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ramaz Today ‫רמז היום‬

The Ramaz School Annual Magazine ‫שנתון תשע''ב‬

EDITORIAL STAFF Judi Resnick Communications Director Mara Lassner Communications/PR Coordinator Lauren Katz Director of Alumni Relations

ADMINISTRATION Rabbi Haskel Lookstein ‘49 Principal Judith H. Fagin Head of School Kenneth Rochlin ‘86 Director of Institutional Advancement Don Anziska Director of Finance and Operations The Lower School & Early Childhood Center Rabbi Alan Berkowitz ‘79 Headmaster Dr. Michal Agus Fox ‘92 Lower School Psychologist Hedva Ofek-Shai Director of Hebrew Language Curriculum & Faculty Supervision Risa Zayde Director of Curriculum & Faculty Supervision Lori Ash Director, Early Childhood The Rabbi Haskel Lookstein Middle School Morah Smadar Seinfeld Headmistress Rabbi M. Mendel Lewitin Director of Curriculum & Faculty Supervision Lois S. Nyren Assistant Headmistress The Rabbi Joseph H. Lookstein Upper School Ira M. Miller Dean Rabbi Jay Goldmintz, Ed.D. Headmaster Rabbi Shlomo Stochel Assistant Dean Rabbi Joshua Bakst Dean Emeritus

PHOTOGRAPHS Mara Lassner Judi Resnick Rachel Rabhan ‘92 Shirley Serure Photography Jacqueline sharp-Linsenbaum Faculty and students of the Ramaz School


“Building the future together” pages DESIGN Marshall Haber Creative Group Inc.

THE RAMAZ SCHOOL 114 East 85th Street New York, NY 10028 212-774-8055

‫שנתון‬ ramaz annual magazine


Message from the Principal and the head of school interview with Chairman of the Board Jacob Doft a lesson in civics: classroom linked to community talmud at ramaz: a commentary ramaz grandparents: a pinch of stardust alumni news ramaz financials annual campaign overview 2011 annual dinner recap thank you to our donors capital campaign announcement

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The Next 75—and Beyond ‫ והלאה‬75-‫ ל‬75-‫ מ‬,‫עבר ועתיד‬ the core of this learning process. The plan was created in 2009 after consultation with eight hundred faculty, parents, alumni, students, and board members. “Creating the plan was exciting,” says Middle School history teacher Jennifer Bernstein. “We have a long history, but we need to move forward and position ourselves for the future.”

A message from the principal and

the head of school

Ramaz is looking not only backward at its seventy-five-year history but also inward and forward. It would be easy merely to offer the same excellent education for which the school has long been well-known. But that would not be the right approach. The Torah, it is said, has seventy “faces” or facets of interpretation; the way to discover them all is to turn the Torah over again and again. A scholar may study the Torah every day, but there will always be a new perspective to uncover. The more Torah she learns, the more she grows as a human being.

More than ever, Ramaz honors its students as individuals. Lower School students learn socializing strategies through the B.R.A.V.E. (Belief in the Rights and Value of Everyone) Program. The Middle School Sephardic Club provides programs about Sephardic ritual practice. The spring semester of twelfth grade has been revitalized with a diverse range of minicourses (covering everything from the Akedah to zombies), chesed opportunities, work-study assignments, and other options, including travel to Poland and an interdisciplinary senior thesis. Through an expanded science research program, Upper School students are working on sophisticated lab research projects and writing up their results in academic papers.

Likewise, learners and teachers are multifaceted. There is no single method suitable for everyone; a strategy that works well today may be ineffective tomorrow, and alternate pedagogies may draw out as-yet-unknown skills and talents. When Judith Fagin became Head of School in 2006, she decided that, exceptional as it was, Ramaz had to turn itself over and over again. The school had to evaluate itself, to reflect. Ramaz had to embrace innovation—not for the sake of being experimental but to better realize its mission. The more Ramaz learns about itself, the more it grows as an institution and community.

Ramaz also now recognizes individual differences in approaches to spirituality. In the Middle School and Upper School, yoatzim (religious counselors) meet with students to discuss religious and spiritual issues on the minds of their students. In the Upper School, the new Talmud Bekiut program offers students the chance to complete

Implementation of a strategic plan—a road map with specific strategies to improve the school—is

even as Ramaz embraces change, some things will always remain the same....

principal rabbi haskel lookstein ‘49


an entire tractate over the course of the year through weekly lunchtime meetings. And the Kollel Fellows program brings young men and women from Yeshiva University and Stern College to serve as role models and learning resources. Today’s students learn in an era of enormous technological and educational transformation. They grapple with the same material that previous generations mastered, but through twenty-first-century lenses. Faculty members continually sharpen their skills to provide the best teaching practices. Teachers now participate in curriculum mapping: every teacher documents the skills and content taught in the classroom and shares this information with all the other teachers in all disciplines, enabling any teacher to track skills and update lesson plans.

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These innovations are a resounding success. In its last assessment, the New York State Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS) gave Ramaz an overwhelmingly positive review, commenting favorably on ongoing improvements. Of course, even as Ramaz embraces change, some things will always remain the same. Ramaz continues to view financial aid an essential expression of our values, not as charity. It continues to model and nurture menschlichkeit. The school continues to support and attract outstanding faculty members. Ramaz continues to express a love of Israel, Torah, and peoplehood, and it continues to foster a sense of communal responsibility. •

More than ever, Ramaz honors its students as individuals.


Head of School Judith H. Fagin

interview with jacob doft ‘87 ‫ראיון‬

ramaz chairman of the board, alumnus & parent


Q A “I am astonished that my children are learning material years earlier than I did at Ramaz. Their work in writing and humanities is significantly more advanced than I remember mine being as a student. The emphasis on public speaking and delivering presentations is both new and appreciated. And the recently-instituted Hebrew immersion program in the Early Childhood Center has provided a significant boost to my children’s grasp of Ivrit.”




What experiences at Ramaz do you hope your children also enjoy? My favorite part of Ramaz was tuna sandwiches and potato chips each Friday for lunch. Seriously! In high school, being Chairman of the business investment club was a blast and very well may have been the start of my career as a money manager. And being part of a championship team (I played hockey) was an experience in teamwork that I would love my children to also enjoy....Did I mention that I met my wife at Ramaz? How did Ramaz prepare you personally and professionally? Ramaz taught me leadership and courage. We protested outside of the Soviet embassy every morning for years. And, amazingly, it worked. That was my first lesson in determination. Watching Rabbi Lookstein rally on behalf of Jews around the world was eye-opening. This activism also taught me to never sit back and expect things to happen on their own. That is why I got involved in Ramaz and its governance. At work, I lead by doing, just like I did as Chairman of the business investment club or representing Ramaz on the hockey team. What are your priorities as Board Chairman? To find a new head of school to continue Mrs. Fagin’s great work, enhance the school’s transparency and communication in regards to both parents and faculty, inspire and develop a new generation of lay leadership, and constantly encourage the school to improve its already-strong program. What are the biggest challenges in ensuring a financially sustainable Ramaz? Simply put, the challenge is to balance the tension between investing in fabulous teachers and keeping tuition affordable for families. Tuition need not be rock bottom, but a Ramaz education certainly needs to be a good investment. Two development initiatives that will help us accomplish this are growing the endowment and broadening our donor base. what other challenges do you anticipate during your tenure? Helping a new head of school acclimate to the position will be the most important task in the near future. In its 75-year history, the institution has had only three heads. What budget trends have you seen over the last 5 years and what do you expect to see in the coming 5 years? The most alarming trend is the significant rise in financial aid needs. Over the past six years, financial aid requirements have grown at a compounded growth rate of over 20%. And while some of this growth is clearly cyclical, and therefore temporary, it concerns us that much of it may be secular. Tuitions are higher now, and with rent control diminished, it is much harder for our typical hard-working family to make ends meet.


‫שיעור באזרחות‬

A Lesson in civics: Classroom Linked to community Service-learning at Ramaz Service-learning combines classroom learning

with hands-on community service projects. Ramaz is committed to helping students grow in their understanding of creative and practical ways to solve public problems, as highlighted in the new strategic plan. These types of projects develop innovative leadership skills in children by seeking engagement through dialogue and collaborative work with civic and philanthropic infrastructures. Service-learning works in tandem with civic responsibility and is woven through all areas of the social studies curriculum at Ramaz. These ideas help propel communities forward and demonstrate how social transformation can be within the reach of all.

A daily reminder to help others How does one grow in concrete ways to grasp a fundamental understanding of community? It happens in small and large ways each day. A child’s eyes are gradually opened to the surrounding world and the realization that he or she can make an impact. At Ramaz, the practice of extending educational experiences past the walls of classroom instruction begins at a very young age. Rabbi Alan Berkowitz, Lower School Headmaster, concludes his morning greeting to the Lower School with a daily challenge. He simply asks students to be aware of their surroundings, and mindful of ways they can effect change for another person. By tailoring this message in practical and relevant ways, Rabbi Berkowitz subtly, yet powerfully, guides a student’s consciousness. His message empowers them to engage, not just with their school community, but with all communities within reach. The definition of community In the ECC, students learn about their primary community: family. As the youngest members of our school community, they engage in very concrete activities to support civic organizations. Recently, they held a bake sale in order to raise money for a playground for children in Sderot. Their engagement was comprehensive and included the preparation of baked goods, creation of advertisements, and even completing the actual sales transactions. In the first grade,


Ramaz students begin to interact with the community at a local level. They benefit from an increased awareness and participation in their own communities by visiting the local firehouse and police station. Speakers from different community offices are invited to present during assemblies. The goal is to introduce children to the civic organizations right outside the walls of the school. This basic introduction is a concrete vehicle that helps students understand the ways in which the world interacts with citizens. Their knowledge of community begins to broaden as they start to grasp the various ways in which communities intersect.

Voicing an opinion Once students are able to comprehend roles and functions of

various communities, they are better equipped to widen their scope of involvement. The social studies curriculum keeps pace by introducing Lower School students to the ways in which different geographic communities (such as rural, urban, and suburban) interact with one another. In particular, teachers want students to begin participating in community activities. Second graders participate in a Bank Street College activity where they, along with students in five other states, vote for their favorite picture book. It is an important developmental milestone for students to understand that each one’s unique voice can be heard and will affect the results of something concrete. Students also engage in field trips that examine urban planning, bridge construction, and the intersection of rivers. In addition, they visit places exhibiting models of various cityscapes.

The global community In third and fourth grade, the social studies curriculum

grapples with more global issues such as immigration, map studies, explorers, and the ways in which various landforms affect communication among global communities. This expanding perspective on community provides a unique view into the connection between history and civic engagement. Last spring, students were privileged to hear a Ramaz parent and her daughter speak to the Lower and Middle Schools about the Beta Israel (Falasha) in Ethiopia and their collective struggle to reach Israel. Their experience left students inspired and engaged. It further exemplified the type of service-learning opportunities that Ramaz students seek as they grow in their understanding of the world. On a local scale, students also spent time writing to elected officials about issues that were relevant to their life. They found it particularly rewarding to receive letters in return!

Our government, our responsibility During the Middle School years, students begin to deepen their understanding of civic rights and responsibilities. History classes widen in scope as students begin to explore authentic connections between history, civics, and their individual lives. In fifth grade, the curriculum centers on ancient history. Many fifth-grade students participate in a weekly chesed club that raises thousands of dollars for philanthropic agencies. American history is taught in both sixth and seventh grades. A special emphasis is placed on the political spectrum in seventh

center: Eighth-grade students on their Israel trip package food for distribution. inset: Lower School student votes for his favorite book; Early Childhood Center students hold a bake sale for Sderot; a Middle School student accompanies Ethiopian Olim to Israel. OPPOSITE: Wearing pink at the Upper School on “Pink Day� to raise awareness of and also funds for breast cancer research.


Teachers champion grade. Students explore issues central to each political party and the multitude of ways one particular issue can be viewed. Understanding point-of-view is a key component of the history curriculum. In tandem with the history focus on government, students also read novels such as To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee and Lord of the Flies by William Golding, where leadership and government are explored, and the individual power to effect change is amplified through the choices of various characters. Thus, Middle School students begin to gain a firm foothold on the make-up of the U.S. Constitution and the inner workings of governing bodies from a multitude of perspectives. Eighth-grade students study Jewish history and Zionism. They also participate in a specific unit that addresses civic engagement and the rights and responsibilities of an American citizen. Civic leaders speak to the students during special assemblies. Students also learn how to engage with ideas presented in the Op-Ed section of the New York Times, and write letters to the editor about issues they feel are important. Civic responsibility is a thread that runs through the entire four years of Middle School. For example, following a class discussion on muckrakers, students are asked to consider issues they feel are relevant to this topic today, and encouraged to write elected officials about such concerns. Students travel to Philadelphia and visit Constitution Hall and the Liberty Bell in sixth grade. In seventh grade, they travel to Washington, D.C.; visit the Vietnam and Lincoln Memorials; and attend a session of Congress. At every age, current events circulate in the classroom. Eighth-grade current events issues often tie into present-day issues in Israel. At the conclusion of Middle School, eighth-grade students take a Civics Exit Exam to demonstrate their firm understanding of how government works and the multitude of ways in which they can effect change.




A new service-learning project In the most holistic form of service-learning, the students envision the topic and manage the program from inception to completion (along with guidance from a teacher). This year, a group of sixth-grade students got a close-up view of local government when they met with Lauren Schuster, the chief of staff for Linda Rosenthal of the New York State Assembly, and were asked about issues and topics that concerned them. Voicing their deep concerns about second-hand smoke in the city, they decided to come up with a social justice grassroots campaign they are calling Peers to Prevent Smoking. Their goal is to spread the following message to other kids: “If you don’t start, you’ll never have to quit.” The group is in the process of developing a website and will meet with Ms. Schuster again. Drawing parallels between civics and history in the upper school In the Upper School, the history curriculum covers

civic virtue in the ancient world, conflict between religious identity and citizenship, and the origins of modern civil society. In particular, eleventhgrade American history spends a great deal of time on constitutional issues and debates, including the structure of the US Constitution. This year, a new elective provides an in-depth look at American government, in addition to the structures, laws, and culture of modern American politics. Throughout each year, students in all grades are encouraged to draw parallels between the attitudes surrounding historical and contemporary events. For example, the Great Depression unit gives rise to a discussion of the current recession and students are encouraged to make comparisons about the responses to each of these events.

left: Upper School students pick fall crops and use them to prepare dinner at a Connecticut soup kitchen. below: Grade seven students at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC. opposite: A Grade two student learns about urban planning while constructing NYC out of building blocks. above right: Ramaz Upper School students at the 2011 AIPAC Conference in Washington DC.




Civics in action In the Upper School, student programming works

in tandem with the History Department to prepare special Election Day activities. Each year, a panel of experts presents a relevant topic for debate. Students relish the opportunity to combine politics with history in order to further understand constitutional concepts amidst polarized adverse opinions. Adding Jewish ethics to the mix provides a dynamic framework for discussion that is particularly relevant. In past years, topics have included the Tea Party and Guantanamo Bay. On Veterans Day, special activities give students a better understanding of the lengths to which members of our own school community have gone to transform their commitment to civic responsibility into action. A tangible reminder of civic responsibility is a special pin each student receives that morning. In addition, the forty-foot American flag hung above the doors serves as a visible reminder to those passing by on 78th street.

In 2008, 2009, and 2011, students traveled to York, PA, to work with Habitat for Humanity, a Christian organization founded by former President Jimmy Carter. Working with hammers and nails and interfacing with and laboring alongside members of a different culture to rebuild a community in need of revitalization is yet another example of hands-on civics engagement. In the Upper School, Ramaz students mature in their awareness of ways they can effect change in the world, and raise money for particular projects that have unique relevance to their lives. This past year, Upper School students expressed an interest in autism research. A core group of seven students toured The Mount Sinai Center for Autism Research. They then held a carnival to raise money for autism research and developed a relationship with the Friendship Circle, which works with special needs children.

Classroom linked to community Throughout all divisions of Ramaz, the history curriculum seeks to link classroom with community. By helping students understand the many forces that combine to affect the events of the past, students are better prepared to have a positive impact on events currently unfolding. Teachers champion the power of the individual. In particular, they help students feel as if they have choices, and that their choices truly matter. Service-learning opportunities empower students and foster innovative leadership capabilities that propel communities forward. They develop collaborative skills by helping students engage in creative problem-solving projects that truly matter. Each student is able to see that social transformation is within his or her own reach. • Marianne Wilson is a seventh-grade English teacher at The Ramaz Middle School. She is the devoted mother of two daughters, Anabel and Juliet.

‫מרחיבים אופקים‬

Broadening Horizons: Students Attend AIPAC Policy Conferences

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee, AIPAC, began as a grassroots movement in the 1950s. It gives credence to the notion that creative individuals who care about social transformation can propel communities forward and effect change. Each year, Ramaz students eagerly anticipate AIPAC’s national policy conference in Washington, D.C. and are fortunate to participate. Miriam Krupka, Upper School Tanakh faculty member who directs this initiative, describes this experience as an outlet for students to express their love of Israel while broadening their horizons and perspective. Students who may have a strong emotional connection with Israel are able to find a deeper understanding of the political, historical, and social forces that drive public policy affecting Israel. In an average year, between 15 and 30 Ramaz Upper School students attend the conference. This past year, thanks to a generous donor, 34 students were able to travel to DC and hear speakers such as Benjamin Netanyahu and President Obama speak to the delegates. In addition, students are able to attend breakout sessions on various topics such as Changing Politics in the Arab World, Transformation and Turmoil in Egypt, Reducing Dependence on Oil, and Understanding Christian Support for the Jewish State. When students return from the AIPAC policy conference, they are empowered to share their experience. Students put together speeches and articles that are presented to the student body so as to provide further engagement and widen the “ripple effect” of the topics. Their contagious enthusiasm becomes a dynamic voice that Ms. Krupka hopes can be used to create and solidify further connections between Ramaz students and members of congress. She hopes to establish an open line of communication between the issues that matter to Ramaz students and the elected officials in the community. •


talmud at ramaz: a Although the formal study of Talmud at Ramaz does

not begin until a child enters the Middle School, there is little doubt that the groundwork has been laid and skills have been accumulating long before the transition to a new division. The stimulating world of Talmud learning becomes, over time, central to life as a student at Ramaz. While yet in the Early Childhood Center, children are exposed to Midrash, the rabbinic formulations of Judaism’s Oral Law, as they are taught the laws of the holidays. Soon after, in the Lower School, they will have their first experience of studying Chumash and eventually learn how to read the commentary of Rashi, which relies heavily upon the teachings of the sages of the Talmud and Midrash. This formative learning acquaints the children with the style and content of Torah shebe’al peh, and their textual facility deepens and broadens, preparing them for the early stages of Talmud study. In both the Middle and Upper Schools, the Talmud curriculum is broadly devoted to cultivating a commitment to learning Torah and inspiring the informed observance of its mitzvot. It is a missiondriven curriculum that strives to produce a learned graduate empowered with the desire and means to engage in the independent study and practice of Torah both as a lifelong passion and as a source of intellectual and spiritual fulfillment.

students for Talmud, the subjects of Mishnah and Halakhah are split into two distinct classes, taught by different teachers.

Finally, in the seventh and eighth grades, students plunge into the full scope of Talmud study, adopting the traditional model of independently, or in chavruta pairs, working their way through the Aramaic dialogue with its attendant commentaries and source references. Students are encouraged to apply modern technology to this ancient legal and philosophical text by using the computer lab and the classroom SmartBoard to divide the unpunctuated passages into its dialectical strands. Color-coding of the transitional phrases of the Talmud is another skill taught at this stage to enable students to visualize the rabbinic conversation. Upon entering the Upper School, Ramaz students are, for the first time, invited to make decisions about the balance of subjects within their Judaic studies courseload. All students take a minimum of five periods a week of Talmud, but those skilled in Talmud who wish to commit more time to the subject may opt to enroll in advanced classes of nine periods a week, shifting their overall Torah studies toward more Talmud learning. In the junior and senior years, the advanced classes meet for up to thirteen periods a week, giving motivated students the opportunity for intensive study and equipping them with the requisite background to pursue Talmud learning in the premier yeshivot in Israel after graduation.

In order to create a unified community of The twin academic objectives are scholars and learners, the Upper School acquisition of knowledge and textual ABOVE: A Lower School student excitedly holds his Talmud department uses the traditional literacy, which stress critical thinking first Chumash. OPPOSITE: An Upper School student model of teaching a single masechet BACKGROUND: An early printing studying the Talmud. and rigorous analysis, both essential of the Talmud. (tractate) to the entire school each year. components of Talmud learning. Equal Talmud thus becomes the only subject area in emphasis is placed on exposing students which every member of the school community engages in shared to the principles and concepts of Jewish law and on training learning. Conversations about the themes of that same Talmud them to read from the original texts and commentaries. fill the classrooms and corridors, and students of varying levels In the fifth grade, students are introduced to the Mishnah, the and ages can be seen and heard learning together or debating third-century rabbinic compendium of Jewish law that is the the finer points of the Talmudic dialogue. Sugyot (units) within a basis of all Talmudic commentary. Mishnah is taught together particular masechet are selected for their suitability for achieving with Halakhah, organized around the daily routine of prayer and the goals of the curriculum. The four-year cycle of masechtot benedictions, and the annual cycle of holidays, reinforcing the embodies the diversity of the Jewish ritual and ethical tradition, organic relationship between Jewish learning and practice. By and aspires to acquaint the student with the breadth and depth the sixth grade, owing to the growing sophistication of students of halakhic discourse throughout the centuries. In each unit, the and the need to devote more instructional time to readying


commentary ‫ פרשנות‬:‫תלמוד ברמז‬ historical development of Halakhah is traced while the texts are probed for their practical applications and spiritual implications. Consistent with this approach that views the study of Talmud as more than just an academic subject, but instead as an essential part of a child’s spiritual growth and religious routine, the Upper School asks students to engage in summer Talmud Torah by learning selected mishnayot (verses) of the upcoming year’s masechet. This past summer, students were encouraged to consult an online resource prepared by the Talmud faculty in the form of a series of audiovisual shiurim, short explanatory lectures. Talmud teachers in both Middle and Upper Schools also have been using our language lab/ media center to record their vocal renderings of the Talmud and its commentators. Students find these helpful in learning the proper pronunciation and intonation of the text. In some cases, students have recorded their own reading of Talmud for submission to their teachers for review and feedback. Students are coached to read as if they were auditioning for a part in the school play, to convey their comprehension of the text with dramatic flair and proper vocal inflection. An Upper School Talmud initiative that has become popular among students in the last few years is the bekiut program of voluntary lunchtime learning. Once a week, students take their lunch to the auditorium to participate in a session led by a member of the Talmud faculty. Modeled on the daf yomi style of fast-paced learning but with an built-in incentive to entice students, the program attracts a large

number of students from each grade. The goal is to complete an entire tractate—either the one taught in the formal curriculum or a related one—over the course of the year, culminating in a celebratory full-school siyyum at the end of the academic year. The program exposes students to many more pages of Talmud than are possible within the confines of the more in-depth and interactive Talmud learning that occurs in the classroom. The bekiut offering and its wide following continues to be a source of pride for the Talmud department. Also in recent years, the Upper School has partnered with Yeshiva University in a Kollel Fellows program staffed by YU rabbinical students and Stern College students. They spend several mornings a week at Ramaz learning in our Beit Midrash, joining our minyanim, and entering Talmud classes to assist teachers with their instruction. While a variety of methods for integrating these young men and women into the classroom are used, such as smaller group learning, the presence of these role models in and outside the classroom has enriched the atmosphere at school. Ramaz students have always valued their interaction and relationships with teachers, and the Kollel Fellows add yet another welcome dimension to this vital experience of a Ramaz education. •

rabbi shlomo stochel is Assistant Dean of the Ramaz Upper School. He also serves as Chair of the Upper School Talmud Department.

‫המגע האישי‬ Making it personal This year, the Upper School Talmud Department is teaching Masechet Berachot. The curriculum is devoted primarily to the relationship between man and God as expressed through the liturgical themes of the Shema, tefillah, birkot ha-Torah, birkat ha-mazon, and the recitation of blessings. In seeking ways of extending classroom learning to the spiritual lives of our students, a number of teachers have encouraged them to write reflective journals about the prayers and blessings studied. This exercise helps students make personal meaning of their ritual practices by thoughtfully linking the philosophical and halakhic texts of the Talmud to their everyday experiences. In addition, when a particular practice is addressed in the curriculum, awareness at school is raised in regard to that mitzvah. Most recently, after the clock changed and it was possible to hold a ma’ariv minyan at the end of the school day, students were urged to attend by direct reference to the Talmudic source that promises merit to those who join the blessing of redemption after the Shema to the Amidah, the contemporary custom for the recitation of the evening service.


Ramaz Grandparents: a pinch of stardust ‫עטרת זקנים בני בנים‬

Alex Haley, the award-winning author of the novel Roots, states, “Nobody can do for little children what grandparents do. Grandparents sort of sprinkle stardust over the lives of little children.” If this is so, stardust is in the air at Ramaz. It catches the light and reflects the contagious joy of children clasping hands with grandparents to celebrate intertwining educational journeys. Ramaz students are fortunate to have a large population of grandparents who live in close proximity to the school. What does this mean? Teachers and students alike will be the first to attest that most events held at Ramaz are bound to have supportive grandparents in attendance. Cheering during sporting events, clapping at musical performances, punctuating dramatic theater with an enthusiastic “Bravo!”, and bowing heads in reverence during important prayer services, Ramaz grandparents are truly a measure of stardust that glitters in the air, thus amplifying magical moments for all. This year, grandparents received a special invitation to attend Kindergarten Grandparents Day where they were able to immerse themselves in a day of math, science, literacy, and Hebrew activities alongside their grandchildren. Songs were sung in Hebrew as well as English, and special photos were taken to capture the many moments that sparkled.

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Many grandparents attend the special ceremony where students are given their first Bible and prayer book. Torah journals and holiday letters are regularly sent to grandparents to provide a framework for the holidays and create a space for common, shared dialog among students, parents, and grandparents. A Grandparents Council was recently formed to discover additional ways the school can be inclusive of this important role. Students love marching with grandparents during the Celebrate Israel Parade. They gather

‫ מדור לדור‬,‫תלמידינו‬

Generations of Students

Howard Schub ’83 feels he received a great education, with good balance of secular and religious studies, at Ramaz, as did his siblings Rebecca ’81, Benjamin ’82, and Sara ’87, and his mother Frances Durst Schub ‘55. His children Joshua ’12 and Daniel ’14 entered as freshmen, while Rebecca’s son Jonathan ’12 enrolled in Grade 6 at the same time that her daughter Danielle ’09 began in the Upper School.

with grandparents for school-wide chesed projects, intergenerational visiting programs, and Holocaust memorial events. Grandparents are also encouraged to share a variety of eclectic life experiences with students. Their knowledge is woven into the tapestry of Ramaz students in profound and immeasurable ways. Recently, one grandparent shared her experiences traveling in Antarctica. Her photos and slides from the trip left the children awestruck. Stardust shimmered above them as they gaped at pictures of penguins and glacial ice structures.

Like glitter that remains long

after an art project is complete, the effect that grandparents have on every aspect of a student’s life is immeasurable. It sparkles and casts new light on everyday topics. It captures our vision and has the potential to change our perspective. Sometimes it catches us off-guard. It can bring a lump of nostalgia to our throat. These are the days we will remember the most, the days in which different generations are able to come together. When family members who share the same name are all in one space with one purpose, to support the children. Grandparents are at the heart of the matter. They have a perspective we need to understand. When they share their time with us, we are able to catch a pinch of their stardust and sparkle ever more brightly. •

“We never really considered anywhere else,” noted Mr. Schub, “because Ramaz offers the best academic program of any of the schools around. It has been the leader in that regard and continues to be so today.” And with Rabbi Lookstein at the helm, he explained, “there will be a focus not only on Torah u’Maddah, but also on menschlichkeit.” One of the main differences in the Upper School now is the differentiation that goes on in scheduling to help each student reach his or her potential and to pursue his or her passion. There’s more involvement now, too, between students and their faculty advisors and yoatzim, as well as smicha students from YU and the Stern College students who study Talmud with students. And, of course, there are many more extra-curricular activities now than ever before, he said. Ms. Schub also pointed to equal opportunities in both secular and Judaic studies where all of their voices are heard: in and out of the classroom, including the school chorus and plays. Danielle chose Ramaz for many reasons: the academics, the arts, community service, according to her mother. Jonathan, she added, benefited from everything the Middle School offered: outstanding curriculum (including foreign language), music, art, computer lab, and co-curriculars. At Ramaz, we think of ourselves as one family. For Abigail Tambor ’92 and her extended Lindenbaum-Newman-Feldstein relatives, the reference is just about true. Abigail attended Ramaz alongside cousins, as do her own children now. Abigail’s parents, Marcel and Belda Lindenbaum, are Ramaz ‘55 graduates, as are siblings Nathan ’78, Matthew ’80, Bennett ’80, and Victoria Feder ’85. So are an aunt and cousins, whose children also are current students. Choosing Ramaz for her children was easy, she said, because she wants them to benefit from having the same strong basis in Jewish studies, combined with a top-notch secular education, that she did. Also important is the deep love of Israel and appreciation of doing chesed that Ramaz imparts to its students. With children only in the Lower School so far, she feels that what they are learning is a wonderful mix of the very familiar that has been polished and updated, especially through the use of technology to enhance learning. What is a significant step-up is the Hebrew program, she pointed out, now with a strong Israeli presence and children learning the language from native speakers.

Marianne Wilson

right: Howard Schub ‘83, center, with his mother and children. above: Mrs. Laurie Badner shares her Antarctica experience with her grandson’s class to complement the class’s reading and discussion of Mr. Popper’s Penguins.

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alumni focus

Ramaz prepares its students to pursue and excel in diverse careers and personal pursuits. Ramaz encourages and equips

Natan Edelsburg



Natan Edelsburg attended Ramaz from the time he was in Nursery – and has continued to stay involved with the Ramaz community ever since! After graduating from the Upper School, Natan spent a year in Israel on Young Judaea’s Year Course and then went on to NYU to study media and communications, with a minor in TV production. It was Natan’s year in Israel that influenced his decision to focus his area of studies at NYU and encouraged his involvement in Israel-related programming on campus. Now Natan is Supervising Producer of Shorty Awards and Vice-President at Sawhorse Media. Do you like to tweet? Do you follow anyone on Twitter? The Shorty Awards honor the best producers of short-form, real-time content on Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, YouTube, and the rest of the social web. Sawhorse Media, the Shorty’s parent company, produces and and works with top brands to curate and build products for the social web. Natan enjoys working at a smaller, technology-based company, driving the conversation in the marketing /advertising field in a very innovative and revolutionary way. Natan credits his experiences at Ramaz with preparing him both academically and socially. He fondly remembers his 5th grade teacher, Ms. Victoria Ginsberg, with whom he has maintained a connection over the years, even coming to the school to help her out with computer needs and navigating the social media scene. He still remembers the strategies she taught him when writing an essay – which came in handy during his Upper School and college years. He also remembers the impact Dr. Jucovy had on him in his junior and senior years. He got to know Dr. Jucovy outside of class through the Federal Reserve Club. The lessons he learned about the economy back in our economy today. Natan notes, “Above all, I learned the value of committing myself to those things that mattered to me most.” Always recognizing the valuable role Ramaz had on his life and his family’s, when it came to getting involved in the planning committee for the Class of 2006’s reunion, Natan was immediately drawn to helping out and giving back to the community. Natan now serves as one of our newest members of the Ramaz Alumni Advisory Council. ✔ See who won an award at

alicia oltuski

2002 Alicia Oltuski just had her first book published, entitled Precious Objects: A Story of Diamonds, Family and a Way of Life. In Precious Objects, Alicia gives an insider’s look at the history, business, and society behind the diamond district, where ninety percent of all the diamonds that enter America pass through those few blocks. In the book, Alicia, the daughter and granddaughter of diamond dealers, reveals the fascinating secrets of the diamond industry and its cast of characters, including her own father. Alicia always was fascinated by the professional life (often secretive) led by her father and grandfather and was drawn to telling its story. Oltuski says, “diamond dealers are famously cagey and [the diamond district] is this captivating, hidden world in the middle of New York City.” Alicia spent a few years researching the topic. Having access to diamond dealers and other professionals in the industry through family connections offered Alicia the opportunity to have very candid interviews and more of an insider’s look into the topic. Barnes and Noble identified Alicia as a Fall 2011 Discover Great New Writers selection. Alicia, currently living in the Washington, DC, area with her husband, is working on her writing and busy promoting her new book. She has participated in readings at bookstores in different cities and has connected with the Jewish Book Council to showcase her book at Jewish book fairs and festivals across the country. Alicia indicated that, from the time she was a Middle School student, Ramaz fostered her love of writing. In the Upper School, Alicia was a member and editor of Parallax, the school’s literary journal, and recognizes how fortunate and unique it was to have an emphasis on creative writing at a Jewish day school. Following graduation from Ramaz, Alicia attended the University of Pennsylvania, participated in the Kelly Writers House, and gained experience working with writers like Max Apple. Alicia then attended Columbia to receive her MFA in creative writing, with a focus in non-fiction. Alicia still is in touch with many fellow alumni and several members of the Ramaz faculty. She is looking forward to celebrating the milestone of her 10-year reunion this coming year. ✔ You can learn more about Precious Objects at

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‫ תמונת מצב‬:‫בוגרינו‬

its students to follow their dreams. The profiles below highlight the accomplishments of some of our alumni.

Benjy shamah

sharon flatto


1998 Being in the kippah business was probably the farthest thing from Benjy Shamah’s mind when he graduated from Ramaz in 1998. Now, 13 years later, he is the managing partner of Klipped Kippahs, a kippah company based in Florida with a patent (pending) on the builtin clipping system. The specially designed “klips” are permanently built-in to every kippah. As Benjy said, “the questions and comments of ‘where’s your kippah?’ or ‘put your kippah on your head!’ are nearly eliminated. The kippot stay on!” Benjy notes the inspiration for the idea came from always seeing kippot end up on the floor during yeshiva basketball games. The company grew very quickly through word-of-mouth efforts. They are in 175 day schools (and growing!), establishing relationships with yeshivot in Israel and university Hillels, taking custom orders for smachot, and teaming up with MLB and NHL teams for Jewish Heritage nights. Along with the patented klip system, Klipped Kippahs come in every style; they even will personalize kippot for weddings. One can even see many Ramaz students wearing Klipped Kippahs with the Rams logo! Check out the company at or say hello to Benjy at Benjy grew up in NYC and started at Ramaz in kindergarten. “Ramaz gave me a tremendous foundation and fostered my love of music. I would not be who I am today if it had not been for certain teachers looking out for me and guiding me. Ramaz is a part of my identity.” Benjy says, still to this day, his closest friends are those that he made at Ramaz – a comment we so often hear from our alumni. Benjy attended NYU and, throughout the years, while living in NYC, remained connected to Ramaz by playing his guitar at chagigot and other school celebrations as part of the band Aspaklaria. Benjy and his wife Venessa now live in Hollywood, FL (near many other Ramaz alumni!), and have two daughters, Brianna (6) and Rebecca (4). Benjy reconnected with other Ramaz alumni at the Florida event the Ramaz Alumni Association hosted in February 2011. When he is not running Klipped Kippahs, Benjy spends his time working with the Sanford Barrows Group, an executive staffing firm, where he is Senior Vice President of the Accounting and Finance division.

Ramaz nurtured Sharon Flatto’s love for learning and pursuit for knowledge. The skills she learned back in the Upper School still influence her today in her career. Sharon, a member of the Class of ’86, is currently an Associate Professor of Judaic Studies at Brooklyn College. She teaches courses in Early Modern Jewish History, Kabbalah, Hasidism, Medieval Jewish History, Classical Jewish Texts, and Modern Jewish Thought. She has taught at a broad range of educational institutions—including Yale University, Queens College, and Brown University—and at a number of adult education programs. She is the author of The Kabbalistic Culture of Eighteenth-Century Prague: Ezekiel Landau (the ‘Noda Biyehudah’) and His Contemporaries (Littman Press, 2010) as well as various articles, and is in the process of working on two more publications. One project focuses on the Kabbalah and its surprisingly important role during the Haskalah, while the second examines three generations of acculturation in the Jewish community of Prague. Sharon grew up in Riverdale and came to Ramaz to attend the Upper School. Following graduation, she went on to earn a B.A. in European History from Barnard College and a Ph.D. in Jewish History from Yale University. Sharon enjoyed the academic rigor at Ramaz, noting that it was very exciting to be among such a highly engaged group of students. She recalls her classroom experiences being eye-opening, exposing her to varied points of view on politics and culture, and helping her appreciate the school’s diverse Jewish student population. Sharon has fond memories of Honors Talmud with Rabbi Bieler, AP European History with Dr. Jucovy, Chumash with Mrs. Weinstein, and Hebrew/Jerusalem Exam with Ms. Melnick. As a student, she remembers people talking about the Ramaz family, and now, twenty-five years later, she realizes how true that sentiment really is. Of course, like many other Ramaz alumni Sharon affectionately remembers her favorite lunch: Friday tuna sandwiches with potato chips! Sharon is married to Rabbi Ysoscher Katz (who teaches at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah) and they have two sons, Avi (4) and Gabriel (2).

To be featured in an upcoming Alumni eNewsletter or to get involved in alumni initiatives, contact Lauren Katz, Director of Alumni Relations at

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peter gyenes

1963 Peter Gyenes was born in Budapest and lived in Paris with his family until they immigrated to the United States in 1954. Peter attended a yeshiva prior to attending the Ramaz Upper School. Following his graduation in 1963, he went on to Columbia College for a B.A. in mathematics and eventually earned his M.B.A. there as well. During his freshman year at Columbia, Peter began working at IBM, which ultimately led to a career in the computer industry. Peter was chairman and CEO of Ascential Software, a public software company he built and ran from 1996 until its acquisition by IBM in 2005. Since then, Peter has served on the board of a number of technology-related companies and is an investor in the technology industry. In looking back on his experience at Ramaz, Peter says his appreciation for the school has built over the years. He had a wonderful time at school – was challenged academically and enjoyed the opportunity to participate in athletics and make long-lasting friendships. Ramaz provided him with a lot of grounding and gave him the foundation for secular and Jewish learning and for continued growth. Since his high school graduation, Peter has been connected to Ramaz in a variety of ways. He still maintains close relationships with several friends and established new connections with fellow alumni when his daughter Sarah married the son of a Ramaz classmate. After graduation, Peter came back to the school on Sunday mornings for minyan and breakfast (a requirement) so that he could play basketball in the gym. While Peter may not be a regular on the basketball court these days, he sets aside the time to come to New York every year to play in the annual Sam Gyenes Alumni Basketball Game. Sam, Peter’s nephew, died tragically at the end of his sophomore year at Ramaz, and, in tribute to his memory, Ramaz hosts the basketball tournament and alumni game. “Ramaz’s continued sponsorship of the game, in addition to being a testament to Sam’s legacy, exemplifies the culture and values of the school and I am proud to be a part of its community.” Peter lives in Brookline, MA, with his wife Debbie. They have two daughters: Sarah in Teaneck, NJ, and Emily in Ranaana, Israel, and five grandchildren.

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chantal low

2011 Pride becomes service: Enlisting in Tzahal

‫גאווה בשירות הצבאי‬

It has become quite common for many of our graduates to spend a Gap Year in Israel. Some go to deepen their Jewish learning at a yeshiva and others participate in programs such as Shalem and Young Judaea’s Year Course. Then there are those who selflessly enlist in Tzahal. This past year was a remarkable one–-five graduates from the Class of 2011 enlisted in the IDF. Over the years, more than 130 Ramaz alumni have served in Tzahal and we are proud to add Jonathan Baumgarten, Michael Hershmann, Ben Lang, Talia Lefkowitz and Chantal Low to the list. In her own words, Chantal shared the following: “I have wanted to go into the Israeli army since I was little. My love of Israel was reinforced over the years by my many visits as well as the incredibly Zionistic education I received at Ramaz. Every time an Israeli soldier came to speak to us on Yom Hazikaron, I felt tremendous pride and could not wait to join them in serving our country.” Chantal is training to become a Commander of Foreign Relations for International Affairs in a unit called Kashach (Kishrei Chutz), which is the liaison unit that coordinates visits by foreign dignitaries and military personnel. “The Hebrew I learned during the course of my 13 years at Ramaz, along with the public speaking opportunities and involvement in Israeli advocacy programs, helped prepare me for this very challenging position. I hope to make my Ramaz community proud!”

To make sure your name is on the list of alumni who served in the IDF, please contact Lauren Katz, Director of Alumni Relations, at 212-774-8054 or

regional events ‫אירועים קהילתיים וכנסי מחזור‬ “...Ramaz gave us something important—special friendships, a terrific Jewish and secular education, and a strong commitment to the Jewish people.” —Marcia Reines josephy ‘58

It was a great year for reunions and gatherings for Ramaz alumni. In December 2010, during Chanukah, we held our first regional gathering in Los Angeles. Twenty-five alumni gathered at the home of Sara Messeloff Tanz ’90 and her husband Larry Tanz ‘88. Marcia Reines Josephy ’58 shared, “There have been many changes in the school since I was there and it was interesting to learn about them, as told by Rabbi Lookstein. The school is larger, for sure, but the core values of its founder remain the same. The younger graduates asked me about the school in the ‘olden’ or earlier years. I told them my class had 36 graduates. We had dances after basketball games. We had no gym in our building. In senior year, the girls had cooking and sewing. Their eyes widened when I told them these things and it is ancient history. But it was evident that all of us there came because we cared, because Ramaz gave us something important – special friendships, a terrific Jewish and secular education, and a strong commitment to the Jewish people. “

clockwise from TOP: Ramaz alumni at the Lindenbaum home; Rabbi Haskel Lookstein with Florida event co-hosts Robin and Brett Zuckerman ‘92; the Rabbi with co-hosts Jessica and Amiel Lindenbaum ‘88; the Rabbi and LA event hosts Sara Messeloff Tanz ’90 and Larry Tanz ‘88.

A few months later, alumni in Hollywood, Florida, gathered at an event hosted by Jessica and Amiel Lindenbaum ’88 and Robin and Brett Zuckerman ’92. Many graduates and their spouses attended the event, representing alumni from Ramaz’s earliest days through the 2000s. Benjy Shammah ’98, who attended with his wife Venessa, noted it was great to connect with members of his community, and even better to know them as Ramaz alumni.

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reunions... ‫כנסי בוגרים‬

Following the Celebrate Israel Parade in June, 52 alumni from the Class of 2001 celebrated their 10 year reunion. Ten Ramaz faculty members joined in the festivities. Alumni came from across the country to celebrate this momentous occasion. The evening included lots of reminiscing and updating on each other’s lives and accomplishments. As alumnus Adam Groveman shared, “It was great being able to reunite with people I hadn’t seen in 10 years. While it is always nice to get together with those high school friends who I keep in touch with, being able to catch up with old friends and teachers who I hadn’t seen except through Facebook posts added immensely to the night. It was well worth the trip from Memphis!” The Class of 2006 joined together for their 5 year reunion in july. As Amanda Sussman indicated, “Five years seems like a long time, but when stepping back into the Ramaz Upper School building for the first time since graduation, it seemed like yesterday we were running through the halls to make it to class before the bell rang.” Amanda continues, “In five years our lives may have changed drastically, but when we got together it was as if no time had passed.” Approximately 50 classmates from the Class of 2006 filled the third floor terrace to reunite with friends and faculty, catch up, and reminisce. There was lots of schmoozing and exchanging of stories and business cards (and, of course, checking out the new and improved 4th floor lounge!). In March, the Class of 1986 hosted its 25 Year Reunion. It was a great night! Just ask the 45 alumni, along with their guests, who gathered at the Upper School for their milestone reunion. It was an evening of reminiscing, reconnecting, and catching up on one another’s lives. Members of the Class of ’86 enjoyed seeing Rabbi Haskel Lookstein, Upper School Dean Mr. Ira Miller, Judaic Studies faculty member Rabbi Yossi Weiser, Dean Emeritus Rabbi Joshua Bakst, and former Dean of Admissions and Foreign Language instructor Mrs. Danièle Gorlin Lassner, who also participated in the festivities. “I still cannot believe we actually attended our 25th year reunion. The whole evening was surreal. I kept having senses of déjà vu from conversations I had twenty-five years ago with the very same people at the reunion,” said Gil Golan, reunion committee member. “What amazed me most was the number of diverging paths we all took in our lives, and yet we still had such a strong bond to each other. It really was a wonderful evening. I only wish it were longer so that I could have had the chance to speak with everyone. I am already looking forward to the next reunion.”

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“I am already looking forward to the next reunion.”—Gil golan ‘86

“...It was as if no

time had passed..”— amanda sussman ‘86


...and more‫נוספים‬ events ‫ואירועים‬

worth the trip

The Millennium Society—a community for Ramaz graduates in their 20s and 30s that facilitates social interaction, professional networking, and lifelong Jewish and secular education—hosted a chesed event in the fall of 2010. Alumni met during Sukkot and delivered packages to clients of DOROT, which is dedicated to enhancing the lives of the elderly and bringing together generations. Rachel Kelstein Maryles ’98 remarked, “It was a great feeling and a nice way to catch up unexpectedly with some fellow classmates, and represent Ramaz—we were all there to do chesed.”

from memphis!” —Adam Groveman ‘01

In November 2011, the Millennium Society hosted a Shabbat dinner at the Upper School. Approximately 60 alumni came to welcome Shabbat together. Arielle Anhalt ’04, Fall Shabbat Host Committee member, remarked, “It was so nice to see so many different alumni attend the event and celebrate Shabbat together. I so enjoyed the opportunity to reminisce with fellow Ramaz alumni and reconnect with old friends. I am proud to be a part of such a strong, accomplished, vibrant community of Ramaz graduates and I look forward to continuing to participate in the Millennium Society and being an active member of the community. “ In the spring of 2011, we hosted the Annual Sam Gyenes Memorial Basketball Tournament and Alumni Game. The Ramaz Rams Varsity basketball team beat SAR in the championship game. While we are very proud of our varsity basketball players, we were equally excited to watch our illustrious alumni basketball team play in honor of Sam Gyenes z”l during halftime. The Basketball Tournament and Alumni Game was established more than 20 years ago by the Gyenes family as a way to honor the memory of their son, Sam, who passed away when he was 16 years old. As Sam’s classmates noted, “He was the type of person who sought to build friendship and community among everyone around him.” The Gyenes family is deeply touched to have Sam’s legacy continue to live on through this annual event. In June 2011, the class of 2010 kicked off their summer at a BBQ Dinner. The young alumni were excited to see one another for the first time since their graduation one year prior. They seemed equally excited about eating Ramaz’s famous chocolate chip cookies, too! As Rachel Marcus shared, “It was so nice to see my classmates and teachers after such a transitional year! Even though we went off in separate directions, it felt like we never left. The event was a great way to begin the summer!”


On Tuesdays throughout July and August, 45 male alumni played in the Ramaz Alumni Intramural League (RAIL); the summer league was organized by Gabriel Merkin ’11 and Willy Jemal ‘11. “It was just great to bring Ramaz alumni back together on the basketball court,” said Gabriel. “Former Ramaz players always talk about how we miss high school basketball, playing for Ramaz, and the bonds we made on the court. Now we have a way for Ramaz alumni to continue to play together and not have to entirely give up that part of our past.”

In addition to all of the programming held during the 2010-2011 academic year, Ramaz hired a full-time Director of Alumni Relations in the spring. Lauren Katz joined the Development Department in March 2011 and is working closely with Josh Lookstein, Chair of the Alumni Relations Council, and the rest of its members on enhancing our outreach and engagement efforts. So much is planned for 2011-12! Please get involved by contacting Lauren at

212-774-8054 or

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ramaz financials ‫מבזק חדשות‬ 2010/11


Actual Income - $30.4M

budgeted income - $32.3 M

Fundraising and

Fundraising and

Other Income $5.4 M

Other Income Student Related Income


Gross Tuition $30.5 Financial Aid (4.3)

Other (1.2) $26.9 M

budgeted expenses - $32.4 M

Actual expenses - $31.3 M




Financial Aid (5.3)

82% 82%

$25 M


Gross Tuition $33.3


Other (1.2)


Student Related Income

18% 13%

$5.4 M



Occupancy $1.6

Occupancy $1.7

Administration Costs 1.9

Administration Costs 1.9

Student Related Expenses

Capital Expenses 0.9

Personnel Costs $24.7

$4.5 M

Capital Expenses 0.7

Student Related Expenses

$4.2 M

Personnel Costs $26

Direct Expenses 2.1

Direct Expenses 2.1

$26.8 M

$28.1 M

Student Related Income for 2011/12 is projected to be $1.9 M higher than 2010/11 primarily due to the inclusion in tuition of an amount equivalent to the prior year's Foundation pledge (which has since been discontinued), partly offset by higher financial aid (primarily the incremental effect of financial aid recipients not paying the Foundation pledge equivalent now recorded as tuition). Student Related Expense for 2011/12 is projected to be $1.3 M higher than 2010/11 due to higher personnel costs, primarily a cost of living adjustment increase in salaries and a partial subsidization of increasing health benefit costs. Summary: In 2010/11 the Ramaz School had an operating loss of $0.9 M. In 2011/12, the Ramaz School budgeted to operate at essentially break-even as a result of the structural change to tuition outlined above by keeping the sum of tuition and the Foundation equivalent in line with the prior year.

Financial Aid Students


the gap: $5.5 M


268 $5.3 M $3.9M

$5.5 M

$4.3 M


$26.9 M

$32.4 M

Net Revenue


Aid ($)


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annual campaign ‫ תרום והתרם‬:‫המגבית השנתית‬ Join us in marking a key milestone! help make our 75th anniversary Annual Campaign the most successful yet


Leave your mark today with a gift to the Ramaz Annual Campaign!

For information on dedication opportunities, please call Kenneth Rochlin, Director of Institutional Advancement, at 212-774-8041.

Your gift supports these essential areas:

✔ Scholarship ensures that children, regardless of financial need, have access to a high-quality Jewish education.

✔ Academic Excellence helps provide the highest level of education in both Jewish and general studies.

✔ Student Life and Leadership supports co-

curricular activities that empower students to grow into the leaders of tomorrow.

✔ Religious Life and Communal Values

helps provide our students with opportunities to further connect with their Jewish identity, the State of Israel, and our global community.

✔ Educational Advancement offers an

academic program designed to meet the individual learning needs of students, including differentiated instruction, enrichment opportunities, and learning centers.

Special need

Today, our financial needs are at record levels, with 303 students—almost 30% of our student body— requiring a total of $5.3 million in financial aid. In order to balance the school’s budget, Ramaz needs to raise an additional $5,094 per child.

help us close the gap wth your generous gift to the Ramaz 2011/2012 Annual Campaign! To make a donation or for more information, please call Kenneth Rochlin, Director of Institutional Advancement, at 212-774-8055, or visit

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!‫נתנדב ונתרום‬,‫ נעשיר‬,‫הבה נסייע‬ contribute


ENRICH support

from top: Guests of Honor Judy Schaer Wilner & Dr. Philip Wilner with Ramaz Principal Rabbi Haskel Lookstein; student performance; Educator of the Year Hedva Ofek-Shai; Bentzi the Hebrew-speaking turtle.

Support, Enrich, Volunteer, Contribute The 74th Annual Ramaz Dinner was a beautiful, fun, and memorable evening, highlighting the year’s message of “SUPPORT. ENRICH. VOLUNTEER. CONTRIBUTE.” Everyone can help Ramaz accomplish its mission. Parents, alumni, parents of alumni, grandparents, faculty, and friends support Ramaz by volunteering and contributing time and resources to enrich the educational experience of our students. Ramaz supports its students in realizing their academic and co-curricular potential. The school contributes to students’ commitment to their Jewish identity, religious life, and spiritual growth. Ramazenriches classroom learning through co-curricular programming. Pro-active volunteering and life-long social activism begin at Ramaz! Judy Schaer Wilner and Dr. Philip Wilner ‘75, the 2011 dinner honorees, are exemplars of this theme. Judy has served in many different roles, including Parents Council President. Phil, a distinguished alumus, has served as a Charter Trustee and Secretary. Proud parents of two alumni and one current student, the Wilners are beloved lay leaders whose wise counsel, balanced perspective, and unbounded devotion have greatly enhanced Ramaz. Hedva Ofek-Shai was recognized as 2011 Educator of the Year. A master teacher and respected mentor who supports Lower School students and faculty and enriches their academic and professional experiences, she is a passionate and innovative leader in the Hebrew department, as well as a loving and beloved advocate for Ramaz students and faculty. Her contributions to our Hebrew immersion program in the Early Childhood Center and Lower School are invaluable. On this special evening, we celebrated and affirmed the mission of the school amid the warmth of family and the very exceptional talents of our students. Numerous volunteers helped made the evening flow smoothly and successfully. Thank you to all participants for making the dinner and annual campaign a success.

Thank‫תודה‬ you ‫שלמי‬

$100,000 & above Nina & Mitchell Davidson Suzanne & Jacob Doft Pamela & George Rohr Inge & Ira Rennert Lara & David Slager

$25,000 - $99,000 Nicole & Raanan Agus Ilana & Daniel Benson Deborah & Richard Born The Cayre Family Renee & Ezra Dabah Caryl & Israel Englander Etzioni Charitable Foundation Flik International Corp. The Goldberg / Berg Family Tamar & Eric Goldstein The Gruenstein Family Amy & James Haber Jill & James Haber Raquel & Ezra Hamway Jeanne & Samuel Jemal Sandra & Jeffrey Justin Joia & Joshua Kazam Ellen & Robert Kapito Suzanne Kayden Ruth & Jerry Kestenbaum Faye & Hartley Koschitzky Elena & Jay Lefkowitz Ray & Matthew Lindenbaum Leora Mogilner & Richard Linhart Ramaz Parents Council Monique & Andrew Rechtschaffen Abraham Rosenzweig Deborah & Daniel Schwartz Erica & Robert Schwartz Judy & Michael Steinhardt Robyn & David Stonehill Jody & Ari Storch Rebecca & Edward Sugar Holly & Michael Weiss Sherry & Joel Wiener Judy Schaer & Philip Wilner $18,000 - $24,999 Adrienne Cooper & Arthur Adler Wilma & Kenneth Aschendorf Pauline & Solly Assa Central Business Solutions Vanessa & Raymond Chalme Checkpoint HR Perah & David Dwek Vanessa & Joseph Gad

Nellie & David Haddad Eric Herschmann Rena & Scott Hoffman Jessica & Adam Kaplan Sepi & Daniel Koren Rachel Brody & Michael Lustig Michelle & Jack Maleh Lisa & Edward Ostad Alissa & Howard Shams Zahava & Moshael Straus Abigail & Shai Tambor Ariel & Joshua Weiner

$10,000 - $17,999 Myrna & Charles Alpert Jayne & Harvey Beker Elana & Aryeh Bourkoff Adam Brenner Carolyn & Wilfred Brown Laurie & Eli Bryk Ivette & Isaac Dabah Susan & William Dellal Ruthann & Kenneth Eckstein Jewel & Theodore Edelman Karen Lehman Eisner & David Eisner Pamela & Adam Emmerich Laurie Bilger & Eli Epstein Debbie & Robert Ezrapour Anne & Natalio Fridman Shari & Joshua Goldberg Rebecca & Laurence Grafstein Carin & Eric Gribetz Judith & Martin Grumet The Herman Forbes Charitable Trust Sandy & Nathan Kahn Rachel & Edgard Khafif Joy & Judd Kleeger Mindy & Jonathan Kolatch Janice Korff & Justin Korn Esther & Motti Kremer Amy & Darren Landy Judith & David Lobel Audrey & Rabbi Haskel Lookstein Carol & Joseph Low Sandra Goldstein & Zig Mandelbaum Sharon Ossip & Solomon Merkin Cindy & Bruce Miller Esther & M. David Muschel Jessica & Jason Muss Gloria & Shaul Nakash Carol & Melvin Newman Judith & Daniel Ottensoser Vicki Deutsch & Gerald Platt

to the 2010-2011 ramaz annual campaign donors

Lauren & Mitchell Presser Gail Propp Pung San Construction Corp. Arlene Steinberg & Michael Schulder Ariel & Albert Sebag Chani & Mark Segall Rina & Amnon Shalhov Adrianne & Avi Shapira Beth Goldman & Louis Solomon Randi & David Sultan $5,000 - $9,999 Nancy & Benjamin Aryeh Steven Berkowitz Sara & David Berman Judith Schwartz & Michael Brizel Cambridge Security Marcie & Kenneth Cappell Dana & Michael Cohen Karen & David Cole Rachel & Barry Cooper Rita & Fred Distenfeld Fortunee & David Dushey Shlomit & Chaim Edelstein Suzanne & Samuel Eisenstat Lilian & Elliott Eisman Ariana & Daniel Elsztain Alla & Alexander Eydeland FACTS/Nelnet Business Solutions Falk Technical Miriam & Eric Feldstein Sherry & Mark Fessel Helen & Elliot Freilich Sandy & Zev Furst Alisa & Scot Glasberg Jean & Eugen Gluck Ellen & David Goldschmidt Gila & Michael Goodman Adrienne & David Greenblatt Jennifer Gross & Saul Burian Pati & Jack Haber Orly & Issy Hackmon Lori & Alan Harris Tikva & Zalman Jacobs Helene Partel & Harvey Kaminski Stacey & David Kanbar Lisa Szubin & Jay Katzman Linda & Ilan Kaufthal Jane & Reuben Leibowitz Jody & Elie Levine Rena Fredman & David Lichtenstein Aliza & Steven Major

Aliza & Aaron Menche Sarina & Albert Palacci Melina & Mark Palmer Jessica & Barry Piafsky Sydney Reisman Eleanore Reznik Chava & Randall Rose Trudy & Seymour Sadinoff Sheira & Steven Schacter The Scheinberg Family Suzanne & Robert Schwartz Eyal Seinfeld Rose B. & Daniel A. Shames Sara & Simon Shemia Gabriela & Jack Shnay Esther & Marc Sholes Sisterhood Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun Ronnie & William Slochowsky VVA Project Managers & Consultants Phyllis & Jonathan Wagner Cathy & Allan Weiss

Radine & William Spier Barbara Zimet Naomi & Bernard Zweig

$2,500 - $3,599 Barbara & Harvey Arfa Deborah & Isaac Ash Gregory Brenner Claudia & Marcos Douer Hinda & Eugene Farber Bonnie & Joseph Fein Carolyn Hiltebeitel & Orrin Feingold Ruth & Rafael Fouzailoff Beth & Harry Fried Jane & Ishaia Gol Georgette & Steven Gross Jan & Andrew Groveman Judith Grushko Rae & Stanley Gurewitsch Amy & Paul Heller Zeva & Lawrence Herman Rochelle & David Hirsch Chani Penstein & Jonathan Hornblass Mari & Arthur Hourwitz $3,600 - $ 4,999 Janegail & James Kahn Jonathan Art Ellen Kandel-Burg & David Burg Judith & Harry Ballan Elissa & Philip Klapper Sarah & Leonard Bley Stacey Kreinen-Klass & Richard Ruth & Raymond Brenner Klass Talia & Isaac Dayan Rebecca & Jonas Leibowitz Abigail & David Doft Jean & Armand Lindenbaum Debbie & Michael Doppelt Deborah & Robert Lipner Ronalee & Russell Galbut Michele & Anthony Mammon Lauren Schor & Martin Geller Nina Kampler & Zvi Marans Wendy & Sholem Greenbaum Vivian & David Mark Dina & Marshall Huebner Caroline & Morris Massel Tal Kastner & Ivan Lehon Anat & Louis Menaged Karin Charnoff-Katz & Joel Katz Paula & David Menche Barbara Braffman & Benjamin Perla & Julio Messer Klapper Sheera & Michael Moffson Miriam Silverstein & Dan Kimchi New York Marriott Marquis Phyllis & Marrick Kukin Jane Dauber Lewittes & Michael L. Diana Newman & Isaac Corre Park East Kosher Butchers Lewittes Gail & Berndt Perl Sherri & Alexander Libin Rachel & David Quint Wendy & Adam Modlin Ronnie & Andrew Schonzeit Nancy & Norris Nissim Debra & Howard Schub Andrew Plevin Ruth & Irwin Shapiro Laura & Laurence Rabinowitz Vivian & Yale Shulman Marian & William Rosner Lisa & Lee Snow Susan & Martin Sanders Suzy & Joseph Sokol Sandra & Haron Shohet A. Steinman Plumbing & Heating Corp.

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Susan & Avraham Tahari Carla & Steven Tanz Sarah & Mark Tarnofsky Adele & Ronald Tauber Lisa & Mark Todes Denise & Alan Wildes Harvey Wolinsky $1.000 - $2,499 Abraham Wassner & Sons Foundation Stacey & Harvey Abrahams Marilyn & Greg Adler Amy & Lawrence Adolf Hedieh & Navid Aminzadeh Sara & Gregory Angrist Roberta & Alan Aronoff Rona Woldenberg & Reuben Askowitz Sharon & Harold Aspis Sara Babich Sharon & Dan Barlev Frederic Baumgarten Suzanne & Stuart Beretz Lisa Handler & Barry Bergman Leslie & Jonathan Berland Nava & Daniel Bettinger Taryn & David Bolnick Aliza & Alvin Broome Francine & Benjamin Brown Esther Altmann & Richard Cantor Sheila Chess Community Counseling Service Co. Eugenia & Ira Davis Gail & Michael Davis Arlene & Avrom Doft Sandy & Eli Dweck Nechama & Jason Fertig Suzanne & Lawrence Fishman Meredith & Neal Flomenbaum Ruth Fromm Judith & Michael Goldberg Joseph Groveman Rebecca & Isaac Herschkopf Robin Tobin-Hess & David Hess Dana & Matthew Hiltzik Shaun Honig Deborah & David Kahn Judy & Hirshel Kahn Jennifer & Michael Kaplan Eve & Marc Karstaedt Annie & Avery Katz Amanda & Meir Katz Kaufman Bros. Printers Inc. Dina & Jonathan Kaufthal Arielle & David Kauvar Rina & Zachary Kestenbaum John Kmetzo Sharon Koren & Matthew Cohen Ariella & Alex Kornfeld

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Julia & Henry Koschitzky Lori & Liron Kronzon Melanie & Andrew Kule Bobbie Sue Daitch & David Landau Lee Lasher Lisa Lerer-Zahn Susan & Jack Lerner Tse & Daniel Levy Judy & David Lewittes Cindy & Jeffrey Liebmann Georgette & Rabbi Joshua Lookstein Rochelle & Eugene Major Margot & John Mann Alisa & Barry Mannis Rebecca Mannis Kevin Marks Stacy & Elliot Maza Michael Meltzer Annie & Robert Mendelson Joelle & David Metzman Kenneth Michael Diane & Russell Miller Eve & Stephen Milstein Elizabeth & Victor Mintz Sheba & Stanley Mittelman Ilanit & Adam Mukamal Joshua Nathanson Deborah & Randall North Ephrat & Ron Orgel Marilyn & Arthur Penn Ellen & Philip Phillips Roni & Robert Pick Martha & Hugh Pollack Bonnie & Isaac Pollak Susan & Marlon Portes Katia & Mitchell Raab Charmaine & David Rapaport Drorit & Michael Ratzker Robert Riederman Annie Rolland & Sylvia Smith Karen & Nathan Rosenfeld Amy & Howard Rubenstein Deborah & Sheldon Rubin Julie & Edward Rubinchik Shira & Allen Rubinstein Dana & Ilan Rubinstein Esther Buterman & Kenneth Rubinstein Marcy & Cyrus Sakhai Phylise & Richard Sands Rebecca Feit & Rami Sasson Cheryl Fishbein & Philip Schatten Roberta Solar & Rabbi Robert Schumeister Betty & Howard Schwartz Robyn & Bruce Shoulson Heather & Jerry Siegelman Adina Cimet de Singer & Michael Singer Diane & Elliot Sloyer Sheva & Kenneth Smigel

Pamela & Douglas Stern Gail Bodzin & Harvey Strauss Surie & Robert Sugarman Ellen Oppenheimer & Kenneth Tauber Jennifer & David Tawil Rebecca Moshief & Harris Tilevitz Elizabeth & Joshua Trump Liz Neumark & Chaim Wachsberger Linda & Bernard Weiner Shira & David Weinstein Marion & William Weiss Sheila & Marvin Weissman $500 - $999 Helene & Ellis Abramson Rabbi Judith Hauptman & Milton Adesnik Carmit & Georges Archibald Corinne & Jeffrey Ascherman Michelle & Jonathan Aufzien Rachel & Marc Bakhchi Rosemary & Jack Barchas Stacy & Thomas Behm Beth & Marc Bengualid Alison & Sylvain Bergfeld Judith Benstein Esther & Nathaniel Bier Yaira & Matthew Binstock Ronit Simantov & Howard Blas Karen & David Blatt Daniele & Steven Bleier Dana & Maurice Bonime Marjorie & Neil Brenner Judith Abel & Michael Brill Tammy & Hillel Bryk Karen & Ethan Budin Jerry Cahn Sandra & David Chabbott Lisa & Juda Chetrit Esther & Meyer Chetrit Tami & Edmond Cleeman Suri & Kenneth Cohen Tammy & Sidney Cohen Ann & Jonathan Dachs Dawn Brite of New York Nancy & Daniel Edelman Monita Buchwald & Charles Edelsburg Beth & David Eidman Diane & Steven Eidman Robin & Jonathan Eiseman Randi & Howard Eisenstein Debra & Juda Engelmayer Linda & Jeffrey Esses Linda & Allen Essner Roslyn & Tobias Feinerman Lauren & Michael Feit Sylvia & Bert Fisher Nicole & Jeffrey Fisher

Estelle & Dennis Freilich Stephanie & Jonathan Freilich Hannah & Paul Freilich Danielle & Jason Friedman Diana & Robert Friedman Elliot Fruchter Irina & Michael Gad Kim Gantz-Wexler & Sanford Wexler Naamit & Michael Gerber Eric Gibbs Carole & Gil Golan Ruth Gershen & Rabbi Hillel Gold Eve & Dan Goldschlag Shoshana & Warren Graham Micheal Gross Simone & David Gross Laura & Leonard Grossman Daniel & Sheila Harari Amy & Albert Harary Mildred & Alvin Hellerstein Malka & Paul Herman Janna & Samuel Herskowitz Linda & Harold Hoffman Michele & Stephane Ifrah Sidney & Wendy Ingber Muriel & Jeremy Josse Ilana & Bernard Kabak Ilana & Mitchell Kahn Elana & Ron Kastner Ruth Kastner Stephanie & Bennett Katz Marissa & Daniel Katz Dina & Daniel Katz Meredith & Michael Katz Jane & Robert Katz Marjorie Lehman & Ari Klapholz Alice & Jacob Klein Daniela & Steven Klein Judy & Barry Kluger Julie & Reuben Kopel Penny & Israel Kornstein Sharon & Jason Koutcher Marika Kogan Jacqueline & Saul Lebovic Judith & Pinkas Lebovits Ellen & Herbert Lepor Shira & James Levin Lisa Silverman & Josh Levin Adelle & Saul Levy Leora Tanenbaum & Jonathan Lonner Susanna & Steven Lorch Lisa & Nathan Low Rhonda & Jeffrey Luxenberg Emma & Samy Mahfar Jacqueline & Jeffrey Marcus Adria & Martin Marcus Phyllis & Sidney Margolis Sydney J. Mehl

‫שלמי תודה‬

Genevieve Blanchard & Barry Meislin Margot Small & Roy Mensch Mindy & Fred Miller Allison & Jeffrey Miller Myra & Alon Mogilner Randi & Brian Moore Elissa Moskowitz Maureen & Moshe Nemetski Stephanie & Herbert Neuman Joshua Neuman Douglas Newton Sam Nimroody Judy & Donald Olenick Iris & Laurence Orbuch Susan & Milton Ottensoser Emily Katz & Marc Packles Janelle & Sheldon Pike Suzanne & Lawrence Present Dina & Douglas Propp Dorit Rabbani & Jason Shames Alexandra & Haskel Rabbani Miera Harris-Rechtschaffen & Alan Rechtschaffen Diane & David Rein Tami Rock & Joseph Halpern Beth & Abraham Rosenberg Sari & Wilhelm Rosenberg Marilyn Rothschild Gabriella & Saul Safdieh Michele & Joseph Safra Frances & Martin Schub Margo & Jack Schwartz Florence & Joel Schwartz Marc Schwartzberg Valerie & Ted Schweitzer Elisa Septee-Lunzer Abbe & Michael Serphos Shirley & Mal Serure Vivian & Henry Shalom Michele & Joseph Shams Ety & Murad Shasha Deena & Adam Shiff Rolyn & Ron Shoshany Nechi Shudofsky Rivka & Andrew Silverberg Shirley Zajdel & Arthur Smith Michelle & William Spielfogel Rebecca & John Steindecker Roberta & Curt Stetson Judith Tanz Susan & Robert Taub Tami & Eric Teller Rachel & Craig Title Julius & Stephanie Trump Kathy & Bruce Tuckman Ester Fuchs & Daniel Victor Jacqueline Vinar & Jay Leibowitz Rachel & David Vorchheimer

Sandi & Stuart Waldstreicher Hadassa & Andrew Waxman Naomi & Michael Weinberger Susan Gross & Dov Weinstock Alisa & Jeremy Weisser Michal & Michael Wicentowsky Amy & Michael Wildes Martin Wilner Susan & Arnold Wilson Carrie & Roberto Woldenberg Alexandra Zohn & Vitor Cepelowicz Under $500 Frances & George Aaron Malka & David Abrahams Roselle Abramson Shayna Sarah Abramson * Ari Ackerman Marcelle & Saul Agus Alan Party Rentals Batsheva & Michael Altman Bettye & Stan Altzman Gilda & Rabbi Marc Angel Barbara Angrist Arielle Anhalt Enid & Don Anziska Rachel & James Archibald Temple Ary Benjamin Ascherman * Avigayil & Brian Ash Lori Ash Shira Atik & Michael Rothberg Alexandra & Jason Auerbach Norma & Alan Aufzien Jonathan Baker Craig Barany Lori & Shai Barnea Shira & Lawrence Baruch Joshua I. Barzilay Sharona Barzilay Ellen Baumgarten Aaron Bayer Edith & Steven Bayme Yehuda Bayme Pamela Becker Susan Beer Norma & Victor Bellino Valerie & Matatias Benichou Merav Benson Tamar Benus * Elaine & Irwin Berg Michael Berg Pearl Fisk & Abraham Berger Gayle Berger Sara Berger Alexis & Rabbi Alan Berkowitz Judy & Meyer Berkowitz Dan Berman

Thank you

Batzion & William Berman Beth & Ronald Bernard Jared Bernheim David Bernstein Gloria Goldenberg & Joel Bernstein Renee & Michael Bernstein Barry Best Jean & Michael Best Riva Alper & Joseph Bierman Sarah Bierman * Judy & Lanny Binstock Daniel Blas * Pia & Michael Bley Akiva Blickstein Susan & Robert Blinken Mark Bloom Bosmat & Jack Blumner Wendy & Haim Boaron Ida Bohmstein Anne Borkowf Sandra & Abba Borowich Anne Braffman Ronne & Andrew Braiterman Jason Brecher * Goldie & Jacob Brener Ronald Brisman Sybil Britton Harriet & David Bryk Jacqueline Bryk * Abigail Bryskin Doina & Lawrence Bryskin Karen & Joel Budin Carol & Scott Burg Marian & Irving Buterman Alissa & Andrew Butterfass Claire & Isaac Cabasso Dina Cahn Ilisa & Ezra Cappell Michael Chasan Dan & Abigail Chill Mindy & Jay Cinnamon Michael Cleeman Richard Coe Gila & David Cohen Ellen & Eli Cohen Janet Cohen Malki Cohen Rosemary Cohen Susan Cohen & Igor Vayshenker Sharyn & Richard Cohn Jana & Steven Cohn Steven Cohn Nita & Alan Corre Randy & Hayley Corwick Vivian & Lawrence Creizman Gloria Dabah * Mariel Dabah * Lorraine & Leonard Dauber

Jennifer Zwiebel & Mathew Davey Helen & Reuben Davis Deborah de Winter & Philip Sussman Janet & Rudolph de Winter Rebecca Davis & Percy Deift Jonathan Desola Mendes Lea & Franklin Dickstein Distinguished Flooring Nili Doft Sylvia & M. Bruce Dratler Elad Dror Jan Duchon Vita & Nahum Duker Judith & Olivier DuPont Nadine Eckstein Sheila Eckstein Darren Edelstein Linda Edelstein Elyse & David Efron Jennifer & Jason Eichenholz Linda & Barry Eichler Florence & Seymour Eidman Assaf Elkayam Julia Elyasheva Emergency Skills Melanie Englese & Steven Sisskind Gloria & Martin Epstein Linda & Seth Epstein Renee & Harry Erreich Dina Erstejn Dina & Jacques Farhi Simon Farhi David & Mike Faust Shirley & Aaron Feder Valerie & Daniel Feder Derek Fein * Shifra Fein Deborah & Rabbi Menachem Feinsod Shirley & Donald Feldstein Yosef Feldstein William Ferer Martin Finkel Gloria & Sidney Finkel Sarah & Robert Fishman Laura & Jonathan Fleischmann David Fontek Michal & Nathan Fox Jonathan Freedberg Kayla Freilich * Sheila Freilich Lonni & Howard Fried Claire & Irving Friedman Rebecca Friedman * Inge & Bert Fuld Miryam Silverman-Fuld & Elliot Fuld Mindy & Howard Gage Annette & Seymour Gavens Carol & Jules Gelber

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Jane & Roger Gerber Carolyn & Leonard Gero Sharon Rafaloff & Harvey Gersten Sarah & Neil Gillman Sandra & Edward Ginsburg Jennifer Bernstein & Yitzhak Gitelman Miriam & Felix Glaubach Mitchell Glenn Benjamin Gober Deborah & Zvi Gold Florence & Daniel Goldberg Ruthe & Ronald Golden Vered & Mark Goldfarb Polly & Charles Goldman Sheryl & Jeffrey Goldman Jessica Goldman • Jordana Goldman • Seryl & Elliot Goldofsky Hadassah Barzilay & Samuel Goldring Ruth & Fred Goldschmidt Leda & Gerald Goldsmith Amy & Alex Goldstein Judy Golzman Lawrence Golzman Arlene Goodstein Vivian Goodstein Elaine & Murray Goralnick Susan & Jacques Gorlin Paula & Michael Gottlieb Dara Granoff Judith & Robert Grauman Helen & Richard Greenberg Valerie & Stephen Greenberg Susan & Michael Greenberg Rhonda & Michael Gribetz Brenda & Fred Gross Beth & Harvey Gross Evelyn & Manny Gross Yael Gross * Sharon & Lawrence Grunfeld Cathy & Nick Gura Rose & Sam Gurfinkel Michal Gursen Elena & Vladimir Gutin Peter & Debbie Gyenes Melina & Steven Haber Freda Haddad Roberta & Robert Hadi Jessica & Chad Haller Nathan Handlin Miriam Hausman Bernice Heller Laura & Jonathan Heller Helaine & William Helmreich Jayme Herschkopf Emily & David Hiltzik Linda & George Hiltzik Joyce Hirsch

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Ellen Hochberg Leslie & Dion Hoff Jay Hoffer Brett Hoffman Vicki & Isaac Hoffman Joshua G. Hoffman * Lee & Paul Holm Toby & Avraham Holtz Shelley & Steven Hubert David Ishofsky Shara Israel Rhoda Israelov Alexander Izso * Ronnie & Eddie Izso Kenneth Jacobson Lisa Joels Diane & Ashley Joffe Alison & Isaac Judd Joan & Joshua Kagan Ronit Kahanowicz Shira Orenstein & Daniel Kahn Eli Kahn Larry Kallus Marc Kantrowitz Karen & Jonathan Kaplan Yael Cycowicz & Matthew Kaplan Paul Kaplan Tamar Kaplan-Marans & Joseph Nussbaum Barbara & David Kasell Phyllis & Melvin Kass Denese & Jeffrey Kassman Joan & Henry Katz Howard Katz Roger Katz Beverly & Stanley Katzman Charlotte Katzoff Daniel Kaufthal Lori & David Kaufthal Joshua Kaufthal Sheryl Kaye Harold Keiser Evelyn Kenvin Betty Kestenbaum Tineke & Steven Kevelson Shabnam & Kourosh Khaloyan Elan Kiderman * Helena & Alexander Kisch Deborah Kalin & Michael Klagsbrun Leah & Henry Klapholz Alisa & Tom Klaristenfeld Fried Cheryl Klaristenfeld Amanda & Jonathan Klatt Brian Kleinhaus Emil Kleinhaus Rena & Steven Klosk Michelle & Rabbi Jeffrey Kobrin Barbara & Fred Koffler Silvia & Gabriel Kogan

Rachael & Alexander Kohl Marlene & Mordechai Konsens Yvonne Koppel Grace & Charles Korn Leslie & Jay Kornsgold Carol & Martin Koshakow Elka Sachs & Seth Kosowsky Amy & Absalom Kotulski Jane & Yakov Kovler Ziva & Rabbi Avraham Kramer Karen & Mark Kramer Judy Kress Betti & C. Howard Krukofsky Sarah Kukin Barrie & Andrew Kulak Alisa & Neil Kurshan Philippe Kurzweil Vivianne & Robert Kurzweil Andrea & Martin Landis Daniele & Jules Lassner Herbert Latner Pamela & Aaron Lauchheimer Rachelle & Alan Laytner Vida & Oscar Lebwohl Lester Lehon Sharon Samber & Michael Leifman Maxine & Manuel Lerman Charlene Lerner * Amy Levenson Ivy & Gregory Levi Susan & Daniel Levin Carol & Carl Levine David & Roslyn Levine Tova & Jacob Levine Robert Levine Beth & Max Levitan Channa Rice & Bernard Levy Sara Kaplan & Harrison Levy Jill & Matthew Levy Toby & Aaron Lewis Shira & Eric Lewis Miriam & Rabbi Menachem Lewitin Elaine & Scott Liebman Samuel Liebmann * Toby Liederman Esther & Paul Liesman Ann & Mervyn Lifschitz Faith & Rabbi Leonard Lifshen Julia & Andrew Linder Shirley & Harold Linder Edith & Salomon Lipiner Sandra & Jonathan Lipsky Caroline Lobel * Jocelyn London & David Adelsberg Thelma & Herb Loring Jay Lunzer Sandy & Norman Magid

Irene & Guilherme Malamut Hillary Malkinson Lynda & Burt Mandelbaum Rabbi Amy Roth & Rabbi Noam Marans Emily Marbach & Tim Jackson Rachel Marcus * Michelle Gavens & Brian Margolis Miriam & Marvin Margoshes Ian S. Mark * Susan & Leonard Mark Ridie & Zev Markenson Dinah & Seth Marlowe Elihu Massel Lee & Gary Medows Michal Medows * Robin Mehl Raquel & Jose Mehlman Rebecca & Jack Menashe Eliza Mendes Cheryl & Norman Meskin David Messer Caroline & Marcelo Messer Michelle Messer & Jonas Heymann Alex Mezei Beatrice Milberg Elaine & Martin Miller Stephanie & Shachar Minkove Nani Mintz Elizabeth & Alan Mitrani Leah & Barrie Modlin Debbie & Samuel Moed Raquel Moffson * Rochelle Mogilner Tzivia & Gabriel Moreen Morgan Stanley Matching Gifts Program Carol & Ira Morrow Joshua Moskowitz Marilyn & Sheldon Muhlbauer Lea & Nathan Muller Rebecca Nanasi Julian Neiditch Melanie & Moshe Neiditch Elizabeth & Moshe Neiman Susan & Avery Neumark Dorothy Susser & Robert Norkin Loren Norman Helga Novek Diane & Ira Novich Hedva & Shai Ofek Shireen & Alfred Ohebshalom Jacob Olidort Ilona & Paul Oltuski Sandie & Peter Oppenheimer Dana & Ethan Orlinsky Elana & Shay Oron Michele & David Ouimet Rena & H. Leon Pachter Stefanie & Ori Pagovich

Barbara & Peter Paris Joanna & David Parker Jeffrey Parnass Kathy & Milton Parnass Zev Parnass Laury & Jason Paul Arlene & Jeffrey Peldman Michelle Levite & Natan Peri Miriam & Paul Peskowitz Barrie & Eliot Peyser Abraham & Helen Pilchik Rita & Bernard Pitkoff Leah Pluchenik David Pollack Robin & Brent Powers Regene & Kenneth Prager Roberta & Paul Pravda Rhoda & Stanley Presser Naomi & Jonathan Price Debra & Baruch Prince Eve Propp David Rand * Susan & Jeffrey Rand Meira & Rabbi Jason Rappoport Joyce & Stanley Raskas Avital Raynor Dan Raz Barry Redlich Phyllis Reich Daniel Reidler * Fern & Marvin Resmovits Judith Resnick Harvey Rice Marilyn Rimm Susan & Irwin Robins Evelyn V. Rochlin Sharon & David Rosen Michael Rosenberg * Mindy & Stuart Rosenbloom Fern & Sam Rosenfeld Julie Feldman & Joshua Rosenfeld Tami & Lawrence Rosenstein Adam Rosner Beth Rosner * Tzipora & Rabbi Aaron Ross Kent Roth Phyllis Roth Aren Gottlieb & Ram Roth Dassy & Beryl Rudensky Naomi Ickovitz & Steven Rudolph Dina Saltzman Joan & Barry Saltzman Sima Sambol Harriet & Jack Sasson Norma Kraut & Ron Schacht

Jane Flechner & Ronald Schechter Edith & Leo Scheiner Alice & Kalman Scheinwald Ann & Dov Scherzer Elizabeth & Jonathan Schilowitz Marlene Stulbach & Nathan Schleifer Sarah & Steven Schleifer Gail & Jonathan Schorsch Rebecca & Chaim Schreck Ms. Ilana Schulder Jane & Martin Schulman Susan & Norman Schulman Ellice & Bradly Schwab Avi & Jessica Schwab Aliza & Joshua Schwalbe Arlene & David Schwartz Jacob Schwartz * Vivian & Jonathan Schwartz Max Schwartz Melissa Schwartz Peter Schwartz Belinda & Victor Schwartz Rhea & Leo Schwartzberg Ilya Schwartzburg * Robin Rothman & Lanny Schwartzfarb Gila Schwarzschild * Yvette & Jakob Schwerdt Sarah & Joel Schwitzer Sandra & Gerald Seligsohn Chana & Eric Selmon Cynthia & Searle Selmon Ruth Septee Ruth & Rabbi Mitchell Serels Nathan Shams * Muriel & Edward Shamula Dara & David Shapiro Shirley Sheingold Tracie & Sam Shore Carol Ann Finkelstein & Morris Shoretz Adina Shoulson & Todd Stern Shana & Avi Shua Patricia & Rabbi Stanley Siegel Signature Industries Devora Steinmetz & Rabbi David Silber Dana & Uzi Silber Susan & Gerson Silver Terry & Isaac Silvera Ms. Natalie Silverman Janet Heettner & Peter Silverman Susan Silverstein Neila & Harvey Sisskind Debra & Arthur Skaroff Barbara Skydell-Safran & Arthur Safran Joyce Slochower David Slodki

Esther Sloyer Daniella & Evan Smith Mark Smith Snappy Solutions Naomi & Jerome Snider Erica & Cantor Alan Sokoloff Laura Meislin & Gary Sokolow Judy & Moshe Sokolow Peter & Susanne Somosi Ann & Morris Spielfogel Deborah & Don Spilky Shoshana & David Stadtmauer Micheline & David Stamler Ariella Stawski Francine & Aaron Stein Arlene & Daniel Stein Ethan Stein * Lawrence Steinberg Arthur Steinthal Diane & Martin Sterenbuch Jessica Stern Mindy & Herb Strulowitz Caron & Michael Strulowitz Rose & Daniel Subotnik Laverne Sullivan & Marc Spero Amanda Sugarman Pearl & George H. Sultan Lara & Michael Szlamkowicz Sarah & David Tabakin Daphna & Cary Tamler Sheila & Martin Tanenbaum Smadar Taub Barbara & Jeff Teller Betty & Marcos Tepper Marcia Terner & Jaime Kopel Phyllis & Irving Tobin Janet & Irwin Tobin Rebecca & Ari Tobin Jacob & Marcia Toledano Doris Travis Lewis Trencher Gerard Tugendhaft Judith & Mark Tykocinski Phyllis & Sidney Ulreich Michael Veetal Benjamin & Rochelle Vinar Debra & Noam Waldoks Dalit & Damon Warshaw Ellen & Stanley Wasserman Esther & Irwin Weber Deborah Wechsler Rabbi Harlan Wechsler & Naomi Friedland-Wechsler Joyce & Michael Wechsler Elizabeth & Sanford Weinberg

Gabrielle & Howard Weinreich Sara & Howard Weinstein Jerrald & Judith Weinstein Razelle & Dov Weinstein Joan & Alan Weinstock Naama & Rabbi Elie Weinstock Celia & Edward Weintrob Ophra & David Weisberg Bram Weiser Agnes & Leslie Weiss Morris Whitcup Guita & Steven Wilf Andrea & Rabbi Neil Winkler Abraham Wolf * Florence Wolf Gabrielle Wolf Geet & Hershel Wolf Linda Wolf Carol & Robert Wurzburger Shavit Yarden Yedida & Rabbi Jordan Yasgur Lynne & Aaron Yunis Miriam & Marc Yunis Risa & Bruce Zayde LZ - Prince Co. Elisheva P. Zeira Jill Zellmer Michelle & Robert Zellner Ruth Zimbler Joy Zimmer Gail Suchman & Jerald Zimmerman Adam Zitter Hillary & Robert Zitter Dalia & Amram Zur Some of our donors prefer to remain anonymous

* Acknowledges YOUNG LEADERS CIRCLE donors— gifts of $18 or more made by alumni who have graduated in the last 5 years have you made your donation to the

2012 ramaz annual campaigN?

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Ramaz announces campaign to raise $75,000,000 for its 75th anniversary In the year of our 75th anniversary, Ramaz/KJ is proud to announce an exciting $75,000,000 campaign for the school and synagogue community. The campaign has two core objectives: • Reconstruct and revitalize the Lower School and KJ building so the quality of our physical environment reflects the caliber of our programming • Grow the Ramaz Endowment Fund to ensure the

In the coming months, we will ask everyone in the community to consider their personal commitment to this historic effort. Gifts at a certain level will be recognized with special facility or endowment naming opportunities. We hope you will create your permanent legacy at Ramaz/ KJ and make a meaningful investment in the future of the institution through your participation in the Building the Future Together Campaign.

accessibility of a Ramaz education and the excellence of our faculty and programming for future generations We already have raised $55,000,000 in cash and pledges. We also stand to gain another three $1,000,000 grants from a challenge grantor as we reach specific yardsticks in our fundraising. Combined, this represents 77.3% of the goal. We have been able to reach this point because of the extraordinary generosity, commitment and love demonstrated by this community of which we are all a part. Campaign goal: REVITALIZED RAMAZ/KJ FACILITIES The campaign will fund the reconstruction of the Lower School building into a modernized, state-of-the-art facility that is brighter, safer, more welcoming and accessible. The design is intended to reflect changing needs of modern educational facilities, meet rapid changes in technology, and attune learning space to activities that support Ramaz’s unique general and Judaic studies curriculum. Significant progress is already evident as a result of our first three phases of construction. In the fall of 2011, faculty, students and parents returned to revitalized 4th and 5th floor classroom and learning spaces. Today, light fills each classroom, new windows keep noise from 85th Street to a minimum, and the reconfigured structures make the facility feel even larger. The 2011 reopening also showcased the new 4th floor library addition and reading terrace, a new ECC playroof, and a state-of-the-art ECC kitchen. We invite all of you to come see the enhanced and beautiful new spaces!

For KJ, after the devastating 4-alarm fire at the shul in July 2011, the original plans for the KJ facilities were tabled. While plans for the shul are being re-envisioned, funds raised for the facilities today will allow us to rebuild the space to be more vibrant and aweinspiring than ever before.

“The Lower School renovation project will allow us to meet the challenges of educating our students at the beginning of the 21st century and beyond, ensuring that they are prepared to contribute to the good of our community and world, as Torah observant Jews.” —Head of School Judith Fagin

Building the Future Together: The Campaign for Ramaz/KJ 2010

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The need to invest in Ramaz’s endowment is unequivocal and urgent. Campaign goal: grow the ramaz endowment

Our endowment lags behind peer schools in Manhattan and falls below industry recommended standards for endowment size. A significant cash infusion into our endowment will give us the financial strength to compete with other leading day schools in Manhattan for vital resources, without compromising the quality of our educational programming and our unique mandate to help Jewish families afford the high costs of day school tuition. This commitment is evident when comparing school financial aid data: Ramaz offers financial aid to 30% of its student body, the highest percentage reported among peer day schools in Manhattan.


A robust endowment will ensure the long-term financial sustainability of Ramaz, adding a permanent source of revenue to fund the rising gap between our revenues and our expenses. It will enable us to keep a lid on tuition increases, while sustaining current levels of financial aid, continuing to attract the finest faculty and staff, and, ultimately, ensuring that Ramaz upholds its position as a standard bearer for Jewish day school education in the U.S.


FINANCIAL AID • Additional funds for full and partial scholarships, in addition to continued aid commitments at current levels, despite rising needs • Alleviated pressure on operating costs, helping to contain tuition increases • Assurance that a Ramaz education is available for all students, regardless of family circumstances

faculty and programmatic excellence • Continued levels of competitive compensation, in line with cost of living increases, to attract and retain top educators in general and Judaic studies • Increased professional development and advanced degree opportunities to train faculty in the most advanced and innovative teaching techniques • Funds to support and continue to offer exemplary, diverse, and innovative programming that keeps Ramaz at the forefront of academic and co-curricular opportunities

Building the Future Together: The Campaign for Ramaz/KJ 2010

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Ramaz Receives $5,000,000 Challenge Grant from Community Philanthropist In the spring of 2011, the Building the Future Together Campaign received an extraordinary commitment from an anonymous donor in the Ramaz/KJ community. The donor, who already had a landmark $5,000,000 gift to the campaign, offered an additional $5,000,000 gift in the form of a community-wide challenge grant. With our campaign total at $45,000,000, he agreed to pledge $1,000,000 as the campaign reached each of the following fundraising milestones: $49,000,000, $54,000,000, $59,000,000, $64,000,000, and $69,000,000. The purpose of the challenge grant was to motivate the community and the campaign leadership to strive to reach the ambitious $75,000,000 goal, and to not stop short of achieving this critical amount. According to the donor, “I felt this challenge would incentivize other donors to participate in the campaign and to do their share to ensure the survival, accessibility, and high quality of Modern Orthodox Jewish Day School education. This gift is also in recognition of Rabbi Lookstein as a great leader of Ramaz, KJ, and the broader Jewish community.�


Rabbi Lookstein

1. Why is this campaign so important? Because it addresses two critical needs: the complete reconstruction of our Lower School/Synagogue House building, to make it fit the educational and communal needs of today. The school building is over 85 years old, and the synagogue, which has now been devastatingly damaged by fire, is 110 years old. Both need reconstruction and renovation. 2. How does this campaign compare to other school/shul campaigns in the past? We are not only addressing buildings; we are addressing the affordability of a Ramaz education for all families by committing a significant portion of the $75 million goal to the Endowment Fund of Ramaz. That will help us keep tuition increases as minimal as possible, provide scholarship funds for those who need them, and ensure that Ramaz attracts and retains the finest faculty and staff. 3. Who do you hope participates in the campaign? Everyone! There is nothing more important than providing the right facilities and the opportunity for children to get a day school education and for a community to have the right kind of synagogue. I would hope that everyone would want to contribute in some way to this campaign, because this campaign will ultimately serve every single one of us. 4. Why should people give to this effort? Because the present and future of Modern Orthodox Judaism in this community depends on it.

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Thank‫תודה‬ you ‫שלמי‬

to our ramaz/kj capital campaign donors

We want to recognize and thank the many members of the community who joined in this vital effort to revitalize the Ramaz and KJ facilities and grow the Ramaz endowment. The early support of our parents, congregants, alumni, grandparents and many friends has set a strong momentum for the campaign. We thank the donors for their generosity, loyalty and devotion to ensuring the strength and vitality of our community for generations to come.

Anonymous (4) S. Daniel Abraham Nicole & Raanan Agus Myrna & Charles Alpert Diana Newman & Isaac Corre Seryl & Charles Kushner Helen Nash Barbara & Harvey Arfa Jonathan Art Wilma & Kenneth Aschendorf Deborah & Isaac Ash Louise & Sidney Banon Abe & Sidney Block Foundation & Dr. Morris Block Deborah & Richard Born Lotte & Lou Bravmann Judith Schwartz & Michael Brizel Laurie & Eli Bryk Marcie & Kenneth Cappell The Cayre Family Sandra & David Chabbott Vanessa & Raymond Chalme Sherry & Neil Cohen Jana & Steven Cohn Eugenia & Ira Davis Rachel & Avi Dishi Rita & Fred Distenfeld Suzanne & Jacob Doft Arlene & Avrom Doft Sam Domb Elad Dror Fortunee & David Dushey Perah & David Dwek Ruthann & Kenneth Eckstein Jewel & Theodore Edelman Diane & Steven Eidman Suzanne & Samuel Eisenstat Lilian & Elliott Eisman Karen Lehman Eisner & David Eisner Pamela & Adam Emmerich Caryl & Israel Englander

Lionel Etra Miriam & Eric Feldstein Suzanne R. Fishman & Dr. Lawrence M. Fishman Ruth & Rafael Fouzailoff Hannah & Paul Freilich Anne & Natalio Fridman Abraham & Niki Friedberg Helen & Sidney Friedman Vanessa & Joseph Gad & Irina & Michael Gad Alisa & Scot Glasberg Jane & Ishaia Gol The Goldberg / Berg Family Nathan & Louise Goldsmith Foundation Tamar & Eric Goldstein Ruth & David Gottesman Rebecca & Laurence Grafstein Carin & Eric Gribetz Jessica Gribetz Georgette & Steven Gross Nicole & David Gruenstein Amy & James Haber Jill & Jimmy Haber Lori & Alan Harris Rebecca & Isaac Herschkopf Ronnie Heyman Rena & Scott Hoffman Dina & Marshall Huebner Tikva & Zalman Jacobs Jeanne & Samuel Jemal Sandra & Jeffrey Justin Stacey & David Kanbar Ellen & Robert Kapito Joia & Joshua Kazam Keren Keshet Fund Ruth & Jerry Kestenbaum Debbi & Alan Kestenbaum Rachel & Edgard Khafif The Klapper & Ingber Families

Joy & Judd Kleeger Mindy & Jonathan Kolatch Faye & Hartley Koschitzky Esther & Motti Kremer Bertha & Henry Kressel Lebensfeld Foundation Elena & Jay Lefkowitz Jane & Reuben Leibowitz Jody & Elie Levine Jane Dauber Lewittes & Michael L. Lewittes Leora Mogilner & Richard Linhart Janice & Saul Linzer Judith & David Lobel Audrey & Rabbi Haskel Lookstein Estate of Hannah Lorch Rachel Brody & Michael Lustig Sara Miller Linda & Hilton Mirels Jessica & Jason Muss The Nakash Family Stephanie & Herbert Neuman Carol & Melvin Newman Lisa & Edward Ostad G. L. Ostrow Judith & Daniel Ottensoser Gail & Berndt Perl Gail Propp & Family The Propp Family Monique & Andrew Rechtschaffen Diane & Ira Riklis Pamela & George Rohr Abraham Rosenzweig & Jane Jelenko Amy & Howard Rubenstein Marcy & Cyrus Sakhai Carol & Lawrence Saper Sheira & Steven Schacter Estate of Sylvia Schatzman Erica & Robert Schwartz Suzanne & Robert Schwartz

Chani & Mark Segall Alissa & Howard Shams Sara & Simon Shemia Vivian & Yale Shulman Roberta Solar & Rabbi Robert Schumeister Judy & Michael Steinhardt Robyn & David Stonehill Rebecca & Edward Sugar Randi & David Sultan Abigail & Shai Tambor Leora Tanenbaum & Jonathan Lonner Merryl & James Tisch Rachel & David Vorchheimer Diane & Robert Wassner Ariel & Joshua Weiner Holly & Michael Weiss Susan Wexner Sherry & Joel Wiener Judy Schaer & Philip Wilner

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Ramaz Magazine 5772  

2011 Annual Magazine