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March 2015/ Adar-Nissan 5775 | Volume 4/Issue 2
Features COVER STORY Amy Shlossman brings passion and experience to Red Cross.......32 UPFRONT David Howitt helps entrepreneurs birth newness..........................10 BUSINESS Ins & Outs...................................................................................12 ISRAEL This election is especially vicious.................................................38 ARTS & ENTERTIANMENT JTC Brings unknown history to stage............................................40 White Bird presents Israeli dancers.............................................42 March is Jewish Art Month...........................................................44 Salem concert March 22.............................................................44 FOOD NW Nosh: Portland’s kosher craft beer ........................................46 Taste of Temple a true taste of Portland.......................................48 SENIORS Rep. Mitch Greenlick has no plans to retire..................................50 Life insurance can pay off while you’re here to enjoy it..................52 Eliezer Froehlich likes to solve mysteries......................................54
Passover Passover: The original spring cleaning.........................................14 Israeli youth look forward to Lag B’Omer .....................................17 What questions do you ask at seder.............................................18 To eat or not to eat kitniyot–that is the question...........................20
JKids/Camp Winter camp fun.........................................................................23 Camps need technology, campers don’t......................................24 Best friends at camp...................................................................28 Camp Advertiser Directory...........................................................29
JLiving Good deeds day..........................................................................56 Rabbi Eve Posen inspires through education................................58 Jewish Crossword: Gold Stars......................................................59 FACES from recent events...........................................................60 Reb Zalman is gone, but Shabbaton lives on................................62 Looted art talk and the Anne Frank exhibit...................................64 Talk explores biodiversity, borders, and friendship.......................65 Calendar ....................................................................................66 Crossword answers.....................................................................66
Columns To Life by Amy Hirshberg Lederman.............................................18 Chef’s Corner by guest chef Lucia Schnitzer................................ 20 Soundbites.................................................................................28 Oregonian in Israel by Mylan Tanzer.............................................38 NW Nosh by Kerry Politzer...........................................................46 Ask Helen...................................................................................49 4 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
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Editor’s Letter I never went to summer camp. When I was born my mom quit her job at the bank to be a stay-at-home mom. This was pretty common in our 1960s neighborhood outside of Detroit. We kids spent carefree summer days running wild, climbing trees and scavenging fruit – apples, cherries, wild berries – from various yards and a nearby woods. We’d leave home after breakfast and eat lunch wherever we found ourselves mid-day. The older kids were tasked with keeping an eye on the youngest, but plenty of moms also kept an eye on us as we scurried through their yards. It seemed an idyllic existence, but not one I could replicate for my own sons. I didn’t have the option to stay home, so summers meant a mix of day camps and sleepaway camp. We would have fun sitting down with all the camp schedules and picking out fun experiences for each week. My sons enjoyed sports camps, science camps and zoo camps, as well as the traditional JCC day camps. The resident camps gave them the opportunity to spend the day out in nature with a pack of kids, though the older kids and adults watching them were staff rather than neighbors.
Though much more structured than my free-floating summers, their summers were also full of fun and negotiating relationships with their peers. Looking at the camps in our special section this month, I realize the options have become even more varied. Arts, technology, filmmaking and music have joined the mix of all the camps my boys enjoyed. But there are still plenty of options for sleepaway camps where kids can be kids and technology is primarily hidden in the camp office. Being unplugged for an extended period of time is an option few kids today experience, though Judaism offers an excellent opportunity to do just that once a week for Shabbat. Judaism also offers a wonderful chance to reflect on freedom. With Passover approaching, our special section on Passover is full of food and fun for the holiday. In her “To Life” column this month, Amy Hirshberg Lederman looks at expanding your seder questions beyond the “Four Questions.” This year as you sit around the seder table, maybe you can ask your kids what the freedom of summer means to them. And you can look through our camp section and decide where they want to enjoy some summer fun and sun.
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8 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
I want to thank you for your letter in the January 2015 issue of Oregon Jewish Life. It was personal and yet highlighted the universal concerns and prevalence of family violence. The list of resources you provided is valuable. I would like to add to your list, “A Safe Place,” the Clackamas County Family Justice Center, located at 256 Warner Milne Road, Oregon City, OR 97945. 503-655-8600, clackamas.us/asafeplace A Safe Place opened its doors in December 2013 and houses several agencies and resources under one roof, including Clackamas Women’s Services (cws.org); Clackamas County Health, Housing and Human Services, the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office, domestic violence unit; the Clackamas County District Attorney’s Office, domestic violence unit; and many other community partners. A Safe Place offers coordinated care as a one-stop, drop-in place where victims and survivors of family violence may receive a wide variety of services, including counselling, and assistance in finding shelter and other financial benefits. In addition, victims have access to the Circuit Court video-conferencing to apply for and receive Family Abuse Protection Act restraining orders. A Safe Place also provides services to victims of elder abuse. Thanks again for drawing attention to domestic violence and for helping others find safety, healing and justice. Eve Miller Clackamas County Circuit Court Judge Oregon City, OR
At Purim we laugh and we GIVE. The Dignity By Design campaign has already raised $16.2 million and we just have $3.1 million more to go.
In honor of Purim, we express our happiness with the miracles before us, including the generosity of our community.
Happiness... consists in giving, and in serving others.
Purim is also about giving. Please join us in building a state-of-the-art care center for our elders’ future. Your gift to Cedar Sinai - Henry Drummond Park’s Dignity By Design Campaign will be used to develop brand-new residential longterm care households. It will also remodel the existing Robison Jewish Health Home into a beautiful rehabilitation center that also offers skilled nursing – complete with a private bath for every resident.
We’re so close! Let’s use the happy occasion of Purim to get even closer to raising the remaining $3.1 million so we can break ground. This significant project will create happiness for many generations to come.
WE’RE ALMOST THERE.
See how you can help by calling (503) 535-4303 or visiting www.CedarSinaiPark.org/CapitalCampaign.
DIGNITY by DESIGN CAPITAL CAMPAIGN
By Deborah Moon
Meriwether Group founder and CEO David Howitt guides entrepreneurs as they “birth newness into the world.” With more than 20 years in product development, branding and business strategy for both start-ups and Fortune 100 companies, David knows how to help dreamers bring their ideas to fruition. Following graduation from Lewis & Clark Law School, he helped his wife, Heather, and her mother, Tedde McMillen, launch Oregon Chai in 1994. In just one year, sales of the home-brewed teas jumped from $20,000 to $200,000, and after six years in business distribution had spread to 40 countries. During that time David worked for Adidas, where he led the legal department for four years followed by another four in licensing and business development. After selling Oregon Chai to the Kerry Group in 2004, David founded the Meriwether Group to help other entrepreneurs reach their goals. He has helped companies such as Dave’s Killer Bread, Voodoo Doughnut, Stumptown Coffee, Pendleton, Salomon, Klim, Bloch, Living Harvest and ABC Carpet & Home. 10 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
This month he plans to meet with a prospective client in Israel and says he is looking forward to deepening his connection and engagement with the nation known for its prodigious number of start-ups. His only previous trip to Israel was 31 years ago when he was 15. The “profound and amazing” three-week trip was with his grandmother, Lena Howitt, z’l. “She was a really important person in my life,” says David. “She was a very kind and smart woman and played a critical role in my life.” The Meriwether Group, which now has a team of 12 people, offers support in three primary areas: funding, acceleration and exit strategy. It can fund a business with debt or equity. “We can roll up our sleeves and bring our collective understanding, experience, Rolodex and knowledge to become an extension of the (company’s) team to help it grow,” he says. “When the founder is ready for an exit or partial exit, we help sell, liquidate …” “At Meriwether we believe … the entrepreneur is the modern day hero,” says David. He says entrepreneurs have a significant impact through their creation of “the products, services and technologies we collectively use,” which is why Meriwether helps them on their journey. He believes “and” is a very important word. People don’t need to choose between financial security and happiness. He chose his company’s name as a reflection of the dual nature of life that is possible. “Meriwether is from Meriwether Lewis of Lewis and Clark,” David explains. “I chose the name because I felt it supported the power of and. Lewis and Clark were lawyers, Harvard educated, East Coast traditional, blue blood, society types – and they were explorers, adventurers who charted new paths. I felt that this would embody the ethos we
David Howitt at his treadmill/standing desk, where he can walk and talk and type at the same time.
wanted to bring into the world. Namely, that we could be both astute business counsel, lawyers, MBAs, executives and explorers, artists, creatives, hippies, musicians and lovers of life.” The Dalai Lama says, “The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers and lovers of all kinds.” David disagrees. “The world needs CEOs and lawyers and doctors who are also poets and artists. When we are both, we can heal the world,” he says. When he was growing up, tikkun olam (heal the world) was a phrase David often heard from his grandmother. David believes another Hebrew phrase – Ruach Elohim, the breath or spirit of God – also plays a role in that process. “God breathes into us; when we live from our divinity inside of us, that is how we repair the world,” says David. “Fundamentally my purpose, and that of Meriwether Group, is to help people to live from their Ruach Elohim in hopes we can be a small part of tikkun olam.” To further help others in their journeys, this past year David wrote Heed Your Call: Integrating myth, science, spirituality and business, published by Atria Books and Beyond Words, both divisions of Simon & Schuster.
His book shares the journey of successful entrepreneurs using the “road map” revealed in mythology and described by scholar Joseph Campbell as The Hero’s Journey.“We use The Hero’s Journey, a formulaic map of life,” which appears not just in ancient myth, but also in films such as “The Wizard of Oz,” “Star Wars” and “Avatar.” David’s own journey was not the path he set out to follow. He grew up in Grand Rapids, MI. His parents, Dennis Howitt and Leslie Vandenhoot, divorced when he was young. After earning his bachelor’s degree at Denison University, he headed for Oregon in 1991 to begin law school at Lewis & Clark, intending to “be an environmental lawyer and go save some trees.” “When I was moving here, I met a blond, hippie girl in Telluride, CO, who went on to become my girlfriend and then my wife, Heather,” says David. After tasting Chai tea while on a trip to Southeast Asia, Heather announced she wanted to start her own business. Starbucks was taking off and revolutionizing coffee drinks, but “if you liked tea, you were stuck with a mug of hot water and a tea bag,” says David. “She brewed at home with her mom, and I provided business support.” When he graduated, David took a job at a large law firm to provide financial stability for the family. But he soon realized a large firm “was not a good fit for me.” Through networking, he landed a job serving as corporate counsel for Adidas. During his eight years there, he continued to support the growth of Oregon Chai (which he notes his Jewish friends all want to pronounce “hi”). The combination of product development in big business and growing an entrepreneurial start-up was an excellent preparation for launching Meriwether Group and for writing Heed Your Call. He says he’s a prime example of being able to be a CEO with financial stability and a luxury car, and also a happy, creative person involved with his family. David and Heather have a 15-year-old son, Sawyer, and a 12-year-old daughter, Hailey Lena (named in memory of David’s grandmother). Like many families, they are not affiliated with a congregation, though they do attend High Holiday services and Hailey has spent several summers at B’nai B’rith Camp. “We light Shabbat candles on Friday night and try to observe Shabbat as a day of rest,” says David. The family also celebrates the holidays with their good friends and neighbors, Todd and Levia Friedman, whose children are the same age as the Howitt kids. During Passover David says they try to ask their children questions relevant to both the holiday and their own lives. His favorite question is “If you had to leave home with one day’s notice, what would you bring and why?”
David Howitt: MeriwetherGroup.com | HeedYourCall.com
At 15, David Howitt visited the Western Wall in Jerusalem with his grandmother Lena Howitt, z’l. He plans to return to Israel this month.
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OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 11
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OAJC MOVES MISSION TO FEDERATION The Oregon Area Jewish Committee has integrated its mission-related activities into the newly named Jewish Community Relations Council (formerly the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland’s Community Relations Committee). Recognizing that being an independent organization was becoming increasingly unsustainable, the OAJC leadership explored several different models before proposing an “organizational integration” model to the federation board. OAJC Executive Director Joanne Van Ness Menashe joined the federation team in February to lead the new Intergroup Outreach Committee of the Jewish Community Relations Council. OAJC President Jeff Reingold and other board members have assumed leadership roles in the new committee and expanded JCRC. Before being named executive director of the OAJC in September of 2013, Joanne held leadership positions at the Oregon Ballet Theatre, Oregon Humanities, Nonprofit Association of Oregon, Oregon Symphony, Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Downtown Corvallis Association. She serves on the boards of Congregation Beth Israel, Cedar Sinai Park and the Sisterhood of Congregation Beth Israel. In her new role at federation, Joanne is moving forward with two intergroup programs formerly organized by the OAJC. The 16th annual Community Intergroup Seder will be 6-9 pm, March 30, at the MJCC. Unto Every Person Is A Name, the annual reading of Holocaust victims’ names on Yom HaShoah – Day of Remembrance, will be 10:30 am-6 pm, April 16, at Pioneer Courthouse Square. email@example.com | 503-892-7401 SHARON MORELL PANELIST AT JFNA INVESTMENT INSTITUTE Oregon Jewish Community Foundation Board President Sharon Morell participated in Jewish Federations of North America’s Investment Institute conference in February 2015. The gathering, held in Florida every other year, brings together influential stakeholders from federations, the Jewish community and private foundations from across the country that collectively represent more than $65 billion in Jewish communal philanthropic assets. Sharon was part of a panel that addressed Where Opportunities and Risks Are Today – Due Diligence Across the Investment Landscape. “It’s very exciting to see OJCF’s president serving as a panelist at this important national Jewish Federation Investment Institute conference,” says OJCF Executive Director Julie Diamond. “Sharon Morell brings her extensive knowledge and experience in financial management and investments to this meeting, as well as her experience as a member of the OJCF Investment Committee.” ojcf.org
12 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
OJCF ANNOUNCES COMMUNITY ENDOWMENT FUND AWARDS FOR 2014 The Oregon Jewish Community Foundation Distribution Committee, charged with oversight for the Community Endowment Fund, announced grant awards for 2014 totaling $74,000. Following an extensive review of past grantmaking approaches and current community needs, the committee and board of directors voted to continue a strategy of grant-making in key strategic areas rather than issue a Request for Proposals. “These grants support programs and organizations that engage multiple age groups in the Jewish philanthropic experience of learning about community needs and providing funding in response,” says President and Committee Chair Sharon Morell. Grant awards: B’nai B’rith Camp, $2,000 in support of teen philanthropy program; Camp Solomon Schechter, $2,000 in support of teen philanthropy program; Create A Jewish Legacy Oregon/Life & Legacy, $30,000 to continue the legacy development program in partnership with the Harold Grinspoon Foundation; $10,000 to establish a Community Emergency Fund, details to be clarified by board subcommittee; Greater Portland Hillel, $2,666.66 to support Jewish student life on campus; Jewish Young Adult Giving Circle (working title), $5,000 in start-up costs; Oregon Hillel, $2,666.67 to support Jewish student life at University of Oregon; Oregon Hillel, $2,666.67 to support its work with Oregon State University to establish a new OSU Hillel; Oregon Jewish Community Youth Foundation (OJCYF), $9,000 for the OJCYF’s annual grant-making to community nonprofits; PJ Library, $8,000 shared between Portland metro and four other communities around Oregon, in partnership with the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland, B’nai B’rith Camp, Jewish Federation of Lane County, local synagogues, individual funders and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation. 503-248-9328 | ojcf.org CEDAR SINAI PARK RECEIVES CAPITAL CAMPAIGN GRANTS In January Cedar Sinai Park received a $400,000 capital gift from the Meyer Memorial Trust and a $50,000 grant from The Oregon Community Foundation to construct the new Harold Schnitzer Health and Rehabilitation Care Center. The 48-bedroom residential facility will support elders and people with disabilities through a “household” model. “Research has shown that even very fragile elders function at a higher level in a household care setting,” says CSP CEO David Fuks. “The Harold Schnitzer Health and Rehabilitation Care Center will use the household model to provide our most fragile community members a care environment that enhances functioning, increases dignity and significantly improves quality of care and quality of life,” he adds. “This innovation will help us to create a setting with personal choice and dignity at its center,” says CSP Capital Campaign Chair Jim Winkler. “It is time to assure that institutions bend to meet the needs of elders rather than expecting elders to bend to fit into institutional routines.” Meyer Memorial Trust was first called the Fred G. Meyer Charitable Trust. It was created by the late Fred G. Meyer, who built the chain of retail stores bearing his name throughout the Pacific Northwest. There is currently no relationship between the company and the charitable trust. The $50,000 grant from The Oregon Community Foundation was awarded from discretionary and/or advised funds, including the Cornelius and Mildred Dixon Memorial Fund of OCF, which provided $12,700; the George and Helen Largey Fund of OCF, which provided $11,600; the H.J. and Grace Sandberg Fund of OCF, which provided $14,700; and the Sigel/Wagenknecht Fund of OCF, which provided $11,000. “OCF is proud to support Cedar Sinai Park in their expansion of the new Harold Schnitzer Health and Rehabilitation Care Center, a 48-bedroom residential facility,” says Kathleen Cornett, Vice President of Grants & Programs. “The expanded center will provide tremendous programming and support for aging Oregonians and persons with disabilities.” cedarsinaipark.org NEVEH SHALOM GETS GRANT FOR INCLUSION TRAINING Congregation Neveh Shalom will receive a $1,000 grant from the OHSU Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities. The funding will provide social and educational inclusion training for professionals and parents, enhancing the integration of kids with special needs in the congregation’s
classrooms. Neveh Shalom has a clear philosophy that our Jewish learning programs are for all children in our community. There is always more learning to be done as to how best to create and implement the learning and social goals that will make the experience the best one possible for our teachers, children and families – and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to move forward in these areas. Director of Congregational Learning Mel Berwin will convene a meeting of teachers, parents and education consultants to plan the two trainings, which will be held in March and April. TASK Disabilities Inclusion Specialist Corinne Spiegel, from Jewish Family & Child Service, and Eddy Shuldman will assist in the trainings. firstname.lastname@example.org | nevehshalom.org PIXIE PROJECT GETS GRANT FROM SCOTT WAINNER The Pixie Project animal adoption center and low-cost care center has received a $175,000 donation from Internet entrepreneur Scott Wainner. These funds will enable The Pixie Project to increase low-cost pet clinic services and staff for 2015, under the leadership of Executive Director Amy Sacks, who was featured on the September 2014 cover of Oregon Jewish Life. The Pixie Project is a nonprofit animal adoption center and rescue in Portland. Scott Wainner is an Internet entrepreneur and angel investor who bootstrapped five companies, with no funding and no debt, starting at the age of 16. pixieproject.org
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Passovermeans spring cleaning By Rich Geller
Passover is just around the corner, and that means it’s time for spring cleaning! If your New Year’s resolution to finally get organized never quite panned out, Pesach presents the perfect opportunity to make good on that promise. The Torah instructs us to rid our homes of hametz or leavened foods in anticipation of Passover: “Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread; on the very first day you shall remove leaven from your houses, for whoever eats leavened bread from the first day to the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel.” Exodus 12:15. The search for hametz necessitates giving your home or apartment a deep and thorough cleaning. If you are a parent with young children, it’s also a great time to take inventory and donate, recycle and declutter. So before you’re banished from the entire Jewish community, here are some simple steps you can take to create order from chaos throughout your home. STEP ONE: Assemble your team. Remember, even Moses couldn’t do alone. Be sure to enlist your children in the Passover housecleaning. Then watch history come alive as they kvetch and complain, just as the ancient Israelites griped and grumbled their way through the desert for 40 years in search of the promised land! Leo Geller demonstrates proper chametz retrieval.
STEP TWO: Find strength in unity. Remember when you were a kid, how your Mom would get rid of all your stuff while you were away at summer camp or off visiting your grandparents? Why not take a more democratic tack and include your children in the decluttering fun? Crank up some tunes, put out some snacks and you’ve got yourself a sorting party! During the days leading up to the holiday, try to tackle one category per day – be it books, toys or clothing – to sort through together. Make a “keep” pile, a “hand-me-down” pile for siblings and a “donate” pile. Set aside books you might wish to sell back at Powell’s or to give to Goodwill or your local library. Encourage your kids to deposit the proceeds from any books sold into your home’s tzedakah box. STEP THREE: Support the Arts. It is amazing how fast stuff accumulates when you have young children. Take art projects for example. In less than nine years, we have acquired enough drawings, doodles and paintings to open a museum devoted to our children’s art that would rival the Louvre. To keep from being deluged by the tsunami that our kids’ art has become, my wife and I have found ways to stem the tide. Begin by gathering as many art projects as possible together into a single space. Have your children help you sort through them and put aside your favorite pieces in a “save” pile. Try to keep items that are representative of landmark ages and phases. Take photos of pieces you wish to remember but don’t wish to keep, and then recycle them. Hopefully by the time you are done, you will have retained the most meaningful pieces while freeing up valuable real estate in your home. STEP FOUR: Bedikas hametz. As Pesach approaches have your kids assist you in the bedikas hametz or the search for hametz. To prepare, first round up all the hametz in your home. This includes all your bread, cereal, pasta, pretzels and anything else that is considered to be leaven. Then either dispose of it or box it up and “sell” it to a neighbor for a nominal fee. Now comes the fun part! The traditional bedikas hametz is conducted after sundown on the night before Passover. This is a really fun family activity, and kids will love it because it combines both running around with flashlights and setting things on fire – under parental supervision of course!
Now comes the fun part! The traditional bedikas hametz is conducted after sundown on the night before Passover. This is a really fun family activity, and kids will love it because it combines both running around with flashlights and setting things on fire – under parental supervision of course!
WHAT YOU WILL NEED: flashlights (or wax candles if you’re brave), feathers, large wooden spoons and paper bags. It is traditional for parents to discreetly place 10 crusts of bread here and there for the wee ones to find. Assign each child a flashlight, a feather and a wooden spoon. When crumbs are found, sweep them into the “dustpan” with the “broom.” If your home is
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 15
SPECIAL SECTION: PASSOVER
“All hametz or leaven in my possession that I have not seen, and have not destroyed, shall be nullified and become ownerless, like the dust of the earth.” With your home now certified hametz free, you’re ready to rock Pesach! Watching chametz burn is captivating for children.
anything like mine, they’ll find all manner of relics, including ancient Cheerios, errant popcorn kernels and the ubiquitous Goldfish cracker. After the search is completed, place all hametz into a large paper bag. The following morning, burn the hametz in an indoor fireplace or safely outdoors and recite the following blessing: “All hametz or leaven in my possession that I have not seen, and have not destroyed, shall be nullified and become ownerless, like the dust of the earth.” With your home now certified hametz free, you’re ready to rock Pesach! STEP FIVE: Grow your own. Spring has long been synonymous with rebirth and renewal, as plants begin to flower, bud and blossom at this season. Now that your home has been restored and revitalized, why not brighten it by growing your own “bitter herbs” for the seder table? Not only is it a fun home project for children, it’s also a great way to beautify your home with some greenery. Parsley grows Julia Waldinger, a kindergarten for Pesach. teacher at Congregation Beth Israel in Portland, explains, “My favorite activity to do with my kindergarteners is planting parsley for Passover. Between Tu B’Shevat and Passover, we water our parsley and watch it grow.” 16 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
WHAT YOU WILL NEED: a flowerpot, some soil, parsley seeds and water. Let your children decorate the flowerpot with paint or markers. Then ask them to help you fill the flowerpot with soil and make a small indentation in the top of the soil with a finger. Give each child a few seeds and some water to sprinkle on the soil. Place the flowerpot in the sunshine, water daily and watch the parsley grow. The rewards of decluttering are infinite. A clean space frees your mind to focus on the themes of freedom that Pesach presents. The Exodus was about leaving the past behind as the Israelites walked the path of freedom to a new life. Just as G-d delivered the Israelites from Pharaoh’s tyranny in Egypt, so can you liberate yourself from the tyranny of clutter this spring. Some historians have even speculated that the ritual of spring cleaning itself may have its origins in the annual removal of hametz from Jewish homes prior to Pesach. So this spring, when you’re up to your knees in schmutz and schvitzing your keppe off cleaning, think of the generations before us that have kept the flames of freedom alive by preparing their homes for Passover. Now you are part of this proud tradition. Rich Geller is a freelance writer and father of three.
PASSOVER IN ISRAEL By Teddy Weinberger
The Passover season in Israel goes into full force right after Purim, that is, one month before the holiday. Israeli employers are encouraged to purchase various gifts for their employees, and consumers are encouraged to buy anything and everything in honor of the holiday. While it usually makes more economic sense to clean your car, refrigerator or sofa rather than to buy a new one, this does not stop the advertisers – and indeed many Israelis do use this festive period for special purchases. Thus, I doubt it was a coincidence that three weeks before the holiday, I noticed workers installing central air-conditioning at my neighbor’s house down the block. An early sign of the coming of Passover in the States – giant Passover sections at major supermarket chains in the big cities – is not as prominent here. At my local Publix supermarket in Miami, for example, they started getting ready for the holiday four weeks in advance. Here, Passover takes over my local grocery store only the week before the holiday. On the other hand, you don’t have the urgency to stock up on Passover goods that you have in the States , where you often have to be sure to buy all you need before the holiday starts (Publix began breaking down its Passover section on the first day of Passover). In Israel, Passover items are in ready supply throughout the holiday. Israeli children are given more than ample time to prepare for the holiday, to the great dismay of many Israeli parents. Regular public schools, religious and secular, typically recess eight days before Passover. In ultra-Orthodox schools (especially for the girls), the Passover vacation often begins two weeks before the holiday. Left on their own, I have found that my children do use this period to prepare for a holiday – only it’s the holiday of Lag B’omer rather than Passover. After the weeks-long preparation for the holiday of Purim (which means hoarding all the fireworks they can possibly get their hands on), the next focus of youthful energy seems to be the bonfires of Lag B’omer. Toward this end, children spend up to eight weeks gathering wood in all possible forms. It’s a good idea not to leave your old wooden chairs out in the open during this period. Before Passover, there are opportunities for children to have more enriching experiences than wood-gathering: many of the youth movements offer multiday hiking trips at this time. But the truth of the matter is that since Passover is the formative national experience in Judaic memory, sleeping on the shores of the Kinneret with your Zionist religious youth group is also a kind of preparation for the holiday. It is a way for your children to connect viscerally to this land, the Promised Land of the Exodus story. And this connection to the land is, of course, one of the reasons why people like us moved here in the first place. Happy Passover! Teddy Weinberger, Ph.D., writes from Givat Ze’ev, a suburb of Jerusalem just over the Green Line. He and his wife, Sarah Jane Ross, made aliyah in 1997 with their five children. Teddy is director of development for Meaningful, a company that works with Israeli non-profit organizations.
Second Night Community Seder Saturday, April 4, 6:00 p.m. Please call for reservations. 360-896-8088 • www.jewishvancouverusa.org 7800 NE 119th Street • Vancouver WA 98662
Celebrating Jewish Life in Southwest Washington OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 17
SPECIAL SECTION: PASSOVER
What Questions Do You Ask at Passover? By Amy Hirshberg Lederman
Ever since I can remember, I have been in a relationship with God. Despite growing up in a family of agnostics, I always believed in, and even felt, the presence of God in my world. My idea of God as a child was that of a Biblical God – allknowing, omnipotent, fatherlike and ubiquitous. My God was everywhere, like a full-time friend who protected and accompanied me throughout the day. When I was a sophomore at Oberlin College, I had a vivid dream about God: I was sitting in a vacant classroom, waiting for class to begin. I asked aloud, to an empty room, “What is God?” The answer came over a loudspeaker, in a voice that was neither male nor female, neither young nor old, in a language I didn’t know but totally understood. “God is that force inside you that strives to be good in a world that is not always good.” I have embraced this idea of God since my college days, and it has served me well as a compass when I have felt lost, afraid or unsure. It has helped guide me in my choices and soothe me in times of frustration or pain. There is a LOT of God talk in Judaism. Jewish liturgy and texts are filled with references to God. We are commanded to bless God 100 times a day – when we wake up, before we eat, when we drink wine and when we experience something for the first time. Jewish holidays often mention God, but the Mega-God holiday is Passover, which, more than any other holiday, focuses our attention on the actions of a God who intervenes directly in history to save us. Year after year we are commanded to tell the story of how God took the Hebrew slaves out of Egypt “with a strong hand and an outstretched arm.” God delivered the 10 plagues upon Egypt and parted the Red Sea so that the Israelites could pass through in safety. God brought the waters crashing down upon the Egyptian soldiers who were following in pursuit. Why did God do all of this? The answer came
18 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
seven weeks after the Exodus at the base of Mount Sinai, where the Hebrew people gathered for the first time to experience the most profound moment in Jewish history, the Revelation of the Torah. It was here that more than 600,000 (some put it at 2 million) Hebrew ex-slaves became unified as a spiritual nation, when they entered into the covenant with God. They were given freedom for a distinct and special purpose – to love God, to follow the laws of the Torah and to become a “kingdom of priests and a holy nation.” Our tradition teaches us that everyone was present on that day – from the leaders and the elders to the wood choppers and the water carriers, from the oldest sages to the newborns. We are also taught that each person saw, heard and understood the word of God uniquely, according to his or her own knowledge, experience, intellect and ability. What I take from our teachings is this: At the very moment when we first came together as the Jewish people, we also became aware that God would and could mean something different and unique to each of us. What we shared as a people at the foot of Mount Sinai was the undeniable personal yearning to know God. There is a line in the Haggadah that states: “in every generation we should regard ourselves as though we personally left Egypt.” One way that we can personally experience this commandment is to see it as an invitation to think about the “God conversation” in our lives. Do we feel a sense of God in our lives? Do we believe in the God of our youth, or have we abandoned those ideas as remnants of simpler times and thoughts? Do we yearn to hold on to something greater than ourselves, a higher power, a sense of awe and wonder, that inner voice that directs and guides us to do good? Are we unsure if we believe in God at all? And if we don’t believe in God, what does the God that we don’t believe in look like or mean to us? I’ll be honest. I miss the clarity I once felt about “my” God and the comfort I experienced
Year after year we are commanded to tell the story of how God
took the Hebrew slaves out of Egypt “with a strong hand and an
outstretched arm.” God delivered the 10 plagues upon Egypt
and parted the Red Sea so that the Israelites could pass through
in safety. God brought the waters crashing down upon the
Passover 2015 AVAILABLE APRIL 2nd - 5th, 2015 for pick up at Elephants NW 22nd Ave
Egyptian soldiers who were following in pursuit.
from my unwavering faith. Over the years my clarity has been replaced with a yearning to understand the meaning of the totality of life – the joys and blessings as well as the challenges, struggles and losses that I have faced. Where does God fit in to all of this and how? I can’t answer that for sure, but I know that I will never stop trying. Passover is a wonderful opportunity to look at where we are as we wander through our own desert of ideas about what God may or may not mean to us. For a lively conversation you might even consider posing this as the Fifth Question at your seder: “How is my God different from your God?”
Amy Hirshberg Lederman is an author, Jewish educator, public speaker and attorney. Her first book, To Life: Jewish Reflections on Everyday Living, goes into its second printing this fall. Visit her website at amyhirshberglederman. com.
STARTERS & SIDES Matzo Ball Soup Potato Latkes with apple sauce Potato Cheese Latkes with apple sauce Gefilte Fish with chrain Chrain with beets Chopped Chicken Livers Haroset Tsimmes
MAIN COURSE Beef Brisket with tsimmes Chicken Breast with apricot Marbella Chicken
DESSERTS Flourless Chocolate Truffle Cake Coconut Macaroons Chocolate Dipped Macaroons French Almond Macarons with vanilla
EASY ONLINE ORDERING! www.elephantsdeli.com | 503.299.6304 115 NW 22nd Ave, Portland 97210
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 19
SPECIAL SECTION: PASSOVER/CHEF’S CORNER
To Eat or Not to Eat Kitniyot this Passover
By guest columnist Lucia Schnitzer; Photos by Matthew Strauss
We’re just weeks away from experiencing the wonderful Passover festivities with our families and friends. Our limited food options create culinary challenges, but we can still create amazing meals for the seder and for the week. Along with not consuming chametz (leavened bread), many of us do not consume kitniyot, which include rice, corn, millet and legumes (peas, green beans, soybeans, peanuts, sesame seeds, poppy seeds and mustard). Kitniyot have been banned for centuries by Ashkenazi Jews (decendents of Jews from France, Germany and Eastern Europe). Medieval sages gave various reasons for banning kitniyot, with the most common being that they were so similar to banned grains that they might be confused, or they were commonly stored with chametz. Whatever the reason, most Ashkenazi Jews today do not eat kitniyot, even though it’s not prohibited by Torah law. Since 2013 the Orthodox Union, the world leader in kosher certification, has included a new symbol of authorization for Passover products: OU Kitniyot. The new symbol of authorization appears on packaging with the explanatory message: OU Kitniyot: Acceptable for those who consume kitniyot on Passover.
20 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
While you won’t generally see kitniyot dishes at an Ashkenazi seder, they are quite common at Sephardic seders. Sephardic Jews are those of Spain, Portugal, North Africa and the Middle East and their descendants. During Passover both Sephardim and Ashkenazim prohibit the eating of barley, oats, rye, spelt and wheat unless meticulous steps have been followed to turn the flours into matzah (unleavened bread). But there are distinct differences at a Sephardic seder. One obvious difference is food seasoned with unique Middle Eastern flavors such as allspice, cloves and cinnamon. A traditional Sephardic Passover meal for the Jews of Turkey typically includes stuffed vegetable dishes. Whether or not you eat kitniyot, here are some amazing recipes you can make and adjust to fit your Passover traditions. Warmest wishes to you all for this Passover holiday. Next Year in Jerusalem! See recipes page 22. Guest columnist Lucia Schnitzer and her husband, Ken, run Luci’s Healthy Marketplace in Phoenix, which they opened in 2009 in Lucia’s honor after her successful battle with breast cancer.
Chag Pesach Sameach! Rabbi Michael Z. Cahana, Cantor Ida Rae Cahana, and Rabbi Rachel L. Joseph and the rest of the CBI Team.
Join us on April 2, 2015 at the Global Business Awards Lunch at the Portland Hilton
Tributes By Kerry Tymchuk
Andrea Bartoloni Richard Birkel, PhD Edwin Harnden The Honorable John Haroldson Ken Thrasher Sandra McDonough James Rudd
to Honor and Give Tribute Ron Tonkin, z’l
Governor Victor Atiyeh, Tom Moyer, Carl & Mercedes Deiz, Andrew Kerr,Terry Amato
For the Benefit of Special Olympics—Oregon
For more information please call: 503.224.4193 or 503.248.0600 ext. 29
Doors Open ------------------11:30 Program ------------------------12:00 Conclusion ---------------------1:30
Individual Ticket ----------$75 Ambassador Table ---$1,200
Passover Stuffed Japanese Eggplants Ingredients
10 to 12 small Japanese eggplants (depending on size) 1¼ pounds ground beef 1 cup freshly chopped parsley 1 large clove garlic, minced 3 extra large eggs 1 /3 cup matzo meal Sea salt Freshly ground pepper Avocado oil 1 medium yellow onion, diced small 2 cups Roma tomatoes, diced small 1 cup canned crushed tomatoes 1 cup water
Sephardic Rice and Peas with Shredded London Broil Ingredients
1 pound London Broil steak 2 cups rice 2 cups water 1 cup reserved water 4 tablespoons avocado oil ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon cinnamon ½ teaspoon allspice 1 bag frozen peas ½ cup pistachios ½ cup pine nuts Instructions Boil the meat for 1 hour (or bake in oven at 350 for 2 hours). Let London Broil rest then shred meat and reserve 1 cup of liquid for rice. Bring 2 cups of water and 1 cup of reserved liquid to a boil. Add rice, 2 tablespoons of oil and salt then simmer for 15-20 minutes. Let the rice rest for a few minutes. Mix cinnamon and allspice into the rice. In a small pan sauté frozen peas with avocado oil for about 10-15 minutes. In a separate pan, sauté almonds, pistachios and pine nuts for 3-4 minutes adding a pinch of cinnamon and allspice. Combine all ingredients in a serving dish and serve.
22 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
Instructions Wash and dry eggplants. Slice the stem end off each eggplant and slice in half lengthwise. Using a small melon baller, scoop out some pulp to create a shell to stuff. Dice the pulp into small pieces and reserve for later use. Heat a 12-inch skillet on medium-high and add two tablespoons avocado oil. Season eggplant shells with salt and sauté each shell (hollow side down) until golden and slightly softened; set aside on a large plate. In a medium bowl, combine ground beef, parsley (reserving one 1 tablespoon for garnish), garlic, eggs and matzo meal. Season the mix with salt and pepper. Fill each eggplant shell with ground beef filling and place in a greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Heat oven to 350°F. Sauté onions and eggplant pulp and spoon over eggplants in baking dish. Mix crushed tomatoes and diced Roma tomatoes with water and pour over eggplants. Garnish with a tablespoon of parsley and season once more with salt and pepper. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil and bake a half hour. Remove aluminum foil and bake for another half hour. Remove dish from oven when it looks golden and bubbly and is cooked through. You may make this several days ahead. It can be reheated or eaten cold as you prefer for an appetizer or vegetable side dish.
& Teens too A child friendly resource for parents
Winter Camp Fun Camp Gan Israel MJCC Winter Break Camp
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 23
CAMPS NEED TECHNOLOGY, campers don’t By Deborah Moon
As computers, cell phones and other evolving technologies become more tightly woven into the fabric of our daily lives, summer camps struggle with a growing dichotomy. As a business, camps rely on technology to efficiently manage everything from registration and medical information to alumni relations. But camp has traditionally been a technology-free oasis that allows our youth the opportunity to develop skills and relationships unfettered by omnipresent connections to parents and the world. At the last biennial conference of the Foundation for Jewish Camp, technology was a hot topic. Blogging on the foundation’s website after the event, Rabbi Jason Miller wrote, “The general consensus among camp experts is that technology shouldn’t be seen much by the campers who should unplug and have an electronics-free oasis during their summer experience. However, today’s summer camps must be run efficiently with the most up-to-date technology available.” Even the companies charged with helping camps run as businesses feel that the place for technology is in the camp office. CampBrain, used by about 1,000 camps, is management software intended to assist camps in all aspects of running their operation. “Our real purpose is to enable camp administrators to manage their camp as efficiently as possible, so most of our tools are directed at functionality for them and for the parents during the year,” says CampBrain CEO Rob Carmichael. “But, from what we have seen, most camps choose to limit campers’ use of technology, wanting to provide a time and space for other things like sports, activities, relationship-building, character-building, etc.” Paul Berliner, COO of CampMinder, which provides a business management platform for more than 600 camps, voices an even stronger stand on camper access to technology. “My personal opinion is camps are a device-free refuge to learn life skills naturally,” says Paul. “In the 21st century there is a serious lack of specific life skills like teamwork, productivity, relationships … things you don’t learn behind a screen … (but) that you can learn naturally in a camp environment.” The American Camp Association estimates there are 12,000 American camps – approximately 7,000 are resident camps and 5,000 are day camps; this number provides room for a multitude of policies and opinions on technology. From its 2013 biennial Emerging Issues survey, the ACA notes, “We know that 74% of camps don’t allow campers to use any personal electronic devices at any time, and 85% of camps indicate that campers are able to communicate with their parents via hand-written letters or postcards.” Founded in 1921, B’nai B’rith Camp has “very strong unplugged practices for our campers, and (we) do not share photos during the summer,” according to Camp Director Michelle Koplan. At both the winter office and the campgrounds on the Oregon coast, professional staff “use technology to keep our business efficiently and effectively running.” For the campers the summer is essentially screen-free, with the exception of “projector screens for song sessions and movie nights.” Although many camps do post photos during the summer to keep parents connected, at BB Camp “Our board and staff have determined that, while it may be a bit harder on the parents, giving the kids a few weeks in the summer free of their
24 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
“You are giving your children a great gift by sending them to camp, where they are disconnected from technology and busy experiencing, exploring, playing, learning and, yes, building friendships for life.” electronic tethers and their parents’ loving eyes significantly enhances their camp experience,” says Michelle. “You are giving your children a great gift by sending them to camp, where they are disconnected from technology and busy experiencing, exploring, playing, learning and, yes, building friendships for life.” The Union for Reform Judaism doesn’t have a nationwide policy on technology use at camps. URJ Camp Kalsman Director David Berkman says all camps struggle with the prevailing culture of perpetual connection. At Kalsman, campers are allowed to use some technology but do not have access to email or cell phones or anything that connects to the Internet. “Camp, we feel, provides a rare and valuable opportunity to connect with individuals on a face-to-face basis and with their sense of Judaism, spirituality and nature,” says David. “You can’t do that if your thumbs are tied to a screen.”
Camp Miriam Gabriola Island, BC
A Jewish Summer Camp with a Difference “Meaningful, educational and fun social experience that has the kids waiting and wishing for more!” - a parent
“Every day we have fun and every day we learn “Every day we have and every we learn something!” —afun nine year old day camper something!” - a nine year old camper Creative Programming • Theme Days • Shabbat at the Point Creative Programming Theme•Days • Shabbat the Point Israeli Dancing and•Culture Overnight HikingatTrips Israeli DancingCHILDREN and Culture • Overnight GRADES 2-11 Hiking Trips CHILDREN GRADES 2-11 Registration 2015 Available Online campmiriam.org firstname.lastname@example.org campmiriam.org•• email@example.com Ph: Ph: (604) (604) 266-2825 266-2825 26 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
At Camp Nageela West, which is moving to Arizona this summer, campers are allowed to use technology, but not communicative technology such as cell phones or Internet. “Many campers use iPods, iPads and other devices, and we do occasionally employ a computer in activities,” says Rabbi Dani Locker, director of Camp Nageela West. “We want campers to discover the joys of outdoor living and disconnecting from technology on their own, not feeling like it’s been ripped away from them. We also feel that using technology in moderation is a teachable value, whereas completely shunning technology may work while at camp, but has little staying power once they get home.” The camp also makes use of a concept inherent in Judaism – Shabbat. “We unplug completely on Shabbat, and encourage campers to do the same at home,” says Rabbi Dani. “And we encourage them to diversify their daily activities so that they are not ruled by technology.” But not all camps are the same. “Types of camps range incredibly – it is not just what one thinks of as a secluded overnight camp in the woods,” says CampBrain’s CEO Rob Carmichael. “For those traditional camps, I would suggest the vast majority want their campers to unplug. However, there are camps for entrepreneurs, camps for technology learning, camps for just about every specialty you can imagine … and those camps may have a different take on technology at camp.” In fact the ACA Emerging Issues survey notes 54% of directors responded that they had added a new activity or program in the past two years, including 12% who have added STEM programs (science, technology, engineering, math). Many day camps offer specialty camps that use technology extensively. Science camps include computer programming, robotics and video game creation. Some art camps also rely on technology for areas such as web animation and film editing. Many day schools offer summer programming that allows campers to continue to learn in an informal, exploration-based setting that often uses technology. One program that incorporates technology into classes to provide “new learning” and inquiry is Portland Jewish Academy’s Summer Discovery Program. Summer Discovery Director Celinda Llanez says that for summer programming, the Jewish day school integrates technology in ways that will spark inquiry, problem-solving and a connection to real-life applications. “This summer, our class Full STEAM Ahead (STEAM = science, tech, engineering, art, mathematics) incorporates technology as students collaborate to construct creative, innovative solutions to ‘impossible’ problems,” says Celinda. Parents who want to find residential or day camps that include technology programs as a primary or secondary focus can explore ACA’s “Find a Camp” tool online at find.acacamps.org.
Get up to $1,000 off with One Happy Camper or 40-60% off with BunkConnect as a first-time Jewish camper! Details at
THE STRENGTH OF A PEOPLE. THE POWER OF COMMUNITY.
6680 SW Capitol Highway | Portland, OR 97219 503.245.6219 | www.jewishportland.org
Emma Rosenthal OJCYF & Neveh Shalom Portland When I was at Camp Ramah we did an IDF training simulation. I met my best friends crawling through the obstacle course.
How did you meet your best friend at camp?
Jon Caplan Neveh Shalom Beaverton
Judy Blauer OJCF and Cedar Sinai Park Portland
Michelle Koplan BB Camp Beaverton
We got sick together at BB Camp. Gary Rubin and I were in the infirmary together eating green Jell-O and drinking ginger ale. We’re still best friends. He was best man at our wedding.
I started going to BB Camp when I was 8 and kept going till I was a counselor in high school. I became close to the girls in my cabin – there was so much comradery and closeness. A couple of us even pledged the same sorority at University of Washington.
My bunkmate and I had a terrible fight. But when she got sick, I went out barefoot at night over the gravel to get a counselor. I didn’t care that we had been fighting/ I wanted to help my friend.
NEXT MONTH: What one possession would you never part with? To share your reply, please send your short answer, name, congregation or organization (optional), city and photo to deborah.moon@ojlife. com by March 9.
WE ARE SUMMER & we’re in your neighborhood
Day Camps - Full & Half Days
Preschool • Youth • Teen
Sports • Arts • Skate • Dance Nature • Music • Gymnastics • Theater Day Camps – Full & Half Day Preschool – Youth – Teen Sports, Arts, Skate, Dance Nature, Music, Gymnastics, Theater Swim Lessons and Daily Swim Sessions Summer Swim Team Beginners, Intermediate, Advanced
Register for summer today! www.PortlandOregon.gov/parks/summercamps 28 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
CAMP DIRECTORY CAMPERSHIPS One Happy Camper and Bunk Connect onehappycamper.org The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland, in partnership with the Foundation for Jewish Camp, is proud to offer first-time campers incentives of up to $1,000 and discounts of 40-60% to attend overnight Jewish camp.
RESIDENTIAL CAMPS B’nai B’rith Camp
Camp Miriam 950 W 41st Ave. #303 Vancouver, BC V5Z 2N7 604 266 2825 campmiriam.org Habonim Dror Camp Miriam, on beautiful Gabriola Island, BC, offers a diverse Jewish camp experience for children completing grades 2-11. Emphasis is on building a Jewish youth community based on values of equality and inclusion.
Camp Nageela West
9400 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy. #147 Beaverton, OR 97005 503-452-3443 bbcamp.org
3511 Verde Valley School Road Sedona, AZ 86351 801-613-1539 nageelawest.org
B’nai B’rith Camp provides a welcoming community based in Jewish values. Campers expand their creativity, develop their Jewish identities, and enjoy a summer filled with music, athletics, and more. Building friendships for life since 1921!
Three weeks of crafts, sports, outdoor activities, watersports and developing incredible relationships! Highest staff/camper ratio in the business. Payment plans to make your summer Nageelaffordable.
THE ONLY JEWISH OVERNIGHT SPORTS CAMP ON THE WEST COAST!
OUR IDEAL CAMPER We train and play hard, but coachability and a desire to
If your child loves sports and wants to advance his or her
improve are more essential than current skill level
skills in a Jewish environment, you’ve found the perfect camp.
when considering our program.
During our two-week camp sessions, campers focus on developing athletic skills and improving as teammates in their sport of choice – Baseball, Basketball, Soccer, or Tennis.
415-997-8844 | maccabisportscamp.org
REGISTRATION IS OPEN NOW, FOR SUMMER 2015!
JCC Maccabi Sports Camp is funded by:
In affiliation with:
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 29
3 weeks youâ€™ll remember 4 ever
JCC Maccabi Sports Camp 1000 El Camino Real Atherton, CA 415-997-8844 maccabisportscamp.org Programs in soccer, basketball, baseball, and tennis for boys and girls grades 4-12. Two-week sessions combine high-level specialized sports instruction with the fun, friendship, and community of a Jewish overnight camp in the Bay area.
URJ Camp Kalsman winter: 3805 108th Ave. NE, Suite 100 Bellevue, WA 98004 Summer: 14724 184th St. NE Arlington, WA 98223 425-284-4484 kalsman.urjcamps.org URJ Camp Kalsman is the best Jewish residential camp in the Pacific Northwest. Join us for a summer of fun, friendships of a lifetime, and an unparalleled Jewish experience!
YMCA Camp Collins 3001 SE Oxbow Parkway Gresham, OR 97080 503-663-5813 ymcacw.org
West paintball archery art LOCATED IN INCREDIBLE
nature sports drama
watersports jewish pride trips
for boys & girls 9-16
Overnight camp (day program available) 30 minutes east of Portland. Sessions late June to mid-August. Horses, swimming, ropes course, archery and traditional camp activities build around our five core values and intentional relationship building programs.
DAY CAMPS MJCC Day Camp 6651 SW Capitol Hwy. Portland, OR 97219 503-244-0111 oregonjcc.org/daycamp Full-day fun all summer long 7:30 am-6 pm. Traditional day camp activities include swimming, sports, arts, crafts, rock wall climbing and more! Ages 3-11. Open to everyone! Full and half day options.
PJA Summer Discovery 6651 SW Capitol Hwy. Portland, OR 97219 503-244-0126 pjaproud.org/summer
801.613.1.JEW firstname.lastname@example.org nageelawest.org facebook.com/nageelawest 30 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
Experience exceptional classes taught by professional teachers. Exercise your brain in a fun way and challenge yourself to learn something new! Experience this fabulous summer enrichment experience. Open to everyone ages 4-14.
C e l e b r a t i n g o v e r 3 0 Ye a r s
Portland Parks & Recreation Summer Camps 14 camp sites throughout the city 503-823-2525 PortlandParks.org We offer a variety of camps including sports, arts, dance, nature and more! We offer camp programs at more than a dozen community centers throughout the city. Join us for FUN summer camps this summer!
Willowbrook Arts Camp PO Box 3546 Tualatin, OR 97062 503-691-6132 willowbrookartscamp.org Creativity flourishes in a beautiful outdoor setting! Children ages 3-18 explore hands-on experiences in world arts and crafts, nature, writing, ceramics, basketry, filmmaking, theater, music, dance, and much more. No previous experience is necessary. (Includes all summer youth programs advertising in this issue of Oregon Jewish Life)
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 31
Amy Shlossman knows volunteers have always been at the core of the Red Cross mission. Here she checks out two historic uniforms. The uniform on the left is a 1940sâ€™ canteen volunteer uniform worn by volunteers who served donuts and coffee to the troops. On the right is a 1960sâ€™ volunteer uniform that was worn by volunteers who did tours in Vietnam and overseas working in recreational services or in the hospitals passing out reading materials and organizing games and other entertainment.
Amy Shlossman of the Red Cross
The experience to lead, the passion to inspire By Deborah Moon
A family and synagogue that instilled a dedication to social service combined with an impressive professional resume made 32-year-old Amy Shlossman an ideal fit for her current post as CEO of the American Red Cross of the Cascades Region.
32 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
Amy Shlossman with then Sen. Barack Obama in 2008 on the campaign trail at an event in Arizona.
Before her move to Oregon last August to assume leadership of the Red Cross in Oregon and Southwest Washington, Amy had racked up a decade of experience leading large, complex state and national organizations. When she became Chief of Staff for the White House Office of Management and Budget shortly before the 17-day government shutdown in October 2013, Amy was thrust into the center of key decisions about “what can stay operating and what can’t.” Agencies with multi-year revenue sources and those funded by fees could stay open. Services essential to life or safety had to continue to function, though for those Amy had to “address a workforce required to show up but not get paid.” And when the shutdown was over, restarting government was a complex operation. During normal government operations, Amy says it was an incredible experience to help manage the federal office responsible for developing the president’s annual budget and setting fiscal and management policies for more than 100 agencies in the executive branch. As the White House Chief of Staff for Homeland Security for the previous five years, Amy oversaw operations and policy development for the third largest department of the federal government, with 240,000 employees in more than 75 countries – more than ample training for leading the 35 Red Cross staffers and 1,700 volunteers in two states. Working with Homeland Security she saw the Red Cross in action at multiple natural disasters and during national security threats, for which she led the response efforts and crisis communications. “I worked closely with the Red Cross wherever disaster struck—flood, fires, hurricanes, tornadoes – also non-natural disasters such as the BP oil spill, Boston Marathon bombing and school shootings,” says Amy. “(Through) that experience with the Red Cross, I was so impressed by the mission, service delivery, and incredible dedication of the staff and volunteers.” The organization’s infrastructure, capacity to respond when needed and humanitarian focus made the Red Cross a compelling next step when she was ready to leave Washington, D.C. The very things that impressed Amy are likely the same reason March has been proclaimed Red Cross Month by every president since President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued the first such proclamation in 1943: “I request that during that month (March) our people rededicate themselves to the splendid aims and activities of the Red Cross.” The special month affords an opportunity to honor the everyday heroes who help the Red Cross fulfill its mission. “We could not deliver these services without our volunteer
March is Red Cross Month The Red Cross is a charitable organization, not a government agency. It depends on volunteers and donations from individuals, corporations and foundations to fund its services. Services include: • Disaster Response: Provide food, shelter and comfort to families affected by domestic disasters. • Preparedness: Increase community resilience by helping individuals, families and businesses prepare for disasters. • Service to the Armed Forces: Support members of the military and their families pre-deployment, during deployment and when they return home through emergency communication services, financial assistance and re-integration, and veteran services. • Health and Safety Training: Teach lifesaving health and safety skills through training courses such as first aid/CPR, water safety and babysitter training to millions of people annually. • Blood Services: Largest supplier of blood in the United States, providing about 40% of the nation’s blood supply to aid accident and burn victims, surgery patients and patients being treated for a variety of diseases. • Volunteers: Nationally, volunteers constitute 90% of the Red Cross workforce.
American Red Cross, Cascades Region: 3131 Vancouver Ave., Portland | 503-284-1234 | redcross.org/cascades OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 33
First Lady Michelle Obama meets with Amy Shlossman and other Homeland Security staff and Sec. Janet Napolitano.
She first experienced Red Cross disaster relief when Arizona was an evacuation site for those fleeing Hurricane Katrina.
While serving as White House Chief of Staff for Homeland Security, Amy Shlossman joins the Border Patrol for a patrol in Arizona. 34 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
corps of people, who get up in the middle of the night to go to a house fire or deploy to a natural disaster for three to five weeks at a time,” says Amy. “They are an exceptionally dedicated corps of people devoted to this humanitarian mission.” In addition to the volunteers, those who donate funds or blood and those who take a Red Cross health and safety class such as first aid or CPR help make communities safer. In fact, a babysitting class she took when she was 11, followed by a lifeguard class a couple years later, were Amy’s first experiences with the Red Cross. Those classes coincided with her early attraction to public service. “I’ve spent my career in nonprofit and public service sectors,” says Amy. She attributes that interest to the things she learned growing up in Phoenix, where she became a bat mitzvah at a Reform congregation that emphasized social justice and participated in Jewish youth groups through high school. She spent several summers at a Jewish sleep-away camp in New York. Her experiences in the organized Jewish world dovetailed with her family’s focus on service. Her parents, Dr. Marc and Karen Shlossman, played a key role in her desire to help others: “It’s in my family’s blood.” “My mom is a retired social worker,” she says. “My dad is a periodontist. He was in private practice for 30 years, but now he teaches at a dental school and takes his students on service projects around the world. Last year he took students to South Africa to set up a dental clinic.” After graduating from the University of Arizona with a degree in public administration/public finance, she worked in youth development and service learning programs before she joined the staff of Arizona Gov. Janet Ann Napolitano. As director of policy in the governor’s office, Amy worked with 40 state agencies to balance the state budget and implement initiatives on education, health care, transportation and economic development. She first experienced Red Cross disaster relief when Arizona was an evacuation site for those fleeing Hurricane Katrina. “We set up a large shelter at the Arizona fairgrounds,” Amy says. “I was given the job of writing the daily shelter newsletter with information on what services were available and to help people integrate into the community.” Joining Gov. Napolitano to campaign for Barack Obama in 2008, she met the then-senator from Illinois. But as Homeland chief of staff in the White House, serving under U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Napolitano, Amy says she was very much “a staffer.” Interactions with the president were through the members of his cabinet, such as Sec. Napolitano. Having seen the impact of the Red Cross during her stint with Homeland Security, Amy was already well aware of the compelling importance of the Red Cross mission. Then, when she came to Portland for an interview last summer, “I fell in love with the Portland area.”
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In 2006 President Clinton meets with John Sandweg, Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano and Amy Shlossman.
Even though the rains arrived a couple months after she moved here in late August, she still loves Portland. She enjoys the Portland art scene and likes to visit the various art fairs. She walks the two blocks to work every day and has put “a bike on my Portland list.” When she moved to D.C., she left her 90-pound Australian cattle dog/husky mix with her parents. Now she’s on the lookout for a rescue dog to add to her home here. She’s also checking out the city’s synagogues and says she enjoyed High Holiday services at Neveh Shalom soon after she arrived. She’s also discovered that, in addition to the longstanding volunteer corps, the Red Cross has plenty of opportunities for day-of-service projects. This month she hopes the community will participate in “a great mitzvah project” to prevent home fires. After a morning training session, teams of adult volunteers will spend March 14 walking through the Lents neighborhood, offering free smoke detectors and helping families evaluate their preparedness for fires and other disasters. 36 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
“The most common disaster is home fires,” says Amy. “The Red Cross responds to 60,000 disasters a year. The most common on a daily basis is home fires. We are the first call the fire department makes when a family is displaced. Our volunteers are on call and trained and ready to respond at any time. … We provide emergency and immediate housing and financial help to buy clothes, glasses, medicine.” The average cost to help one family after a house fire is $1,250. In 2013, the Cascade Region Red Cross responded to 700 fires that impacted 900 families. This past December there were 60 home fires in the region. “Fire Hurts/Red Cross Helps” raises awareness and funds to meet that local need. “We raise our local budget,” explains Amy. “Dollars that come into the local office stay local.” Cascades Region Director of Communications Paula Fasano Negele says, “Amy has done some amazing programs. She has really helped us to focus. She is an amazing woman.” For her part, Amy is pleased to be in Portland and leading the regional Red Cross. “It’s a real honor to be part of the Red Cross team,” says Amy. “The work we do is really powerful.”
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[ISRAEL/AN OREGONIAN IN ISRAEL]
This election campaign is especially personal and vindictive
C By Mylan Tanzer
Compulsive military service has created a kind of IDF subculture in civil society. Since most Israelis are IDF veterans, most Hebrew slang naturally has its origins in the IDF.When you go through a difficult period, you say that it was like “tironut” or basic training. When I encourage my kids to work hard, I say to them what commanding officers always say to their troops: “It’s difficult in training, so it will be easy in battle.” When someone performs a mitzvah, it is said that he or she deserves a “tzalash,” which is the IDF medal for bravery. But as the elections approach, the most common military jargon seems to be “yorim b’toch ha’nagmash” (firing your weapon inside the armored personnel carrier), a phrase used when someone does or says something that causes internal dissent or demoralization. Even in the context of the very emotional, personal and vindictive style characterized by Israeli campaigning, this election is by far the most vitriolic and negative of the 10 elections held in the 33 years I have lived in Israel. I doubt any Israeli MK has ever heard of American columnist Franklin Pearce Adams, but they nonetheless seem to have internalized his statement: “Elections are won by men and women chiefly because most people vote against somebody rather than for somebody.” Instead of seriously debating the burning issues facing Israel, they all seem preoccupied with personal attacks on each other. Left versus right, center versus right, center versus left, left and right versus center, and religious against left, center and other religious parties. Rival camps should be expected to heatedly argue the issues. This election even those on the same side are launching attacks, but most are personal, not issue-oriented. It is getting pretty bloody in the APC; if any survivors remain standing, they will be so bloody and bruised that the public won’t consider them fit to rule. The first major development of this campaign was the surprising and creative merger of the Labor Party and Tzipi Livini’s The Movement Party. Labor leader Yitzhak “Buji” Herzog truly thought outside the box to break the oncedominant Labor’s two-decade slide into political irrelevance. Together they should be greater than the sum of their parts. Herzog and Livni are high-profile center/left politicians who have been unable to translate the strength of their public personas alone into Knesset mandates. If the “Zionist Camp” (the name of the coalition) forms the next government, then Herzog and Livni will implement a rotation agreement with Herzog serving as PM for two years and then replaced by Livni for the remainder of the term. Reactions to the merger were mixed. Many admired Herzog’s willingness to share power with Livni, especially since voluntary gestures like these are virtually unheard of in Israeli politics. But many others were astonished by Herzog, who has stated incessantly that he is the only leader who can replace Netanyahu. 38 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
It seems unlikely a candidate confident of victory would agree to such a voluntary rotation. Livni was the true beneficiary. Her small party might not have surpassed the 3.5% threshold required to enter the Knesset. At worst she now will be co-leader of the opposition. However, the deal has caused many undecided voters to question Herzog’s judgment. From a combined 21 seats in the current Knesset, initial polls indicated the Zionist Camp would get up to 27 seats, surpassing the predictions for the Likud. Since this initial euphoria, the Herzog-Livni campaign has stalled – primarily due to their defensive and negative response to the smear campaign by the Likud and the right in general. The two party leaders have been systematically ridiculed by the right referring to them nonstop as “Tzipi-Buji,” not exactly titles that will inspire massive numbers of undecided voters to view the pair as unflinching leaders. The Zionist Camp suffered another setback in early February with Likud’s high-profile press conference to expose the purported connection between the Zionist Camp and the NGO “V15.” Financed by the American billionaire Jeffery Abrams, the V15 has the goal of mobilizing the left and center to defeat Netanyahu. If true, this would be in strict violation of campaign contribution regulations. Likud did not provide any smoking gun to prove a connection between the party and V15. But what do the facts matter in an Israeli election? The V15 affair was the main election story for a few days, which during a campaign is priceless. As one commentator remarked, “In this campaign, he who doesn’t slander, doesn’t exist.” Likud’s focus on this issue did divert some of the very negative media attention the Likud campaign has received on two issues: Netanyahu’s intention to accept John Boehner’s invitation to speak to the U.S. Congress on Iran, and the irrelevant preoccupation with how the Netanyahu household is run, particularly the modus operandi of the head of that household, Sara Netanyahu. I am not an aficionado of Bibi, nor his wife, and the opulent lifestyle they lead, which shows immense disdain for the average Israeli. Her presence on every official trip her husband takes is unnecessary and adds additional expense. Her presence could be expected on major state visits to important allies or countries previously not visited. But why on common one-day jaunts to Europe and every single visit to the United States? In recent years, several former employees of the PM’s official residence have sued the PM’s office after being fired or resigning, claiming abusive and humiliating treatment at the hands of Sara. Most have been settled out of court. But a current suit featuring the family’s former household manager Manny Avraham has become a central campaign issue. One of Avraham’s claims – that proceeds from bottle deposits for beverages consumed at the residence purchased on state money were pocketed by the Netanyahus – has turned into a major campaign issue, with the
mainstream media and social media including many humorous images of Sara and bundles of bottles. These issues should not be swept under the carpet, but that they have turned into major campaign issues at the expense of crucial security, social and economic issues is a travesty. The Yediot Communications Group, particularly the Yediot Ahronot newspaper, has given these issues immense coverage. Editor Arnon “Noni” Moses, never a great fan of Bibi, has become a major force trying to defeat Netanyahu. Moses is the son of the iconic founder of Yediot, which under Noni’s tenure has become the most powerful and dominant media conglomerate in the country. Like most of the mainstream media, Moses’ media outlets are contantly critical of Netanyahu and his policies. But this rivalry is only partially based on differing political views and orientations. Over the years it has become more of a battle of conflicting financial and business interests. Specifically, the launch of the Sheldon Adelson funded, pro-Netanyahu Israel Today free daily paper, which has overtaken Yediot in daily circulation, has turned a cold rivalry into a colossal, all-out war. It has reached a crescendo approaching the March 17 elections. As part of the Likud strategy to go on the offensive against Yediot, Neyanyahu has attacked Moses on his Facebook page – an unprecedented tactic. A lengthy status post begins, “Recently I have been attacked not only daily in the Yediot newspaper, but on an hourly, and often half-hourly basis in YNET (Yediot’s market-leading website). This two pronged synchronized attack of ridiculous, malicious and false slander against me and my wife are part of a media campaign designed to topple the Likud government with a left-wing government and to re-instate the media domination of Moses. ” He concludes, “This is only the tip of the iceberg. I will go into details in the future.” This is a status posted by a presiding head of state lashing out at a newspaper editor turned media mogul. Let us not forget that Bibi’s foray, albeit veiled, into the media industry with Israel Today is what riled Moses in the first place. Moses will not respond directly. His daughter did post a response that was no less savage. Perhaps the most interesting response was from the respected, prize-winning Yediot Senior Columnist Nahum Barnea, who said in an interview, “Netanyahu is haunted with fear and paranoia … What can a newspaper do to him? ... The guy needs to be institutionalized.” I think Netanyahu launched his diatribe against Moses as a decoy to negate the mounting criticism of his intention to speak to Congress about Iran. No one here has any doubt that Israel is closer than ever to the existential crossroads of a nuclear Iran. Almost all Israelis understand that anything and everything has to be said and tried, no matter how futile, until the very last minute. The insult to the White House does not have much importance for Israelis. Regardless of our personal feelings for the president, we believe Obama is completely clueless in reading the map of the Middle East and doesn’t understand the true motivation of the Shi’ite mullahs of Iran and how that endangers us. His main objective seems to be reach an agreement and cross the Iran problem off his to-do list. The
reservations Israelis have regarding Netanyahu’s speech relate to the fact that Israel must not become a partisan issue in the United States, which will be detrimental to our long-term security and to the American Jewish community. Many of Netanyahu’s supporters understand this and think he must find a compromise, but others believe Netanyahu’s insistence that the U.S.-Israel relationship transcends any disagreements and the speech will not impact the relationship. Recently, and on the same day, two diametrically opposed columns appeared in the centrist Ma’ariv daily. In a column titled, “The Cry that wasn’t heard in 42,” Erel Segal wrote, “Those that understand the Shi’ite myth of the Mahdi, who know ‘thakiya,’ the Shi’ite religious allowance of lying for the sake of disguising a goal, need to be worried. This is the same Iran that boldly declares the end of the Zionist entity. The Administration is on its way to an agreement with Iran. A bad agreement in every way. … They said let the Americans take care of the problem and look where that has gotten us. … ‘I do not have permission to speak, but I have permission to cry out’ said Yosef Chaiim Brenner when denied the floor at the founding conference of the Histadrut. Netanyahu’s speech to Congress is today’s cry that was not heard 73 years ago.” On the other hand, New York-based Shimon Shiffer wrote, “It no longer matters if Netanyahu insists on delivering the speech to Congress or if he stays at home, the scorched earth tactics employed by Israel’s U.S. Ambassador Ron Dermer (with Netanyahu’s backing) against the White House and the Democratic leadership has produced so much damage and sabotage, if Netanyahu backs down, the devastation will have already been done. … The impact to Israel’s relationship with the largest Jewish community in the Diaspora will have difficulty withstanding the onslaught.” The sad thing is, no matter what happens, the Likud will capture only around 25 seats in the next Knesset, which will be approximately the same number the Zionist Camp will accumulate. The next government will be more fragmented than ever. It could take months to form the coalition, which means more stagnation. What is also true is that with a few notable exceptions such as “Yesh Atid,” which by all accounts is implementing an aggressive but positive, issue-based campaign (full disclosure: I support them), most everyone else involved will continue shooting up the crowded APC. It would be good if they could read what Nigerian motivational writer Jaachynma N.E. Agu wrote in The Prince and the Pauper, “Don’t blow off another’s candle for it won’t make yours shine brighter.”
Mylan Tanzer is a Portland native who moved to Israel in 1981. He was the founding CEO of the first Israeli cable and satellite sports channel. Since 2005, he has launched, managed and consulted for channels and companies in Israel and Europe. Tanzer lives in Tel Aviv with his wife and five children. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 39
[A & E] P2S Echoes Cabaret Crystal Ann Muñoz and Andrew Bray.
P2S Echoes Cabaret Crystal Ann Muñoz in “Madres de la Plaza” mask.
JTC BRINGS LITTLE-KNOWN HISTORY TO AUDIENCES
above: The Poznan family: Jason Glick, Jim Vadala and Wendy Wilcox.
40 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
top: Early model of stage set by Henk Pander. bottom: Pander looks over full-size version of the set.
Director Sacha Reich (front) with core company member, Sara Fay Goldman, and Ministry’s Pato, Jim Vadala, in rehearsal for the mainstage production of the adaptation of the novel The Ministry of Special Cases.
By Deborah Moon Photos by Frederike Heuer.
The Jewish Theatre Collaborative has once again brought a littleknown story of Jewish history to life with its Page2Stage season focused on a novel, The Ministry of Special Cases. “Part of our vision is to open up parts of the Jewish world we are unaware of,” says JTC founder Sacha Reich. “For our Page2Stage productions we chose novels worthy of a derivative work – good pieces of literature that can translate to the theater with language, characters and themes, but with context that offers the opportunity to broaden what we know about our world and our history.” Sacha describes the entire season as a conversation with the community. From the staged reading of the novel’s opening in the fall, to a winter cabaret response and on to the mainstage production in the spring, Sacha says the season brings together a community by reading and learning together. The mainstage production of Nathan Englander’s novel, which was adapted by Sacha and Jamie M. Rea, runs March 14-April 11 at the Milagro Theatro (525 SE Stark, Portland), where JTC is “in residence.” Set in 1976 at the dawn of Argentina’s “Dirty War,” the novel and the play explore the surreal era during which about 30,000 people “disappeared.” Sacha describes the world that swirls around the story’s main characters as surreal, Kafkaesque. Kaddish, whose mother was a whore involved in the sex trade (which most members of the Jewish community are mortified to acknowledge the community had a role in) and his traditional wife, Lillian, are struggling to raise their teenage son in world of inflation and political instability. “As the world around them stops hearing and talking about what is happening around them, their son is disappeared,” says Sacha. “The story is their search for their son in a world gone mad.” Sacha says Englander’s dark humor translates into a roller coaster in three acts. “It’s an incredible journey for the audience,” she says.
Mark Loring and Crystal Ann Muñoz appear as Juan Peron and wife/President Isabelita during the staged reading introducing The Ministry of Special Cases.
Oregon artist Henk Pander, who designed last year’s JTC set for “A Pigeon and a Boy,” returns as the set designer for this year’s production. “These are world premieres,” Sacha says of Pigeon and Ministry. “We hope they will be produced elsewhere – widely. There is future life for these pieces.” In December Sacha presented a workshop on the Page2Stage concept at the Association of Jewish Theatres conference in Washington, D.C., which drew playwrights, directors and producers from around the country. “At my first AJT conference in 2008, that forum offered me an opportunity to explore ideas about what Jewish Theatre Collaborative could be with colleagues from around the country,” says Sacha. “Attending the conference now, having accrued substantial experience exploring those seminal ideas about how theater can engage community, was a game changer. I went from an upstart to an innovating leader in this particular community.” During her workshop she shared links to videos of both “A Pigeon and a Boy” and “Charlotte Salomon’s Life? or Theatre?,” which was JTC’s first major translation of a book to performance. “The type of narrative-based work JTC creates is unfamiliar to many of my colleagues,” Sacha says. “We believe these scripts have national and international capacity, and this was a great opportunity to get the word out.” In Portland the 7:30 pm, March 14, premiere of “The Ministry of Special Cases” will be followed by a celebration and reception. The play continues at 7:30 pm Thursdays-Saturdays and 2 pm Sundays through April 11. Tickets are $30 and are available at jewishtheatrecollaborative.org.
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 41
White Bird Presents New Voices in Israeli Dance
Hillel Kogan and Adi Boutrous in “We Love Arabs.” Photo by Gadi Dagon
By Elizabeth Schwartz
Portland has a reputation for the vibrancy and diversity of its dance scene, and fans of contemporary dance in particular have long known something Portland’s Jewish community may be only just now discovering: Israel is a hotbed of bold, innovative and critically acclaimed contemporary dance. What’s more, you don’t have to travel to Israel to experience it. White Bird, a Portland-based dance presentation and commissioning company co-founded 18 years ago by Walter Jaffe and Paul King, has been championing Israeli dance in Portland for over a decade. This month White Bird presents “New Voices in Israeli Dance,” featuring Hillel Kogan, rehearsal director for the renowned Batsheva Dance Company, along with a newly commissioned work from former Batsheva dancer Danielle Agami. Performances will take place at Lincoln Hall on the Portland State University Campus March 19-21. “Israel has one of the most vital dance scenes in the world,” says Jaffe. “The energy and physicality of the movement makes Israeli dance stand out.” Jaffe goes on to describe Israeli contemporary dance as “full-out, visceral and often humorous.” The extroverted quality of Israeli choreography, coupled with its in-your-face power and dynamism, reflects some wellknown aspects of the Israeli national character. “New Voices” pairs Kogan’s award-winning 2013 duet, “We Love Arabs,” with a new work currently being created by Los Angeles-based Israeli dancer and choreographer Agami. In a September 2014 interview with Funzine, Kogan describes “We Love Arabs” as “a political satirical
42 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
dance-theater piece, which tells the story of a Jewish choreographer who works with an Arab dancer. Together they are trying to create a piece with a message of co-existence and of peace between Arabs and Jews.” Jaffe adds, “It sounds polemical and political, but there’s great humor and irony in it. ‘We Love Arabs’ overturns many cultural assumptions we have about Arabs – that they’re all Muslim, for example.” Kogan continues, “Usually ‘political art’ is very serious, but my piece deals with very serious subjects with humor and irony.” Kogan, who performs the part of the choreographer with his former dance student, Adi Boutrous, taking the part of the Arab dancer, notes that not all Jews and Arabs hate one another. “There are many Jewish people, like me, who are willing for a better future between Jews and Arabs, in Israel and worldwide. There is some collaboration and friendships between Arabs and Jews in Israel in many fields: arts, education and politics. Usually the international media shows only the conflicts, so people not from Israel think that there it is only war between Arabs and Jews, but it is not right.” Jaffe is equally excited about the dance White Bird has commissioned from Agami. “She started with Batsheva, formed her company in Seattle and is now based in LA,” he says. “The dance is in the process of being created as we speak, so I can’t describe it, but we asked her to play off the multicultural theme of Hillel’s piece.” Agami and her ensemble, Ate9 dANCEcOMPANY, have received an impressive amount of critical acclaim in just a few years, and many consider her an artist to watch.
The music that gave birth to R&B! World Premier musical
Walter Jaffe, left, and Paul King (White Bird Co-Founders) with Barney, the White Bird. Photo by Fritz Liedtke
A post-show moderated discussion will follow each performance, featuring Mittleman Jewish Community Center Executive Director Steven Albert on Thursday, March 19; a professor from PSU’s Judaic Studies program on Friday, March 20; and a representative of Portland’s Arab-American community on Saturday, March 21. “We’re promoting these performances as a three-part evening: two dances plus a conversation,” says Jaffe. “We bring in a lot of dance that stimulates discussion, so we wanted to have the opportunity for the audience to give feedback. We think this particular program is going to generate a lot of interest.” The MJCC is hosting an additional program on Sunday, March 22, at 3 pm, after the performances at Lincoln Hall. Kogan and Agami will discuss their work and show clips from the performances. MJCC members receive a 20% discount on tickets to the March 22 program, as well as a smaller discount on White Bird tickets to the performances themselves. Go to whitebird.org or oregonjcc.org for more information.
The Story of
Chessler, Sonny Til &the Orioles
MUSIC BY Michael Allen Harrison BOOK AND LYRICS BY Alan Berg and Janet Mouser
APRIL 16 – MAY 3, 2015 PORTLAND’5 BRUNISH THEATRE
stumptownstages.org | 800.273.1530
The Herbert A. Templeton Foundation | The Ronni Lacroute Cornell University Foundation Gretchen Barnes and the Law Offices of Cable Huston | Ed Sherman & Dr. Martha Rich
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 43
SALEM CONCERT REUNITES MICHAEL ALLEN HARRISON AND BENNY FRIEDMAN By Deborah Moon Internationally renowned Jewish singer Benny Friedman reunites with pianist and composer Michael Allen Harrison, known as “The Grand Maestro of Portland,” for a concert Sunday, March 22, in Salem. This will be the fourth year Benny has come to Salem for this musical retreat and auction benefit for the Chabad Jewish Center of Salem. Last year he was joined by Michael and the concert moved to a larger venue, the Chemeketa Salem Campus Auditorium 6. That concert drew about 250 people to hear the two Jewish musicians perform together and individually. “Last year the theme was ‘freedom,’ and the concert opened with them singing the national anthem and “God Bless America” together. It was absolutely beautiful,” says Rabbi Avrohom Yitzchok Perlstein. “When they played together, the chemistry was great.” Michael composes and performs jazz, fusion, smooth jazz, pop, new age and adult contemporary. With Portland Rabbi Alan Berg, he created “Crossing Over: A Musical Haggadah.” This year the two have reunited for the musical “Soul Harmony,” the story of Jewish singer Deborah Chessler and the black male vocal group Sonny Til & The Orioles. Benny’s musical career began at age 13, when he started performing at small local events and mesmerized audiences with his dazzling voice. Passionate about both singing and his ability to inspire people through music, Benny spent four years working with Hollywood vocal coach Seth Riggs. He now splits his time between recording albums and performing all over the country. He explores the fundamental concepts of Judaism through music and lore in his concert series “Songs and Stories of Judaism.” In honor of this year’s theme, “Songs of Jerusalem,” Rabbi Perlstein says he hopes the community will come together in solidarity with the people of Jerusalem and those around the world who are confronting terrorism as they try to live their daily lives. In Jewish tradition, “when something bad happens, our response is unity,” says the rabbi. “Unity is the antidote to destroy this hatred.” This year 5% of the proceeds before expenses will go to the Marion-Polk Food Share. Rabbi Perlstein says Salem Chabad has partnered with the food share’s Meals on Wheels program as part of its efforts to care for the elderly, so the donation will support that program. Doors open at 1 pm for a pre-concert silent auction; the concert begins at 2 pm. Access to the auditorium (4000 Lancaster Dr. NE) is easy from 45th Street, and parking is convenient in the Purple Parking Lot. Tickets with RSVP are $21 for seniors, $24 general; or $25 seniors, $28 general at the door; and $18 for students and children. Sponsorship packages are available from $99. To purchase tickets or become a sponsor, visit JewishSalem.com.
44 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
Art is in the Air: March is Jewish Art Month
OTHER DESERT CITIES – From left, Ned Schmidtke as Lyman Wyeth, Barbara Broughton as Polly Wyeth, D’Arcy Dersham as Brooke Wyeth, Joel Reuben Ganz as Trip Wyeth and Susan Cella as Silda Grauma in “Other Desert Cities.” At Portland Center Stage through March 22. Photo by Patrick Weishampel/blankeye.tv
By Deborah Moon
Whether intentional or not, Oregon is awash in both visual art and performance art with Jewish themes during Jewish Arts Month, an annual educational initiative sponsored by the American Guild of Judaic Art in March. On the visual arts side, ORA-Northwest Jewish Artists once again has planned a celebration of JAM. Artists will display their work and demonstrate their techniques at the Mittleman Jewish Community Center (6651 SW Capitol Hwy., Portland) throughout the month. Each week a different group of artists will be in the MJCC lobby Sunday through Thursday (10 am-6 pm) and Friday (10 am-2 pm). Art can be purchased through the artist representing ORA during those hours. During the fourth week, Rose Schnitzer Manor residents taking a class taught by ORA member Eddy Shuldman and Carole Glauber will display their poetry and photography. For more information: email@example.com. While the numerous performances that feature Jewish themes, characters or other content may not have been planned specifically to coincide with JAM, they nonetheless heighten the artistic vibe in the air throughout March. The Jewish Theatre Collaborative presents the distinctly Jewish tale of “Ministry of Special Cases” (see story page 40). White Bird dance company presents “New Voices in Israeli Dance” (see story page 42).
In Salem Michael Allen Harrison and international Jewish singer Benny Friedman reunite for a concert (see story page 44). Jewish characters also take to the stage this month in Triangle Productions’ “Jewtopia,” presented on the heels of its February performances of “Becoming Dr. Ruth.” Asked about presenting two Jewish-themed shows in a row, Triangle Executive Director/Founder Donald Horn says, “Actually, I don’t see them as Jewish shows, thoughthey are, but more importantly, Dr. Ruth is about a woman who battled so many things, and I look at it as the human condition. ‘Jewtopia’ is about looking for love and friendships. Dr. Ruth became available to me, and I didn’t want to wait an additional year, and ‘Jewtopia’ was already planned for two years.” “Jewtopia” tells the story of two 30-year-old single men, Chris O’Connell and Adam Lipschitz. Chris, a gentile, wants to marry a Jewish girl so he’ll never have to make another decision. Adam Lipschitz, a Jew, wants to marry a Jewish girl to please his family, but can’t get a date to save his life. After meeting at a Jewish singles mixer, Adam and Chris form a secret pact. Chris promises that he will help Adam find the Jewish girl of his dreams and show him “Jewtopia,” but only if Adam will help Chris shed his ‘gentileness’ and bring him undercover into the world. Stereotypes collide, cultures clash and chaos ensues.” “Jewtopia” plays at The Sanctuary (Sandy Plaza, 1785 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland) at 7:30 pm Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, March 12-April 4, and 2 pm Sundays, March 22 and 29. Tickets: 503-239-5919 or trianglepro.org. Portland Center Stage also brings Jewish characters to the stage this month in “Other Desert Cities,” the Pulitzer Prizenominated play by Jon Robin Baitz, a highly regarded Jewish playwright and creator of the hit television series “Brothers and Sisters.” Though the play centers around the Christmas return of Brooke Wyeth to celebrate with her well-connected, conservative parents in Palm Springs, the play includes strong Jewish characters and content. Brooke announces that she is about to publish a memoir dredging up a pivotal and tragic event in the family’s history – a wound they don’t want reopened; she draws a line in the desert sand and dares them all to cross it. “Two of the characters in the play are Jewish – Polly Wyeth, the matriarch of the family, and her sister, Silda Grauman, the aunt who is staying with the family. Polly is married to Lyman, who is not Jewish, and Silda criticizes Polly in the play for not being true to her Jewish roots,” says Portland Center Stage Public Relations Manager Claudie Fisher. Silda tells her sister “We’re Jewish girls who lost their accents along the way, but for you that wasn’t enough, you had to become a goy, too. Talk about the real thing? Talk about ‘faking it.’ Honey, this Pucci is a lot more real than your Pat Buckley schtick.” The play runs through March 22 on the U.S. Bank Main Stage in PCS’s Gerding Theater at the Armory. For a complete
JEWTOPIA – The two leads (James Sharinghousen, left, and Alex Fox) in Triangle Productions’ upcoming performance of “Jewtopia” do a read-through of the script. March 12-April 4 at Triangle Productions.
schedule visit pcs.org/desert/. Regular tickets start at $36. Rush tickets are $20. Tickets can be purchased at pcs.org or 503-445-3700.
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Leikam Brewing brings kosher craft beer to Portland brew scene
LE IK M
Craft brewers Theo and Sonia Marie Leikam
By Kerry Politzer
from their product, the couple follows the laws of kashrut in the According to the trade website Oregon Craft Beer, brewery. During Passover, Sonia Marie (who is Jewish) plans Portland has the most breweries of any city in the to sell her part of the brewery to Theo (who is not), so as not to world. But until the recent opening of Leikam own chametz. Brewing, none of our city’s craft breweries had been certified kosher. Leikam Brewing is also unique in that it offers a convenient subscription-based distribution option to its customers. A collaboration between husband-and-wife Members can subscribe to their Community Supported Brewery team Theo and Sonia Marie Leikam, Leikam (CSB), which models itself after the successful Community Brewing aims to provide the Portland market Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. with 300 gallons of kosher beer per month. The nanobrewery, which is located in the backyard of the Theo, a veteran home brewer, graduated from Portland State Leikams’ Southeast Portland home, focuses on classic Northwest University’s Business of Craft Brewing certificate program this styles such as India pale ale, red, porter and stout. past spring. The increasingly popular program offers courses such as Craft Beverage Distribution and Strategic Craft Beverage “We take a very hands-on approach to brewing our smallMarketing. batch beers and (take) pride in creating an artisan product,” says Sonia Marie. “We’re a small brewery, which allows us to make “The program was a good place to get information about the many different beers, some regularly, while others are quick industry and bounce ideas off people on the inside,” says Theo. creative outbursts. Our beers are good anytime!” “It has great resources, and I would recommend it to people looking to get a start in the industry. One of the best parts about Leikam Brewing obtained its certification from Oregon the program was being able to get feedback on my plan; my Kosher in January. When asked what makes their beer kosher, BREWING initial idea for the brewery is not the same plan I have now.” the Leikams answer, “The main beer ingredients (water, yeast, barley, hops) are inherently kosher. There are other ingredients Although the Leikams do not have a formal culinary that can be used in beer production that would not be background, they have a great love for making their own food considered kosher.” In addition to omitting traif ingredients from scratch. “Granola, cheese, yogurt, bread and beer are all
LE IK M
46 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
“We’re a small brewery, which allows us to make many different beers, some regularly, while others are quick creative outbursts. Our beers are good anytime!”
Benjamin Leikam, 3, checks out the kegs loaded in the family minivan, which they were surprised to discover can hold 15 kegs at once.
things we try to produce in-house as much as possible,” they say in tandem. The couple has performed many culinary experiments with beer, hops and even spent grain. “I put beer in latkes; I learned this from Martha Stewart,” explains Sonia Marie. Other experiments include hops pesto and bruschetta, beer-basted Thanksgiving turkey and beer bread.
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Always with an eye toward sustainability, the Leikams are searching out partnerships with local bakeries that might accept spent grain. Their hops are sourced locally. “We have chosen to commit ourselves to reducing our carbon footprint and are excited to have found Crosby Hop Farm, a fifth-generation family farm,” says Sonia Marie. “It is one of only a handful of Salmon-Safe Certified hop farms in the United States.” The Leikams, who have been involved in the local Jewish community since their arrival in Portland 15 years ago, are members of Congregation Shir Tikvah. An interfaith couple, the Leikams have three boys, ages 6, 3 and 1. The family is committed to maintaining a Jewish home and Jewish values. Future plans of the Leikams include statewide distribution and the opening of a tasting room. They are also considering operating a delivery service to different quadrants of the city. Customers can order growler subscriptions, learn about sampling events, find out who is carrying Leikam Brewing on tap and follow the brewery for updates at leikambrewing.com and on social media.
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A capacity crowd of more than 500 people filled the space at Castaway on Feb. 8 to truly get a Taste of Temple. Congregation Beth Israel’s fourth annual friendraiser and FUNdraiser brought together a dynamic and multifaceted committee. CBI clergy (Rabbi Rachel Joseph, Rabbi Michael Cahana and Cantor Ida Rae Cahana, right, embrace chairs Tony and Bianca Urdes (in aprons). The committee recruited 40 of the top restaurants, wineries, distillers and brewers – including Bamboo Sushi and Batch Chocolates by Jeremy Karp – to get up close and personal with those attending this ever-popular event. Photos by David Kinder, Kinderpics Photography
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Dear Helen: Is there any good way to break up with one’s hair stylist? Maybe it’s the seven-year itch, but I’m feeling dowdy when I used to feel stylin’. She’s a nice person, but I’m just not feeling it anymore.
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A resident of Eugene since 1981, Helen is a member of Temple Beth Israel, where she studies and speaks on Torah. She claims to have black belts in schmoozing, problem-solving and chutzpah. She’s a writer and an artist (kabbalahglass.com). Please email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and check out the blog at kabbalahglass.com/blog/
PHOTO: SOL NEELMAN
Dear Ready: Breakups rarely leave clean edges. More often they lead to frayed egos. Usually one person is ready to call it quits, while the other thinks the relationship can still be fixed. As always, the key is good communication and expressing the hope of future friendship. Look at folks whose hair you like and ask for stylist names. Be polite to your “almost” ex. Bad etiquette: go elsewhere and never tell her why. Better: Send a vmail or email that says, I want to change my hair. Attached are some pictures I found online. Can you think about how these would work on my head? (Note: googling images of keywords like short, wavy, bangs, parts on left, etc., will net you many examples.) Best: Give her a chance at making you look and feel new. If the new cut doesn’t rock your boat, follow up saying I value our relationship. I’m going to browse around for a couple cuts. I may be back. Thanks for all you’ve done. Imagine running into her at the store and act accordingly.
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Surely you jest!
By Liz Rabiner Lippoff
Mitch Greenlick’s 80th birthday is March 12. He’ll celebrate with, among others, his wife, Harriet; their three children and their spouses; their grandchildren; and the newest member of the family, great-granddaughter Nava, “our greatest achievement!” Well, that is saying something. Mitch retired from his first job in 1995, although he continues to consult with the organization. He retired from his second job in 2000; he still does work with them, too. He was on the ground floor of many organizations and programs that have had a dramatic impact on the health and education of our community. His resume lists numerous panels and committees, 200+ books and articles, and honors galore. And in February, Mitch Greenlick started his 13th year as the Oregon State representative for House District 33. Little Nava must be a stellar achievement, indeed! Mitch grew up in Detroit. You would not call it an auspicious start. “It was the Jewish ghetto,” Mitch recalls, and it was rife with prejudice. Mitch started kindergarten in 1940 at a time and place where the school district was horrible, the teachers were burned out and he was bored to tears. He went to an afternoon community Hebrew school until he was thrown out at age 10. Look, his friends were outside playing baseball. Why would he want to be in Hebrew school? (Note: he did go on to become a bar mitzvah!) He graduated high school with a 2.8 average and no study skills to speak of, but he wanted to be a pharmacist and got into Wayne State University based on a strong entrance exam. “I didn’t catch on to what education was about until I was getting my Ph.D.,” Mitch says, but he did realize in college that he really did need to be a good student. He was and, when they invited him become a teacher, he stayed on to get his master’s degree in pharmacy administration. Later he realized his interests were much broader than pharmacy: he wanted to improve the delivery of effective, affordable health care to everybody. A doctorate in medical care organization and, fortunately, a move to Oregon quickly followed. 50 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
above: Mitch Greenlick left: Mitch and Harriet Greenlick dance together at their 50th anniversary party.
In 1964 Mitch was hired to start what would become Kaiser Permanente’s Center for Health Research, and he was its lead researcher. His role at Kaiser expanded as he became vice president of research for Kaiser Foundation Hospitals. That work eventually overlapped with his subsequent position as professor and chair of the department of public health and preventive medicine at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland. In both venues, his participation and often his leadership in research and in organizational development resulted in programs and organizations that have impacted health care delivery in significant ways. In 1975, for example, he led the team that laid the groundwork for what is now the Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center. It provides health care to many in Washington and Yamhill Counties, especially seasonal farmworkers and others who have difficulties accessing medical services. “I got arrested!” Mitch says, with some pride. He and a group of VISTA workers were trying to take a sick child from her migrant camp to the doctor. Even though he had a note from the girl’s parents, the owner of the camp wouldn’t let her out. He and two VISTAs were charged with trespassing. The
“As long as we are both physically able, Harriet and I want to make a difference. That’s one of the joys of retirement. If I were 40, I couldn’t afford being a legislator. I can afford it now.” case was moved to federal court and the upshot was the right of AmeriCorps Volunteers In Service To America to go into migrant camps to help the residents. And the list goes on. Mitch started Kaiser’s dental program. He organized the first Head Start program in Washington County. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences at age 36. He was awarded the Presidential Award by the Association for Health Services Research. He was on the founding board of the NW Health Foundation. And he’s very proud of the masters of public health program at PSU, OSU and OHSU, which, he says, has paved the way for the School of Public Health at Oregon State and the joint school under way at Portland State and OHSU. At the same time all this was happening, Mitch and Harriet were raising their family. The Greenlicks were founding members of a Jewish studies group, whose members were all to the left politically, all non-affiliated and all wanting to share the cultural joys of being Jewish. “We raised the kids celebrating the gastronomical holidays: They tried to kill us, we lived, let’s eat!” Mitch eventually had a hand in many aspects of the Portland Jewish community. He taught Sunday School at Neveh Shalom and a course in Judeo-Christian Attitudes Toward Health and Disease. He has served on or chaired the boards of the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland, the Jewish Education Association of Portland, and Jewish Family and Child Service. Mitch did not view his official retirement from full-time work in 2000 as a chance to relax. He decided to run for the Oregon State House, and he won in 2002. “I flippantly used to say that I would do important health policy things and send them to Salem … and they would screw them up. I wanted to go to Salem to screw them up myself !” He and Harriet both serve, as it were: she is his office manager, full time during the session and part time the rest of the year. Before she retired, she had done office work for 25 years and had been the manager of a chiropractic office. “As long as we are both physically able, Harriet and I want to make a difference,” Mitch says. “That’s one of the joys of retirement. If I were 40, I couldn’t afford being a legislator. I can afford it now.” Mitch chairs the House Committee on Health Care, has served on the Committee on Higher Education and Workforce Development, and recently moved to the House Judiciary Committee. He has played a part in every aspect of the health care transformation in Oregon and was instrumental in framing the Oregon Health Authority, expanding health insurance options to every child in Oregon and creating the Oregon Health Insurance Exchange. His expertise and influence, however, extends far beyond health care. Brad Avakian, now commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, has worked with Mitch since they were freshman legislators together.
~ Rep. Mitch Greenlick
“Mitch very quickly established himself as one of the go-to people in the capitol about getting Oregonians what they need to stay healthy. He is thoughtful and innovative. But he is also one of the smartest legislators on virtually anything. He reads and studies every bill, on every topic. He also spends much of his time sitting down with people and asking them, ‘What do you need me to do?’ It is a lesson for every legislator on how to do public service.” Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek agrees. “Rep. Greenlick’s commitment to responsible, smart public policy makes him a treasure in the Oregon Legislature. He brings intellectual rigor, a moral frame of reference and a sly sense of humor to every topic he encounters.” Next up for Mitch is another book. Titled Capitol Letters, it is a compilation of Mitch Messages, the letters he has sent to his constituents over the years. Mitch is contributing his share of the proceeds to the Oregon Historical Society. And retirement number three? “I’m waiting until I’m 100. That’s only twenty more years, assuming our health holds up. It won’t be for lack of trying.” Liz Rabiner Lippoff is a marketing consultant, freelance writer and community volunteer. LizInk.biz
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You don’t have to die to get cash for your life insurance policy By Deborah Moon
knows she won’t live forever. She plans to take a A 93-year-old woman decided to let her life cruise (with the money).” insurance lapse since her adult children wouldn’t need the money and the premiums were Allan has been in the insurance business since escalating rapidly. Then she saw an ad about 1969, but says he really enjoys this new role of getting cash for unneeded life insurance policies. helping people sell their unneeded policies to fund travel, retirement or long-term care. While “She called me and said she had never he says the initial market for life insurance expected to live this long,” says Allan Silverman, policies was unregulated and often used to prey who is licensed to sell life insurance policies in on the elderly, “Regulation has cleaned up the about a dozen states including Oregon. “I tried market.” to persuade her to let her two daughters, who were the beneficiaries, take over the premiums, “Insurance companies don’t like people selling but they weren’t interested.” their policy; they would rather see people drop Allan Silverman their policy so they will not have to pay death The cash surrender value for the $200,000 benefits,” says Allan. “But they can’t stop a change in ownership policy was $6,000, but Allan was able to sell it for $10,500. of the policy.” “She was thrilled,” he says. “She’s healthy, but she’s 93. She
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The buyers become the owner and beneficiary of the policy and take over the premium payments, he explains. Since the buyers are paying premiums until the insured passes on, sellers typically must be 70 or older or terminally ill. “They (buyers) are looking for short life expectancies and the least expensive policy,” says Allan. “This is not for 40-year-olds.” But Allan did help a 47-year-old man with stage four cancer sell his $700,000 policy. “I was able to get him $450,000,” he says. “He and his wife needed the money.” He also shared two more typical case histories (generally purchasers want three estimates on the insured’s life expectancy): • $2 million policy on a female, 79, with relatively modest health impairments: Life expectancies obtained were 122, 142 and 129 months. The policy had only $43,000 in cash surrender value and the client could no longer afford the premiums. The client received $131,000 in a life settlement. • $500,000 policy on a male, 90: The family was running out of money to pay for his long term care in a nursing home. His life expectancies were 36, 36 and 48 months. The client received $217,000 for a policy with no cash surrender value, which gave everyone comfort that he would be able to continue to receive care at his existing facility. Allan grew up in Phoenix where he was on the JCC swim team. He became a bar mitzvah at Beth El Congregation, where he learned the value of helping others. He says it is “very rewarding to help people get money they would never have found. This is an untapped asset they don’t know the value of, and most insurance companies won’t let their agents tell people about it.” When he represents clients, he says, “I make sure there is no elder abuse. I don’t want to get in a situation where the heirs say we took advantage.” He says he makes sure both the senior and his or her heirs are comfortable with the sale of the policy. The policies he does sell are “unneeded, unwanted or unaffordable” for the family. Policies of people with a life expectancy of 10 years or less, and with a premium to face value of 5% or less and a death benefit of $250,000 or more, are the primary target for buyers. While it’s a very lucrative investment for purchasers, Allan says it also benefits the sellers, who get much more than the cash surrender value of their policy. For more information, contact Allan at 888-322-7678.
SPRING. Rose Schnitzer Manor is beautiful all year round, but especially in the spring. Our urban forest setting is abuzz with cherry blossoms, birds and spring flowers. If you’ve been thinking about making a move and would like to explore community living, come to our spring open house. It’s the perfect time to experience Rose Schnitzer Manor first hand and meet the neighbors.
Sunday, April 19 • 1-4pm Live music, delicious refreshments and guided tours. RSVP requested.
To RSVP call (503) 535-4004 or visit www.RoseSchnitzerManor.org.
independent living • aSSiSted living
OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 53
Leather scrip issued by the A. Sternberg Saddlery and Albany Tanningy during the Depression are among items Froehlich has donated to OJMCHE. Eliezer Froehlich explains some twists and turns of Oregon Jewish genealogy at the LDS Family History Center in Corvallis, where he volunteers one day each week to help others navigate their family histories. Froehlich, who has amassed a database of some 25,000 Oregon Jewish names, often helps the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Research verify family connections and details.
Eliezer Froehlich loves a good mystery By Sura Rubenstein
Eliezer Froehlich loves history and family – and solving puzzles posed by both. He has traced his own family back to the conversos of Spain, to early Oregon Jewish immigrants from Bavaria and Baden, Germany, and even to soldiers in the Revolutionary War. But he didn’t stop there. He sought links between his family and others, and today spends anywhere from four to 15 hours a week researching the history of Oregon Jewish families and their early communities. So far, he’s assembled a collection of 25,000 names – specializing in the period before 1900, though including later eras, as well. “I refer anyone doing family research to him,” says Anne LeVant Prahl, curator of collections at the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, who often seeks Froehlich’s help with detailed genealogical questions. “We share any new information about Oregon Jewish families that either of us comes across – I even designed a database in our research collection to track what he sends us.” Sometimes Prahl sends Froehlich her own questions. A recent example: She found files on men with the same name but with different wives. Were they the same person – a prominent businessman? An email to Froehlich brought the response: Same man, divorced and remarried in the 1930s. “He deserves a lot of credit for everything he knows and is willing to share,” says Prahl, who notes that Froehlich plans to bequeath his database to the museum. Froehlich also makes periodic donations from his personal collection to the museum. Among recent additions are a thick 54 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
pencil, most likely dating to the 1860s, promoting Cohen & Schlosser, wholesalers of “Tobacco, Cigars, Cigarettes and Pipes” in Albany, OR, and leather “scrip” issued by the A. Sternberg Saddlery and Albany Tanning during the 1930s Great Depression. He contributes in other ways, as well, including transcribing the museum’s copy of a journal kept by Rabbi Jacob Bloch (Portland’s Congregation Beth Israel, 1884-1900), recording marriages, circumcisions and conversions Bloch officiated at throughout the Northwest. Froehlich has volunteered with many other historical groups, including the Benton County Historical Society and both Oregon Jewish genealogy societies. A resident of Corvallis, he is also the archivist for the Waverly Jewish Cemetery in Albany, established in the 1870s. He’s particularly intrigued by Jews who settled, even for a short time, in small towns around the state. That’s an interest that comes naturally – his roots in Oregon are deep and broad. One ancestor, an uncle to Portland philanthropist Ben Selling (also named Ben Selling), came to Salem in 1852. Other members of the Selling clan, bachelor cousins or brothers, found their way to La Grande, Pendleton, Union and Walla Walla, WA. “They’d come in the early 1800s to Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama,” Froehlich explains. “By the 1840s they were in Texas, then the younger sons went to California for the Gold Rush before the Civil War. Then they came up to Oregon from San Francisco.” Other ancestors, including the Wertheimers, Levys and Sommers, also found their way to Oregon in the 1850s, and, like his Selling family, often settled in small towns. Born in Salem, Froehlich, now 60, remembers growing up listening to his great-grandmother Bertha Wertheimer and grandmother Dora Schwabbauer tell stories about the country stores their families owned, and listening, too, to family friends who had clear memories of childhoods in the late 1800s.
“When I was 12, I dragged my Mom around as a driver,” he recalls. “I’d just want to talk to people and ask them questions.” After graduating from Oregon State University, Froehlich worked briefly at the Robison Home in Portland before moving to Israel, where he met and married Chaya Quarnstrom in 1982 – and also began exploring her family’s history. Before their marriage, Froehlich decided to have a formal Orthodox conversion “just to be on the safe side.” Like many other early Jewish families, there had been some intermarriage in his. “Sadly, many relatives no longer even identify as Jewish,” he says. “I just wanted to be sure.” Chaya died in 1984, some time after their son, Nisseem, was born, and Froehlich returned to Corvallis in 1989. He and his son – “two bachelors,” Froehlich jokes – live in a comfortable family home built in 1902, sharing space with two cats, Webster and Wojzeczk. When they can, they attend religious services at Chabad in Salem or Ahavas Torah in Eugene. The genealogical sleuthing is an avocation. Froehlich now makes his living doing property title research. He did try taking on genealogy clients for a time, but didn’t find it satisfying. “People don’t necessarily appreciate how much time is involved,” he says. If Prahl refers people with specific questions to him, he requests that – rather than pay him – they make a donation to the museum. His biggest challenges? Keeping accurate records of people in large families – the Menashes or the Nudelmans, for example. And what if husband and wife have the same original last name? It’s another puzzle. There are sad or potentially embarrassing discoveries, too – a few murders, a few women making a living on the shady side of the law. But then there is some comfort, even in the midst of family tragedies. “When little babies died, there are these little teeny markers, especially at Shaarie Torah’s cemetery,” he says. “There’s a satisfaction in being able to connect these children with their families.” Froehlich’s research also has helped expand the historical record. For example, he discovered that Bernard Goldsmith, though elected Portland’s first Jewish mayor in 1869, wasn’t an Oregon first. Morris Jacobs of Corvallis, who began the first of his three terms in 1868, predated him. And historian Ellen Eisenberg notes that in 1864, Max Muller effectively became Jacksonville’s mayor when he was elected president of that city’s trustees, or city council. “West Coast Jewish history is very different from that in the rest of the country,” Froehlich observes. “We were here at the beginning, as pioneers, and were accepted without issue.” Though there was discrimination later on, early Jewish arrivals were part of the “Blue Book” social register. “From the very beginning,” he says, “West Coast society was not as stratified.” For now, Froehlich continues to work on his database, adding to and digitizing his records. “It’s like a mystery hunt, a treasure hunt,” he says. “It’s a labor of love, and it’s my passion.” Sura Rubenstein is a Portland writer.
What inspires a life well lived? Isn’t it all the special moments? Like waking up in your charming residence. Being greeted by name, with a warm smile. The newfound ease of living in the midst of everything you love. And the assurance that supportive care for tomorrow’s needs can be accessed right here, at home. This is retirement living—tailored to you.
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GOOD DEEDS DAY: One good turn deserves another
Two teams from the Portland Mitzvah Network volunteered during United Way/HandsOn Greater Portland’s MLK weekend of service. Cheryl Livney and her grandsons Eitan and Nadav Minyan help make blankets for the Binky Patrol. Jesse and Samuel Rothstein buttered bagels and bread to help feed 600 people at Potluck in the Park. By Deborah Moon
For the third year, hundreds of Portlanders are expected to join the hundreds of thousands of people all over the world who volunteer and help others on Good Deeds Day, slated this year for March 15. In May 2007 Ruach Tova (an Israeli NGO) launched the Good Deeds Day project with 7,000 Israelis volunteering; the annual celebration now draws volunteers to help others in 50 countries around the world. “Good Deeds Day puts into practice the simple idea that every single person can do something good, be it large or small, to improve the lives of others and positively change the world,” says Caron Blau Rothstein, Portland Mitzvah Network coordinator. “Regardless of age or ability, everyone has a role to play in tikkun olam, the perfecting of our world.” The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland’s Portland Mitzvah Network promotes volunteerism and ongoing volunteer opportunities, in addition to hosting projects for efforts such as Good Deeds Day and Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend of Service. During this year’s MLK Weekend of Service, two teams from the Portland Mitzvah Network volunteered to help feed 600 people at Potluck in the Park and make more than 200 blankets for the Binky Patrol (blankets for vulnerable children). 56 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
“Service to others is a wonderful entry point for many into Jewish communal involvement,” wrote JFGP CEO Marc Blattner about that experience. Many local parents have used GDD to introduce their children to the benefits of volunteering. Last year Heather Kirkbride volunteered with her mother and her two daughters, Abbie, 9, and Allison, 5. “Volunteering as a family strengthens the lesson I try to teach my girls about being grateful for what you have and always give to others,” Heather says. “You do not lose anything when you give back. You can change a life in a single act of kindness.” Last year Michelle Katz and her husband volunteered with their two children, then 6 and 9, because “We believe it is important to give back to our community and help others. We want to teach our children the value of mitzvot, as our parents taught us, and hope that they will continue to volunteer their time doing something they feel strongly about.” A volunteer at the event for the past two years, Julia Waldinger was so moved by the experience that this year she offered to chair one of the day’s 20 projects. “I volunteered with a group of friends in 2013 at the Holocaust Memorial and by myself in 2014 at the children’s book bank,” she says. “I love to give back to the community. I am involved with a number of organizations. I am actively involved on the social action committee with Temple Beth Israel.”
Hillel helps students react positively to Chairing a project is also rewarding. Never Again Coalition co-chairs Diane Koosed and Lauren Fortgang planned volunteer projects for children and families for the past two years. “I think Good Deeds Day is such an excellent way to involve people of all ages in volunteer activities,” says Lauren. “It shows people that whether you are 4 or 84, there are always ways we can give back to the world and help others.” Last year about 30 participants decorated large handprints to send to Little Ripples preschools and wrote letters to soccer players of Darfur United Soccer Academy – both programs in the Darfur refugee camps in Chad. “Even though we speak a different language than that of the refugees, our efforts let them know that they are not forgotten,” says Lauren. “That they are ‘part of the world.’ ” This year the duo are turning their attention to educating teens on how to become activists.“Teens will learn that parts of our phones and computers most likely came from the war-torn area of the Democratic Republic of Congo,” says Diane, noting attendees are asked to bring old cell phones for recycling, with proceeds benefiting programs in the Congo. After learning about the conflict surrounding minerals in the Congo, teens will learn how to take action. “They can call the White House, send a tweet to an ambassador, write a postcard or letter, or do all of the above,” says Diane. “This will be an empowering way to show aspiring activists how easy it can be.” Kathy Walls, community life director at Cedar Sinai Park, has seen the impact teens have on people closer to home. Last year a group of teens from Congregation Shaarie Torah visited the residents at CSP for a “Senior” Prom. “To see young teens not only chatting with our residents but also dancing with them to music familiar to the seniors but new to the youth is very rewarding,” says Walls, noting the prom is planned again this year. “They (the residents) love youth, family, music and dancing. Put it all together and you have a true senior prom.” To see available projects and to register to participate, visit jewishportland.org/ gooddeedsday. For questions, call Caron Blau Rothstein at 503-245-6449.
anti-Semitism By Will Rubin One of the more significant events to impact the University of Oregon Jewish community last year happened neither during High Holidays nor through any Oregon Hillel event, but while most students were far from the Eugene campus. On the morning of July 14, students from Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity (international Jewish fraternity founded in 1913), including then-president Josh Losner and current president Sam Gutten, walked out of the organization’s house on East 15th Avenue to find numerous swastikas drawn on nearby mailboxes with washable paint or marker. “They weren’t even their mailboxes necessarily, but they certainly felt that it was directed towards them,” says Oregon Hillel Executive Director Andy Gitelson. Gitelson and campus leadership helped fraternity leadership file a report with the Eugene Police Department and handle media inquiries. Gitelson quickly sent emails to University Dean of Students Paul Shang and then-university President Michael Gottfredson among other area leaders to inform them of the incident. Both offices responded “within minutes,” according to Gitelson. “We served as kind of a buffer for students to make sure they weren’t inundated when the media picked up the story; they were in summer classes and also working,” says Gitelson. “While they wanted to deal with this, I don’t think they knew which direction they wanted. They were shaken up, which is what an act like that is intended to do.” Gitelson says such incidents are relatively infrequent on Oregon, Oregon State and Lane Community College campuses compared to the upswing in anti-Semitic and antiIsrael activity on campuses in some parts of the country. But when students do experience such incidents, he says, “We first ensure that they understand that they have a support system in place and focus on preventing them from feeling isolated and alone. We then help them navigate the proper channels within the universities and communities to ensure that their incident is reported and that, when possible, those that are responsible are held accountable for their actions.” “While the Hillel programs at our universities provide a number of services, holiday observance opportunities, trips to Israel and social outlets for students – being in place to respond to these types of incidents and serving as a key partner with the universities that we serve is also a major role that Hillel plays,” says Gitelson. “Hillel serves as a student advocate and center for diversity education on our college campuses.” As the situation calmed and tensions subsided, the men of AEPI were reminded that for the most part, Eugene is a caring community intolerant of any and all hate speech. Having already planned a summer Shabbat get-together for the campus community, Gitelson approached fraternity leadership to see if they wanted to use the opportunity to bring closure to a difficult week. He and others in the community addressed a group of around 70 gathered on the front porch of the AEPI house, bringing a positive end to a week. “In the Talmud, Rabbi Hillel says about learning Torah, ‘That which is hateful to you, do not do to another. That is the whole Law. The rest is commentary. Now go and learn,’ ” Gitelson said in his prepared remarks. “May we all move forward with a keen understanding of Torah – that which has been done to us we will not do, we will commit our lives to treating those of different races, religions, sexual orientations, different cultures and those in the Jewish community with whom we differ with respect, kindness and love. “If we or someone else in our community is the victim of a hateful act, may we come together and lend our voices of support and ensure that we provide the same sense of community that we have been shown.”
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Rabbi Eve Posen inspires all ages through education
R By Polina Olsen
Rabbi Eve Posen looks forward to her first Passover in Portland and wants to help other women enjoy the holiday, too. As the new youth director and rabbinic educator at Congregation Neveh Shalom, Rabbi Posen’s “Inspirational Women’s Passover Experience” will explore central themes of the seder while providing tips and tricks. Open to Portland’s entire Jewish community, the March 19 event will include wine, desserts and special noshes. Of course, innovative programming is the norm for Rabbi Posen. A graduate of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University, she also earned a master’s degree in experiential education, a philosophy that combines learning with concrete experiences, and emphasizes teaching both outside and inside the box. “I like being on the bimah, but the real connection for me is in the classroom,” she says. “People ask questions, and we can explore the journey together.” Questions begin each Monday morning with Neveh Shalom Foundation School for 2-year-olds to pre-kindergarten. “They’re so excited,” she says. “We start by asking what they are thankful to G-d for. Then we sing Modeh Ani, talk about gratitude, do the Havdalah blessing and send them into their week.” Her Wednesday night seminar for high school seniors features whatever Jewish topic the students request. “Earlier this 58 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
year they wanted to hear about how Judaism tells us to care for our bodies,” Rabbi Posen says. “I talked about the text on selfcaring and the importance of taking a rest. The whole class went and got pedicures.” (The boys didn’t color their nails.) Rabbi Posen’s interest in education includes programs for all ages. She collaborates with Director of Congregational Learning Mel Berwin to identify current needs. At “Rabbi a la Carte,” Rabbi Posen meets congregants wherever they want to discuss topics of their choice. “I’ve done some women’s learning in a home,” she says, referring to a recent class titled “How to Say Here I Am.” “We talked about what it means to be present for ourselves and our family. We held a class about the true miracle of Hanukkah at a coffee shop, and we have one coming up in a bar.” At a Super Bowl party she compared football and Jewish leaders using Vince Lombardi and Yitro from the Torah. Another interesting program is one titled “Hope and Healing,” which explores rituals and prayers that accompany life’s stages. “Learners explore Jewish methods of moving forward,” Rabbi Posen says. “We study the psalms for life-cycle events and try to interpret what the writer meant and what it means to us. We have old and young, people who are moving through a loss, new empty nesters, people coming through an illness, people who had a loss years ago. It’s become a nice place to read text and build community.” Rabbi Posen hopes women from outside the congregation will join them for the upcoming Passover experience. Neveh Shalom Program Director Jennifer Greenberg is helping to coordinate. “It isn’t a model seder as much as a fun and meaningful look at Passover,” Jennifer says. “Women will come away with tools – things they can use at their seder. They’ll be fun surprises. And, they’ll have the chance to taste good Passover wines.” An “Inspirational Women’s Passover Experience” will take place on Thursday, March 19, 7 pm at Congregation Neveh Shalom, 2900 SW Peaceful Lane, Portland. The cost is $18 per person. Visit tinyurl.com/wseder15 or call 503-246-8831 to RSVP.
By Yoni Glatt Editor: DavidBenkof@gmail.com Difficulty Level: Medium
ACROSS 1. Full, as from brisket 6. Tzaraat, e.g. (See Exodus 4:6) 10. Tref flying mammals 14. One from an Arab country with few Jews 15. Comment from a Freudian analyst, perhaps 16. Mitch Miller’s woodwind 17. 2014 film about someone watching Geraldo Rivera’s news network? 19. Those were the days? 20. Israel’s in it 21. Isaac, to Abraham 22. Norris who starred in Menahem Golan’s “The Delta Force” 23. West without much tzniut 25. Sands, say, as a shofar 27. 2014 film about a Biblical punishment? 32. Moses had little 33. Amulet seen on jewelry, often 34. React to a Jackie Mason line 36. Novel in a Wiesel trilogy 40. American st. whose legislatiure was the first to support a Jewish homeland in Palestine 41. ISIS, by many 44. Telushkin’s “Rebbe”, e.g. 45. Maarat Hamachpela in Hebron is one 47. Level in Golder’s Green? 48. Prophetic signs 50. 47th Street fare 52. 2014 film about Gideon or Deborah? 54. Inner Jerusalem 58. Sleep locale at a crowded Shabbat house 59. Newman who scored “Toy Story” 60. Seder plate, e.g. 63. Lieberman, presidential -___ ran 67. Paddan ___ (whence Rebecca) 68. Best ___ Actor, category this puzzle’s movies are nominated for in the 2015 Oscars 70. Brent Spiner robot role 71. Torah talk? 72. The Torah commands shooing a mother bird from one 73. Like 1948? 74. “Lay ___ Lay” (Dylan tune) 75. Modern meeting
DOWN 1. Shabbat crash location, perhaps 2. Book after Joel 3. Kaufman’s sitcom 4. Makes like the Jews by Sinai 5. ___ Internacional del Ladino (Sephardi occasion) 6. Sephardi Passover perk 7. Rav who compiled much of the Talmud 8. Samuel and Elijah 9. Joaquin Phoenix sci-fi flick 10. 2014 film about pre-Bar Mitzvah days? 11. Circa BCE 12. What Samson tied to foxes tails 13. Something one does for chametz before Pesach 18. Abbr. for a college department that might teach some Sondheim 22. Lowly bureaucrat in the Misrad Hapnim 24. Don’t spray this on apples... Adam’s or otherwise 26. With “out,” something for the Sanhedrin to do with punishments 27. When tripled, a catch-phrase for Sheila Broflowski 28. Michael or Raphael might have one 29. Not exactly a rabbi 30. Two dots, in Hebrew 31. Raise, as a blue-and-white flag 35. New Israeli
37. Schluffing 38. Item on the IAF logo 39. Job for a JAP? 42. Before Rosh Hashana 43. Where one might learn Krav Maga 46. 2014 film about Noah, the dove, and the raven? 49. Like Magneto’s genes 51. Like a yenta trying not to divulge a secret 53. Sound in a Negev machtesh 54. Peddler’s activity 55. Mercaz follower 56. Matrilineal 57. Para ___ (red heifer in the Book of Numbers) 61. Some people use it to daven, nowadays 62. Like Aly Raisman 64. Former currency in the land of the first ghetto 65. A chutzpadik person may get into one 66. Arch atop some old shuls 68. Character in Lumet’s “Dog Day Afternoon” 69. Howard’s best friend on “The Big Bang Theory”
Stay Active, Stay Engaged This month’s puzzle sponsored by: To sponsor future puzzles, call 503-892-7403 OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 59
LIFE & LEGACY – Representatives from the 12 organizations selected to participate in the Life & Legacy collaboration between the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and the Oregon Jewish Community Foundation accept checks for $9,000 for meeting their goals to obtain legacy pledges. From left: Les Soltesz for Jewish Family & Child Service, Steve “Rosy” Rosenberg for Portland Jewish Academy, Barry Benson for Mittleman Jewish Community Center, David Newman for Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, Eva Aigner for Oregon Holocaust Memorial & Education Endowment Fund of OJCF, Shelly Klapper for Congregation Shaarie Torah, Steve Blake for Congregation Neveh Shalom, Julie Diamond on behalf of Temple Beth Israel in Eugene, Sharon Weil for Jewish Federation of Greater Portland, Jen Feldman for Congregation Beth Israel and David Fuks for Cedar Sinai Park. In year two of the program, the OJM and former OHRC (Memorial Endowment Fund) teams will be one as OJMCHE.
DIVINE GOODNESS – Professor Andrew J. Riley, a visiting assistant professor of Hebrew Bible in the University of Oregon’s Harold Schnitzer Family Program in Judaic Studies, gave a fascinating lecture on Divine goodness in view of hate at the 4th Annual Rabbi Marcus Simmons Lecture at Temple Beth Israel in Eugene.
NINE YEARS OF PJ LIBRARY — Portlander Ayelet Lake, 4, recently received one of 250,000 tzedakah boxes given to children from Harold Grinspoon and PJ Library. PJ Library came to Portland nine years ago this month. “I love PJ Library,” says Ayelet. “They give me a book every month and I appreciate it. I love them and we love to read them all the time!” pjlibrary.org
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SHELTER FEED – On Jan. 29 Portland Jewish Academy middle school students, parents and staff prepare and serve meals to those in need at shelters across Portland, including Jean’s Place, Doreen’s Place, Clark Center, Goose Hollow and Blanchet House. PJA’s Middle School Shelter Feed Program was funded in large part by a 2014 grant from the Oregon Jewish Community Youth Foundation. “PJA is grateful to the OJCYF … Our middle school students were able to provide 827 meals in one day for individuals at shelters across the city,” says PJA principal Merrill Hendin Julie Diamond, co-advisor of OJCYF and executive director of OJCF, adds “It’s so rewarding to see that funds granted by OJCYF made the Shelter Feed program possible. The youth foundation’s funding helped meet a need in the area of hunger and PJA students made a difference through their handson service.”
FRANCE SOLIDARITY MISSION – Jewish Federation of Greater Portland CEO Marc Blattner was in Paris Feb. 9-10 representing Portland’s Jewish community on a national Jewish Federations of North America Solidarity Mission along with 48 other community leaders from 18 communities across America. Following the Charlie Hebdo and Hyper Cacher supermarket killings, armed French soldiers are stationed at every Jewish institution. With a growing radicalized Muslim community and heightened antiSemitism and anti-Israel sentiments in France and across Europe, there was an increase of 104% in the number of hate crimes in France in 2014, with 51% of those being directed against Jews. “I was proud to be there representing Portland. Senior representatives from the French, Israeli and United States governments heard our concerns and understood why we were there – to stand in solidarity with our French mishpocha,” says Marc.
THE Q WINNING TEAM – This year 312 people played trivia at The Q. More than $75,000 was raised at the Jan. 24 trivia night at the Mittleman Jewish Community Center. Dr. Cynthia Gulick, of the Oregon Medical Weightloss Center, accepts the trophy for her team’s victory. The clinic was the business raffle sponsor for the event. NCSY Portland Director Doovie Jacoby, left, and NCSY Oregon Director Meira Spivak, right, presented the trophy. Photo by One Click Studio OREGON JEWISH LIFE | MARCH 2015 61
Reb Zalman Legacy Shabbaton in Ashland April 24-26
rom 1991 through last spring, Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi, z”l, and Eve Ilsen came to Havurah Shir Hadash in Ashland for a weekend of ecstatic music, deep learning and prayer. Members of Jewish Renewal, Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist communities from around the country would descend on the Havurah to be a part of the transformational magic that was created during those Shabbaton weekends. Reb Zalman and Eve were joined by many West Coast rabbis, who were all connected to the work of Renewal within Judaism. This year these same teachers, many of whom were ordained by Reb Zalman, will contribute their wisdom, teachings and music to bring forward his amazing, paradigm-shifting teachings. Havurah Shir Hadash Rabbi David Zaslow says, “At the end of Reb Zalman’s last Shabbaton in Ashland, he said to me ‘Please gather again next year. I’m not sure I’ll make it, but this gathering is so special. I’ll try to be there.’ In the spirit of the Rebbe’s incredible legacy, we’ll have a gathering of the tribes from all over to celebrate his teachings, music and wisdom.”
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The upcoming Shabbaton weekend promises to be an inspirational fulfillment of Reb Zalman’s vision. “At the Ohalah rabbinic retreat in January, Reb Zalman’s presence was palpable and profoundly accessible,” says Rabbi David. “I think the same will be true at our Shabbaton.” The upcoming Reb Zalman Legacy Shabbaton will be April 24-26 at the Havurah Synagogue in Ashland. Eve Ilsen will explore both the subtleties of the weekly Torah reading and the unique period of time after Passover during which the program is held. During the retreat the weekly counting of the Omer will move from the week of Netzach to the week of Hod; Eve will explore these themes through story, song and imaginal exercises. “Eve was trained in the use of imaginal exercise in the unique Sephardi tradition of her teacher Mme. Colette Aboulker-Muscat,” says Rabbi David. “Unlike simple visualizations, imaginal exercises are a wonderful way to touch the inner worlds. She is an extraordinary guide!” The weekend will be infused with the spirited music of Hazan Brian Yosef Schachter-Brooks, Rabbi Yitzhak Husbands-Hankin, Cyrise Beatty Schachter, Laura Berman Benelli, Hazan Bruce Morris and others. Teachings, storytelling and workshops will be offered by Reneé Brachfeld, Rabbi Mark Novak, Rabbi Sue Morningstar, Rabbi David Zaslow, Devorah Zaslow, Rabbi Lavey Derby, Cassandra Sagan, Ashira Katz, Rabbi Joshua Boettiger, Rabbi Jackie Brodsky, Rabbi Hannah Dresner, Rabbi Julie Danan, Rabbi Benjamin Barnett and others. Havurah Executive Director Ayala Zonnenschein says, “Our Shabbatons with Reb Zalman and Eve have been amazing, uplifting, inspiring and life-changing for so many people. This year we will continue that tradition by invoking the tremendous legacy of Reb Zalman, z”l, and also by honoring Eve, a brilliant teacher and storyteller.” The $225 fee includes Friday night Kabbalat Shabbat and oneg, Shabbat morning Torah service, lunch, various workshops in the afternoon, Saturday evening storytelling concert, and Sunday morning breakfast followed by davening and closing circle. A women’s mikvah, led by Cyrise Beatty Schachter, and a men’s mikvah, led by Rabbi David Zaslow, will be offered on Friday afternoon prior to the start of the Shabbaton at Southern Oregon’s kosher mikvah at the Jackson WellSprings. For more information about the mikvah and mineral spring spa, visit jacksonwellsprings.com. Work trade discounts are available for anyone wishing to have a reduced fee. For more information and registration forms, visit havurahshirhadash.org. Since this is a busy season in Ashland due to the Shakespeare Festival, attendees should plan to book accommodations early. Check out the FAQs page on the havurah website for information on hotel rooms being held through March for retreat attendees.
THE STRENGTH OF A PEOPLE. THE POWER OF COMMUNITY.
6680 SW Capitol Highway | Portland, OR 97219 503.245.6219 | www.jewishportland.org
PREVIEWS ANNE FRANK: A HISTORY FOR TODAY WHAT: This exhibit on loan from The Anne Frank Center USA serves as a springboard for community dialogue about the effects of intolerance in the past and today, and provides an opportunity to address the positive values of diversity and tolerance.
Looted art in fact and fiction makes for interesting program By Deborah Moon
Portland native Susan Winkler decided to combine her lifelong interest in art and her broad knowledge of Paris to write her first novel, Portrait of a Woman in White, released last fall. Educated at Bennington College, Stanford University, L’Academie in Paris and the University of Geneva, Susan was recruited to write The Paris Shopping Companion: A Personal Guide to Shopping in Paris. Over four editions published across 25 years, she visited Paris regularly and came to know many art dealers there. She learned that looted art, art stolen by the Nazis during World War II, was a taboo topic. Having read Hector Feliciano’s The Lost Museum: The Nazi Conspiracy to Steal the World’s Greatest Works of Art, she became intrigued. A radio interview with a woman who had to leave her first love to escape the war merged with the looted art theme in Susan’s mind, creating the basis of her novel. “I wanted to illustrate the history,” she says of the novel she wrote about a fictional Matisse portrait stolen from a Jewish family by the Nazis. “But once I got into it, the characters really took over the story. I thought I knew who they were when I started, but they reacted differently than what I would have expected.” With her novel as full of surprises for readers as the characters were for her, Susan’s story will provide an intriguing springboard for an upcoming panel discussion on looted art. The panel will be a conversation between Susan and Bruce Guenther, who recently retired from his post as chief curator of the Portland Art Museum. Before joining the Portland Art Museum in 2000, Bruce was a curator at the Seattle Art Museum, and chief curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and the Orange County Museum of Art. He has written extensively on the art of the last 100 years. A popular lecturer on contemporary art, he is a frequent juror for regional and national exhibitions. 64 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
WHERE: Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, 1953 NW Kearny, Portland WHEN: through April 14. Exhibit hours are 10:30 am-4 pm, Tuesday-Thursday; 10:30 am-3pm, Friday; and noon-4 pm, Saturday /Sunday. ADMISSION: $6 for adults, $4 for students and seniors, and free for members and children under 12 accompanied by a parent or guardian.
RELATED EVENTS Sundays – Exhibit tour on at 1 pm followed by speaker at 2:30 pm. March 18, 7 pm – OJM Cinema: Iraq N’ Roll March 20 – DEADLINE for Sala Kryszek Art & Writing Competition for middle and high school students encourages youth to evaluate history, foster an awareness of the Holocaust, and broaden their minds in the areas of art, history, civics, sociology, and literature. March 24, noon-4 pm – PPS Spring Break Journal Making Workshop for 6th grade and up INFO: 503-226-3600 or visit ojmche.org.
The panel moderator is Judy Margles, a board member of the American Alliance of Museums, who is involved in national efforts to expand knowledge of cultural objects looted during the war. Judy expects the discussion at the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, of which she is the executive director, to be a lively conversation that explores historical insights into the subject of looted art. Looted Art: An Unfinished Business will begin at 7 pm at the museum on March 11. “I’ll moderate the panel, focus a bit on why Susan chose the subject and why a fictitious story appealed to her, ask Bruce to talk about looted art with regard to the challenges that the subject poses for curators,” says Judy. “We’ll take questions from the audience, and I’ll probably ask Susan to read a small section from the book.” Susan also knows the local Jewish community. She and her husband, Jim Winkler, are members of Congregation Beth Israel, where their three children, Jordan, Julia and Jacob, became bar and bat mitzvah. Jim, also a native, grew up at Congregation Shaarie Torah. He is a past president of Cedar Sinai Park. A Lion of Judah, Susan will be speaking to that philanthropic group of the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland in April. The March 11 panel discussion is being held in conjunction with OJMCHE’s current exhibit, “Anne Frank in the World.” Tickets for the panel discussion are: public, $10; OJMCHE members, $8; and students, $5. For more information, visit ojmche.org or call 503-226-3600.
Borders, biodiversity and understanding March 16
On March 16 The Community Without Walls series presents Borders and Biodiversity: How Cultures Across the Israeli-Jordanian Border Enhance Biodiversity. “Different human cultures on the two sides of the Israeli-Jordanian border may have different impacts on the land that will result in species differences and sometime even difference in behaviour of species across the border,” says Dr. Uri Shanas of Haifa University who is spending his sabbatical at Portland State University. “The Israeli side of the border has been settled with kibbutzim that have a western-like culture, with modern agricultural practices, while the Jordanian side holds a traditional society with different impacts on the land, such as grazing and hunting.” Uri and his Israeli and Jordanian colleagues worked together for three years in the southern Arava desert. In addition to discussing the biodiversity findings, he says he will also discuss the closer ties that resulted. “This close collaborative work resulted in very interesting findings, as well as enhancing peace and making friends between former enemies,” says Uri. “In addition to the striking differences across the border we found also some new species. For example we found the largest spider in the region, which led Discover magazine to mention it in one of the top stories for 2010. During his sabbatical, he is continuing his study on nutria that does in Israel with the help of the JNF-KKL. “Nutria are invasive in many places in the world (including Israel and Oregon) and we have a collaborative work here to find ways (mostly humane ways) to control their population and to also study what makes them such successful invaders,” says Uri. Uri is in Portland with his wife, Irit, and son, Tomer, who is attending West Sylvan Middle School. Their two daughters, Neta (a student) and Shaked (a soldier), remained in Israel. Presented by Jewish Federation of Greater Portland and Mittleman Jewish Community Center, th talk begins at 7 pm March 16 at Congregation Shir Tikvah, 7550 NE Irving St., Portland. Free, but RSVP 503-245-6219.
GROW WITH US! Join Shaarie Torah to be inspired!
Together as a community we will explore,
experiment, engage, celebrate, connect and be welcomed!
FREE MEMBERSHIP MARCH 1 THROUGH JUNE 30, 2015
TALK Looted Art: An Unfinished Business Conversation with Bruce Guenther and Susan Winkler Wednesday March 11, 7pm
OJMCHE CINEMA Iraq N’ Roll Wednesday March 18, 7pm
ANNE FRANK: A HISTORY FOR TODAY
SUNDAY EXHIBIT TOURS
Join us on Sundays at 1pm for an exhibit tour and at 2:30pm for a talk by a member of our Holocaust Speakers’ Bureau
CALL US TODAY 503-226-6131 www.shaarietorah.org Congregation Shaarie Torah 920 Northwest 25th Avenue Portland, OR 97210
Through April 14 Affiliated with
1953 NW Kearney St., Portland, OR 97209 | 503-226-3600 | www.ojmche.org Tue/Thu 10:30am-4pm | Wed 10:30am-8pm | Fri 10:30am-3pm | Sat-Sun noon-4pm
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CALENDAR Clark County’s Italian Flavored Purim Festa! RSVP: jewishclarkcounty.com
Cogan Lecture featuring Samantha Baskind on Jewish art. 7 pm at PSU, Lincoln Hall, 1620 SW Park Ave., Portland. Free. 503-725-8449
Jewish Art Month. See events pages 40-45
March 1 Purim Carnival 1:30-4 pm at MJCC.
Weekend in Quest 2015: The Rise & Fall of LadinoSpeaking Jewry. Astoria. weekendinquest.org
Café Shalom Israeli folk dancing. Class, 7 pm; 8 pm, open dancing. Repeats each Tuesday. 503-314-1567, email@example.com
Israeli musician Gabriel Meyer Halevy and guest world music artists presented by Congregations P’nai Or and Shir Tikvah at Neveh Shalom’s Stampfer Chapel at 7:30 pm. 503-287-8737
March 4 The Jews Brothers Purimshpeil and Blues review. 6 pm at Congregation Beth Israel. Appropriate for all ages. Bethisrael-pdx.org Take Me out to Shushan: Purim, baseball and Neveh Shalom. 4:30 pm Purim carnival; 6 pm kosher hot dogs for sale; 6:45 whole Megillah reading . 503-246-8831 Schmaltz! A Grease Purim Parody. 6:30 pm at Temple Beth Israel-Eugene; followed by Megillah reading in Hebrew and English. tbieugene.org Purim celebration and Megillah reading. 6 pm at Shaarie Torah. 503-226-6131 Oh What a Spiel! The Jersey Boys Megillah. 6:30 pm at Congregation Kol Ami in Vancouver. 360896-8088 Israeli folk dance 7-8 pm Wednesdays at the MJCC. Israeli folk dance advanced partner dancing. 8:30 pm Wednesdays at Congregation Ahavath Achim. firstname.lastname@example.org
March 5 Indoor Playground with Chai Baby & PJ Library. Free. 10 am at MJCC.
March 8 Day Camp Registration Fair! 1-3 pm at the MJCC.
Good Deeds Day. See story page 56 Maimonides Jewish Day School dinner and raffle. 503-977-7850
March 16 Community Passover Storytelling for preschoolers with their adult. 4 pm at Garden Home Rec Center, 7475 SW Oleson Road, Portland. Free. nrubin@ nevehshalom.org Community Without Walls. See page 65
March 17 Women’s Series: Women and Money. 7 pm at the MJCC. 503-535-3617
March 19 Women’s Model Seder with Rabbi Eve Posen. See page 58
Purim Carnival, 12:15 pm at Congregation Kol Ami, Vancouver. 360-896-8088
Israeli folk dancing. 8 pm Sundays at Fulton Park Community Center, Portland. SundaySession@ portlandisraelidance.com
March 8-10 Annual Used Book Sale hosted by Portland Jewish Academy and the MJCC. Sunday 1-5:30 pm, Monday and Tuesday 8 am-7 pm at MJCC. email@example.com or facebook.com/pjaubs.
March 10 The 8th Annual Sephardic winter film series concludes with “The Frisco Kid,” a comedy about a kosher cowboy without a prayer, but with plenty of laughs. 7 pm at Congregation Ahavath Achim,Portland. Free. Info: David, 503-892-6634
March 12 Kosher Wine & Art Festival. 7 pm at MJCC. Portland Kollel’s annual Wine & Art Festival. 503-245-5420
March 13 Shabbat Across America & Portland. Register at jewishportland.org/shabbatpdx Shabbat Dinner at Moishe House for young adults. 7 pm at Moishe House, 6444 SE Stark, Portland. 503-781-9895 or firstname.lastname@example.org
March 14 As Time Goes By, Cedar Sinai Park’s Annual Event to support elders of Robison Jewish Health Center. 6:30 pm at the Tualatin Country Club. Inspired by the iconic film “Casablanca,” this year’s event features dinner, dancing, live music and classic casino games. cedarsinaipark.org/annualevent or 503-535-4360
66 MARCH 2015 | OREGON JEWISH LIFE
Israeli dancers at White Bird. See page 42 PDX Live! with Guest Cantor Randy Herman. 7:30 pm at Neveh Shalom, Portland. 503-246-8831
March 24 Madagascar in Focus: artist Corie Hinton shares her art and experience living in Madagascar as a Peace Corps volunteer. 7 pm at the MJCC. Print sales benefit organizations working in Madagascar.
March 25 “Haggadah Good Feeling About This,” a mock seder and Passover guidance for confused Jews. Learn the differences between Sephardic and Ashkenazic Pesach traditions. 6:30 pm at Ahavath Achim, 3225 SW Barbur Blvd., Portland. Cosponsored by Portland Kollel. 503-227-0010
March 27 The North Coast Shabbat Group holds its first service of the year led by Leonard and Elayne Shapiro at 8 pm at the Bob Chisholm Senior Center, 1225 Ave. A in Seaside. Bev Eastern, 503-2447060
March 30 Interfaith Seder at MJCC. 503-892-7401 Israeli folk dancing. 7:30-9:30 pm at Leedy Grange in Cedar Mill. sites.google.com/site/pifdnews
April 3 Passover begins at sunset. First Seder.
MJCC is the Mittleman Jewish Community Center at 6651 SW Capitol Hwy., Portland. 503-244-0111, oregonjcc.org
Let ITC Show You the Spirit and Soul Join a Very Special Cultural Israel Journey Highlighting Sephardic Influences October 14 - 26, 2015
Jewish Heritage Tours to:
Cuba “People to People” November 1–9, 2015 January 17–24, 2016
Israel, Eastern/Central Europe, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Argentina, Morocco, India & China
Germany's Jewish Legacy Tour Aug 23–30, 2015 Led by Scholar in Residence Rabbi David J. Fine PHD
55+ HAZAK USCJ Tours Grand Eastern Europe: Apr 26–May 10 , 2015 (Berlin Extension: May 10–15) Israel Journey: Nov 1–12 & 15, 2015 Revisit Israel Second Timers Trip: March 6–17 & 19, 2016
Under the authorization of the Cal Cuba Arte Project Lic CT-2012-297556-1
Bar and Bat Mitzvah 2015 Family Tours with FREE TOUR* for Bar and Bat Mitzvah Child Jun 15–26 & 29, 2015 Jun 22–Jul 3 & 22, 2015 Jun 29–Jul 10 & 13, 2015 Jul 27– Aug 7 & 10, 2015 Aug 10–21 & 24, 2015 Aug 17–28 & 31, 2015 Dec 23–Jan 3 & 7, 2016 *Conditions apply
Contact ITC Travel Specialists about our Custom Designed Tours for Individuals, Families and Synagogues
From the White House to the Red Cross, Amy Shlossman has a colorful life. Included in this issue are special sections for Passover & Camps.