years and older to participate. Entry includes: Bag to collect dreidel, 1 dreidel, Hanukkah prize, activities, latkes and sufganiyots for the family. For more information or to register, visit vosjcc.org/ dreidelhunt. ENGINEER YOUR OWN DREIDEL WITH PJ OUR WAY AND THE MIT MUSEUM Dec. 6 at 1 pm online In this online workshop, you’ll investigate spinning motion by designing, building, and testing your own dreidels using everyday materials! This workshop will provide plenty of opportunities to be creative, experimental, and whimsical as you explore the physics of spin. This workshop is especially suited to kids ages 9 and up. You will need: • A clean, flat workspace (desk, kitchen table, etc.) • A computer, tablet, or phone with access to zoom • Pencils (small pencils work great if you have them!) • A few sheets of thin cardboard (like from cereal boxes) • Some corrugated cardboard • Tape • Paper • Markers • Coins or paperclips for weights • Scissors • Ruler For more information, contact Saskia Swenson at saskia@hgf.org.

To register, visit bit. ly/3leD3HS CELEBRATING HANUKKAH – LATKES & APPLESAUCE Dec. 6 at 1 pm via Zoom It just wouldn’t be Hanukkah without the golden, crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside yummy deliciousness of latkes! In this kid-friendly class, you’ll cook along with Chef Devon Sanner, making the best latkes ever. To add a touch of sweetness, you’ll whip up applesauce to complement and balance the savory. Commemorating the oil that miraculously burned for eight days when the Maccabees purified and rededicated the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, they’re perfect as an appetizer, a side dish or even for tea with a sprinkling of confectioners’ sugar. Register online at flyingaprons-tucson.myshopify. com/collections/cookingclasses/products/12-6-zoomclass-celebrating-hanukkahlatkes-applesauce. Class is $40 per household. For questions call 520-2611996, or flyingapronstucson@ gmail.com. HANUKKAH: CULTIVATING COURAGE FOR RIGHTEOUS ACTION Dec. 7 at 1 pm online Join Rabbi Lisa Goldstein, a teacher and facilitator, to explore insights and practices that help us deal with our fear wisely and

connect with our innate courage in order to help us move forward to bring blessing to ourselves and to others. Event is hosted by Valley Beit Midrash and Temple Chai. Cost is $18. For more information, visit valleybeitmidrash.org. HANUKKAH IN CAREFREE 2020 Dec. 10-17 at 5:30 pm at Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion, 101 Easy St., Carefree Hanukkah is coming to Carefree! Each night of Hanukkah, Thursday, Dec. 10 through Thursday, Dec. 17, a 6-foot Hanukkah menorah will be lit at 5:30 pm in the Sanderson Lincoln Pavilion. The lighting will be led by a different community group or family each night. In person, social distancing will be observed, including masks required. Chocolate gelt will be available to all who attend! Live streaming will be available each evening at visitcarefree.com/chanukahin-carefree-arizona.

CELEBRATE HANUKKAH Dec. 13 at 4 pm at Chabad Center Patio, 2110 E. Lincoln Dr., Phoenix

For more information, visit chabadaz.com/celebrate. LIGHT UP THE NIGHT, CHAVERIM! Dec. 13 at 5:30 pm via Zoom Join Rabbi Stephanie Aaron for a virtual kindling of the fourth candle of Hanukkah along with blessings and songs! Contact Congregation Chaverim (admin@chaverim. net) for Zoom link. WELCOME SHABBAT – HANUKKAH EDITION Dec. 18 at 11 am via Zoom Join the JFCS Center for Senior Enrichment for a Hanukkah celebration with Cantor Seth Ettinger, Congregation Beth Israel; Cantor Ross Wolman, Temple Chai; Cantorial Soloist Todd Herzog, Temple Solel, Cantor Jonathan Angress, Congregation Beth Israel; and Cantor Danna Rubenstein, Congregation Or Tzion. Free and open to all older adults. For further information, contact the CSE Director, Jennifer Brauner, at seniorcenter@jfcsaz.org or 602-343-0192.

Enjoy entertainment, Hanukkah craft, treats, menorah lighting (5 pm) and a gelt drop (5:20 pm). Admission is free and face masks are required. There will also be a Menorah Car Parade on Dec. 14. ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 55


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Shake It Up MARS DUST GLOBE $35.00 uncommongoods.com

It's In The Stars NASA LUNAR TELESCOPE FOR KIDS $49.99 amazon.com



Your A, B, C's ALEPH BET ART PRINT Shop for unique and custom designs at Modern Mitzvah like this darling Hebrew Alphabet art print—the perfect gift for new parents or a young child. $45 for 8x10, unframed. Shopmodernmitzvah.com or hello@shopmodernmitzvah.com. Heads Up YAIR EMANUEL KIPPAH WITH STARS $9.00 worldofjudaica.com

House For Sale THE CHANUKAH HOUSE COOKIE KIT $12.99-$15.99 Available at leading retailers and amazon.com

Code Breaker ROOT RT1 IROBOT CODING ROBOT $199.99 amazon.com


SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION Design Time Gift yourself or loved ones a 2-hour interior redesign consultation to create beautiful, comfortable, functional personalized spaces. Receive a virtual or in-person meeting with interior designer Barbara Kaplan. Obtain expert, new ideas and best plans to adapt your home for today’s exciting multi-purpose needs. Special for Arizona Jewish Life readers: $275. barbara@barbarakaplan.com

8 Days a Week APELOIG COLLECTION OIL MENORAH FOR HANUKKAH $380.00 apeloigcollection.com



Things to hang up, people to feed and so much more!

In a Pinch CRAB MULTI TOOL $22.50 kikkerland.com

Pile It On DAVID ADLER BUTTERFLY EDEN RUG Price upon request davideadler.com



Go Native NATIVE STICK LADIES Add a creative element to your space with these intricately designed gourds by world renowned artist Robert Rivera. Beautifully adorned and Native inspired, these art objects will bring joy to your home. Please visit our website or show room to view our many one-of-a-kind objects and

original art. buffalocollection.com

Palettes & Plates Scottsdale Artists’ School has created an amazing cookbook, including art from the studio and the kitchen! This unique 242-page book features more than 280 delicious recipes and over 100 extraordinary art images. $35; 100% of the sale of each book supports the purpose and programs of the Scottsdale Artists’ School. Call 480-990-1422 or visit scottsdaleartschool.org.

Twinkle, Twinkle FESTIVAL OF LIGHT

Jackie Cohen art glass votives. Price upon request jackiecohenglassartdesigns.com

Milk Moustache

SMEG MILK FROTHER $199.95 Color shown Pastel Green williams-sonoma.com ARIZONA JEWISH LIFE | DECEMBER 2020 63

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION Nirvana SUSHI CAT TOY (filled with Organic catnip)

$10.30 each etsy.com Feline Fun


FOR PETS Gifts for all your pets

Say My Name LEATHER PET COLLAR $59.00 (fmonogrammed)





Satorialist WILLIAM WEGMAN BEING HUMAN $19.00 amazon.com

Fly Away Home WORLD WILDLIFE FUND ADOPT A SPECIES $55.00 ladybug adoption kit gifts.worldwildlife.org.com

Tentacle Trinket OCTOPUS ORNAMENT $14.99 oldworldchristmas.com

Splish, Splash AESOP ANIMAL WASH $39.00 verishopcom


Special Puppy Place VICE PUPPY UPPERS CANISTER $138.00 jonathanadler.com


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Arizona Jewish Life Dec. 2020 Vol. 9/Issue 1