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Join the Celebration!



OUR VISION Inspired and guided by our tradition of tzedakah (righteousness/ charity) and tikkun olam (repairing the world), the National Women’s Philanthropy of The Jewish Federations of North America is dedicated to the continuity, connectivity and thriving future of our North American communities, Israel and the Jewish People. The National Women’s Philanthropy Board is dedicated to ensuring that women who assume positions of responsibility in their communities have the knowledge and confidence to lead, are appropriately trained and have been given the tools to hone their individual abilities and maximize their potential for success. We exist to serve the goals and mission of the Federation movement and to strengthen the influence of women as philanthropists and decision-makers. We seek to provide significant opportunities for all women to affirm their Jewish identity and spirituality, to be proactive in evolving issues of concern to contemporary Jewish women, to engage new cadres of participants and leaders in our communities and to inspire other Jewish women by our example. We believe that the future of the Jewish community depends upon the strength of these endeavors, and we pledge ourselves to the fulfillment of this vision.



NATIONAL WOMEN’S PHILANTHROPY Gail Norry Chair Linda A. Hurwitz President Patti Neuman Chair, Lion of Judah Magazine Kim Fish Senior Director Alison Margulies Garber Associate Director Stacy Walter Associate Director, Development


FROM THE CHAIR by Gail Norry


FROM THE PRESIDENT by Linda A. Hurwitz


FROM THE JFNA CHAIR by Kathy Manning



8 “T” IS FOR TRAINING The secret is out: the women of the T.E.C.H. Team offer Training, Education, Consulting, and Help. by Andrea Glick

Elizabeth Mondragon Administrative Assistant Marsha Silverman Administrative Assistant

10 TWO TIMES A LION These women don’t have trouble choosing between their “home” Federation and the one in their second community. They choose both. by Andrea Glick

Lisa Kleinman Editor Caitlin O’Brien Editorial Assistant Andrea Glick Writer

12 DECADES OF LIONS In honor of the 40th birthday of our beloved Lion, we bring you portraits of Lions of all ages, from Federations across the continent.

Produced by the Jewish Federations of North America Strategic Marketing & Communications Department in cooperation with National Women’s Philanthropy


Cover: Victoria Kimerling, Birmingham

b The Lion of Judah turns 40 this year, and the 40th anniversary is symbolized by the ruby. Look for the Ruby Lion throughout the magazine to learn some fun tidbits about rubies of all kinds.




The Chair


Forty years ago, a few visionary women in Miami had a brainstorm that would transform women’s giving for the Jewish community. Not only did they empower women to make a significant gift in their own name, but they created an international sisterhood. In deciding on the amount of money the Lion would represent, they chose $5,000 because that was the cost of rescuing a family of four from the Soviet Union. From its very origins, a Lion pin represented our responsibility, as women, to all Jews around the world.

I remember when my own mother, Joan Shuster, became a Lion on a national mission almost 25 years ago. My mother-in-law, Sharon Norry, was the very first Lion in Rochester, NY, and my grandmother-in-law, Ruth Singer, was a Lion in Atlanta. I feel a responsibility to continue this longstanding tradition. When I visited the Jewish community in Moscow last summer, I heard story after story of teens who were just discovering their Jewish identity. One of them was Anya, who I met at a Jewish Agency summer camp. She was 16 years old and had just found out that she was “fully” Jewish. Through her experiences at the camp, she has embraced her Judaism and is teaching the rest of her family how to observe Shabbat. I think of Anya when I light my Shabbat candles each week, using the candlesticks I received from Ruth as an engagement present. They link me to the women who preceded me and taught me to give tzedakah—and now they link me to Anya as well. One of the distinct privileges of serving as the chair of National Women’s Philanthropy is the opportunity to meet Lions from dozens of communities around the world. From Chile to Tel Aviv, Memphis to Long Beach, I hear passionate stories of what being a Lion means to each woman who makes this incredible commitment. Although it is a sacrifice for each of us, we all get back so much more in return. In order to ensure that these values of family, tradition and giving endure, I believe that we each need to look to the next generation and to others in the community who can join us. Invite someone new to join us in New York for the International Lion of Judah Conference, or whet their appetite by bringing them along to a local outreach event. We Lions are almost 18,000 strong, but we have the opportunity to be even stronger. Women today have obtained more wealth and make more financial decisions than ever before, and we care deeply about effecting change in the world. According to the recently released Bank of America Merrill Lynch Study of High Net Worth Women’s Philanthropy, women spend more time than men on due diligence before making philanthropic decisions, and expect a deeper level of communication and involvement with the organizations they support. National Women’s Philanthropy can meet all of these objectives. Every gift helps feed the 168,000 Jews remaining in the former Soviet Union, provide Jewish day school education in our local communities, and support victims of terror in Israel. If we can “widen the tent” and inspire more women to join us, we can do even more. I want to thank you for your transformative generosity and for your commitment to the Jewish community. I feel strongly about the continuity of our family tradition of giving, and I look forward to the day when my own daughters will become Lions of Judah. But in the meantime, I hope you will join me in reaching out to friends and family and asking them to consider becoming our newest Lions. Forty years ago, we rescued thousands of families from the Soviet Union. Imagine the impact we can have today in building a stronger Jewish community that will lead us from strength to strength into the future.



Gail Norry


The President


Forty years? Where does the time go? When the Lion of Judah was just a cub, many people did not think it would amount to much. And now, 17,500 Lions later and hundreds of millions of dollars raised, we can look back and marvel at the insight and vision of the Lion’s creators, and fully appreciate the impact their innovation has made on our people. What lessons can we learn from the determination of Norma Kipnis-Wilson and Toby Friedland, the Lion founders, in the face of skepticism and doubt? Lesson one: Attitude. Anthropologist Margaret Mead said, “Don’t think a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens cannot change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” If you have a good idea and are ready to invest your time and energy in careful preparation, planning and implementation, go for it! Calculated risks have gotten us where we are today and will get us where we need to be tomorrow. Will you be the next one to initiate change and moving our agenda even further forward? Lesson two: Timing. When you do what you love and believe in it for all the right reasons, things have a way of working out. Timing is everything. It took 15 years from the Lion’s founding until the timing was right for the women of my Federation in Baltimore to adopt this innovative concept. Now, 25 years later, 283 Baltimore women proudly wear the Lion pin, not only to beautifully display their values, priorities and principles, but also to encourage other women to discuss and consider their Jewish journeys. The timing was right to celebrate our 25th year, and we marked this occasion by creating the Lion Leap. Each new or increased Lion gift leverages a $2,500 match by an anonymous donor who was one of Baltimore’s original Lions! Almost 100 Lions have made the leap, increasing their Annual Campaign gifts by 10%. What leap works in your community? Can you find promise in a milestone at your local Federation? Lesson three: Perception is reality. When I turned 40 (just a few years ago!), I learned that life lesson. What is actually happening matters less than what people perceive is happening. Make your Federation the place to be; the place to congregate and get involved. Provide education, passion and reasons to give their time, talent and dollars. If you earn their trust, respect and confidence, Federation is where it is at! Many of you have heard my five P’s: be prepared, personal, positive, professional and proactive. Jerry Silverman, JFNA’s president and CEO, promotes the three L’s: “listen, learn and lead.” What is your quote or philosophy? How can you make a difference in how your Federation is perceived? If we learn from our past leaders--not only what they achieved, but also the effort behind accomplishments--we will be on the road to strength, empowerment and progress. Yes, we will all have bumps and detours in our individual and collective journeys, but if we persevere and stay the course we will reach new heights and promising destinations. Forty years from now, what will you have contributed to the infrastructure, success and stature of women’s philanthropy? What will the next generation learn from your calculated risks, innovative endeavors and perceptions? In sum, forty years from now, what will you have achieved and how do you want to be remembered?


With love,

Linda A. Hurwitz

Lions have been “reaching for the Ruby” since the level was introduced in 1985. According to the Lion of Judah Pin of Honor Guidelines: “Women who contribute personal pledges of at least $10,000 per campaign year are entitled to the Lion of Judah pin with a ruby inset in the eye.” 5





As I have traveled from community to community over the past two years, I have been surprised to hear a number of younger women reject the idea of giving a separate individual gift in favor of being part of a family gift. While I am strongly in favor of building and supporting strong families, I remain firmly committed to the idea that each and every woman in our community must have her own voice and must stand in our collective community as her own person. Making your own, individual contribution to our federation system is a powerful way of making your own voice heard. Over the past year, we have seen some surprising and disturbing attempts to silence a woman’s voice. The admonishing of woman attempting to sing their prayers at the Western Wall, the refusal of ultra-Orthodox Israeli soldiers to participate in ceremonies where female soldiers join in the singing, the refusal to allow a female Israeli scientist to accept her own award at a government award ceremony run by ultra-Orthodox government officials – these have all been shocking attempts to silence women’s voices. We must raise our voices in solidarity with Israeli women. We are doing this by visiting Israel and meeting with Israeli women. We are doing this by meeting with Israeli government officials and making our views known. And we are doing this by making our own financial contributions to the Federations. Let’s not forget what men have known for years: “money is power” and “money talks.” We must remember and teach others that the purpose of wearing a Lion pin is not to tell others what we give, but rather to tell others what our values are. Wearing a Lion pin is a way of saying “Hineni – here I am.” It’s a way of saying that you count as an individual and that you are willing to step up and share responsibility for other Jews. It is tangible evidence of your participation in our collective Jewish values: the obligation and privilege of helping those in need, enabling the elderly to live in dignity, educating our children, and supporting and building connections with the State and people of Israel. I sometimes joke that my Lion pin is the most expensive piece of jewelry I have ever bought. In fact, my Lion pin is the most meaningful piece of jewelry I have ever bought, because it shows, year after year, that I speak out on behalf of those who need our help and those who share my Jewish values. I want my own, distinct female voice to be heard, and I am willing to put my money where my mouth is.


All the best,

Kathy Manning

The Ruby River, which flows through southwestern Montana, is known for excellent fly fishing, especially rainbows, cutthroats, grayling and brown trout. The lower stretch of the river, below Ruby Dam, provides excellent brown trout fishing. A tributary of the Beaverhead River, it is approximately 76 miles long,




When I traveled from my hometown, Baltimore, to Santiago, Chile with the National Women’s Philanthropy Board Mission last fall, I took my friends and family with me. That is, I was able to share every step of my journey with them using social media tools. My hope was not only to share my love of travel but to educate all the people I connect with on Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare about the needs and causes of our international Jewish family. The purpose of our mission was to gain further understanding about our global Jewish family by getting an understanding of the Jewish community of Santiago, demonstrating personally to our fellow Jews that the North American Jewish community supports them. While in Chile, we learned about the culture and the needs of its Jewish community. We visited synagogues and Jewish community centers, explored local vineyards and were welcomed into the homes of Chilean Lions of Judah. We toured the Presidential Palace and met the First Lady; we put together food packages for needy Jews. I captured everything I saw and experienced not only for myself, but for all of the people who follow me on various social media platforms.

Our mission visited the Ariel Job Center, which helps members of the Jewish and the general communities find employment, and I was delighted to learn that LinkedIn Social Network is being used to help connect employers with prospective employees. I connected with a couple of the women I met there via my own LinkedIn account. At the Reshet Hands-On Service Program, we put together boxes of essentials goods for those in need. I tweeted, “@citypeekpatti is packing up boxes to share with needy Jews in Chile” and was able to spread the message that every person has the power to make a difference. Coincidentally, the American-born niece of the inspiring Reshet director was visiting from Philadelphia. We connected, shared pictures on Facebook, and I am honored to now include her among my Facebook friends.


Perhaps you’re already using social media in your Federation volunteer work, to share photos or links or to publicize events. I want to encourage you to take it to the next level, and view these tools as an opportunity to make an even bigger impact; exponentially. This year, as we celebrate the Lion’s 40th anniversary, let’s share our experiences as Lions with more women who could be transforming lives—and being transformed themselves—through Federation.




Patti Neumann 7



The secret is out: the women of the T.E.C.H. Team offer Training, Education, Consulting, and Help.


Call them when you need a speaker to fire up your next women’s event or a coach to calm the nerves of new Campaign solicitors or a trainer to help board members become more confident speakers. “They” are the T.E.C.H. Team, a group of roughly 25 volunteers from the National Women’s Philanthropy board, whose acronym stands for Training, Education, Consulting, and Help. Over the last three years, T.E.C.H. consultants have visited more than 90 communities, using their decades of Federation experience to help us all become better at the work we do. The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington got a taste of the T.E.C.H. Team last fall when Laurie Hazman Luskin of The ASSOCIATED: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, led a workshop for Women’s Philanthropy leaders gearing up for Campaign. The name of Luskin’s session: “I’ll Do Anything but Ask for Money.” Rather than minimize solicitation anxiety, Luskin acknowledged it, saying she herself once dreaded asking for money but over time had become passionate about having these conversations. Susan Schor, Washington’s vice chair of Women’s Philanthropy and someone who counts herself among the

T.E.C.H Team member Nelle Miller from Sarasota (left) spoke at Broward’s Mitzvah Luncheon, chaired by Margie Albert.

fundraising-phobic, appreciated Luskin’s candor and high energy. “She was just amazing, really inspiring,” says Schor. “Her message was, ‘If I can do it, you can do it.’” That kind of feedback is music to the ears of the women on the T.E.C.H. Team, which was founded in 2009 by Linda A. Hurwitz, the president of NWP, as a way to tap the energy and vast experience of NWP board members. After all, these are women who have been Campaign chairs, Women’s Philanthropy chairs, and Federation presidents, who have spoken at big events, intimate parlor meetings, and one-on-one with major donors and who have traveled the world on Federation missions. They’re people who won’t hesitate to hop a redeye or drive several hours back and forth if it means supporting Federation women and their work. What can the T.E.C.H. Team do for you? You name it: they’ll run solicitation training sessions or leadership development workshops, speak at events, even “make the ask” with major donors. And they do it for free — the only costs to Federations are for travel and lodging, which are kept to a minimum.

Intimate gatherings can be great venues for T.E.C.H team visits, which are tailored to provide the right tools for each community.


T.E.C.H. members seek to empower their peers. They teach women, for instance, how to tell their own Federation stories, the kind that transform a conversation

from a solicitation into a relationship. “It can be about yourself or someone you met on a mission or at a home for the aged. It’s finding something that inspires you and learning how to convey that to a donor,” explains Paula Saginaw of MetroWest NJ. Saginaw was one of the original two co-chairs of the T.E.C.H. Team, along with current NWP Chair Gail Norry of Philadelphia.

T.E.C.H. trainers say they get as much out of the program as they give. “I have yet to go into a community where I don’t learn something I can bring to my own community,” said Leslie Dannin Rosenthal of MetroWest. Others talk about the gratification they feel knowing they’ve made an impact, or realizing how much they’ve honed their own speaking skills even as they teach those skills to others.

For the last two years, the Jewish Federation of Broward County, Florida, has invited T.E.C.H. members to speak at their “Mitzvah Luncheon.” Last year it was Nelle Miller from Sarasota, this year it was Karen Kramer from Philadelphia. Both were a hit. “They gave examples of what other women have done, and inspired our women to think, ‘I could do this, too,’” says Lauren Rickoff, vice president and women’s division director.

So there you have it: inspiration, great speakers and free training. What are you waiting for? See the sidebar for instructions, pick up the phone, and call the women of the T.E.C.H. Team. It’s about the only thing they can’t help you do.

The talent on the T.E.C.H. Team is both broad and deep. Members have not only held major Federation leadership posts, but come from varied professions and geographic regions. So when Miller of Sarasota spoke to entrepreneurs at the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas about making philanthropy part of their corporate culture, she did so as a longtime entrepreneur for whom “philanthropy and community service have been important since childhood.” Norry, the NWP chair, talked about the T.E.C.H. Team, while she was, fittingly, at the airport, waiting to fly to Louisville, where she would speak at a Pomegranate and Lion event. Norry thinks an added benefit of T.E.C.H. is that it exposes more women to the larger Federation movement. “They hear about all the work we’re doing — stories from missions or the Lion of Judah Conference. When you talk to them in person about the national system and all we offer, it comes across very differently than in an email or conference call.”

HOW TO ARRANGE A T.E.C.H. TEAM VISIT IN FIVE EASY STEPS The T.E.C.H. Team is co-chaired by Sandy Lenger of Middlesex (NJ) and Lisa Fishman of Hartford, who have both logged many miles as T.E.C.H. Team members. They want to expand the number of Federations and Network communities that use this amazing resource and keep T.E.C.H. Team members sharp by continuing to provide them with training and resources. (All T.E.C.H. Team members receive training and a fat resource book.) To have a T.E.C.H. Team member arrive on your doorstep, all you have to do is:

1 2 3 4 5

 O to the National Women’s Philanthropy website: G Click on the T.E.C.H. Team link and download the request form. COMPLETE the form, being very specific about what you are looking for, and submit it to NWP Associate Director Alison Garber. LET the T.E.C.H. Team make a shidduch. Ali and our leaders will call and figure out the best T.E.C.H. Team member to meet your community’s needs. SPEAK to your T.E.C.H. Team consultant in advance, to review exactly what you’re looking for and any special information you want her to know. ENJOY a visit from a warm, experienced, energetic woman who will make a lasting impact on your community. Don’t forget to utilize your T.E.C.H. trainer on local solicitations while she’s in town. We live to multi-task!

Ruby is a very popular girls’ name in the U.K. and Australia (ranking in the Top 10 for the past 3 years). In the United States, it peaked in popularity around 1910; last year it ranked 84th in the U.S. and 66th in Canada.

T.E.C.H Team co-chairs Lisa Fishman of Hartford (left) and Sandy Lenger of Middlesex County in action. 9



Two Times a

LION For many women, it’s not hard to choose between their “home” Federation and the one in their second community. They choose both.

When she started spending time in Palm Springs, Gail Scadron remembers thinking that all the residents of the upscale California community were living the good life. “I thought everyone here was on vacation,” she recalls. Then she went on a mini-mission sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Palm Springs and Desert Area, and saw another side of the Coachella Valley, the region that encompasses resort towns like Palm Springs and Rancho Mirage. “My whole idea of the Valley population became very different when I saw how many people were in need and dependent on the kindness of others,” Scadron explains.



many people in need as there are back home. And they see that the Federations working to meet those needs require just as much support. Vivian Lieberman has long been a Lion in Detroit, but it’s only since she started spending several months a year in Palm Beach that she’s become actively involved in Federation. In 2000, she and a friend went to the International Lion of Judah Conference in Israel. They were befriended by some Lions from Florida and before long, Lieberman was hooked. She became a Lion in Palm Beach, then, much to her surprise, became the Lion Chair and then president of Women’s Philanthropy in Palm Beach. “I just got involved and thought, ‘You know, I spend time here, and the community needs more people to give.’ So I just did it.” She has also endowed her gifts in both communities.

That was about five years ago, around the time she realized she herself was no longer “on vacation.” Her short trips to escape the Chicago winter had eventually turned into six months of the year spent at her Gail Scadron home in Rancho Mirage. Scadron, a longtime Lion in Chicago, decided she was a resident, not a guest, in her second community. So she became a Lion there, as well, and started volunteering the way she had for years at the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago.

Lieberman says her involvement in Federation has given her a sense of rootedness in Palm Beach and the chance to meet people from across the community. “It’s nice to play cards and golf,” she explains, “but I don’t want to do that all the time.”

Many Lions with second homes are realizing that the resort towns they frequent are part of larger communities with as

Mary Levine, director of Women’s Philanthropy for the Federation of Palm Springs and Desert Area, sees this sort


MULTIPLY THE LION EFFECT More and more Lions have connected with more than one Federation, and their influence has been felt by many. Reaching out to women who have a second home in your community and helping them find the passion to give not only creates strong bonds, it can magnify your impact on the Jewish future. Here are a few practical ways to do it:

Ann Jacobson

Vivian Lieberman

of evolution all the time – women involved in Federation at home first dipping a toe, then jumping in all the way to become fully engaged with Federation in their second communities. “Once out-of-town women become aware of the dire needs in this desert, and see what our Federation accomplishes, many become quite passionate,” she says. Ann Jacobson didn’t have much chance to decide whether she wanted to get involved in the Jewish Federation of Collier County, located in her second home of Naples, Florida. Word got out in the resort community that she’d been a Federation president – and much more—back home in Kansas City, Missouri. “About 10 years ago, a couple of men took me to lunch and said, ‘Ann, you’re going to be our next president.’ I said, ‘Well, okay.’ Then I got stuck in it for the next three years,” she jokes. Chances are Jacobson would have become active with or without that persuasive lunch. A Holocaust survivor who came to Kansas City as a child from Austria, she knows how much Federation helped her own family as they made their way in America. She started raising money in junior high school for the Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City and basically never stopped. She also spent her professional career in human services, eventually becoming a vice president at Kansas City’s United Way. For Jacobson, it’s simply a person’s responsibility to support the place where they live: “You’re taking advantage of all the institutions that were here when you got here. I could give money in Kansas City and just forget about it, but I want this community, in Naples, to grow. There’s so much that needs doing.”

The ruby is the birthstone for July–the fiery summer month of backyard barbecues, watermelon, and sparkling fireworks. It symbolizes love, passion, health, and courage.

• Ask if they receive the local Jewish community news. This will enable them to learn more about the area and find out about the various programs available. • Encourage them to attend local Jewish community events by warmly welcoming them and sharing your stories. • Suggest that they attend missions and mini-missions sponsored by their local Jewish Federation to build relationships with their peers and to experience the need of the community first-hand. • Describe how your own engagement and giving in the community has had an impact on those in need. • Help them build connections: invite them to intimate events where they can meet other women in a comfortable environment. • Express how the values of your shared Jewish community mirror those of your other home. The universality of Jewish values creates a sense of comfort for women in new communities. 11



Decades of

OUTSTANDING LIONS In honor of the Lion of Judah’s 40th anniversary, we are proud to present a gallery of excellent women. These Lions span the decades from their 20’s to 100 and hail from all over the U.S. and Canada. Despite their diversity, they share a strong and passionate dedication to all the Lion of Judah stands for.

ISABELLA KIMERLING, Birmingham [Right] Isabella became a third-generation Lion in 2008, and along with her twin sister is committed to continuing her family tradition of volunteerism and supporting Israel. She attended both TribeFest and the International Leadership Reunion in 2011. She is also dedicated to the Kimerling Community Center in Rosh Ha’Ayin, Israel, founded by her great-grandparents Tillie and Max Kimerling.

VICTORIA KIMERLING, Birmingham [Left] Victoria, like her twin sister, has been a Lion of Judah since 2008. She has served on the Birmingham Jewish Federation Board. In 2011, she participated in International Leadership Reunion, TribeFest, and the Heart to Heart mission. She is currently earning a graduate degree at George Washington University and participating in NeXus, a leadership development program with the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington.






Upon her move to Colorado, Cintra Pollack immediately became re-engaged in her local Jewish community in support of Jewish life in Colorado and abroad. When Colorado was chosen to host the 2011 GA, Cintra stepped up to create meaningful programming for the Young Adult Division/ NextGen contingent. Her vision and generosity led to a full sponsorship of all GA Young Adult programming, including a performance by renowned artist Matisyahu with over 1,000 attendees. Colorado feels lucky to have Cintra as a role model for philanthropy.

Introduced to women’s philanthropy by her mother, Jessica was a $365 donor until she felt the passion to do more. She became a National Young Leadership Cabinet member and a Lion of Judah in the same year. Jessica is helping to create a Young Women’s Council in Las Vegas and encouraging other young women to join her in becoming a Lion.

The world’s largest ruby–yet to be cut, shaped, or polished– weighs about 8.2 pounds or 18,696 carats. The largest cut ruby ring, 23.1 carats, was a gift from Subway co-founder Peter Buck to his wife. 13

SARAH BEREN, Kansas City Sarah served as the youngest-ever Women’s Division Campaign co-chair and in May 2011, she completed two years as Women’s Division President. Sarah is an officer on the Federation Board of Directors, is WD nominating chair, and is a member of the National Young Leadership Cabinet. Her passion for Jewish life earned her the prestigious Pella Fingerish Young Leadership Award, given once a year to an outstanding leader.

“Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love to Town” was written by Mel Tillis, first recorded in 1967 by Johnny Darrell and made famous by Kenny Rogers and the First Edition in 1969. It has been covered dozens of times by artists including Leonard Nimoy, the Wellington International Ukelele Orchestra and Czech country singer Pavel Bobek.


b Above, Left to Right

SUE BERMAN, Pittsburgh


Sue has been a steadfast advocate for Women’s Philanthropy for almost 20 years and a Lion of Judah for 12 years. A graduate of the Wexner Heritage Program and National Young Leadership Cabinet, she has recently concluded her tenure as chair of the Governing Board of the Hillel Jewish University Center of Pittsburgh. Sue’s hard work and dedication to the Jewish community also led to her involvement as chair of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Jewish Community Life Commisson.

Sherri, an Emerald Lion of Judah, has given to the Annual Campaign since 1983. In 2006, she established a legacy gift that will endow her Annual Campaign contribution and provide an annual gift for Shaare Zedek Synagogue. She was a driving force behind the establishment of the Jewish Community Foundation of St. Louis, and helped launch “Create a Jewish Legacy,” for which she received a Professional Advisory Award from the St. Louis Planned Giving Council. In 2008, Sherri received the coveted Leo I. Mirowitz Award for her volunteer service.

DEBBIE GOBER, Broward Debbie’s passion and vibrance in her community are evident in her hard work as a board member of both the Jewish Federation of Broward County and its Women’s Philanthropy department. She is also an active participant in many committees and programs. Debbie has transmitted a legacy of generosity to her daughter Chelsea, who founded a tzedakah project as a tribute to long-time Lion Charlotte Baker.

JUDITH PREMSELAAR, Monmouth Judy’s dedication and commitment to helping others was instilled through the values of her parents and grandparents. A Sapphire Lion and active philanthropist, she has chaired many Lion of Judah events and last year was chair of the Major Gifts/Campaign Kickoff. Judy and her family also sponsored a portion of Jewish Federation of Monmouth County’s PJ Library program.

SARI GROSS, Northern New Jersey Sari created “Flames of Giving” 17 years ago to provide holiday gifts and cheer for those in need near her home in Wayne, NJ. This past holiday season, nearly 900 gifts were given to young children, teens, and seniors—Jews and non-Jews alike—throughout Northern New Jersey. Sari, a longtime Lion of Judah, has chaired the Jewish Federation of Northern New Jersey’s Mitzvah Day, an annual day of caring and sharing. Her selfless spirit has reached countless individuals in her community. 15


ANNA GELT, Calgary


After immigrating to Canada from Kishinev in 1980, Anna gained a deep appreciation for the efforts of those who assisted in her integration. She has since been an avid volunteer for Jewish Family Service Calgary and is a co-vice president of Jewish Immigrant Aid Services of Canada. Anna is also actively involved in the JOLT program, which mentors Russian-speaking Jewish immigrants in community leadership. She has served as a UJA leader, sits on the board of Calgary Jewish Federation, and has been a proud Lion for three years.

Andrea, a Lion for over a decade, recently received the prestigious Anne Ratner Award for her extraordinary leadership in the Jewish community, and is a past recipient of the Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland Award. She is an exemplary leader who had served as president of both the Jewish Federation of San Diego and its Women’s Division. Andrea has been a role model in Women’s Philanthropy and is an inspirational figure in her Jewish community.





FREIDA POSNOCK, Central New Jersey

Louise became a Lion in her small Jewish community in order to encourage other women and to emphasize the importance of giving. She has demonstrated her generosity through her service as an Augusta Jewish Federation board member, a VP for Campaign, and now as Federation president. Louise, a small business owner, has been an active and influential figure in the Augusta community.

Freida and her husband are founders of the Jewish Federation of Central NJ. She has served in every major role in Women’s Philanthropy including president, vice president, and Lion of Judah chair, is on the Federation board, and has chaired many missions to Israel. Freida has been recognized as a Woman of Valor, the highest honor Women’s Philanthropy bestows, and is president of her synagogue. For more than 35 years, Freida has demonstrated her dedication, commitment and passion to the Jewish community both at home and in Israel. 17

Photo by Arthur Roswell

Above, Left to Right



Eleanor, an Emerald Lion of Judah, has been listed on the Lion of Judah Honor Roll since 1984. She has worked for the Connecticut State Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, and was active in Hartford’s Women’s Division. Eleanor is also a dedicated life community trustee of the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford and a member of the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Hartford.

Sara has spent her life dedicated to the Jewish people in her community and abroad. Her commitment to the State of Israel has led to the enrichment of many lives. Sara founded both the Vered Israel Cultural and Educational Centre and the Canadian Jewish Studies Program at the University of Otowa. Her support has been invaluable to the Weizmann institute, Hebrew University, and United Jewish Appeal.


JUDY WILK, Delaware

Betty has been a major source of inspiration to her Jewish community and the Women’s Philanthropy division for years. Betty, an active donor and participant in Jewish life, serves on the Women’s Philanthropy and Jewish LIFE Committees. She has been instrumental in facilitating the work of the World Union for Progressive Judaism and is an honorary member of its executive board. Betty has enriched her community through her unwavering devotion to the future of the Jewish people.

On Judy’s 80th birthday last June, rather than having an elaborate celebration, she decided to become a Lion of Judah. Judy has been dedicated throughout her life to a number of worthwhile organizations, including Federation, and is committed to securing the future of the Jewish people. She established a philanthropic “Fund for the Future” through the Jewish Federation of Delaware in honor of her parents to provide support for future generations.



b Above, Left to Right



Lois is an influential figure in the Baltimore community and carries on the proud tradition of philanthropy that has been a part of her family for generations. She has been committed to programs serving vulnerable and underserved populations in both Baltimore’s Jewish community and in the greater community. Lois has been giving as a proud and committed Lion of Judah for more than three decades.

Eleanore has been involved in community and philanthropy for her entire life. A long-time Lion of Judah, she maintains an active role in the community—soliciting, advising and mentoring others. Those who know her love her for her energy and passion, and consider Eleanore a true gem in the Portland community.

MILDRED LEVINE, South Palm Mildred and her husband have been instrumental in building the South Palm Jewish community. The two are major donors who remain extremely active in Jewish life and in supporting a bright Jewish future. Mildred hosted the first Lion of Judah luncheon in Boca and remains a dedicated and remarkable Lion in her ninth decade.

ANNE SHAPIRA, Louisville In 2004, Anne celebrated her 90th birthday by creating an endowment for her Federation’s ROAR children’s reading/tutoring program. A passionate Lion of Judah and grandmother of six, Anne has been integral in Louisville’s Jewish community and has been an active member of the National Council of Jewish Women, Adath Jeshurun Sisterhood, Hadassah and the Brandeis Women’s Committee. 19

RUTH KAHN STOVROFF, Buffalo Ruth has been an active member of her Jewish community since the 1940s. She was the first woman president of the Jewish Federation of Greater Buffalo, then the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies. Ruth and her late husband established the Dr. Milton and Ruth H. Kahn Young Women’s Leadership Award to recognize young women in leadership roles. Ruth also established the Food Bank of Western New York, was a founding member of the Western New York Women’s Fund, and was the first president of the local Community Action Organization. In 2005, she was inducted into the Western New York Women’s Hall of Fame. Ruth is a truly extraordinary Lion of Judah.

The ruby slippers worn by Judy Garland in “The Wizard of Oz” are among the most treasured and valuable film memorabilia. Numerous pairs were made for the film, five pairs survived, and one pair was stolen in 2005.


Mazel Tov!

To All the Women Who Have Created a Lion of Judah Endowment YOU HAVE OUTGROWN OUR PAGES! It’s true. Because so many of you have decided to leave a Jewish legacy for generations to come, there are now too many LOJEs to fit in the Lion of Judah magazine. To remedy the “problem,” we have created a new place on our web site, where we can record and continually update the ever-expanding ranks of endowed Lions. Look for this web feature at And thank you for joining a cadre of exceptional women philanthropists whose acts of kindness and tzedakah will continue to make the world a better place.

1 out of every 8 children under the age of 12 goes to bed hungry. Thanks to donors like you, this isn’t one of them. Jewish Federation has a long track record of supporting innovative, groundbreaking new programs that care for and feed the neediest among us. It’s a successful strategy we apply to every issue we tackle. Whether promoting Israel travel experiences, helping the unemployed live with dignity or supporting families with special needs, together we do a world of good. Donate. Volunteer. Make a difference today. @jfederations

On the


Steven and Linda A. Hurwitz, left, will co-chair the 2012 GA with fellow Baltimoreans Josh and Genine Fidler.

NWP’S LINDA HURWITZ TO CO-CHAIR THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY From November 11-14, 2012, Baltimore will host thousands of Jewish lay leaders and professionals for the JFNA General Assembly. When NWP President Linda Hurwitz heard that the 2012 General Assembly would take place in Baltimore and was asked to co-chair it with her husband Steven and their dear friends Genine (a fellow Lion of Judah) and Josh Fidler, all four of them jumped at the opportunity. “To assist and enhance our two loves —The Jewish Federations of North America and The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore — and promote Klal


Yisrael through one of the largest gatherings of Jewish minds, souls and spirits on the planet is the chance of a lifetime. We have already begun lining up the best and brightest both in Baltimore and nationally to serve on our committee.” The GA is the Federations’ annual opportunity to gather as a community to confront the big issues, ask the tough questions and learn from one another. Registration opens this summer. Check for updates on the program at

The Mogok Valley of Burma is known for its extremely rare and fine rubies. Burmese monarchs of the past monopolized the ruby mining industry by claiming all rubies over six carats as crown property. Miners who failed to comply were severely punished.



JEWISH FEDERATIONS SUPPORT GLOBAL DISASTER RELIEF The Hibuki doll—a stuffed animal developed to comfort traumatized Israeli children during the 2006 war—is now bringing hugs and solace to Japan. Federation donors gave more than $1 million to Japan relief in response to the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis last year. Through our overseas partner JDC, these dollars have funded relief efforts including the Hibuki doll, support and training for mental health and education professionals, and an ongoing relationship with the Jewish community of Japan. A recent allocation of $120,000 will help build a PTSD Mobile Training Center and train citizens and professionals to support hundreds of thousands of people devastated by the disaster. JFNA Emergency Chair Cheryl Fishbein, a Lion from New York, said crisis relief is often a long-term process. “While many move quickly to offer immediate assistance in the wake of a disaster, the reconstruction and rebuilding of communities that comes later on is just as critical.”

In the past year, Jewish Federations have also responded to a devastating drought and famine in East Africa. Through the Jewish Coalition for Disaster Relief (JDCR), an alliance of U.S. and global Jewish agencies coordinated by JDC, Federation donors have contributed tens of thousands of dollars for victims across the Horn of Africa. The funds will help millions in countries like Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, who are experiencing their worst drought in 60 years. The funds raised for East Africa relief include $60,000 contributed by the Jewish Federation of Reading, Pa. The Reading Federation’s appeal to support aid to East Africa was encouraged by two local donors, Irv and Lois Cohen, who offered to match all dollars raised. “This Jewish community has so much heart,” said Tammy Mitgang, president of the Jewish Federation of Reading. “No matter what the cause is, Jews in our community are always the first people to step up. They feel it’s their responsibility to take care of all people in need.” 25

KATHY MANNING RECEIVES WOMEN TO WATCH AWARD In her remarks there, Manning said that the lessons she learned when she founded and conducted the first women’s a cappella group at Harvard have served her well in her Federation work.

JFNA Board Chair Kathy Manning receives her award from Jewish Women International Chair Susan Turnbull.

Congratulations to JFNA Board Chair and Lion of Judah Kathy Manning of Greensboro, North Carolina, who was named a 2011 Women to Watch by Jewish Women International (JWI) for her leadership in enhancing the well-being of Jews worldwide. She was honored at the annual Women to Watch celebration in Washington, D.C in December.

“The real beauty and joy of a cappella singing comes from working together to create a sound that’s more powerful and more exciting than any of us could create on our own,” Manning said. “To be effective, we need to harness the talents and the strengths of all the people in the Jewish community who are willing to be part of our Federation system. We need skilled Federation professionals and great lay leaders, seasoned solicitors and new volunteers wiling to learn. Big donors and small donors. Experienced leaders with wisdom and perspective, and young leaders with energy and enthusiasm and new ideas. And when we have these diverse talents working together, we can do things that no person and no community can do alone…. “Although we may not always sing in tune, when we do, the outcome is pretty spectacular.... Many of us love to sing solos, but there’s something powerful about being part of a large group and working together for a common purpose. While it may take more effort to achieve the right blend, the end result can be life changing.”

NOTES FROM THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL National Campaign Chair Susie Stern is wrapping up her first year in this challenging and exciting position. Since last fall, she’s visited more than 25 communities to help kick-start campaigns, cultivate donors, and engage campaign leadership around the country. A former chair of National Young Leadership Cabinet and a former National Women’s Philanthropy chair, Susie frequently encounters old friends as she crosses North America---people who are leading their communities today and with whom she shares so much history. Her trips to Israel and other overseas Jewish communities are the true inspiration behind her dynamic approach to fundraising. “Day to day campaign work isn’t easy, you need a connection to why you’re doing it. Climbing six flights of stairs to deliver a food package, or meeting teens at a summer camp, you connect with the people whose lives we touch. You literally meet the faces on the other end of those dollars we raise.” It’s no surprise that she’s fully committed to helping revitalize JFNA’s missions program, so that more people can share those life-changing experiences. Being a Lion of Judah is an invaluable asset in her Campaign work, according to Susie. “The Lion sisterhood is an extraordinary, international network of people. It’s a privilege to be part of this group, and a wonderful asset when you take on a leadership role.” She encourages every Lion to think about accepting more responsibility. “If you’re really committed to Jewish survival and living and learning, take the next step to become a leader. Take your passion and put it to work to build your community. Every community needs Lions.”


WHY FEDERATION? HERE’S WHY! As a Federation leader, you may have found yourself trying to explain to friends or new acquaintances what the Jewish Federation is and what it does. What’s the impact of our work? How does it make a difference in the world? Because Federation does so much, it can be hard to concisely put its mission into words. If you have looked for a clear, memorable way to explain why Federation is a smart choice for effective and meaningful Jewish giving, look no further. “Why Federation?” gives you a consistent way to talk about Federation, using language that has been market-tested with donors and non-donors. Whether you’re looking for a few choice words, an elevator speech, or a leave-behind brochure, you’ll find the tools you need at



Lunch came with sound effects at the home of Osnat, a Kurdish Jew who likes to sing to her food as she cooks. Osnat welcomed a group of women from the Heart to Heart mission into her home in February for a cooking lesson and delicious lunch. Not far away, another group of women were treated to Yemenite cooking lessons, a meal, and opera arias by Gila Bashari. Osnat and Gila are two of more than 200 women in the city of Beit Shemesh (where religious tensions have made international headlines in the past few months) who have been empowered to use their cooking skills to support themselves by Ethnic Cooks, part of the Women’s Empowerment program sponsored by the Jewish Agency and JFNA through Partnership2Gether (P2G). Thanks to Ethnic Cooks, Israeli women originally from Persia, Russia, Yemen, Kurdistan, Iraq and Morocco have learned professional skills that enable them to turn their cooking skills into catering businesses. They

Photos by Malerie Yolen-Cohen


not only use their cooking to support themselves at home, they have traveled abroad to conduct ethnic cooking workshops in Washington, D.C. and South Africa—which are, not coincidentally, the cities matched with Beit Shemesh in the P2G partnership. As the Heart to Heart participants learned cooking techniques from their hostesses, they also heard moving stories of the cooks’ homelands and cultures, their aliyah, and their often difficult lives in Israel. Most important, they experienced for themselves how food can be a tool for strengthening families and connecting Jewish women from across the world. 27


September 10-12, 2012


The Marriott Marquis, Times Square

Celebrating the 40th annivers

and 40 years of Lions—the world’s most pa Dear Lions, We are delighted to introduce ourselves as your co-chairs for the 2012 International Lion of Judah Conference. This is the first time the ILOJC will be held in New York, and we know that the city that never sleeps will infuse our conference with excitement and energy. Please join us to spend three days packed with inspiration, surrounded by women who share your enthusiasm and dedication to the Jewish people. Come share the fun, the learning, and the incredible memories that the Lion Conference never fails to provide. For 40 years, the Lion of Judah has represented an enduring commitment to the strength and vitality of the worldwide Jewish community. At the 2012 conference we will commemorate this special birthday. We’ll also celebrate each other—the fabulous women philanthropists who wear the Lion pin as a symbol of our passion and power.What better backdrop for worldclass Lions than New York, the essence of a world-class city with its amazing food, shopping and culture?  We’ll hear from excellent speakers, participate in a service project, caucus by community to open our hearts and share our Annual Campaign gifts, and pay tribute to our Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland honorees. Find out more and register for the conference at And start packing—we can’t wait to see you in New York!

Betsy Hoos,

New Haven

Leslie Sidell,



sary of the Lion of Judah

assionate, philanthropicJewish women. 2012 ILOJC LEADERSHIP TEAM Susan K. Stern, National Campaign Chair

Alice Viroslav, Next Gen Chair

Gail Norry, NWP Chair

Julie Lipsett-Singer, Israel People to People Connection Chair

Norma Kipnis-Wilson and Toby Friedland, z�l, Lion of Judah Founders Carole Solomon, Susan K. Stern and Lois Zoller, ILOJC Founders Jill Namm and Robin Kauffman Saran, HR and Recruitment Chairs Pearl Serota, Jewish Learning Chair Julie Russin Bercow, Jewish Agency Chair Norma Kirkell Sobel, JDC Chair Suzanne Barton Grant, Political Advocacy Chair

Jewel Lowenstein, Keren Hayesod Chair Wendy Abrams, Social Action Chair Amanda Adler and Janna Stern, Cabinet Liaison Chairs Jennifer Korach, Social Media Chair Deborah Goldenberg, Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland Chair Moj Daniel, Sheryl Kimerling and Jackie Sprinces Wong, Corporate Sponsorship Committee

Register now at

From Dens Across North America...



Jewish Community Board of Akron Lions of Judah and Pomegranate donors were honored at a recognition brunch in October, graciously hosted by LOJE Dianne Newman. Debra Shifrin Newman, a Lion of Judah and 2012 Campaign chair, welcomed and thanked the women there as well as the many other generous Akron Lions of Judah and Pomegranate donors, noting that they exemplify the 2012 Campaign theme L’dor V’dor, from generation to generation.

Left: Akron Lion Marcia Stone; Right: Akron Lion Toby Rosen

BALTIMORE This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Lion of Judah in Baltimore. This amazing milestone is being used to encourage women to increase their gifts by 10 percent. Women who do so, or who increase their gifts to the $6,000 Lion level, will help leverage an anonymous $2,500 gift to THE ASSOCIATED’s Annual Campaign. To date, 70 women have taken the Lion Leap. For Linda A. Hurwitz, chair of the program and National Women’s Philanthropy president, the anniversary represents the perfect opportunity to highlight growing needs in the community and to encourage women to increase their contributions. “What was given year after year does not pay for what we need to do today,” said Linda. “These leaders, who wear the Lion pin, need show the rest of the community where they want to make the difference.”

The pin, she said, is a mark of honor that reveals each woman’s motivation for giving: “By wearing the Lion, you are announcing that you personally find philanthropy a necessity. You are sharing with everyone that giving to those in need is a priority.”

Left to Right: Linda A. Hurwitz, Lion Leap Chair, and Kelly Blavatt and Lainy LeBow-Sachs, Lion of Judah Campaign Co-chairs, celebrated the 25th anniversary of Lion of Judah in Baltimore at an October event. Photo by Stuart Zolotorow.

BROWARD COUNTY Lion of Judah Chair Lori Mizels has been a Lion for more than a decade. She’s made friends, helped the community and established a tradition of philanthropy in her family. It’s no surprise that her daughter, Amy, 13, now is a Young Lion of Judah. “It’s certainly something that as a mother I love – that Amy identifies with families who share the same commitment,” says Lori. Young Lions is open to all children from bar/bat mitzvah age through high school. All that’s required is an annual gift of $180 to the Jewish Federation of Broward County Annual Campaign in their own name, and participation in group service projects. Leslie Linevsky, chair of the Young Lions of Judah program, has two teenage daughters, Jackie and Raquel, who participate in the program. Her children, along with the 20 other teens


in the program, have delivered painted flower pots to area senior centers and volunteered at an area homeless kitchen on Thanksgiving. It’s not simply about the community service hours the teens earn for high school. “It’s hands-on, active community service,” Linevsky says. “And it’s a fun way to meet other teens.”

CALGARY Calgary Lions of Judah gathered in November to celebrate the pinning of four new members and to honor Gabriella Fialkow and Michael Zhuhovitsky, the 2010 recipients of our local Lion of Judah student scholarship. “The timing for the annual Lion of Judah dinner couldn’t have been better,” said Lion of Judah Co-Chairs Naida Feldman and Carolyn Libin. Special guest Miri Eisen, a retired IDF colonel and much-sought-after Middle East analyst and Israeli government spokesperson, shared the excitement felt in Israel just two weeks earlier when Gilad Shalit safely returned to his home and family after more than five years in captivity. Col. Eisen said that she felt particularly privileged to share her firsthand observations with a Lion of Judah audience. The Calgary Jewish Federation Lion pride, which began with a few women in the late 1970s, now numbers 72. Most of the original Lions remain active, while an increasing number of younger members are pumping new energy and generosity into women’s philanthropy. The Lions contribute approximately 20 percent of funds raised in the Annual United Jewish Appeal Campaign.

Broward County Lion of Judah Chair Lori Mizels and her daughter, Young Lion Amy Mizels

BUFFALO Pundit and political analyst James Carville was the headliner for The Jewish Federation of Greater Buffalo’s 2012 United Jewish Fund Campaign Kick-Off Dinner. Prior to the event, he took a little time out to meet with some of our Lions of Judah at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. At the Annual Kick-Off Dinner, people of all ages from all segments of the Jewish community came together for one night to enjoy each other’s company and support the Federation Campaign. Our Women’s Philanthropy led the way with the addition of a new Lion this year.



Calgary 2010 Lion of Judah Student Grant committee and recipients: Top row (L. to R.) Calgary UJA Campaign Director Diana Kalef; Anna Gelt; 2010 LOJ Student Grant Recipient Michael Zhuhovitsky; Donna Riback; Sandy Martin; 2010 LOJ Student Grant Recipient Gabriella Fialkow. Seated front (L. to R.) Calgary LOJ Co-Chair Carolyn Libin; Calgary LOJ Co-Chair Naida Feldman.

CENTRAL NEW JERSEY On September 15, Mitzi Eisenberg warmly welcomed Lion of Judah donors from the Jewish Federation of Central New Jersey into her home for an up close and personal tour of her incredible private art collection. Mitzi began the tour by sharing how their son’s influence, guidance and encouragement sparked their interest to begin purchasing art and how becoming collectors has changed their lives. Ragin’ Cajun James Carville meets with Buffalo Lions and LOJEs on a beautiful September day. Seated are (L. to R.) Viola Sterman, Women’s Philanthropy chair; Holly Levy (LOJE), Jewish Federation of Greater Buffalo president; Mr. Carville; Anne Virag. Standing (L. to R.) are incoming Women’s Philanthopy Chair Ellen Weiss and Dina Benderson.

Wendy Rosenberg, Lion of Judah co-chair, thanked the group of extraordinary philanthropists by remarking, “We enable the ‘nachas factor’ and we make so many differences with our philanthropy. Our core values of tzedakah and tikkun olam guide us as we bring justice to those in need, repairing the world one life at a time.” Dr. Will Recant, assistant executive vice president of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), 31

provoked tears as he shared stories of women from across the globe whose lives were impacted by the generosity of donors like the women in attendance. Joanie Schwarz, Lion of Judah co-chair, then continued to touch everyone’s emotions with her own thoughts about family, commitment and responsibility. The Lions who were present were clearly moved, raising more than $143,500 for the 2012 Federation Annual Campaign.

and school supplies for 50 children. With the help of Jewish Family Services, we also donated home-baked challah and honey for 50 households on Rosh Hashanah. Additionally, our emphasis on social action encouraged our Women’s Professional Network to engage its members in social action by forming an alliance with Shalom Bayit of North Carolina, creating awareness and support for victims of domestic abuse.”

Mitzi Eisenberg gives Central New Jersey Lions an art tour of her home.

Left to Right: Charlotte Lions of Judah Tracy Brown, Nancy Kipnis, Barbara Levin and Alison Lerner distribute backpacks to Shalom Park Freedom School scholars.

CHICAGO The “LOJE–Celebrating Women’s Philanthropy” breakfast for Lions and LOJEs of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago was hosted by Lynn Sachse Schrayer at her home in June. Guest speaker Gail Norry, chair of National Women’s Philanthropy, spoke about the significance of women’s giving and the importance of providing for future generations.

Left to Right: Central New Jersey’s Joanie Rosenthal, Joan Levinson, Wendy Rosenberg and Maxine Schwartz with Dr. Will Recant.

CHARLOTTE At a recent Jewish Federation of Greater Charlotte event, Co-Chairs Amy Augustine and Alison Lerner, inspired when a woman was given the gift of Lion of Judah by her sister, announced the launch of “From Generation to Generation,” a campaign focus for 2012. “We hope you will consider making your mother, daughter or sister a Lion of Judah or a Pomegranate. By adding to an existing gift or making a new gift, you can help someone you love achieve her philanthropic goals and share your own passion for Women’s Philanthropy,” said Amy. Alison updated the Lions on our social action initiatives. “As a result of attending the ILOJC in New Orleans, we began deepening our connection and adding new meaning to our program. We volunteered as greeters for Shalom Park’s Freedom School and provided swim suits, towels, backpacks


Lynn and Debbie Winick both shared their personal stories of why they endowed their annual women’s gift and became LOJEs. The Women’s Division launched the 2012 campaign in October with the annual Lion Luncheon. Over 312 women filled the Swissotel Chicago ballroom, many proudly standing to share their 2012 gifts. These women demonstrated their leadership by raising $3 million for the 2012 campaign. In addition, the Women’s Division added 20 new Lions to its pride, now numbering over 820 women. The featured speaker was Valerie Plame Wilson, the former CIA agent and author of Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House. All the women who have become new Lions since last year’s luncheon, as well as the women who have increased their gifts to the Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, Double Chai, Zahav or Prime Minister level, were recognized. Event Chair Jodie Berkman led a strong pride of Lions: Lori Komisar, Emerald co-chair; Gail Rudo, Ruby chair; Ruth Fromm, Dana Gordon, Susan Kagen Podell, and Andrea Saffir, Lion of Judah co-chairs; Miriam Lichstein, Young Women’s City Council co-chair; Deborah Winick, Young Women’s Board Lion of Judah co-chair; Ellen Spira Hattenbach, professional Lion of Judah co-chair. 

Women’s Philanthropy Initiative, in February 2011, the Federation hosted a community-wide Appreciative Inquiry Summit to explore new possibilities for the engagement and mobilization of Cleveland’s diversity of Jewish women. One hundred and fifty women turned out to craft three major strategies for the 2011-12 fiscal year: a campaign for Jewish needs, outreach and impact, and leadership development. Although still in its transition phase, WPI is moving full speed ahead, gathering hundreds of new voices along the way.

Standing at the “Celebrating Women’s Philanthropy” breakfast for Chicago Lions: (L. to R.) Lynn Sachse Scharayer, host; Susie Spier Chapman, 2011 LOJE chair; Gail Norry, National Women’s Philanthropy chair; Deanna Drucker, Women’s Board president; Andrea Ableman Rich, 2012 LOJE chair; Debbie Winick, Young Women’s Board advisor.

Following the path of other innovative Federations, Cleveland is also in the process of instituting a “Step Up To Lion” program which will encourage $2,500 donors to move up to the Lion level over the course of the next three years, during which time they will be invited to Lion events and be cultivated by their sister Lions. One such unique event took place in February 2012 when Cleveland’s Lions had the opportunity to spend an evening at the home of the world famous Cleveland Orchestra. An exclusive hands-on volunteer opportunity will take place in the spring.

b JUF/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago 2012 Lion Luncheon Leadership: Deborah Winick, Young Women’s Board Lion of Judah co-chair; Susan Kagen Podell, Lion of Judah co-chair; Martha Davidson, 2012 campaign vice president; Jodie Berkman, Lion Luncheon chair; Ruth From, Lion of Judah co-chair; Lori Komisar, Emerald co-chair; Miriam Lichstein, Young Women’s City Council co-chair; Gail Rudo, Ruby chair; Valerie Plame Wilson, guest speaker; Ellen Spira Hattenbach, professional Lion of Judah co-chair; Dana Gordon, Lion of Judah co-chair (Not pictured: Andrea Saffir, Lion of Judah co-chair).

CLEVELAND Innovative programming is behind the tremendous growth of Cleveland’s Lion program in 2011-2012: 25 new Lions, 13 new Rubies, and four new Lion of Judah Endowments. The Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s Lion and Ruby co-chairs have instituted year-round outreach programs including the annual Lion of Judah dinner, which was held in October when 150 Lions joined together to hear Iranian Jewish author Farideh Goldin. The event was chaired by Beth Brandon, Marti Davis, Trish Adler and Eileen Sill. Past Women’s Campaign Chair Nancy Levin was honored with the 4th annual Ruby Bass Award for her solicitation skills and her knack for securing new Lion-level gifts. In the summer of 2010, Cleveland’s Women’s Leadership formally allocated resources to implement a Women’s Philanthropy initiative, chaired by Suellen Kadis, designed to expand philanthropic opportunities by offering leadership advancement and meaningful engagement throughout Cleveland’s Jewish community. To set a road map for the

Left to Right: Cleveland’s Nancy K. Levin, winner of the 2011 Ruby Bass Challenge Award, standing with the award’s creators and funders Jonathan Bass, Stephany Bass and Lenore Kessler.

DELAWARE In October, Jewish Federation of Delaware’s Women’s Philanthropy Co-Chairs Barbara Blumberg and Dorothy Bobman hosted 100 women for the inaugural W.O.W. (Women of Wisdom) event. Delaware’s Lions gathered together for a special reception before the main event, and then joined other like-minded women who share a passion and commitment for building a strong future in their community. The evening featured bestselling author and motivational speaker Gabrielle Bernstein, who signed copies of her latest book and shared her personal transformation and spiritual journey towards happiness, selfacceptance and fulfillment. For the first time in the community, there was a minimum gift requirement to attend the women’s philanthropy event, and we are thrilled to report the success of our efforts and the participation across multiple generations of women. Our next W.O.W. event will take place in the spring of 2012, when new Pomegranates will be inducted as the Pomegranate Program is restored in the community as one of many initiatives to engage women in the Federation. 33


Jewish Federation of Delaware Lions with guest speaker Gabrielle Bernstein at the W.O.W. event reception.



Linda Hurwitz visited the Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids community in November 2011, and spoke to its Lions, Pomegranates, business professionals, young parents, campaign solicitors, and general community about the importance of having the opportunity to give. The theme for the day was “Passion and Purpose in the Jewish Community,” which Linda was a huge part of.

The Lions of the Greensboro Jewish Federation enjoyed a fall luncheon at which Ralph Lowenstein, author and Dean Emeritus of the College of Journalism at the University of Florida, shared his story of volunteering in Israel’s War of Independence at age 18 without his parent’s knowledge. The event was held at the home of Sylvia Samet, whose daughter, Leslye Tuck, serves as the 2012 Women’s Philanthropy chair. Gail LeBauer, chair of the Jewish Foundation of Greensboro, spoke to the women about the importance of becoming a LOJE and endowing their gifts for future generations.

Later in November, the Lions helped fund a Sacred Dimensions Concert performance by the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra. Additionally featured in this Jewish themed concert was Dalit Warshaw, a Boston composer and pianist who performed some original compositions for the standing-room-only crowd. Also exciting is that 2012 has been declared the Year of Interfaith Understanding in the Greater Grand Rapids community.

In an effort to reach out and engage future donors, the Women’s Philanthropy division hosted STEP UP!, a dim sum lunch at which Greensboro women were asked to put their best foot forward for the Federation by raising their pledges. Local artists decorated shoes that were raffled and the proceeds donated to Jewish Family Services to purchase Hanukkah gifts for children in need. Amy Chrystal, co-chair of the STEP UP! event, became the Greensboro Jewish Federation’s newest Lion of Judah.

Left to Right: NWP President Linda Hurwitz with three Grand Rapids Lions: Karen Padnos, Judith Joseph and Judy Subar.

Left to Right: Event Co-Chair and new Lion Amy Chrystal welcomes Robin Skirboll to Greensboro’s STEP UP! event


Left to Right: Greenwich’s Laurie Siegel, holding her brand new Lion of Judah Pin, with Sheila Romanowitz, COO of the Federation. Left to Right: Leslye Tuck, 2012 Women’s Philanthropy chair, with her mother, Sylvia Samet, hostess of the Greensboro Lion of Judah Fall luncheon.

Left to Right: Ellen Davis, president of UJA Federation of Greenwich; Mitch Chupak, director of development at the Jaffa Institute; Michele Stuart, president of Women’s Philanthropy. Photo by Harold Shapiro. Left to Right: Rose Ackerman and Kathy Manning at Greensboro’s Lion of Judah Fall luncheon.

GREENWICH In October, UJA Federation of Greenwich’s Women’s Philanthropy hosted author Iris Krasnow at a Lion and Pomegranate event held at the home of Sally and Tony Mann. Laughter filled the room as Krasnow spoke about her just-published book, The Secret Lives of Wives, and some of the women shared their own funny secrets. Funds were raised to help build Beit Ruth, a new residential and educational village being constructed in Afula, by the Jaffa Institute, for at-risk teenage girls. Women’s Philanthropy adopted Beit Ruth as a giving project this year. In December, at the UJA Federation Annual Gala, Women’s Philanthropy President Michele Stuart and UJA President Ellen Davis presented a check for Beit Ruth to Mitch Chupak, director of development of the Jaffa Institute.

The ruby-throated hummingbird, the only hummingbird indigenous to eastern North America, is aptly named for the bright red plumage on its chest. Only the males have this reddish hue–to attract females during mating season.

HARTFORD Hartford’s Lions of Judah gathered at the beautiful home of Sandy and Arnold Chase in West Hartford in early October to celebrate their philanthropy at The Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford and to recognize the important work of JDC in raising breast cancer awareness around the world.   Guest speaker Nela Hasic, regional director at the Women’s Health Empowerment Program in Bosnia-Herzegovina, reported on how the Federation empowers women to fight breast cancer in many countries, including Israel and BosniaHerzegovina, through JDC and Susan G. Komen for the Cure This event, which occurred during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, was particularly meaningful for Honorary Chair Sandy Chase, a breast cancer survivor. Event chairs were Shari Cantor and Elaine Price. We were pleased to welcome eight new Lions – thanks, in part, to our new “Step Up” program, which invites women to step up to the Lion level by the 2014 campaign by making a three-year commitment, starting with this year’s 2012 campaign. “Step Up” Lions immediately receive all of the Lion of Judah benefits. In Greater Hartford, more than 120 women proudly wear the Lion of Judah pin and gather several times each year for an annual luncheon, book club and speaker events. Hartford’s 35



Lion of Judah program provides more than $1 million to the Annual Campaign each year. “As Lions we take great pride in our philanthropy and our commitment to care for the most vulnerable in our local community, in Israel and in 60 countries around the world,” said Lisa Fishman, 2012 Women’s Philanthropy chair.

LAS VEGAS This year’s Women’s Philanthropy Fall Outreach event took on an exciting new twist! More than 70 women from across the Las Vegas Valley met at Town Square Las Vegas in November to sample tasty treats and delicious cocktails at the hottest restaurant locations. The women met in the Town Square Park, a popular shopping area with restaurants and bars, and were divided into groups based on common interests. Each group was led by a member from the Women’s Philanthropy Outreach committee. Following brief remarks about the Jewish Federation’s mission and goals, the women were sent to their first restaurant for cocktails and appetizers. From there, they visited four more restaurants, picking up tidbits of information at each stop about the vitally important work the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas does in the community and the programs and services it currently offers its partners and beneficiaries.

Left to Right: New Hartford Lions of Judah Dara Chase Dyer, Lauri Mandell, Audrey Lichter, Rona Gelber, Marina Cunningham, Ayelet Chozick, and Lee Ann Benadiva. (Not shown: Anne Martha Pitegoff.)

The intention was for the participants to become more knowledgeable about the important work of the Federation, leading to deeper involvement with Women’s Philanthropy Council programs and increased gifts to the Campaign.

KANSAS CITY In October, the Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City’s 2012 Lion of Judah campaign was launched with a luncheon at the home of Michael Klein, whose collection of museumquality Judaica is known internationally. “Cherishing the Past – Protecting the Future” was the theme for the event. Lisa Cohen and Stevie Shuchart chaired the luncheon, which honored Kansas City’s four new Lions as well as three new Rubies and was attended by 50 women. Host Michael Klein previewed some of his newest acquisitions and explained how he came to be a Judaica collector. The Lions toured Klein’s home, which houses more than 400 pieces of Judaica from around the world. Many of the items on display represent vanished ancient Jewish communities in China, Syria and Afghanistan.

Left to Right: Jane Schorr, Audrey Plotkin, Debra Cohen and Dale Tracht enjoy treats at Town Square Las Vegas.

Left to Right: Helen Edell, Ellen Bodner, Women’s Philanthropy Chair Rachel Ventura, and Alene Wexler get ready to “Dine Around” in Las Vegas. Left to Right: Kansas City members stand together. Pictured are Jenifer Blum, new Lion; Bari Freiden, Women’s Division president and new Ruby; Rachel Krantz, new Lion; and Dr. Cathy Seligson, new Lion.


Ruby Falls is a 145-foot underground waterfall hidden within Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga, TN. No rubies are found in the area – the waterfall was named for the wife of the man who discovered it.

the Lion of Judah program. Detailed follow-up is done with each attendee. Second, we comb through our lists of donors and nondonors to target women we feel have potential to become Lions. Current Lions are assigned to take these women out for lunch or coffee. Finally, we have opened up our kickoff event to all women in the community. In the past, this event was only open to Lions – but why preach to the choir? Now we let all the women in our community enjoy a festive night out and hear the fabulous Federation message. Left to Right: Las Vegas Women’s Philanthropy Outreach Chair Fran Fine-Ventura with Elyse Zacharia and Lara Stone.

This targeted approach has been very effective. To date, Memphis has welcomed 17 new Lions, bringing the total number of Memphis Lions to 88.

LOUISVILLE In what is becoming a tradition, the Lions of Judah and the Pomegranates held a joint event in November at Sarah O’Koon’s home. JFNA’s National Women’s Philanthropy Chair Gail Norry recounted her personal story of Campaign involvement – how it helped her personally and how she was able to make a difference for others. The group welcomed new Lion Aly Goldberg and new Pomegranate Alison Silberman. At the end of the evening, $153,050 had been raised for Louisville’s 2012 Federation Campaign.

b Some of the 17 new Lions in Memphis, left to right: Billie Pelts, Robin Orgel, Laurie Meskin, Molly Wexler, Tricia Woodman, LOJ Co-Chair Margo Fogelman and Lisa Silver.


METROWEST NJ The importance of our Jewish community has once again proved itself a priority for the women of the United Jewish Communities of MetroWest New Jersey.

Left to Right:New Louisville Pomegranate Alison Silberman and new Lion Aly Goldberg.

MEMPHIS Two and a half years ago, the Memphis Jewish Federation began an intensive campaign to educate more young women about the Federation and the Lion of Judah program, with the ultimate goal of recruiting new Lions. We have a three-pronged approach. First, we hold small luncheons and invite both Lions of Judah and non-Lions to share an informal meal and a roundtable discussion about

Just three days before CHOICES, our main fall event in November, Mother Nature caused chaos. A nor’easter dumped 6 to 12 inches of snow on parts of the MetroWest area, causing downed trees, property damage and widespread flooding, along with massive power outages throughout the entire community. However, CHOICES was still the place to be. Encouraged to “come as you are – this is not a time for dressing up but a time for showing up,” our women heeded the message of the night. Some of us might still have been in the dark, but the women of MetroWest brightened the world with our inner lights. More than 360 women braved the elements to hear veteran broadcaster and journalist Campbell Brown speak about her Jewish journey, her new life as a full-time mother, and the importance of Jewish community. They raised $675,000 in support of the 2012 UJA Women’s Campaign, but just as important is the fact that even at the most challenging of times, our women came together to perform tikkun olam and help those in need. 37

by Anne Freel of Northern Trust Bank and Rabbi Efrat Zarren-Zohar, director of adult learning at the Center for the Advancement of Jewish Education. These conversations allowed women to explore the impact of wealth management on their families, their personal legacies, and their enduring impact on the Jewish community.

Left to Right: Colleen Fain, Fran Berrin, Lily Serviansky and Rosi Behar at a Miami Lion of Judah Endowment Society event.

Left to Right: MetroWest Women’s Philanthropy President Anna Fisch and CHOICES Co-Chair Debbie Janoff (standing). Women’s Philanthropy Vice President and CHOICES Advisor Terri Friedman and CHOICES Co-Chair Dara Orbach (seated).

MIAMI More than 600 people gathered in November at the Greater Miami Jewish Federation Women’s Event, chaired by Susan Kleinberg, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Lion of Judah. Co-Presidents of Women’s Philanthropy Mojdeh Khaghan Danial and Laura Koffsky presented Norma Kipnis-Wilson, co-founder of the Lion of Judah, with a special gift of appreciation in recognition of her enduring vision, leadership and dedication. As a pioneer of women’s leadership and a role model to the community, Norma inspired all who were in attendance. The luncheon also featured a keynote address by awardwinning journalist and broadcasting veteran Campbell Brown, who shared her perspective as a newswoman as well as her personal journey in becoming a Jewish wife, mother and daughter-in-law. Elise Scheck Bonwitt, Miami’s Women’s Philanthropy Campaign chair, also spoke movingly about the way in which her mother’s experiences inspired her deep involvement with the Federation. Last May, at a Lion of Judah Endowment Society event chaired by Fran Berrin, women had the opportunity to learn about wealth, wisdom and strategies to manage family financial decisions. The event included presentations The actress, poet, playwright, screenwriter, journalist, and activist Ruby Dee, best known for co-starring in the film A Raisin in the Sun (1961), has won a Grammy, Emmy, Obie, Drama Desk, SAG and SAG Lifetime Achievement Award and the National Medal of Arts, among others awards.


Norma Kipnis-Wilson (center) receives a recognition award from Mojdeh Khaghan Danial (left) and Laura P. Koffsky (right) at the Miami Women’s Event.

MILWAUKEE The Milwaukee Jewish Federation’s Lions of Judah joined with Pomegranate Society donors to create an event of great excitement in October. The event was hosted by Debbie Attanasio – a principal owner, with her husband, of the Milwaukee Brewers – just as the Brewers were competing in the playoffs for a place in the World Series. The venue was the Attanasios’ lovely Milwaukee home, with its spectacular views of downtown and Lake Michigan. The keynote speaker was Marc Platt, a producer who has successfully bridged the worlds of theatre, film and television. Platt, a leader in the Jewish community, offered an inspiring message about the importance of Jewish life and culture, and of our commitment to ensuring that a vibrant Jewish community will be here for future generations. Between the beautiful location and Marc Platt’s engaging presentation, our donors left inspired and proud of their commitment to the Federation and to Jewish life and the community. A few weeks after this highly successful event, leaders of the MJF Women’s Division attended the JFNA General Assembly in Denver, and then met after returning home to discuss,

debrief and talk about how we can apply the energy of the GA to our own community. We are proud to say that the Milwaukee Jewish Federation has 107 Lions of Judah, and 31 women have chosen to endow their Lions.

Attending Montreal’s 2011 Lion of Judah Campaign event, standing (left to right) Heather Adelson, Women’s Campaign chair 2012; Heather Paperman, Connections chair; Gail Adelson-Marcovitz, president of Women’s Philanthropy; Joyce Schwartz; Nancy Ditkofsky, Women’s Campaign chair 2011; and Therese Attias, co-chair of Lion of Judah circle. Seated, Event Co- Chairs Randy Abecassis, Linda Sigal-Zelniker, and Etty Abitbol. Shown at the Milwaukee Lion of Judah and Pomegranate Society event are (left to right) Lauri Roth, event co-chair; Lindy Liberman, event co-chair; Debbie Attanasio; Mindy Palay, event co-chair; and Elizabeth Goldberg, Federation professional.

MONTREAL In the airport on the way home to the Federation CJA from the 2010 International Lion of Judah Conference in New Orleans, an idea was born: sitting in the airport, our Lions talked about what they were going to make for dinner and began swapping recipes. This impromptu discussion led to the launch of Bien Manger (French for “good eating”), a unique program that touches the women of our community by bringing delicious and easy recipes right into their homes and email inboxes. An email with the recipes is sent quarterly, and Lions have been submitting their favorites in both French and English as a way to reach out. This past spring, the Lions got together at the home of our president, Gail Adelson-Marcovitz, for a Lion of Judah card allocation breakfast. This event allowed us to assign many of our cards and was a huge help in growing our campaign. Also leading up to the campaign and following our card allocation breakfast, we invited all our Lions to a lunch with Sue Fishkoff as speaker. It was attended by almost 100 Lions and was held at the home of Jewel Lowenstein. At our LOJ Campaign event, held at the home of Joyce Schwartz, with over 150 Lions present, Lisa Steinmetz gave an inspirational speech about the power of the Jewish woman to make a difference. She challenged participants to ask themselves who they are, what they care most about, and what makes them leaders. She also asked them to think about what they are passionate about and how can they harness that passion to find their own personal mission in life. She encouraged the Lions to inspire others to be leaders by recognizing their potential, believing in them and making them feel worthy. Following Lisa’s speech was a fashion show featuring the top five trends for spring 2012.

NEW ORLEANS On an evening in November, nearly 50 community members gathered at the home of Hope and James Meyer to kick off the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans 2012 Annual Campaign. In attendance were the 2012 campaign cabinet, past campaign chairs, Federation executive committee members and constituent agency executive directors and presidents. Among this group were nearly 15 Lions of Judah. 2012 Campaign Co-Chair and Lion of Judah Karen Sher spoke about her experience on the 2012 Campaign Chairs and Directors’ Mission to Moscow and Israel. Accompanied by a photographic slideshow, Karen spoke of the interesting people she met, and how important it was for her to have the opportunity to see how the Federation’s overseas dollars are spent. Her life was touched by some of the children she saw, and she was humbled by the chance to spend time with elderly Jews in need of support. Karen’s words helped to bring to life this year’s overseas case for giving to those in attendance.

Left to Right: New Orleans Lions Vivian Cahn, Margot Garon, Janice Stern, Lynne Wasserman and Ann Fishman at the Federation’s Opening Campaign Dinner in November. 39





“We need each other to accomplish our joint mission and vision,” Karen Friedman, chair of UJA-Federation of New York’s Women’s Philanthropy, told an audience of nearly 300 women attending the Lion of Judah fall luncheon. The event was a powerful testament to the strength of women in the community, with the collective gift of the attendees representing over $5.1 million.

The Jewish Federation of Northeastern NY announced a new initiative that connects the women of the Federation with social service agencies in Northeastern New York. Thirty women from Women’s Philanthropy and NextDor: The Next Generation of Leadership have joined together to form TOV (Tikkun Olam Volunteers). Founded with the knowledge that there is power in the work of the female collective, TOV will take action to improve life in the Capital Region through hands-on involvement with several key non-profit organizations. The TOV committee decided to bring their “esprit de corps” to four organizations (two Jewish and two secular) in the coming months:

Honoree Sheila Birnbaum, a partner at the law firm Skadden Arps and Special Master of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, urged the guests to tap into the valuable resource of “pioneering and retiring women who opened the doors of work for other women. We have to use their talent in new kinds of charitable giving and endeavors to do what we have to do for the poor and the hungry,” Sheila said.

Girls Inc., which helps girls build skills and capabilities necessary for a responsible, confident and self-sufficient adulthood.

Joan Klitzman gave a moving account of how a beneficiary agency made a difference to family members who lost a loved one on 9/11. Klitzman helped create a support group at the JBFCS New York Jewish Healing Center following the loss of her own daughter on 9/11.

Daughters of Sarah, which enhances the quality of life of residents at this senior facility, assuring maximum independence and dignity.

Joan Wachtler received the Phyllis V. Tishman Memorial Award for her years of dedicated service. In accepting the award, she cited words she had learned from her grandmother, “It is not an obligation to serve our community, it is a privilege.”

Hebrew Academy Day School (HACD), a full-day K-8 school that integrates Judaic and secular studies, provides a nurturing and respectful school community and values the uniqueness of each child and the diversity of Jewish practice.

Keynote speaker David Makovsky, director of The Washington Institute’s Project on the Middle East Peace Process, spoke about how the Middle East is currently “at its most tumultuous since World War I,” and why peace between Israelis and Palestinians is now so critical. Makovsky said there is both opportunity and risk. The Jewish people can’t give up, he added, and discussed how he drew inspiration from the generosity and deep commitment represented by the Lions of Judah.

Hope Club, which creates a support community for anyone whose life has been touched by cancer.

TOV’s community service is off to a great start! In November, TOV honored three “Girls of the Month” at an award ceremony and visited with the girls who benefit from this inspiring organization. Eleven women attended our first TOV activity. It proved to be extremely rewarding for the women who attended, who enjoyed speaking to the girls one-on-one. An unexpected benefit was the opportunity to educate the girls on pre-existing stereotypes they had about Jewish people. This confirmed for us the importance of volunteering for secular as well as Jewish organizations. We’re attracting donors and non-donors alike, young and old, to participate in this new initiative helping social service organizations in Northeastern New York.

Left to Right: Award recipient Joan Wachtler, guest speaker David Makovsky, and honoree Sheila L. Birnbaum at the NYC Women’s Philanthropy Lion of Judah event.

Jewish Federation of Northeastern NY volunteers participating in the first TOV activity at Girls Inc.


NORTHERN NEW JERSEY Over 75 Lions of Judah from the Jewish Federation of Northern New Jersey celebrated the power of women and Women’s Philanthropy at the annual Lion of Judah luncheon, held at the home of Jodi and Mark Epstein in October. Fashion designer and author Vicky Tiel, whose recently published book is It’s All About the Dress: What I Learned in 40 Years About Men, Women, Sex and Fashion, shared stories about her fascinating life, including her friendship with Elizabeth Taylor, and showed samples of some of her creations. Then JFNA National Campaign Chair Susie Stern related examples of ways that Federation dollars are making a difference for Jews around the world. Women’s Philanthropy Co-President Lauri Bader reported that Northern New Jersey women donors contributed 26 percent of the total dollars raised, which exceeds national statistics. She also announced that 40 percent of the donors to the Annual Campaign were women making a gift in their own name. LOJE Co-Chairs Dana Adler and Bambi Epstein announced that three Lions – Adrienne Greenblatt, Joan Krieger and Yvette Tekel – endowed their gifts over the past year, bringing the total to 74 LOJEs in the NNJ community, representing endowment commitments of $8.3 million.

The Ottawa Sea Lions’ Dragon Boat Israel poster at Ottawa’s Dragon Boat Festival last June.

PALM BEACH COUNTY This is a special year for the Palm Beach Lions. In addition to the Lion program turning 40, our Federation is turning 50! We have a lot to be proud of as our Lion donors contributed more than $7 million, which translates to nearly 48 percent of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County’s 2011 Campaign. Our Lion/LOJE event at The Mar-a-Lago Club in February is the highlight of our year. We honor our founding Lions and LOJEs at a celebratory, cabaret-style evening with entertainment by fellow Lion Lesley Wolman. For the first time, Lions are encouraged to share their philanthropy by bringing their spouse or a guest.

Left to Right: Northern New Jersey LOJ Luncheon Co-Chair Shelley Cohen, Vicky Tiel, Luncheon Co-Chair Susan Silberman, Women’s Philanthropy Co-President Lauri Bader, Luncheon Co-Chair Judy Siboni and Women’s Philanthropy Co-President Jodi Epstein.

OTTAWA The Jewish Federation of Ottawa Lions have started the Dragon Boat Israel Festival, being held on the Sea of Galilee (Lake Kinneret) from May 17-18. Ottawa Lion Debbie Halton-Weiss and her committee of Myrna Barwin, Lynne Oreck-Wener, Linda Kerzner, Shelli Kimmel, Marcia Cantor and Lisa Rosenkrantz have realized their vision of bringing dragon boating to Israel. This festival, which celebrates the fastest growing team water sport, will help build community, foster cultural awareness and support select Israeli charities. Not only is this the first dragon boat festival to be held in Israel, but it’s already sold out! Twenty Israeli teams (with a waiting list of six teams) and 20 international teams with crews from across North America will participate. It is a fantastic example of the way in which Ottawa Lions are helping to engage new people and groups while also encouraging them to visit Israel.

We recognize Lion donors from other communities as well by inviting all Lions to join us with a minimum contribution in support of our community’s local needs. We are also introducing a new feature to this year’s event: our “Step-Up Program,” which encourages women to journey toward the Lion level over a three-year period. The 2012 Campaign year began with our F.E.E.L. (Federation Educates & Enriches Lives) Connected Leadership Day, during which we visited and learned about new and exciting programs offered by our partner agencies. In December, we had four more intimate programs with author and scholar Amy Hirshberg Lederman. Amy’s perspective on money and happiness gave us a lot to think about. In January, Bizu Riki Mullu, originally from Ethiopia, shared her personal journey at several gatherings in our community. The song “Ruby Tuesday” by The Rolling Stones, from the album “Between the Buttons,” was released in 1967. It reached #1 on the U.S. chart and #3 in the U.K. Originally the B-side of “Let’s Spend the Night Together,” it became a hit when radio stations were hesitant to play that provocative song. 41



Palm Beach County Lions are captivated by the evening’s speaker. Left to right: Amy Jonas, Women’s Philanthropy Campaign chair; Vivian Lieberman, Women’s Philanthropy president; Amy Hirshberg Lederman, speaker; Hope Silverman, Women’s Philanthropy vice president and Federation Campaign chair elect.

Philadelphia Women’s Philanthropy leadership celebrates a successful Lion of Judah luncheon. (Back row, left to right) Sara Minkoff, WP president; Robin Zappin, WP Campaign vice-chair; Susan Schwartz, president-elect; Rosalie Goldberg, luncheon co-chair; Sheree Bloch, luncheon co-chair; Ellyn Golder Saft, campaign chair. (Front row) Mona Golabek, guest speaker, and Margie Wargon Perilstein, luncheon co-chair.

PHILADELPHIA The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia is home to over 370 Lions of Judah. In October, more than 170 Lions and friends roared at the Annual Lion of Judah Luncheon, held at the Arts Ballroom and co-chaired by Sheree Bloch, Rosalie Goldberg and Margie Perilstein Wargon. The event’s extraordinary success can be attributed to the passion of guest speaker Mona Golabek, founder and president of Hold On To Your Music, an organization she created to share the story of her mother and other Kindertransport survivors. Golabek described how her mother, a musical prodigy, was forced to leave her family and her dreams of becoming a concert pianist behind to seek safe haven in London at the outset of World War II. The intergenerational audience at the luncheon responded to Mona’s warmth and sincerity and the power of her story. The event raised over $1,116,000 for the 2012 Federation Annual Campaign, plus an additional $73,000 for Women’s Philanthropy Designated Giving Projects, which address several of the Federation’s key funding priorities. These projects include: One Happy Camper incentive grants, which enable children to build Jewish identity and leadership skills through participation in Jewish overnight camps; the Mitzvah Food Project’s efforts to transform its food pantry at the Klein JCC in Northeast Philadelphia into a “Choice Pantry” where clients can choose products that best meet the needs of their families; and therapeutic overnight camp experiences for Israeli teens served by Orr Shalom Family group homes. This year’s luncheon was attended by the largest number of participants in the event’s history. Forty-five women responded to Women’s Philanthropy President Sara Minkoff and her inaugural invitation to bring a friend who might be interested in learning more about the power of women to make a difference through philanthropic giving. Ruby is an all-purpose, object-oriented programming language designed and developed in 1993 by Yukihiro Matsumoto. Matsumoto chose the name Ruby – the birthstone of one of his colleagues – for his programming language before the code for the language was even written.


PINELLAS & PASCO COUNTIES, FLORIDA In October the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco County Lions celebrated “Living Generously” at the home of Lion Linda Feldman. Guest speaker Sandy Lenger from National Women’s Philanthropy’s T.E.C.H. Team was a delightful speaker, and we proudly pinned our newest Lion, Diane Sherman. Wonderful host, wonderful meeting, wonderful home…incredible Lions!

Left to Right: Jeanie Abelson, Pinellas & Pasco chair; Sandy Lenger; Veta Felmus; Diane Sherman; and Linda Feldman.

PITTSBURGH The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Women’s Philanthropy extended its reach in 2011. In need of more programs for our Young Women’s Division, we came up with new and innovative ways to not only reach out and engage more young women in the work of the Federation, but to also connect them with those who have been involved in the community for many years. The most successful and exciting way we engaged new individuals this year was our Young Women’s “Mix and Mahjong” series. In all, we held three Mahjong sessions at private homes and offered a light meal. Women of all ages were encouraged to attend, even if they had never played before. Seasoned Mahj players took the novices under their wings and taught them the basics, while others got to engage in some fast-paced gaming and show off their skills. Our ladies

absolutely loved the series, and they are already asking for “more Mahj!” Pittsburgh also saw great success with our mentoring program last year. We matched 11 seasoned mentors with 11 mentees, most of whom were newly involved with the Federation, so each could benefit from the other’s experiences. We hosted two gatherings throughout the year, but the main goal of the mentorship was for these women to meet and connect on their own time and focus on their own topics. We are proud to report that most of the women involved in the program have established a lasting relationship and still keep in touch with their partners to this day. We look forward to offering a similar program in 2012, so more women who get involved with Women’s Philanthropy will remain engaged and involved for years to come.

ROCHESTER In Rochester, NY, women of all ages enjoy coming together as one. We just celebrated our 21st annual Main Event, our signature women’s fundraising gathering. Two incredible Lions of Judah chaired this event: Limor Madeb and Julie Nusbaum. Limor, upon receiving the 2011 Raye K. Aiole Young Women’s Leadership Award this past June, shared some poignant thoughts on our Federation: “The networking was unbelievable. Everyone was so warm, kind and involved and they wanted to get me involved too. Every time I attended a Federation program, I felt a sense of warmth and welcoming I did not expect, and I was overwhelmed by the kindness. As it turned out, I was not alone in my situation, I was one of many who moved to this town for one reason or another and wanted to feel a part of something. The Jewish Federation of Rochester made us all feel welcome. Soon I attended the Women’s Main Event and I was blown away by all the energy. From that perfect night on, I just wanted to attend and support whatever I could. “I was always welcomed with open arms and smiles. I feel blessed to have been part of the Federation, and for the past 10 years, the Federation has been an integral part of my life and the life of my family… from Purim Palooza, to the Yom Hashanah program, to the Yom H’Atzmaut program, and all

the wonderful speakers. I was fortunate to co-chair a mission to Israel (H2H2), to meet a lot of wonderful women from other communities, to sit on the Federation board, and to become a Lion and now co-chair with my dearest friend at the Women’s Main Event!” Alina Gerlovin Spaulding was the consummate keynote, moving all with her genuine personal presentation. Her story was incredibly powerful, but also peppered with humor. The evening still possesses cachet and feels 21 years young. The feedback was incredibly positive and the night yielded an unheard-of 38% gift for gift increase. Although our Federation name has changed, the Rochester Jewish community maintains its ability to widen the net, welcome and inspire.

SAN DIEGO Twenty-six Jewish Federation of San Diego County Lions shared a fabulous day together, traveling to Los Angeles on a party bus stocked with delicious homemade mandel bread, blueberry muffins, rugalach and Starbuck’s coffee. The group visited the newly renovated Getty Villa in Malibu for a guided architectural tour of the villa and its gorgeous grounds with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. The Lions then continued on to Los Angeles to visit the Skirball Cultural Center, where they enjoyed a gourmet lunch and were treated to an in-depth behind-the-scenes discussion of the new exhibit, “Women Hold up Half the Sky” with Skirball VP and Director of Education Sheri Bernstein, who originally hails from San Diego. Co-Chair Terri Bignell said, “This year’s excursion to L.A. was a great day of camaraderie for the Lions and a fantastic day of art as well. There were several new Lions in attendance and the bus ride lent itself to a great and fun experience. By the end of the full-day trip, we were all busy chatting about the next Lion excursion.” Debbie Kempinski, Major Gifts officer for Women’s Philanthropy, explained, “We try to plan at least one art and cultural program each year. It was great sharing this meaningful experience with our Lions and spending the day together. We have a special group of women who share a passion for caring for our community, and always have a terrific time together.”

Left to Right: Rochester’s Hannah Rosenblatt, Women’s FRD co-chair; Hope Kantor; Ellen Broder; Maria Lauriello-Klein; Monica Flaum, LOJ; Rebecca Klymn; Andrea Kovalsky, Hebrew University intern; Ronnie Jacobs; Limor Madeb, LOJ; Julie Nusbaum, LOJ; Alina Gerlovin Spaulding, keynote presenter; Lorraine Wolch, LOJ and Women’s Philanthropy president; Roberta Feldman, Women’s FRD co-chair; Paulette Reynolds; and Linda Reynolds. 43



San Francisco Lion of Judah Generations: (Left to Right) Ann Bear, Susan Hyatt, Stephanie Block and Karen Daitsch, YAD Campaign co-chair.

San Diego Lion of Judah Excursion to L.A.

SAN FRANCISCO Stephanie Block, National Young Leadership Cabinet member, writes: The fog was even thicker in Daly City than it was in San Francisco. But that didn’t stop women from as far north as Sonoma and as far south as Palo Alto from gathering at the Annual Lion of Judah Luncheon. Together, the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin & Sonoma Counties and its Lions celebrated the sixth day of Sukkot, rejoiced in a “pop up” sukkah, and gave each woman the opportunity to shake the lulav and etrog. Fog didn’t dampen the cozy celebration; in fact, spirits were sunny. Now you might be thinking that a luncheon sounds a little old fashioned. Couldn’t we have group Skyped or had a live Tweet-up? In fact, getting us in a room at one time is a miracle. But there’s something very powerful about women gathering in person for a shared meal and shared dialogue.

J Weekly’s hard-hitting Editor-in-Chief Sue Fishkoff took the podium with the contrasting landscape behind her and explained how Jewish life is flourishing in America and here in the Bay Area. Synagogue membership may be down, but folks are creating new kinds of worship groups on their own and the next generation is starting grassroots Jewish organizations devoted to ecology and social justice. All in all, it’s a great time to be Jewish. And it’s a fabulous time to be a Jewish woman involved in the Federation. The fogs of marginality and indifference have been lifted by resurgence and we should be very excited about what we see underneath! Oh, and the salmon was delicious, too.

Left to Right: San Francisco Lion Leaders Deborah Stadtner, campaign co-chair; Jan Reicher, president; Jacqueline Shelton-Miller, LOJ chair; and Jen Liebhaber, Campaign co-chair.

San Francisco Lions (Left to Right) Jennifer Gorovitz, Federation CEO; Carol Weiss, LOJE co-chair; Mimi Gauss, LOJE co-chair; Sue Fishkoff, keynote speaker and editor-in-chief of J Weekly, the Jewish weekly of Northern California; and Marlyn McClaskey, LOJE co-chair.

SOMERSET, HUNTERDON & WARREN COUNTIES The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon and Warren’s Women’s Philanthropy Division proudly sponsored two exciting events during 2011, each of which attracted wonderful groups of women who live throughout our tricounty area and beyond. A bus trip to the new National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia proved to be fascinating, and we used the opportunity to have different women speak on the bus microphone about what motivated them to become involved. By the time we returned, we had seen a wonderful exhibit about our shared heritage, and many new friendships had been made. Our IMAGINE 2011 event asked women to imagine how we could help Israeli and local individuals facing cancer.


We wanted to make sure that no one would have to face cancer alone. Alissa Fox and Robin Wishnie, our Women’s Philanthropy co-chairs, moderated the event, which included poignant stories from newly diagnosed individuals, an explanation of cancer support programs in New Jersey and Tel Aviv, a wonderful cooking demonstration, a healthy brunch and lots of shopping and raffles. Online Women’s Philanthropy auctions before and after the event brought in more revenue, and there was a call to action to make meaningful donations, both to those in attendance and to women who are involved but who could not attend.

of these “extra” occasions to get together, especially in smaller groups where they have an opportunity to connect with women they are unable to talk to at the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach’s larger Lion of Judah Luncheon.

Our newest Lion was congratulated and pinned at the event; since then another new Lion and Pomegranate have joined us. The group is already eagerly discussing plans for our next effort and for the upcoming Lion conference in 2012. Left to Right: Emily Grabelsky, Campaign vice chair; Meryl Gallatin, chair; Jane Greenberg, host; and Barbara Feingold, South Palm Beach Lion of Judah vice chair.


At Somerset’s Imagine 2011 event: (L. to R.) Debby Feldman, our newest Lion, receives her pin from Alissa Fox, Women’s Philanthropy co-chair.

Eighty of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater’s leading women donors gathered for their annual luncheon at the Sandler Family Campus. Featured speaker Linda Gradstein, a freelance journalist based in Jerusalem, talked about current events in the Middle East. In her remarks on the Arab Spring, Gradstein discussed not only its possible impact on Israel, but its even more immediate impact on the Arab women living in these “new democracies.” She laid out a number of scenarios that might come to pass in the countries where monumental political changes are occurring. None were definitive, and none were particularly positive, at least in the short-term. When asked why she chose to stay in Israel and raise her family there, Gradstein talked about Israel’s surprisingly low rate of violent crime, the safe streets and the feeling of community. She described the satisfaction she feels as she watches her children grow up self-assured and independent – raised by an entire nation.

Somerset’s Women’s Philanthropy trip to the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia was a sellout.

SOUTH PALM BEACH In celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Lion of Judah program, South Palm Beach’s Lion of Judah Vice Chair Barbara Feingold created Lion Chats as an additional gettogether opportunity. Nearly 100 Lions heard an in-depth Middle East update from Florida Atlantic University’s Dr. Robert Rabil at our first “Chat,” held in November.  At the beautiful home of Jane Greenberg, Lions enjoyed a “high tea” along with old fashioned English scones as well as, of course, some spirited chatting.

Gradstein shared a personal story of boarding a public bus with her then infant child. She was not offered a seat by any of the passengers sitting down. Rather she was offered a set of hands into which she was invited to place her child for safe-keeping. “That’s how it is in Israel. You place your child in the arms of a stranger on the bus, so you can hang onto the strap to keep from falling.” And as children grow older, she explained, old ladies on the bus will squish over to make room for them. Then they stroke the children’s hair and play patty-cake with them, while you continue to grasp the strap. Despite its uncertainties, internal struggles and challenges, and its geographic location in a hostile part of the world, Gradstein believes in the ideals and realities of Israel and her message resonated with the crowd.

The next Chat takes place in February with Reuven Hazan of Hebrew University providing an Israeli perspective on the Middle East situation. The Lions voiced their appreciation 45



Left to Right: Tidewater’s new Lions Susan Becker and Farideh Goldin.

TWIN CITIES (MINNEAPOLIS & ST. PAUL) The Women’s Philanthropy Departments of the Minneapolis Jewish Federation and the United Jewish Fund and Council of St. Paul joined forces for an outstanding Lion of Judah event this year. It was held at Oak Ridge Country Club with the commitment of our Twin City Lions shining through as over 120 women attended. The friendship and camaraderie in the room was amazing. Each Lion knew that her individual generosity had helped to work miracles for countless Jews around the world. The Lions are our pillars, they demonstrate to all the importance of a woman’s gift and they are the foundation of our Women’s campaigns each and every year. We salute them and honor their devotion and dedication to Minneapolis and St. Paul, where their collective giving totals over $2 million annually. The women enjoyed a delicious luncheon and were moved and inspired by guest speaker Jeannie Opdyke Smith, whose mother was awarded the “Righteous Gentile” honor for hiding 20 Jews in the basement of a German soldier’s home for over two years. Her mother’s story was made into a Broadway play called “Irena’s Vow,” with Tovah Feldshuh playing Irena. Jeannie moved the audience to tears with the harrowing and inspiring story of what her mother did to help save her Jewish friends. It was an amazing story of courage, compassion, and loyalty. The women had an opportunity to visit with Jeannie after the luncheon and get a signed book as a gift from our Federations. The Twin City Lions roared with appreciation as their luncheon ended and feelings of pride and accomplishment set in. They were very proud to have Jeannie Opdyke Smith representing her mother at the event.

Left to Right: Michelle Shaller, St. Paul UJFC Women’s Campaign chair; Jackie Paster, Lion Lunch co-chair; Lisa Ratner, Minneapolis Jewish Federation Women’s Campaign chair; Jeannie Smith, speaker; Kris MacDonald, Lion Lunch co-chair; Kay Goldstein, Minneapolis Jewish Federation Women’s Philanthropy president; and Diane Smookler, Lion Lunch co-chair. Not pictured: Wendy Lovell-Smith, Lion Lunch co-chair.

WASHINGTON D.C. Every year, The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington’s Women’s Philanthropy tries to find a new and exciting way to engage our very special Lions. In the past, we’ve had powerful, well-known women join us as guest speakers, always proving successful with invigorating programs. This year, we decided to take the Lions of Judah “opener” down a different path. We wanted an opening event that was more than just a fun opportunity – we wanted it to be fun and impactful. Our women were looking for something that would allow them to directly give back to the community. What better way to do this than through a social action project? With that in mind, local, renowned artist Gary Rosenthal lead our initiative by helping our Lions with a unique art project that would benefit those in need. Our Lions created beautiful pieces that were melded onto menorot and given to individuals with special needs at the Jewish Foundation for Group Homes, and to individuals affected by domestic abuse seeking refuge at the Jewish Coalition Against Domestic Abuse. Both agencies are partners of the Federation. Not only did participants have fun getting to know each other, they were ecstatic to be able to give back in a meaningful way.

“Ruby of Cochin: An Indian Jewish Woman Remembers,” co-authored by Barbara C. Johnson and Ruby Daniel, is the first book written by a woman from the Indian community of Cochin. It’s filled with rich descriptions of Jewish life in an exotic culture spanning several centuries.

Washington D.C. Lion of Judah Rise Ain from Potomac, Maryland.


THE LAST WORD I can’t help but think back to 1972, when Norma Kipnis-Wilson and Toby Friedland (z’’l) created the Lion of Judah. I can only imagine the countless hours, creativity and passion that went into the building and marketing of what today is considered the strongest brand in the Federation system. How lucky we are that 40 years ago these women decided to make a difference in a way that, decades later, continues to unleash the power of women to effect positive change. This past week I had the privilege of spending two days at a photo and video shoot with 12 lions from all over the country. Just like Norma and Toby, each one of these women is working tirelessly on behalf of our Jewish community. Despite the diversity of their ages and backgrounds, all of these women had so many fundamental things in common. And each has gotten so much more from being involved then they ever thought they put in. For some, it was meeting their future spouse on a mission or at an event, for others it is the friendships they have forged over the shared Jewish values of tzedakah and tikkun olam. So as the Lion turns 40 and we all gather September 10-12 in New York for the International Lion of Judah Conference to celebrate her and her achievements, let me wish that her next 40 years be as impactful and meaningful as the past 40, and that she continue to change the lives of everyone around her!



Kimberlee Fish, Senior Director, National Women’s Philanthropy

It’s not about the pin. It’s about the Lion who wears it. Her pride in her philanthropy. Her passion for making the world a better place. The value of her impact?

Join us in New York City at the Marriot Marquis Times Square September 10-12, 2012 Register now at


Lion of Judah

2012 LOJE Magazine  

Lion of Judah Endowments Magazine

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