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Date with the State
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Following a screening of the movie Bully, hear Kirk Smalley, whose family tragedy is featured in the film Recommended for grades 6 and up due to language and violence
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Jewish groups praise immigration reform proposals WASHINGTON (JTA)—Jewish organizations praised President Obama’s immigration reform proposals, as well as similar measures offered by a bipartisan group of U.S. senators. In addressing the problem of the 11 million undocumented people in the Unitd States, Obama at a speech in Las Vegas stressed the need to enforce current laws and create a path to citizenship. Mark Hetfield, interim president and CEO of HIAS, an organization that deals with migration and refugee resettlement, said he “is more encouraged than we have been in years that our leaders will finally create a just system for immigrants and refugees.” Now is the time to “fix a broken system” that includes “all kinds of artificial, technical barriers that deny asylum to persecuted people,” he said. The Jewish Council for Public Affairs also welcomed the proposals. “We are eager to work with both Republicans and Democrats, both Congress and the president, to finally see immigration reform passed,” said chair Larry Gold. “Not only will these proposals strengthen our country, but the bipartisan cooperation behind them could mean the start of a new era.” The American Jewish Committee also applauded the efforts for immigration reform, calling them encouraging. “Immigration is a key factor in bolstering America’s economic strength and democratic pluralism,” said Richard Foltin, director of national and legislative affairs for AJC.
Up Front. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Briefs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Torah Thought . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Obama plans Israel trip. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Virginia Israel Advisory Board . . . . . . . . . . 8 Lawmakers listen to advocates. . . . . . . . . 10 Successful Super Sunday. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Jaffe Jewish Family Service in Hungary . . 14 Local students use lobby skills. . . . . . . . . 15 Vote for Israel posters. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Building community database. . . . . . . . . . 17 Book review. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Choosing the right preschool. . . . . . . . . . 19
The Anti-Defamation League issued a statement saying, “It is clear that both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue have heard the American people calling for leaders to overcome partisan divides and create a common sense solution to fix a broken immigration system.” Barry Curtiss-Lusher and Abraham Foxman, the ADL’s national chair and national director, said their organization is looking forward to working with Congress and Obama in what they hope will be a debate that “will honor America’s heritage as an inclusive, compassionate nation of immigrants that values the diversity of its people.” B’nai B’rith issued a statement saying that it “will continue to advocate for a constructive outcome to the legislative process.” Nancy Kaufman, CEO of the National Council of Jewish Women, said her organization “is heartened by the newfound energy to pass comprehensive immigration reform after years of inaction. NCJW will continue to work for immigration reform that ends the second-class status of immigrants without papers and ensures that a viable path to citizenship is finally at hand.” Also weighing in was the Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism. Associate director Barbara Weinstein called the proposals “important steps toward resolving the challenges that have plagued our immigration system for far too long.” She noted that Jewish tradition “commands us to welcome the stranger.”
About the cover: Date with the State photograph by Laine M. Rutherford
Kemspville Synagogue uses UJF grant. . . Jewish Film Festival wrap-up. . . . . . . . . . JFS Chanukah Gift Program. . . . . . . . . . . ODU’s Jewish Writers’ Book Club. . . . . . . What’s Happening. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Calendar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mazel Tov . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Who Knew?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Professional Directory. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Obituaries. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Appreciation: Ed Koch. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Get ready for camp. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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Advocacy group releases manual to fight delegitimization of Israel NEW YORK (JTA)—The Israel Action Network released a new manual aimed at fighting the delegitimization of Israel. The advocacy group created by the Jewish Federations of North America put out a document called IAN FACTS aimed at countering efforts to isolate the Jewish state. “IAN FACTS was compiled to respond to a growing demand from across North America and the globe to examine and share effective strategies for countering assaults on Israel’s legitimacy, including boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) attempts and other campaigns,” said Israel Action Network managing director Geri Palast. “These strategies were forged on many different fronts, including divestment resolutions within mainline Protestant Churches and labor unions, anti-Israel activity online, annual Israeli Apartheid Week activities on college campuses, and boycotts targeting Israeli goods and services.” The manual includes examples of dos and don’ts based on the experiences of its members in the field. Citing the victory last year by Israel supporters against a proposed boycott of Israeli products at the Park Slope Co-Op in Brooklyn, the manual emphasized engaging with “local community leaders to defeat BDS resolutions” and remembering “to tailor responses to BDS resolutions to the unique values and character of your community.”
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briefs Zuckerberg likes Christie Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is friending Chris Christie by holding a fundraiser for the New Jersey governor in his Palo Alto, Calif., home next month, according to Buzzfeed. Christie’s celebrity has been rising lately, from his capable handling of superstorm Sandy’s aftermath to his appearances on Saturday Night Live and The Simpsons. The two originally met in 2010, when Zuckerberg donated $100 million to the Newark public schools. “Mark and Priscilla have worked closely with Governor Christie on education reform in the Newark school system,” said Sarah Feinberg of Facebook. “They admire his leadership on education reform and other issues, and look forward to continuing their important work together on behalf of Newark’s schoolchildren. Mark and Priscilla are happy to host him at their home to support his reelection.” (JTA) U.S. judge dismisses Long Island eruv lawsuit One of three federal lawsuits filed in connection with a proposed eruv enclosure in a suburban New York beach community was dismissed. U.S. District Court Judge Leonard Wexler dismissed a suit brought by a group of Jewish residents on Long Island opposed to the construction of the eruv, an enclosure that permits religious Jews to carry items in public on the Sabbath, The New York Times reported. Proponents of the eruv in Westhampton Beach, N.Y., are affiliated with the Orthodox Hampton Synagogue, which has had repeated run-ins with local residents fearing an influx of Orthodox Jews to the seaside community. (JTA) Lollapalooza nixes Israel Some sad news for music lovers in Israel: Lollapalooza, the acclaimed traveling music festival slated to arrive in Tel Aviv in August, has been called off for now, at least. Festival representatives said the show will likely be postponed, according to the Los Angeles Times, even though the festival’s website now lists the 2013 destination as Chicago. Lollapalooza was created in 1990 as a farewell to the rock band Jane’s Addiction but became an annual event over the years in places such as Chicago, Chile and Brazil. Artists at last year’s show included headliners like the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jack White, the Black Keys, Florence and the Machine, the Shins and Black Sabbath. Festival organizers announced last
year that Tel Aviv would be the home of Lollapalooza for the summer of 2013, in Yarkon Park. However, rumors have been circulating in recent months that the festival was running into financial issues and also was having trouble recruiting musicians to play in Israel, according to the Israeli newspaper Yediot Achronot. While artists like the Chili Peppers and Madonna have happily performed in Israel in the past, others like Elvis Costello and the Pixies have called off shows because of pressure from activists. Festival founder Perry Farrell, formally of Jane’s Addiction, spoke with CNN in August of his ambitions for the festival to eventually head to Jerusalem. (JTA)
Top Egyptian official calls Holocaust a ‘myth’ A top Egyptian official close to President Mohamed Morsi called the Holocaust a myth. “The myth of the Holocaust is an industry that America invented,” Fathi Shihab Eddim reportedly claimed in recent days. Shihab Eddim reportedly is responsible for appointing the editors of all state-run Egyptian newspapers. “U.S. intelligence agencies in cooperation with their counterparts in allied nations during World War II created it [the Holocaust] to destroy the image of their opponents in Germany, and to justify war and massive destruction against military and civilian facilities of the Axis powers, and especially to hit Hiroshima and Nagasaki with the atomic bomb,” Shihab Eddim reportedly said. He claimed that the six million Jews moved to the United States during World War II. In response to the Egyptian’s claim, Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said in a statement, “The time has come for the State Department to inform the Egyptian government that the United States can no longer tolerate such anti-Semitic rants and Holocaust denial behavior from another top Egyptian official.” Shihab Eddim’s remarks became public just days after Morsi was accused of saying in 2010 that Zionists are “the descendants of apes and pigs.” (JTA) Australia holding elections on Yom Kippur Australia scheduled its national elections for Yom Kippur. Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced the Sept. 14 date last month. With the Yom Kippur date, more Australian Jews are expected to vote by mail
4 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
or at pre-poll booths, as Sabbath observers do now because Australian elections are held on Saturdays. Voting is mandatory in Australia; those who do not vote are fined. Michael Danby, a Jewish lawmaker from the ruling Labor Party, said Gillard called him immediately after she made the announcement. Danby said he plans to contact the special minister of state to discuss ‘’extra arrangements’’ to make it easier for Jews to cast their ballots, local media reported. Rabbi Moshe Gutnick, president of the Organization of Rabbis of Australia, said although the prime minister perhaps was “remiss in not taking note of Yom Kippur,” there will be a “welcome increase in prepolling and observance of Shabbat across our entire community precisely because it is Yom Kippur.” Peter Wertheim, head of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, said “it is not a major issue for us,” while Nina Bassat, president of the Jewish Community Council of Victoria in Melbourne, described it as “a little bit disappointing.” Gillard’s Labor Party holds a slender grip on power in a coalition with the Greens, but most polls suggest the Liberals will win. Federal elections have not clashed with Yom Kippur since the Australian Electoral Commission began logging election dates, Fairfax Media reported. Australia has a Jewish population of 110,000. (JTA)
Petition aims to have Facebook pull anti-Israel page A Facebook petition to remove an anti-Israel page that uses an expletive in its name has 75,000 likes, the removal campaign’s creator says. Michael Mendelson of Miami told JTA by telephone that the removal petition against the “Fuck Israel” page has been on Facebook for less than a week; the number of likes is as of Monday, Feb. 4. He said he started the counter campaign “with the help of various pro-Israel groups” in the Miami area. Mendelson said he had been unable to reach Facebook managers, but estimated that his campaign would have to score 10 times as many “likes” as the other side for Facebook to act on the removal petition. Deborah Lauter, civil rights director for the Anti-Defamation League, urged people to complain to Facebook, not just about the “Fuck Israel” page itself, but also to flag and call Facebook’s attention to individual
offensive comments and posts on the page. The “Fuck Israel” page, which has 36,000 “likes” as of Feb. 4, features such sentiments as “God bless Adolf Hitler for what he did,” “Jews are children of apes and pigs…they are baby killers,” and “I hate Israel,” surmounted by a hand-draw flag with a Star of David. On the page, however, Israel defenders outnumber the haters and mostly reply in kind. Rabbi Abraham Cooper and senior researcher Rick Eaton of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles have been monitoring anti-Semitic and anti-Israel websites, as well as YouTube and Twitter postings, for years. Eaton said there are at least two dozen such sites on Facebook alone, most of them started by Muslim groups, featuring logos such as “Free Gaza” in the colors of the Palestinian flag or an Israeli flag with a red circle and diagonal line superimposed on the Star of David. Facebook is also a popular site for hate tirades against Hindus, Mormons, Christians and Muslims, Cooper told JTA. On the whole, Facebook has been responsive to requests for removal of obviously offensive material, according to Cooper, but in numerous instances such sites are reinstated if they clean up their act or reappear under different names. (JTA)
Perelman gives $25 million to alma mater Penn Billionaire Ronald Perelman donated $25 million to the University of Pennsylvania, his alma mater, for a center for political science and economics. The center at the Ivy League university will be named the Ronald O. Perelman Center for Political Science and Economics. “I think every university should have a center where global ideas can be developed and dealt with, and where those across campus can have a platform from which to speak and learn to develop global positions,” said Perelman, the chairman of Revlon cosmetics. Perelman earned his bachelor’s degree and MBA from the Philadelphia university and serves on its board of trustees. He donated $20 million in 1995 for the Perelman Quadrangle, and in 2011, his parents, Raymond and the late Ruth Perelman, donated $225 million to the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, the largest individual gift in Penn’s history, according to the Daily Pennsylvanian. The name of the medical school was changed to the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. (JTA)
torah thought Wilbanks Smith & Thomas
abbi Moshe Alshich (1508– 1593) notes that Mordechai could easily have justified his decision not to bow down to Haman. The king ordered that “the king’s slaves posted at the gate (court) of the king” were to bow down to Haman. Although Mordechai was posted at the king’s court, he was not a slave of the king. Yet Mordechai said, “I am a Jew,” which Rabbi Alshich explained meant that he was of distinguished lineage, one of the exiled officials of Judah. The other officials of the king’s court were incensed by his arrogance. Mordechai was in effect proclaiming himself superior to these mighty and influential barons, claiming he was a prince of G-d. They thereupon reported Mordechai’s comments to Haman. Where Mordechai saw G-d’s chosen people, these officials saw “a downtrodden and outcast people.” I have long been perplexed by Mordechai’s actions. By what right did he endanger himself and all the Jewish people? Why did he not simply inform his colleagues at the king’s court that he did not qualify as one of the king’s slaves? Perhaps he acted in this manner because he did not wish to be deceptive. Yet Jewish law is unequivocally clear on this issue: one may—nay, one must—lie in order to save one’s life, and certainly to save the entire Jewish people. In answer to this question, one of my teachers suggested that Mordechai wished in no way to imply that the Jewish people
were a downtrodden and outcast people. I would like to expand upon that idea. Mordechai was concerned that the Jewish people had reached the point of complete despair. The feast tendered by Achashvarosh with which the Biblical Scroll of Esther opens was according to rabbinic tradition an occasion when the sacred utensils of the Holy Temple were profaned. Achashvarosh wished to impart the unmistakable message that there was no hope of an imminent redemption of the Jews. One can only imagine how demoralized and forlorn our ancestors must have felt under those circumstances. This sense of despair, if left unchecked, could have resulted in wholesale forsaking of our traditions. The Jewish people were thus sorely in need of a strongdemonstration of Jewish pride and self-respect. That was Mordechai’s rationale behind his statement to his colleagues: I am a proud member of the Chosen People. The Rabbi Dr. Joseph B. Soloveitchik (1903– 1993), of blessed memory, notes: “Purim is also a day of introspection and prayerful meditation. The Scroll of Esther is both a Book of Thanksgiving and a Book of Distress and Petition. The narrative relates two stories, of a people in a terrifying predicament and also of their great exhilaration at their sudden deliverance.” Perhaps in this light we can understand the comment of the Talmudic sage Rava (Shabbat 88a) that the Jewish people recommitted themselves to Torah observance after the Purim miracle. The Jewish people demonstrated a new-found sense of inner strength and self-worth that was manifest in a renewed commitment to Jewish identity. Along with the revelry, Purim affords us the opportunity to experience a renewed sense of devotion of our sacred traditions. Rabbi Mordechai Wecker, head of school, Hebrew Academy of Tidewater and Strelitz Early Childhood Center
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Will Obama’s planned Israel visit revive Israel-Palestinian peacemaking? by Ron Kampeas
WASHINGTON (JTA)—Is President Obama’s plan to visit Israel a sign that he’s ready to take another shot at Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking? The White House announced Tuesday, Feb. 5 that Obama would visit Israel in the spring, his first trip there as president. He did visit in 2008, when he was a candidate for the Oval Office. This trip also will include meetings with Palestinian Authority leaders and a trip to Jordan, the White House says. Obama spoke of the visit in a conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Jan. 28. The White House did not announce dates. The announcement appears to be a signal that the president is serious about peacemaking, says David Makovsky, an analyst with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, which has close ties with the Obama and Netanyahu governments. “Part of the problem is that on all sides, there’s disbelief that peace is possible,” Makovsky says. “He wants to engage both societies about why you can’t give up. He wants to engage on the gut level with Arabs and Israelis in a way he hasn’t until now.” In a region where optics are important, Obama’s failure to visit during his first term as president was cast by his opponents as a sign that Israel was not a high priority for him. It did not help Obama’s
popularity in Israel when he omitted the Jewish state from a June 2009 visit to the Middle East that included a major speech in Cairo and a stop in Saudi Arabia. As much as anything else, the spring trip may be about reaching out to Israelis. “I’m excited that President Obama is coming this spring to reaffirm the deep ties between Israel and the United States,” Dan Shapiro, the U.S. ambassador to Israel, said in a message in Hebrew on Twitter. Netanyahu may have his own reasons for welcoming such a visit now. For one, a U.S. president on Israeli soil sends an unmistakable message to Israel’s enemies that America stands with Israel. It also helps Netanyahu politically. Netanyahu emerged weakened from Israel’s Jan. 22 elections, and aides have told the Israeli media that they believe voters stayed away from the prime minister over concerns about his rapport with Obama. The two leaders have had something of a fraught relationship. There have been philosophical differences about Israel’s settlement enterprise and the Palestinians, disagreements about the red line for Iran’s nuclear program and perceived snubs on both sides. During a March 2010 White House meeting, Netanyahu was denied a photo opportunity with the president and Obama interrupted their meeting to eat dinner. Last year, Netanyahu gave an enthusiastic reception to Obama rival Mitt
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Romney during the 2012 campaign. But the recent elections in both the United States and Israel could mark a turning point. In recent days, Netanyahu has indicated that he wants to establish a coalition government that tends more to the center than his last government. He also has identified diplomacy with the Palestinians as one of his top priorities. On the other side of the Atlantic, Obama’s choice for secretary of state, John Kerry, said in his Senate confirmation hearing that preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon and advancing Israeli-Palestinian peace would be his twin priorities in the job. Kerry has since announced his own plans to visit Israel next month, and among his first calls in his new job were conversations with Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. “It’s a new beginning: Obama can have a serious discussion with the Israeli prime minister at a time he’s heading a new government,” says Dennis Ross, a counsel at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy who was Obama’s top Middle East adviser until a year ago. “The president is interested in connecting with the Israeli public. It allows him to show he cares about the peace issues, but allows him to do so while discussing all the issues, including Iran, Syria and Egypt.” Aaron David Miller, a former U.S.
negotiator who now is vice president of the Wilson International Center for Scholars, says both Obama and Netanyahu are being driven to a rapprochement by exigency: Netanyahu by his weakened political position and Obama by preserving his legacy. “One guy is caught in circumstances which require improvement, and the other guy knows if he wants to get anywhere he’s going to have to figure out if he can work with Bibi,” Miller says, using Netanyahu’s nickname. Debra DeLee, the president of Americans for Peace Now, says that Obama’s visit will give him an “opportunity to directly address the people of Israel and lay out a compassionate, pragmatic vision for a future Israel that enjoys security and peace, and that it is a respected member of the community of nations.” But Danielle Pletka, vice president of the American Enterprise Institute, says if Obama is going simply to advance a peace process that many Israelis and U.S. lawmakers believe is stuck because of Arab intransigence, he’s running a fool’s errand. It would be more useful, she says, for him to use his Israel trip to discuss strategies at a time of Middle Eastern turmoil. “If he’s president of the United States, he’s going to talk about Iran and Hezbollah and Syria,” Pletka says. “If he’s the president of Barack Obama’s dream house, he’ll talk about the peace process.”
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Kerry talks to Netanyahu, Abbas
ohn Kerry, freshly installed as secretary of state, spoke with the Palestinian and Israeli leaders. Also, two top State Department officials dealing with Iran’s alleged nuclear threat said they would be stopping in Israel during overseas visits and Israel’s military chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, was visiting Washington. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland spoke about Kerry’s conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “The secretary underscored his personal commitment and that of President Obama to support Israel’s security and to pursue a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians,” Nuland said, according to a Reuters report. Kerry, who plans to visit the region next month, also spoke to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. The State Department in a statement laid out the agenda for the two State Department officials—Rose Gottemoeller, the acting undersecretary for arms control,
and Thomas Countryman, the assistant secretary for nonproliferation. Countryman will “meet with Israeli counterparts to discuss nonproliferation and international security issues of mutual concern,” and Gottemoeller will “consult with senior civilian and military officials on pressing regional security issues and expanding our enduring strategic partnership” and deliver remarks at a conference on nuclear nonproliferation, the statement said. The Obama administration has indicated that it is seeking to engage with Iran in direct talks aimed at ending Iran’s suspected nuclear weapons program. Iran says its nuclear activity is strictly peaceful. The Israel Defense Forces in announcing the five-day visit by Gantz said it was “official…as the guest of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin E. Dempsey.” In its statement, the IDF said the two generals would “discuss current security challenges, the regional security status in the Middle East and military cooperation.” (JTA)
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jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 7
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8 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
hen a group of Tidewater advocates traveled to Richmond for Date with the State, or Jewish Advocacy Day, last month, one of the main topics discussed with area General Assembly members was the Virginia Israel Advisory Board. The Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewaterled group did not request any current action for VIAB. Rather, they thanked their senators and delegates for voting to restore funding to the state-appointed agency during last year’s session, and provided information and updates about the many benefits VIAB brings to Virginia. The primary mission of VIAB is to increase jobs in the Commonwealth by encouraging Israeli companies to locate their businesses in the state. VIAB also advises the Governor on ways to improve economic and cultural links between Virginia and Israel. From 2000 until 2012, VIAB generated nearly $41 million in state tax revenues and helped add around 1,500 new jobs to Virginia’s workforce. In 2012 alone, VIAB was instrumental in the creation of 154 new jobs in Virginia. Without restoration last year for the original budget line item of $175,361 (it had been cut by nearly $50,000), the state was at risk of losing VIAB. Throughout the recession, the agency was stripped of all staff except for executive director Ralph Robbins, and further cuts would have made it impossible to effectively do the work required. Restored funding allowed the agency to provide a working salary for Robbins, as well as enable the hiring of a part-time support
Sabra Dipping Company in Chesterfield County, Va.
person in Virginia and Israel. All of the statistics relayed to the elected officials seemed to capture their attention, but the one that made them nod their heads in appreciation was the 523% return in investment for every budget dollar allocated to VIAB. Currently, VIAB has eight prospective Israeli companies looking closely at Virginia as a state where their businesses could grow and thrive. In the next one to three years, the agency projects an additional 400 jobs will be created through the Israeli companies based in Virginia, bringing in even more tax revenue to the state’s coffers. Speaking to groups of Jewish advocates from all over Virginia during Date with the State, both Robbins and Governor Bob McDonnell praised the strong bonds being forged between Virginia and Israeli companies that have set up base in Virginia, and were strongly optimistic about continued growth and opportunity. In addition to hearing from citizen advocates, lawmakers were given a packet of information from the CRC that included a list of VIAB’s 2012 accomplishments and plans for 2013. Below are some highlights from that list.
Sabra Dipping Company Maker of hummus, Sabra is located in Chesterfield County. In the third year of operations of its only U.S. manufacturing plant, Sabra added 110 new jobs. Another 90 jobs are projected for FY2013, and potentially an additional 100 in the following two years. A 2012 expansion of Sabra’s facility brings the company’s Virginia investment to $28 million. Now, VIAB is helping to co-locate an
Israeli supplier and a second preneur Ascher Shmulewitz vendor near the Sabra plant and former Sabra CTO, Mike with the potential to create 75 Spinelli. The two men expect additional jobs in the next one to launch a plant in Richmond to two years. within two years that could Perhaps even more sigemploy 50 to 60 workers in nificantly, a joint project VIAB manufacturing functional helped kick off with Sabra, foods ingredients; foods cliniVirginia State University and cally proven to help a medical the Virginia Department of condition. Agriculture, is testing Virginia Ralph Robbins, Medicine specific chick pea seeds in executive director, VIAB VIAB is attracting Israeli southern and southwest Virginia. This project could create up to companies to the Manassas Center for Diseases/George Mason 10,000 farming jobs over the next two to Infectious University Partnership that will help comseven years. mercialize products to combat diseases. The Virginia Life Science MedCPU has opened a U.S. office in Investments initiative Richmond to expand its systems that reducAn outgrowth of the Virginia Israel Bio es medical errors and costs while improving Sciences Commercialization Center, The patient care. Virginia Life Science Investments initiative is comprised of nine Israeli companies that Transportation pursue commercialization projects with VIAB continues negotiations with the $18 million in investment funding. Another Dulles International Airport, the Airports investment round is planned for the next Authority and Fairfax County Economic Development Authority to create a direct 12–24 months. Using technologies developed at VLSI, Tel Aviv flight. At the same time, VIAB is a new countertop manufacturing facility working with a consortium to create a peris slated to open in Norfolk in 2013 using manent exhibit of Israeli companies near state-of-the-art Cupron technologies. Up to Dulles Airport that could underscore the potential benefits of direct flight links. 60 jobs are expected in its first year. Modeled on the VLSI success, VIAB’s Gateway program educates dozens of Israeli companies in a given business sector on advantages of the Virginia marketplace, and then selects the best qualified companies to move forward on potential projects. An October 2012 Gateway event targeted nine Israeli defense-related companies that cumulatively employ 400 workers and boast international sales above $100 million. Five of the companies will need U.S. manufacturing facilities within the next six to 24 months, one is expected to open a Northern Virginia office within four months, while another is moving forward on a manufacturing presence elsewhere in the state—with a potential for 60 new jobs over a three year period. In partnership with Dominion Resources, VIAB’s CleanTech Sector Gateway program targets Israeli alternative energy companies. One company has opened an office in Richmond to develop environmentally friendly solutions that keep heat exchanger and cooling towers clean and running efficiently. A second company is partnering with Dominion on installation-free electric energy management that helps utilities adjust to peak usage and helps consumers reduce costs.
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Virginia General Assembly members attentive to Jewish community concerns article and photos by Laine M. Rutherford
rmed with talking points, folders filled with information, and an abundance of determination, a contingent of focused Jewish citizens took to the halls of the Virginia General Assembly building on January 22. The group of 36 who traveled by bus from Tidewater joined other Jews from communities around Virginia for Date with the State, or Jewish Advocacy Day, an event held annually during the legislative session. The Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater organized the trip, with CRC legislative committee co-chairs Jeff Brooke and Jeff Cooper identifying important political issues and leading pre-planning sessions. With a limited amount of time to visit the 20 senators and delegates who represent the Tidewater area, the CRC chose three matters to discuss during their scheduled appointments: a budget amendment to reinstate full funding in the state’s budget for Jewish Family Service of Tidewater’s courtappointed Personal Affairs Management Program, opposition of a bill that would force nursing homes, such as Beth Sholom Village, to disclose the amount of their liability insurance coverage to patients and
residents, and a reminder of the importance of continued funding for the Virginia Israel Advisory Board. “Important work is done on these trips,” Brooke told the group during a briefing session on the bus to Richmond. “Last year’s trip was instrumental in getting VIAB’s funding restored—these guys heard our cry and answered. Let’s make sure they know…that their constituents want this, and remember to thank your legislators when you speak to them.” Before the two-hours of back-to-back appointments, the Jewish advocates gathered for lunch at a church a block away from the General Assembly building. Guest speakers at the event included VIAB executive director Ralph Robbins, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and Governor Bob McDonnell. “It is vitally important for you to come up here and keep your legislators informed about what’s important to your community,” McDonnell said. “And you must continue to do this.” The governor concluded his address by thanking the group for its willingness to step forward and advocate for Jewish and community values, and for taking democracy seriously. Breaking into smaller groups, the delegation from Tidewater spent the next several hours speaking personally to 18
Craig and Joanna Schranz, Bill Nusbaum, Del. Daun Hester, Elka Mednick, and Jeff Cooper.
10 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
Jason Hoffman, Marcia Samuels, Anne Abraham, Rebecca Bickford, David Abraham, Helene Silverman, Sen. Frank Wagner, Laura Miller, Betty Ann Levin, Scott Levin, Linda Hoffman, Jeff Brooke, and Lenny Brooke.
of the General Assembly members, and to two assistants. Among the groups were Robin Mancoll, CRC director, David Abraham, executive vice president of BSV, Betty Ann Levin, JFS executive director, board members from a variety of local Jewish organizations, high school and college students, Del. Bob Tata listens to Brad Lerner and Dorothy Salomonsky. and senior citizens. On the bus ride home, Levin applauded Noting the effectiveness of the group’s the group for the efforts and successes of efforts last year that were instrumental in the day. She is continuing to work with having funding restored to VIAB, and the Senator Frank Wagner and Delegate Chris support the JFS PAM program is getting in Jones, with support from other elected offi- the General Assembly, Levin emphasizes cials, to have amendments included in the the powerful impact of Jewish advocacy. Senate and House budgets to support the “It’s important—whether they’re federal PAM program. or state or local—that our elected officials “Our funding was cut by 50% for the hear from their constituents about what’s current fiscal year (2012–13) and slated important, and how their decisions can to be eliminated for the 2013–2014 fiscal help people in our community,” Levin says. year,” Levin says. “We went to Richmond “What we accomplished in just this one day, prepared with stories of clients we have shows what our collective voice can do.” helped over the years due to this fundingFor more information about this event and and whom we will continue to help for other CRC initiatives, check out www.jewishva. the rest of their lives. All of our legislators org/crc. instantly ‘got it.’ They realized the importance of the often life-saving work we do.”
Jeff Brooke, Lenny Brooke, Jeff Cooper, and Anne Abraham.
Leslie Siegel, Betty Ann Levin, Marilyn Ashe, Amy Weinstein, Rabbi Israel Zoberman, Mike Ashe, Del. Chris Stolle, Megan Zuckerman, Barbara Dudley, Rebecca Bickford, and Laura Miller.
Del. Daun Hester meets with a group of advocates.
Mike and Marilyn Ashe, Betty Ann Levin, director of Jewish Family Service of Tidewater, Laura Miller, and Rebecca Bickford, Tidewater Jewish community concierge.
Betty Ann Levin, JFS director , David Abraham, executive vice-president and CEO, Beth Sholom village, and Robin Mancoll, director of the Community Relations Council of the UJFT.
Del. Sal Iaquinto meets with Lenny Brooke, David Abraham, Jeff Brooke and Jan Johnson.
Jeff Cooper, Craig Schranz, Bill Nusbaum, Joanna Schranz, and Elka Mednick.
jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 11
Volunteers and donors make Super Sunday super successful
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by Laine M. Rutherford
n outpouring of community support made the 2013 Super Sunday phone-a-thon one of the most successful in recent years. The annual event, held at the Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish community on Sunday, Jan. 27, raised more than $100,000 from more than 330 donors, many of whom were making gifts to the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater for the first time. Amy Weinstein, director of the Young Adult Division of the UJFT, says the 10 young adult leaders who made up this year’s Super Sunday Steering Committee deserve credit for coming up with a serious theme, “I Invest Because…,” that resonated
with the community, and for ensuring the phone-a-thon ran smoothly. Weinstein also emphasizes the important role played by the 115 community volunteers who made phone calls or otherwise helped that day. In this still lackluster economy, Weinstein says, it is notable that so many gave their time to reach out to their fellow Jewish community
Jonathan Rathsam and Aaron Shames.
members, and that the community—in turn—opened their hearts and made gifts to the UJFT’s Annual Campaign. “The success of Super Sunday is so much more than just the dollars raised. When you look at volunteers and donors, Super Sunday touched more than 450 people this year. When one day can reach nearly a third of our goal for total donors to this year’s
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Burle Stromberg, Hebrew Academy of Tidewater president, David and Bella Cardon, and Rabbi Mordechai Wecker, HAT head of school.
Harry Graber, UJFT executive vice-president makes a call.
12 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
Ed and Anna Goldenberg.
Campaign, that’s huge,” says Weinstein. “I think a big thank you is in order to all of the volunteers—and the donors. Super Sunday wouldn’t have been so successful without each of them,” Weinstein adds. During the event, volunteers were fortified by the responses they were getting on the phone, as well as through the delivery of 20 kosher pizzas, generously donated by Pepe’s N.Y. Pizzeria, located in Norfolk’s Ghent neighborhood. It is still possible to make a gift to Super Sunday; email pledges to email@example.com, text INVEST to 51818, visit www.jewishva.org/ supersunday and make gifts online, or mail a donation to UJFT, 5000 Corporate Woods Dr., Suite 200, Virginia Beach, VA 23462. Like the UJFT on Facebook to find the “I Invest Because” video and Super Sunday photos.
Mimi Karesh and Delores Bartel.
Super Sunday committee: Jen Groves, Fred Rose, Leah Katz, Aaron Shames, Eric Shapiro, Jennie Hurwitz, Jason Rosenberg, Jonathan Rathsam, Amy Weinstein, and Aaron Goldmeier.
Leora Drory, Stephanie Calliott, and Terri Sarfan.
Miles Leon. Eliot Weinstein
Jacob Konikoff, Austin Kramer, and Evan Roesen.
Rabbi Sender Haber of Congregation Bâ€™nai Israel with wife Chamie and son Ely.
Student volunteers from Toras Chaim with Rabbi Mordechai Loiterman, principal.
Jim Stoltz and Jerry and Laura Miller.
Rabbi Gershon Litt, Eliezer Schwartz, and Benjay Kempner.
jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 13
Return on investment Jewish Family Service in Budapest
his year, Tidewater is helping provide more than 1,066 Hungarian children from 586 families with comprehensive social services. Since 2007, through the generosity and vision of Tidewater’s Jaffe family and the continued support of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the Jewish community of Hungary has benefited from the humanitarian services of the Jaffe Jewish Family Service. The first of its kind in Eastern Europe, the JJFS has transformed the delivery of humanitarian services in the Hungarian
Jewish community. “The model for the Jaffe Jewish Family Service is based on our JFS model here,” says Karen Jaffe, whose family was instrumental in the creation of the agency in Budapest. “We emphasize the community working together, we look at providing holistic solutions to problems, and we’re creating a kind of nexus, to find a way people can connect and relate and network with others in their community.” From services like Jewish holiday programming, summer day camp, providing prescription eyeglasses, job training, and even a new concept for that community—well-baby groups—Hungarian Jewish families now have a place to turn. Families like Agnes and her son, Gregory. Agnes brought Gregory with her when she returned from Israel to her native Budapest after a painful divorce in 2008. Agnes arrived in Budapest at the start of the economic crisis with no job, no income, and emotionally reeling from her divorce. Through the JJFS, Gregory ate hot lunches daily at his Jewish day school. He was able to see the dentist his mother couldn’t afford. He received special tutoring to help him transition into the Hungarian school. He thrived at Jaffe summer day camp and the Szarvas camp, which he attended thanks to a scholarship. At the same time, the JJFS helped Agnes through her personal crisis, in part by facilitating an empowerment group for mothers, and helped her prepare to earn a living in a job readiness training program. Agnes now
14 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
works full time as an administrator, and Gregory has blossomed into a successful high-school student. “I could never have gotten through the difficult times and solved my problems without help from the JFS,” Agnes says about her new life. Year after year since it opened, the JJFS significantly increases the number of Jewish children and families it assists. Karen and her brother Nathan Jaffe remain actively involved with the JJFS, following the lessons taught by to them by their parents, Bernard and Lee (both of blessed memory) about the importance of Jewish people helping and taking care of one another. “There are so few of us (Jews) in the world, that if we don’t care what happens to one another—and we are all family…then nobody cares. Period. Nobody,” Jaffe says. While the JJFS was made possible by the generosity of the Jaffe family, the investment of the greater Tidewater Jewish community, through an allocation of the UJFT Annual Campaign each year, allows the JJFS to continue its essential work in Budapest. “I hope that people don’t think that they can’t make a difference if they’re
unable to make a gift like the Jaffes made in Hungary,” says Alvin Wall, UJFT president. “Part of the beauty of the UJFT is that it allows us to pool our resources. We have a real and lasting impact when we work together. The Jaffe family did an amazing thing when they helped set up the JJFS in Budapest. I’m very proud of them and our whole community—every year, our donors, through the annual campaign, help improve lives through that amazing program.” This summer the UJFT will lead a mission to the Jewish communities of Budapest (Hungary) and Prague (Czech Republic). Mission dates are Sunday, July 14 through Monday, July 22. Space is limited to 45 participants. Call Amy Zelenka at 757-965-6139 to receive additional information.
Local students lobby Representative Scott Rigell on issues important to U.S.-Israel relationship
by Robin Mancoll
our of the five students who attended the AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) High School Summit in October met to put their new skills to the test on Friday, Feb. 1. Representative Scott Rigell opened his office and engaged the students in discussion on the issues important to the U.S.-Israel relationship. Through training at the High School Summit, Skylar Arias, Nathan Levy, Jake Patish and Adam Zelenka discussed with Representative Rigell the importance of preventing Iranian nuclear weapons capability and support for security assistance to Israel. The group also thanked Representative Rigell for signing the letter by Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Howard Berman (D-CA), Ed Royce (R-CA) and Eliot Engel (D-NY) urging the president to send a clear message to PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas that his securing of an upgraded status at the United Nations is damaging to the peace process and will set back U.S.Palestinian relations. The students and Rep. Rigell shared personal experiences about Israel, as well as expressed hopes for their next visit. As the students learned, relationships are not made in a single visit and they look forward to the next opportunity they have to engage the Congressman in issues important to the Tidewater Jewish community and of course, the pro-Israel movement. The students’ reflections on their meeting follow: “We met with Representative Rigell for about 40 minutes to discuss America’s responsibility towards Israel. We talked about three key issues: the threat of the Iranian nuclear program, for which he assured us all options were on the table; Palestinian statehood; and U.S. foreign aid, which should become an issue of importance in the coming month, as sequestration looms. In the visit, it was comforting to be reassured that our representative is on our side and loyal to a thriving American Israeli relationship.” —Adam Zelenka, junior, Princess Anne High School “Lobbying Representative Rigell was a great culmination of our AIPAC High School Summit. The time flew by with deep conversation about Israel. We shared our passion and
Skylar Arias, Adam Zelenka, Representative Scott Rigell, Nathan Levy and Jake Patish.
knowledge on the issues with him, and he skillfully engaged in questioning discussion. The all-important relationship was started.” —Jake Patish, senior, Deep Creek High School “Meeting with Representative Rigell was a great experience. Having the opportunity to meet with a member of Congress not only benefitted me as an advocate on behalf of AIPAC, but also for similar experiences in the future on other issues. I felt pressure going into the meeting since Rigell was taking time out of his busy schedule to meet with us, but he quickly made all of us feel right at home. He seemed genuinely interested in what we were telling him, and he contributed stories and ideas of his own. He even went beyond the allotted time for our group so that we could finish advocating for all of the different issues we had prepared to talk about with him. Robin did an excellent job preparing us, and having her presence in the room made me much more at ease. It was a great learning experience, and I am glad that I finally received an opportunity to use the skills I gained at the high school summit.” —Nathan Levy, senior, Norfolk Academy “In December I attended the AIPAC High School Summit in Washington, DC, where it had been planned for us to lobby congress. Sadly, our lobby time was canceled due to Hurricane Sandy. Naturally I was nervous at first, in that kind of excited way, though. When we arrived at his office, I realized I had nothing to be nervous about. He was very welcoming and was really easy to talk to. He was openminded, but knew what he believed in, which is something I aspire to. The experience was all around great and I truly hope to do it again.” —Skylar Arias, junior, Cox High School
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jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 15
Israel posters are up: Time to vote
d 2013 an 00 P.M. , 7 1 y r a Febru at 10: Opening March 3, 2013 on Closing and at items ies, e r g f o Lots . tunit e oppor ore all the time c i r p d o go gm re addin ' e w d n a s out at uction Check u ood.com/yaka org biddingf
eginning Wednesday, Feb. 13 through Friday, March 1, community members can help a young artist become a big winner in the Israel Advocacy Poster Contest, sponsored by the Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater. Last month, the CRC invited local first through 12th graders to draw a poster highlighting a cool fact about Israel. Now, it’s up to the public to Poster designers, Jaden Baum, Olivia Kamer, and Hannah Foleck. decide which of the 100 submissions they think is best. Posters will be displayed in the Simon Family JCC Cardo 16 at 7 pm, on the Sandler Family Campus, beginning Feb. 13, when the CRC presents during the final Israel Today event featuring Neil Lazarus as its second speaker in the David Makovsky. popular Israel Today Forum. The commuThe winning poster will be profesnity gets two weeks to vote for its favorite sionally framed and hang permanently at posters, then those that get the most votes the Sandler Family Campus. In addition, will be posted online for one more round of attendees at the community’s Israel Festival voting that spans the month of March. The on April 28 will receive a copy of the winwinning poster will be announced on April ning poster.
Project launched to set national standards for home caregivers A new $2.95 million project will set national standards and guidelines for home caregivers. The New York-based Homecare Aid Workforce Initiative was launched last week in a bid to improve care for older adults while benefiting those who have made a career of providing the care, according to a statement issued by the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation. The Maryland-based foundation provided $1.6 million for the initiative, which will establish a best practices baseline for recruitment, training and supervision of paid caregivers. Some 3.2 million paid caregivers in the
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United States assist frail and chronically ill older adults. “We were disturbed to learn that these workers, who provide care for our frailest and most vulnerable relatives, neighbors and friends, have among the lowest levels of training and few, if any, employee benefits,” said Rachel Garbow Monroe, the Weinberg foundation’s president. The 27-month program will provide hands-on, comprehensive and specialty training to at least 600 new and 400 experienced home-care workers. It is being run in collaboration with UJA-Federation of New York and several of its beneficiary agencies. (JTA)
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Tidewater Jewish community works together to build first-ever database “We want to work together, we want to communicate together and we want to build and strengthen our community together! We want to do it, we need to do it and the technology is there to do it, so let’s move forward and finally do it! Let us build a community data base together!” This was the unanimous and collective decision of the leaders of Beth Sholom Village, Jewish Family Service, Hebrew Academy of Tidewater, Simon Family JCC, Tidewater Jewish Foundation and the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater approximately 10 months ago. They all agreed, given their shared goal of bringing important programs and services to the community in the most costeffective and efficient manner possible, that the development of a community database was clearly required and a failure to do so was to fail the community. “The creation of a community database has been a discussion at so many budgeting, funding, marketing, strategic planning and board meetings only because everybody believes that as a community we can do so much more once we have one,” says Alvin Wall, UJFT president. “The beauty of it is that while it is administered by UJFT, all the participating organizations share equally in the establishment of business rules and in its access, reporting, and utilization of the shared information.” “It was clear at our most recent strategic planning meetings that it is important, for instance, to have the names of as many preschool and school age children and their families as we can so that we can make sure that we inform them of the programs and services that are important and essential to them. We could be so more effective if we made sure that the right information was sent to the right party. The same could be done for the mature adult or any other demographic group we want to serve,” says Abbey Horwitz, past president of the Hebrew Academy of Tidewater and the UJFT. “The beauty of it is that all the money we could save by targeting our communications well would be then channeled into more services for our community.” The value of the enterprise is not really built on technology, which is merely the vehicle, but it is rather built on trust, cooperation and community. The information has long been stored in all the agency databases with the largest and most comprehensive, by far, being UJFT’s database. These agencies have never violated the trust placed in them and through the creation
of the community database will never violate that trust by selling the information or otherwise transferring the information outside the community database participants. Any information covered by HIPAA or other privacy laws will not be distributed to any community database participating agencies without a person’s prior written permission in accordance with those applicable laws. In fact, the information that is currently being sought will primarily be demographic in nature such as name, date of birth, occupation, contact information, relationships, etc. “I know that we guard our data very carefully and we did the same when I was executive director of Jewish Family Service,” says Harry Graber, UJFT executive vice president. “You don’t build a community as wonderful and as admired as ours by letting
people down. On the contrary, you take that trust that is generated from the notions of a Jewish people and that all Jews are for one another and have it serve as a proud foundational principle for further innovation and community building. We want to marry technological capability with our aspiration to serve our community well.” Graber continues, “I take inspiration from Rabbi Jeffrey Arnowitz of Temple Beth El who has been in our community for little more than a year when he states, ‘Our synagogues, our Federation and our agencies enable us to achieve far beyond what anyone would expect us to achieve and the reason we can do this is because the Jewish people here work together.’ We want to accomplish great things and this database will certainly help us do it.”
Frequently Asked Questions What kind of information will be collected? The current effort is the first generation of community database development with the hope that initial success will bring subsequent inclusion and refinement. The information to be initially included will primarily be demographic such as name, address, contact information, relatives, education, occupation, areas of interest, etc. How will the information be used? Primarily for internal marketing, communication, member engagement and fund development. It will allow participating agencies to better inform people of events, programs and services that would be of particular interest. If I am receiving counseling services at JFS or rehabilitation service at Beth Sholom Village will that information be part of the community database? No, that information is covered by HIPAA and other privacy laws and will not be transferred to or included in the community database. The purpose of the community database is not to violate any agency’s confidentiality policies, but to gather available information in a manner that is respectful of a person’s privacy, but still helpful in building community. What agency will administer the database, how will information be shared and updated? By agreement of all participating agencies, the database will be administered by the UJFT. The community database will be a separate database with agencies transferring information to it on regular basis. If there are conflicts regarding particular pieces of data such as two different addresses for the same person, the conflict will be investigated, information updated as best as possible and shared with submitting agency so they can update their records. Agencies will make requests as to what reports and/or data they may need and that information will be provided by the database administrator. Will this database replace an agency’s database? No. Each participating agency, including the UJFT, will still maintain its own database and only transfer agreed upon information to the community database. Has a lawyer been consulted on the formation of the community database? Yes. The guidance of an attorney who specializes in this field has been offered and will continue through all phases of the project.
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18 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
the traditional text in Hebrew with English translation, some transliteration, as well as In Every Generation: The JDC Haggadah instruction on the order of the service. It Edited by Linda Levi and Ilana Stern Kabak begins with an introductory reminder, by Devora Publishing, 2010 Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, that the Passover 92 pages, $19.95 (paper) Seder is a practice that has impacted not only ISBN 978-1-936068-13 Jews, but all humanity. The JDC Haggadah is replete with a photographic history of n my youth there was almost 100 years of support for orphaned only one kind of hagJewish children after World War I, 110,000 gadah, the kind that Jews expelled from Germany and Austria was free, distributed by Hal Sacks in 1938, 15,000 Jews in Shanghai during either the Maxwell House WWII, as well as JDC’s lifesaving responses Coffee company or a local bank. There to the needs of Jews in the former Soviet were no haggadot for children. There were Union and Eastern Europe, Cuba, India, no haggadot for women, no LGBT hag- Latin America and Israel. gadah and no vegan Seder plate. The JDC Haggadah tells the age-old There was no “fourth matzo,” no Passover story through modern-day Certainly, “matzo of hope.” Although my images of deliverance and social wife’s grandfather, a sewing responsibility in action. Seder as adults we machine operator in the gar- can see ourselves participants will be interested ment district of Manhattan, in the photos drawn from JDC’s through JDC’s claimed that he “took pleats” extensive archives. Certainly, eyes as having in the haggadah, the leader as adults we can see ourselves participated in of the Seder usually droned through JDC’s eyes as having many an exodus participated in many an exodus every word. By the time it got interesting (plagues, maybe?), of Jews to freedom. There is also of Jews to the littlest kids were either food for adult discussion in a year freedom. asleep under the table or in the when Danish Jews are being warned bedroom where the fur collared not to wear kipot on the way to synacoats were piled. (How great it was to sleep gogue lest they be set upon by extremists. amidst that mountain of fur!) As we prepare for this year’s celebration of However, the duties of Seder leaders Passover, a copy of The JDC Haggadah may took on a new twist as we began to look be just what is needed to add an inspiraupon the Seder as entertainment, as well tional punch to the Seder leader’s agenda. as education for children, and an opportunity to make a pitch for Jews in need. Then came the haggadot with taped music to accompany the kids as they jumped over frogs that hopped about and sing along renditions of traditional songs (plus a concluding number, usually performed by the host couple, “Next Year At Your House”). There was a bag of Seder symbols (developed by the women of a Jewish federation)—one for each plague. However, lately, adults have begun to push back in an attempt to restructure the Seder as a meaningful family event where adult appreciation and discussion might prevail. The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) was created in 1914, The JDC Haggadah will be used at the during World War I, as a Jewish humani- Jewish Women’s Outreach Seder, Sunday, tarian assistance program, based on the March 17, noon–2 pm at the Sandler principle that all Jews are responsible for Family Campus. For more information or one another. Today, JDC works world-wide to RSVP for the Seder, call Patty Malone in rescue and relief, as well as on-going at 757-965-6115, or email pmalone@ujft. support in Jewish communities in need org. For other Women’s Cabinet outreach and in Israel. events, visit www.jewishva.org. In Every Generation: The JDC Haggadah —Hal Sacks is a retired Jewish communal was published in 2010, but just recently worker who has reviewed books for Jewish came to this reviewer’s attention. It includes News for more than 30 years.
7/6/11 11:54 AM
How do you know that a preschool is right for you and your child? by Alene Kaufman, director, Strelitz Early Childhood Center preschool
he key to the answer to this question is in the question itself—whether it is right for you AND your child. Preschool has to be a good match for both parents and children. Parents who feel that their children are in a safe, secure, and nurturing environment will be able to conduct the business of their days with less worry and more ease. There are many points to address in finding that place. Before even looking at the “nuts and bolts” of the school, reflect on how you felt when you walked in the door. Did you feel welcome? Was the environment clean and attractive? Did the children reflect a happy disposition? Was their (the children’s) work on display? Did the playground offer options to support the physical development of a preschooler? Look at the operation of the school. Be sure that the hours of operation work for your family. Determine the cost to be sure that it fits into your budget and if not, ask if there are any avenues for financial assistance. Make sure that the student requirements meet your child’s physical needs, i.e., age potty training is required, arrangements for food allergies. Do you want to be involved in your child’s preschool experience? If so, be sure that the program offers opportunities for parent participation and that the choices work with your schedule. Can’t volunteer during the day? Ask if there is something that you can do at home in the evening. Look at the educational program of the preschool. Be sure that it is aligned with your philosophy of education. If you
haven’t developed a philosophy, I would recommend looking for a program that subscribes to Developmentally Appropriate Practice. In this program, the curriculum looks at the total child and is based upon the idea that experience is the most meaningful way to learn. The day is balanced with opportunities for children to develop in all areas—academically, socially, emotionally, and physically. It addresses the needs of children who may grow and develop at different rates. The program balances teacher-directed and child-directed activities with the teachers guiding the children’s learning. Children actively explore the environment, whether it is mixing paint to learn about color, patterning manipulative materials to develop readiness skills, or looking through picture books to find answers to open-ended questions. Ask some questions about the faculty. Be sure that they have the appropriate education for their respective positions and ask about the school’s requirements for professional development. Be sure that the teaching staff’s philosophy of guiding behavioral development works with yours. Check on the faculty turnover rate. Establish that the teacher/parent communication gives you a sense of what is going on in the program. For example, find out how the teachers let you know what is happening in their classroom. Do they send home newsletters, post notes outside the classroom doors, and/or use e-mail? Do you have access to the methods they use? If you are looking to develop a particular set of values for your child, be sure that the faculty and the curriculum reflect those values. There is something very special about a program where the teachers create a caring
community though developing children’s ethical behavior. For most people, when you think that you have found the right preschool for your family, you will walk away looking forward to your child’s first day of school, anticipating the excitement of your child’s return home to share the Preschool playground. wonder of their day. As the director of the Strelitz Early Childhood Center preschool, I would certainly be remiss if I didn’t make a friendly suggestion to put us at the top of your list. While I can list all of the reasons your child belongs here, nothing says it better than taking a tour and seeing it for yourself. What better time to do it than while we are still in session and you can see firsthand the everyday light bulb moments happening before our children’s eyes! Bring your child,
too, and watch what happens. Contact Carin Simon, admissions director, for more information or to arrange for a personal tour: email@example.com or 757-424-4327. The Strelitz preschool is an educational partnership of the Hebrew Academy of Tidewater and Simon Family Jewish Community Center. It is a constituent agency of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.
DID YOU KNOW? ...Our community helps provide quality education for more than 6,000 children in the former Soviet Union? Money raised here in Tidewater makes a real difference to real people every day.
TOGETHER WE DO EXTRAORDINARY THINGS.
Preschool reading lesson. jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 19
Kempsville Synagogue uses UJFT grant to upgrade communications by Laine M. Rutherford
ong before the Sandler Family Campus opened, in the days when there was no “Town Center” or even Lynnhaven Mall, Jewish families living in central Virginia Beach had a choice to make if they wanted to go to shul: they could drive to Norfolk, or they could drive to the Oceanfront. That changed in the early to mid 1970s with the establishment of two small synagogues in the Kempsville area, the congregations meeting wherever they could find space. Later in that decade, the two temples merged, affiliated with the Conservative movement and became Kehillat Bet Hamidrash, now known as Kempsville Conservative Synagogue. The synagogue built a permanent structure at 952 Indian Lakes Blvd. in 1989, where its congregants continue to meet for services and functions. Kempsville Conservative Synagogue has a membership of about 50 families; most are still residents of the Kempsville area. “We’re like Cheers,” says Charles Firestone, a founding member and former
president of the temple. “We’re small, intimate and everyone knows everyone’s name. No one is a stranger here and everyone is welcome. We don’t turn anyone away.” Firestone says Kempsville Synagogue is an all-volunteer shul. Cantor David Proser conducts services and administers religious rites; other members are also capable of leading. Keeping relevant is not a problem for the synagogue; its small but steadfast roster of members includes descendants of its founders, as well as new Jewish families to the central section of Virginia Beach. Keeping current, however, had proven more difficult, particularly in the realm of computers and communication. Until recently, the synagogue was using computer software designed for Windows 95. The software was unusable with new printers, could only backup to a 3.5 inch disk, couldn’t run on newer operating systems, and occasionally suffered from database corruptions that required manual reconstructions. With grant funding received from the Synagogue-Federation Partnership of the Tidewater Jewish Community, supported by the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater,
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the Tidewater Jewish Foundation and the Simon Family Foundation, Kempsville Conservative Synagogue has been able to begin essential upgrades. “Until now, it’s all been kind of piecemeal,” says Harvey Eluto, a co-president of the synagogue. “This upgrade enables us to be a lot more efficient and effective, and right now we’re in the process of designing a new website and are very excited about it.” Eluto says the growing relationship between Kempsville Conservative Synagogue, other area synagogues and the UJFT is a positive step forward for the Jewish population of Tidewater. Eluto and Firestone say they are grateful for the upgrades made possible through the Synagogue-Federation grant, and also for many of the community-building efforts being put forth. “I’m very optimistic that all of the work being undertaken [by the Partnership] will revive us and let us grow as a community, and it will allow all of our Jewish organizations to thrive, and survive,” Eluto says. With its programming partner, Norfolk’s Temple Israel, Kempsville Conservative Synagogue is hosting an educational series
Charles Firestone, founding member and past president of Kempsville Conservative Synagogue, and Harvey Eluto, co-president.
with Rabbi Michael Panitz, American Jews in Time of War. At 7:30 pm on Tuesday, Feb. 12 (Civil War), Tuesday, Feb. 19 (World War II), and Tuesday, Feb. 26 (Vietnam War). Free and open to the community. For more information on this series, services, and upcoming events, call 757-495-8510, or visit www.kbhsynagogue.org.
The 20th Annual Virginia Festival of Jewish Film presented by Alma* and Howard Laderberg wrapped up a week of cinema with an incredible final day
The American Theatre
The 25th Anniversary Season
students outdid themselves this year, presenting a professionallevel spread of desserts and treats. Throughout the week, the 20th Anniversary of the Virginia Festival of Jewish Film welcomed more than 1,200 community members to the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts and the TCC Roper Performing Arts Center, fulfilling its mission to bring diverse and entertaining Jewish cinema to our area. Photos courtesy of Mark Robbins Photography.
Gloria Siegel, Mal Vincent, and William Laderberg.
Pete Carnabuci and Bill Jucksch.
he matinee showing of Six Million and One brought a crowd of more than 200 to view a moving documentary about the struggle of the second generation after the Holocaust, children of survivors, who cope with the emotional legacy of their parents’ suffering. Pete Carnabuci and Bill Jucksch, two retired U.S. Army soldiers who liberated the Gunskirchen camp captivated the audience after the film with their emotional recounting of the traumatic day of liberation. Through tears and halted speech, both men described the horrific conditions that met them at the gates. Their message encourages younger generations to accept the harsh truths of the Holocaust. They stress how important it is not to white wash or sugarcoat the suffering incurred by the victims; not just to honor memory and sacrifice, but to support the call to action of “Never Again.” Following this powerful film, the festival ended with an uplifting comedy that was shown at the first film festival in 1993, Leon the Pig Farmer. After the film, a reception catered by the Tidewater Community College Culinary Arts Department took place. The
The Simon Family JCC’s 20th Annual Virginia Festival of Jewish Film Presented by Alma* and Howard Laderberg With Major Support From
In Academic Partnership With
Opening Night Film And Gala Sponsored By Patricia And Avraham Ashkenazi Film Sponsors David—Pincus Paul Charitable Trust Yentl—Beth Sholom Village Aka Doc Pomus— Heritage Bank, Simon Family JCC Patrons Of The Arts, And The United Jewish Federation Of Tidewater
In-Kind Supporters Bestway Rent-To-Own Cardo Café/Catering On The Sandler Family Campus Jody’s Popcorn Riverside Paper Sharon Schloss Photography Sysco Hampton Roads Special Thanks To Mal Vincent, The VirginianPilot Film Critic Dr. Edna Baehre-Kolovani, President of Tidewater Community College Dr. Daniel Demarte, Vice President For Student Learning And Chief Academic Officer Mr. James Toscano, Vice President For Institutional Advancement Paul Lasakow, General Manager of The TCC Roper Performing Arts Center Tom Lee, Coordinator Of Multimedia Development Deanna Freridge, Chef Instructor The Culinary Arts Department of Tidewater Community College Tidewater B’nai Brith Girls
Film Festival Chairs Tom Lee Sandra Porter Leon Gloria Siegel Screening Committee William Laderberg, Co-Chair Mark Robbins, Co-Chair Rebecca Bickford David Cardon Diane Carrone Michele Goldberg Barry Einhorn Lois Einhorn Debby Fink Robert Friedman Gene Kanter* Brenda Klar Aimee Koller Tom Lee Ellie Lipkin Marc Moss Rabbi Michael Panitz Jeff Rosen Peter Schulman Leslie Shroyer Mike Shroyer Gloria Siegel Opening Night Planning Committee Gloria Siegel, Chair Patricia Ashkenazi Ilana Benson Charlene Cohen Ronnie Friedman Joan Joffe Leslie Legum Barbara Rosenblatt Leslie Siegel Linda Spindel *of blessed memory
Paul and Ellie Lipkin.
Here Comes The Kid Thursday February 14, 7:30pm Friday February 15, 8pm
An Evening with
Saturday February 16, 8pm
Walnut Street Theatre in
Around the World in 80 Days Friday February 22, 8pm
Turtle Island Quartet
with Michael Doucet, Fiddle & Vocals Friday March 1, 8pm Q&A after the performance
757-722-2787 www.HamptonArts.net 125 E. Mellen St., Hampton
jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 21 JN_Due1-25_Run2-11_Arlo_Marsalis_80Days_TIQ.indd 112/17/12 10:34 AM
Jewish Family Service Chanukah Gift Program 2012
by Debbie Mayer, LCSW
n its 20th year, Jewish Family Service’s Chanukah Gift Program asked the community to contribute gifts, gift cards, and money during this past Chanukah holiday to help local Jewish families in need. JFS received donations from individuals, families, groups, companies, organizations, congregations, and schools. Boxes filled with new clothing, books, games, toys, electronics, bicycles, school supplies, and Judaic items filled JFS’ offices. JFS’s annual Chanukah Gift and Financial Assistance Program reaches local Jewish families who are struggling financially. Many of the families are active members of the local community who attend schools and temples with everyone else. The need
for help has grown over the years and JFS is gratified that donors have continuously kept up with these needs by their willingness to contribute. One of the largest annual group donors are the students, parents, and teachers from Strelitz Early Childhood Center and Hebrew Academy of Tidewater. JFS also received carloads of gifts and/or cash donations from many of the area religious schools, temples, and congregations. This year, a total of 133 different families, consisting of 337 people, benefited at Chanukah time due to the kindness of local community donors. Specific gifts and gift cards were provided to 53 local Jewish families with children/teens, consisting of 102 children and teens. Throughout 2013, these same families will continue to benefit from the donations given at Chanukah time
as JFS provides gift cards towards medication, food, gas, clothing, and school supplies. Below are some of the thank you notes JFS has received this year: “There are not enough words to express how wonderful you have Emily Bettendorf, JFS staff member, poses with some of the donated gifts. been to my family for the Jewish holidays. You picked up where I wasn’t “Thank you so much for donating presents able to this year and made my children’s to us. It was so generous of you to think of Chanukah so very special, and incredibly us during this special time of year. Your gifts memorable.” made our Hanukah very special this year!”
The following made donations of clothing, toys, games, gift certificates, food, and/or funds during the Chanukah 2012 holiday I ndividual and Family Donors Jennifer Adut and Family, Anonymous, Bethanie Ashe, Barry & Tamara Atlas, Elayne Axel, Bruce & Lauren Baros Barr, Clay Barr, Susan Barr, Gary & Elena Baum, Karen Bennett, David & Bonnie Brand, Elaine & Herbert Bregman, Steve & Beryl Brown and Family, Jerry & Sharon Browne, Larry Buckman, Marilyn Buxbaum, Kenneth & Esther Sarah Carroll, Debbie & Ben Casey and Family, Stephen & Ellyn Chapel, Marsha Chenman, Randi Chernitzer, Chris & Jean Clausen, Sadie Cohen and Family, Amy Converse, Jeff Cooper, Ashley & Judi Cytron, Barry & Beth Dorsk, Nathan & Leora Drory, Dianne Epplein, Lynn Feigenbaum, Chris & Michelle Fenley, Joseph Fleischmann, Joseph Abrasam & Idabelle Fleischmann Fund, Lucille Frank, Martin & Judy Freedman, Alan & Beverly Frieden, Abby Friedman, Marcus & Ronnie Friedman, Neil Friedman, Martin Ganderson, Seth & Kim Geshen, Tom & Joanne Glass, Michael & Lori Glasser, Aaron & Valerie Glassman, Linda & Charles Glickman, Bootsie & Morty Goldmeier, Mark & Sharon Goldner & Family, Brenda Gordon, Helene Grablowsky, Gayle Greenzaid, Beth Gross, Ellen Harris, Charles & Renee Heyman, Harvey Hoffman, Abbey & Brenda Horwitz, Ellen Rostov Hundley, Nancy Jacobson, Nathan & Beth Jaffe, David & Kathy Kaczmarczyk, Nancy Kanter,
Jerry & Kathy Kantor, Robert & Nancy Keech, Howard & Arlene Kesser, Debra Mervis Keeling, Michael & Joan Kitchen, Jodi & Jay Klebanoff & Family, Cindy & Ron Kramer & Family, Darryl Lynn Lefcoe, Jay Legum, Lorna Legum, Ashley Lemke, David & Lisa Leon, Scott & Betty Ann Levin & Family, Richard & Karen Lombart, Joan K. London Trust, Robert & Honey Low, Mike & Janet Malone, Matt & Robin Mancoll and Family, Mr. & Mrs. Charles Marks, Bernie & Debbie Mayer, Jerry & Deborah Meltsner, Joseph & Ellen Sue Mersel, Bruce & Connie Meyer, Andreu & Shaina Moore, Tina Moses, Nina Moskowitz, Jon & Alyssa Muhlendorf & Family, Ken & Diane Muhlendorf, Cameron & Evelyn Munden Philanthropic Fund, Evelyn Munden, Anna Myers, Joseph Myers, James & Karen Newnam, Scott, Cookie, & Randy Orlins, Arlene Owens, Rhona Peck, Mark & Karen Pomeranz, Thadine Powell, Adam & Sara Rafal, Edwin Jay Rafal, Shahab & Dina Rahimzadeh, David & Karen Rosenberg, Laurence & Marlene Rossen, Arthur & Miriam Ruberg, Annabel & Hal Sacks, Harry Sandler, Steven Sandler, Samuel & Henrietta Schatz, Schwartzman Family, Peter & Deb Segaloff & Family, Patty Shelanski, Alan & Sally Shapiro, Euvetha Shaw, Helene Shipowitz, Heliene Siegel, Leslie Siegel, Mr. & Mrs. Chris Sisler, Jenefer, Michael, & Brayden Snyder, Mark
22 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
“We say todah rabbah to you. Thank you and may you be blessed with naches and mitzvot. Thank you for helping my children have a Happy Hanukkah in 2012.”
Solberg, Lawrence Steingold, Patti Wainger, Michelle Walter, Ellen Waranch, Arlene Weiner, Sam & Diane Werbel, Debra Young, Dorothy Zimmerman, Gregory & Ashley Zittrain, Jonah & Chloe Zuckerman, Steve & Megan Zuckerman, and Avram & Michon Zysman.
“Thank you for your generous donations to my family for this Hannukah season. My daughter’s eyes lit up when she saw the toys and other gifts. I don’t know what I would have done this holiday without you. A thousand blessings upon all who donated. Hopefully next year we can be on the giving end.”
Organization Donors Beth El Religious School (Kindergarten thru 7th Grade Classes), Commodore Levy Chapel-Naval Station Norfolk, Congregation Beth Chaverim, Hebrew Academy (K–5th Grade Classes & Student Government Association), Hebrew Ladies Charity Society, JCC Seniors Club, JFS Knitter’s Club, Kempsville Conservative Synagogue (KBH), Lost Tribe-Jewish Motorcycle Club, Ohef Sholom Temple Religious School Classes, Pincus Paul Charitable Trust, Strelitz Early Childhood Center (2 year old, 3 year old, & 4 year old classes), Temple Emanuel Religious School Students, Temple Beth El-Williamsburg Gift Shop, Temple Israel, United Hebrew School Students, and United Jewish Community of the Virginia Peninsula—“Full Court Press” fundraiser.
To assist JFS help local Jewish families in need year-round: • Donate food, gas and grocery store gift cards, or cash; • Support the JFS Special Needs Group activities; • Donate: grocery bags; toiletries, cosmetics, bath and body products; Judaic/Jewish items; school supplies; baby supplies; paper goods; and cleaning/household supplies; • Purchase Baskets of Hope centerpieces • Join Hebrew Ladies Charity Society (HLCS) or invest in the HLCS Endowment Fund; and • Volunteer!
If we inadvertently left anyone off this list, we thank you and apologize in advance. Donations noted as of Jan. 3, 2013
Donations to JFS are tax deductible. For more information about these programs, contact Emily Bettendorf, special needs case manager, Jewish Family Service of Tidewater at 757459-4640 or Ebettendorf@jfshamptonroads. org.
A Jewish book club with a difference
March 3 @ 4pm / Jewish Museum & Cultural Center, Portsmouth Discussion by The Whipping Man Director Jasson Minadakis and Chris Hanna, VSC Artistic Director / Details 757 391-9266
By MATTHEW LOPEZ
War-ruined Richmond, 1865
Soldier Caleb, raised a devout Jew, returns home disillusioned and faithless. While he and his family’s ir former slaves work to rebuild their lives and restore their shared faith, secrets threaten their new-found freedom..
Standing: Judy Rohn, Dianne Epplein, Carol Laibstain, Harriett Dickman, Farideh Goldin, Diana Ruchelman, and Kevin Tabakin. Sitting: Nancy Lazier, Betty Sacks, Vivian Margulies, Joan Benas, and Jane Goldman. Missing: Carolyn Rhodes, Anita Fellman, Sharon Weinstein, Lynn Feigenbaum, Rosalyn (Roz) Landres, Shelley Loeb, and Betsy Karotkin.
by Kevin Tabakin
little known fact is that Old Dominion University (ODU) sponsors a Jewish book club. What makes this Jewish Writers’ Book Club unique is that it is often facilitated by ODU professors, focuses largely on writings by women authors, and at times meets with the authors. With a diverse group of eager readers and meetings held in the warm atmosphere of its members’ homes, this is a special book club. In 2003, Dr. David Metzger, then the academic director of the Institute for Jewish Learning and Interfaith Understanding, IJIU made an appeal to other university departments to find a way to support the newly established institute. Dr. Anita Clair Fellman, chair of the Women’s Studies department suggested creating a book club that reads and studies fiction by Jewish women writers. She approached Farideh Goldin a member of the board of Friends of Women’s Studies and an author who enthusiastically agreed that a Jewish writers’ book club could make a worthwhile contribution to the Institute. Together, they mapped out a vision for a club in which university professors would lead discussions. Beginning with Goldin’s memoir Wedding Song, the book club has read many great Jewish women authors including Cynthia Ozick, Allegra Goodman, Edeet Ravel, Grace Paley, Roya Hakakian, Tillie Olsen, Dara Horn, and Lucette Lagnado. The group tries to study books by American writers, as well as by writers from diverse backgrounds and
nationalities, Ashkenazi and Sephardi. These authors use a variety of genres including novels, memoirs, short stories, poetry, social studies, and even comedy to depict the richness and complexity of Jewish life in the Diaspora and in Israel. Diana Ruchelman, a book club member says, “The books are challenging, the discussion great, and I am always amazed at the number of thoughtful, talented Jewish writers to draw upon.” Although the club for many years read only Jewish female authors, two years ago it began including male writers, looking for more layers of meaning by comparing the differences in what men and women authors write about, what distinguishes their writing styles, and whether these differences matter. The group has read A.B. Yehoshua, Moacyr Scliar, David Grossman, Nathan Englander, Amos Oz, and Rodger Kamenetz to name a few. Founding faculty members Fellman and Goldin have frequently selected the books and led the discussions. Other professors have also added analyses and depth to discussions. For instance, Carolyn Rhodes, professor emeritus of English and Women’s Studies, analyzed the use of literary devices in Allegra Goodman’s novels: Katerskill Falls, Intuition, The Cookbook Collector. Heidi Schlipphacke, PhD, associate professor of German and European Studies, enhanced understanding of Paul Celan’s poem, Death Fugue, by giving the history of German Jewish writing after the Holocaust. Idit Benmor, MA, adjunct instructor of Hebrew, Hebrew Linguistics, Medieval and Modern
— TICKETS —
FEB 26 - MAR 17 For Discounted Group Sales call Janelle Burchfield at 757 627-6988, ext 358.
Hebrew Literature provided insights into contemporary Israeli society in the club’s discussion of Apples from the Desert by Savyon Liebrecht. The club has met with authors such as Marjorie Agosin, Joyce Antler, Helen Epstein, Dalia Sofer, and Merle Feld who came to ODU for literary events. Israeli author Sayvon Liebrecht, who will be at ODU in April as part of the Helen and Daniel Sonenshine Lecture Series in Jewish Studies, plans to hold a special meeting with the club. The ODU Jewish Writers’ Book Club is part of the IJIU educational outreach to the local Jewish community, meets monthly
and welcomes visitors. Currently, most members are Jewish women, but men are encouraged to join. The only requirement for joining is to read the entire book before the meeting and be prepared for a lively discussion. For more information or to join the Jewish Writers’ Book Club, contact Farideh Goldin at firstname.lastname@example.org. Kevin Tabakin is a member of Jewish Writers’ Book Club, as well as the community advisory board of the Institute for Jewish Studies and Interfaith Understanding at ODU. She is also a music teacher and a Jewish educator.
jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 23
what’s happening BBYO teen organizes Bully event at the JCC
Torah Talk at Beth El
Sunday, Feb. 24, 4 pm by Leslie Shroyer
lthough she has never been bullied, Arianna Gershon was moved by discussions at BBYO over the past year to spearhead an event at the Simon Family Jewish Community Center and make it her senior project at Norfolk Collegiate School. The Bully event is made possible through a grant from the Simon Family Foundation in support of the local Panim program. Panim provides innovative teen program opportunities that combine service, advocacy and philanthropy, focused on Jewish values and issues that make a difference in the world. An active member of BBYO, Gershon has participated in two events dealing with teen social issues at the JCC this year. This third event, led by Gershon, features the film Bully and Kirk Smalley, whose family story is portrayed in the film. Directed by Lee Hirsch, the documentary follows the lives of five students who daily face bullying in school. Hirsch, who was a victim of bullying as a child, spent the 2009-10 school year tracking the cases of five abused kids, including two who committed suicide. Smalley is the father of one of the teens who died. BBYO has been showing and promoting the film nationwide with the goal of having 1 million teens see it and sign a pledge promising to take a stand against bullying. The BBYO curriculum includes supporting and encouraging Jewish values such as saving a life, avoiding public humiliation and avoiding verbal humiliation. As a dancer, Gershon witnessed many of her gay friends getting bullied. She’s also bothered by the harassing her brother gets at school for wearing a yarmulke, which he does out of a commitment to support Jews in Bulgaria who can’t openly practice
BBYO Bully event committee members Zach Krell, Ben Klebanoff, Arianna Gershon, Hannah Diehl, Blake Gershon, Carly Roesen, Sydney Bernstein and Dana Cohen (not pictured Jared Mercadante and Rose Goodman).
Judaism. “If people only asked questions and got to know why he wears one, he probably wouldn’t even get teased.” Smalley, whose son committed suicide after being bullied, knows only too well about the perils of being bullied. As the audience will hear, Smalley is convinced that if he were a politician instead of a “nobody,” laws would be passed to prevent bullying. Smalley has started an organization called “Stand for the Silent” to help end these actions. Gershon will introduce Smalley and the movie to an audience of what she hopes will be several hundred people. According to Ellie Bernstein, director of teen services and BBYO, the response has already been overwhelming. “Many of our area guidance counselors and principals are enthusiastically on board and encouraging their students to attend.” “Bullying is too pressing an issue to ignore,” says Alvin Wall, president, United Jewish Federation of Tidewater. “The UJFT is proud through the annual campaign to support BBYO, and now jointly with the Simon Family Foundation, to support this program that combats cruel victimization.” The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.
Rocky Horror comes to Temple Israel
Saturday, Feb. 23, 7 pm
et’s do the time warp again…at Temple Israel’s “Rockin’ Hora Purimshpiel.” The Purim skit, accompanying Temple Israel’s Purim service and the reading of Megillat Esther, will be based on the classic movie musical The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but will be suitable for audiences of all ages. Temple Israel’s witty playwrights, Jody Mazur and Cheryl Dronzek, have turned several Rocky Horror songs into destined-
by Marcus Friedman
to-be-classic Purim tunes such as Party at Ahaseurus’ Place and Lordy, Mordy. And, of course, there will be a Purim version of The Time Warp. For kids, there will be a mixed-up Megillah scavenger hunt, a castle-building competition, Shaky Shushan: Esther builds herself a new home, and more, all organized by Melissa Kass. And, of course, hamentaschen and other refreshments for all.
24 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
aturday morning Shabbat services at Congregation Beth El start at 9:30 am. For those who arrive 30 minutes earlier, they are treated to a stimulating and inspirational session of Torah Talk led by Rabbi Jeffrey Arnowitz. It’s a chance to nosh on cake, coffee and tea while doing in-depth Torah study and discussion of the weekly parsha. Torah Talk serves as an introduction and preparation for the regular Saturday morning service. For some it is primarily an intellectual activity, while for others it is more of a spiritual endeavor. When Rabbi Arnowitz arrived at Beth El in 2011, he did a series of “Meet and Greets” to get to know the community. In the course of those meetings, he heard a number of people express an interest in an opportunity to do Torah study during Shabbat services. As it turned out, Rabbi Arnowitz was accustomed to starting services at 9 am at his previous position, so since Beth El services start at 9:30 am, he decided to make good use of that 30 min-
utes by starting Torah Talk. “It provides some meaningful connection with the Torah and helps put participants, including me, in a better mind set when we begin services,” says Arnowitz. Typically, participants want a better understanding of the day’s Torah portion, as well as the opportunity to reflect on the meaning of the portion and possibly provide their own insight. On any given week, participants range from a handful to up to a dozen and come from a variety of age groups and backgrounds. There is a core, devoted group of regular participants. Julius Marcus, one of the regular participants, says, “I enjoy hearing the opinions of not only Rabbi Arnowitz and the sages he quotes, but also the many insightful opinions of my fellow participants.” Virgie McCall also says she enjoys listening to different people’s opinions, but she stresses the spiritual aspect of Torah Talk: “The discussion helps to peel away the layers of meaning and gain a better understanding of God’s meaning.”
Sesame Street characters to tell Purim story at Ohef Sholom Sunday, Feb. 24 10:30 am at Ohef Sholom, 3 pm at Beth Sholom Village
oes Cookie Monster love triangular Hamentaschen as much as circular cookies? Is Oscar grouchy about the Jewish people when he dresses up as Haman? And, can Big Bird rule over ancient Persia? Find out at Ohef Sholom’s Purimshpiel. Starring members and clergy of Ohef Sholom Temple, the annual tradition of retelling the Purim story through skits and humor, songs and high quality entertainment, will take place in the temple’s Sanctuary and later in the afternoon in the multi-purpose room at Beth Sholom Village. Both shows are free and open to the public. Jewish tradition holds that the story contained in the Scroll of Esther, or Megilla, is read on the 14th of the Jewish month of Adar, which is the holiday of Purim. Many synagogues put on a humorous telling of the Purim story, often using familiar cultural themes. “The story of Purim has a lot of hidden
humor, irony, and lessons,” says Cantor Wally Schachet-Briskin, author and director of this year’s shpiel. “So, I thought of the Sesame Street characters. Who better to bring out the joy of Purim than characters who are easily recognizable for their comedy and ability to teach?” Geared to appeal to all ages, the characters from the PBS show at OST will include Grover, Ernie, Bert, Elmo, Abby Cadabby, and Murray. Familiar songs from the Sesame Street program have been re-fitted with new lyrics that tell the Purim story and traditions. At Ohef Sholom, past Purimshpiels have been told through the characters and music of The Wizard of Oz, Fiddler on the Roof, Walt Disney, The Beatles, and Rodgers and Hammerstein, among other themes. The shpiel at OST will be followed by Ohef Sholom Temple Youth Group’s Purim Carnival, filled with games, food and prizes. Proceeds benefit the youth group, OSTY.
what’s happening Esteemed educator leads discussion about everyday women who change lives
Israel Inside: How a Small Nation Makes a Big Difference at B’nai Israel
Sunday, Feb. 17, 10–11:30 am
Monday, Feb. 18, 7 pm
by Laine M. Rutherford
sk a woman about a great female role model, and she might answer Golda Meir, Eleanor Roosevelt, or Hillary Clinton. Ask her again, but this time make it more personal, as it pertains to how she thinks and feels, and the answer may be somewhat expected, such as, “my mother,” or someone unknown to all: “Mrs. Brokenborough, my 10th grade drama teacher.” The Jewish Women’s Salon of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater welcomes all women in the Jewish community to attend Who’s Your Esther? a facilitated discussion about the women who’ve inspired, moved, and helped make them who they are today. The enigmatically named event uses the biblical heroine Queen Esther as the starting point for a discussion about the women who figure prominently in local Jewish women’s lives—those who have mentored and helped shape the participants into the people they are today. Free and open to women in the community, the discussion will be facilitated by Farideh Goldin, director of the Institute for Jewish Studies and Interfaith Understanding at Old Dominion University in Norfolk. “Esther was a woman who had to sacrifice herself in order to save others,” says Goldin. “I don’t think the Esthers of today have to do that, but I do think that as women we can help others and become mentors. “For me, personally, I don’t think I would be here if it weren’t for a lot of women who helped me along the way,” she says. “These were women who opened the doors for me, and, sometimes, I didn’t even want to go through, and they had to push
me a little bit. I’ve done that for others and I will continue to try to do that for others, just as many did it for me.” Goldin, who came to America as a Jewish immigrant from Iran, struggled with acceptance in her new country while trying to come to terms with the distaste she felt for the one she left. She was fortunate to have her mother, a woman she counts among her “Esthers,” as well as female teachers who provided strength, inspiration and guidance, and let her evolve into the respected author and teacher she is today. The ODU English, Women’s and Jewish studies professor is the author of Wedding Song: Memoirs of an Iranian Jewish Women, as well as numerous articles and book chapters. The mother of three—all daughters—is a well-respected teacher, and has facilitated similar programs to Who’s Your Esther? in the past. Annie Sandler, a friend of Goldin’s (and one of Goldin’s own “Esthers”), is excited to have local women gain insights about themselves and others in the community. “Wouldn’t it be amazing if women became passionate and wrapped their arms around their history and what they’re creating for others?” asks Sandler. “Each woman at this event impacts several other people, people they may ever even know, and I think its great that we can talk about the women who helped us become who we are today.” Participants are asked to bring photos of their personal “Esthers” to the event. The pictures will be returned at the end of the discussion. A light brunch will be served. To read a guest blog from Farideh Goldin and for more information, visit www.jewishva.org/esther. To RSVP, call Patty Malone, 757‑965-6115, or email email@example.com.
Rabbi Gavriel Friedman Saturday, March 9, 8 pm Impressions—like it or not, you’re a role model with Rabbi Gavriel Friedman, is a “must see” for parents, young adults, and anyone interested in an entertaining and engaging evening with a positive message. Sponsored by United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, in cooperation with the Konifkoff Center of Learning, the evening’s featured speaker, Rabbi Friedman, delights audiences around the world as
he presents meaningful concepts in an intriguing and humorous manner. Tickets are $10 and are available at the Simon Family JCC and the Hebrew Academy of Tidewater. The event will take place at the Sandler Family Campus. For more information, contact Amy Lefcoe at 343-3638 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
by Rabbi Sender Haber
ometimes we don’t know what to think. Is Israel really a land of war, borders, politics, and falafel? With half a dozen siblings who have chosen to begin their married lives in Israel, I know that there is so much more. When I visit Israel I thank the soldiers, witness the checkpoints, and keep tabs on the elections. I also visit with my family. I watch my nieces and nephews run around in the parks of Jerusalem. I spend time with my siblings and friends at historic and holy sites. I listen to my brother run his small business from his state-of-the-art smartphone while my sister designs catalogs for her American clients in her tiny fourth floor apartment. Meanwhile, my youngest sister is excitedly completing her homework as she prepares to graduate from the architectural school she attends. As I walk down the street, I brush shoulders with some of the holiest sages and some of the bravest heroes of our times. I have learned very quickly to see through some of the abrasiveness and tension in the air. Just below the surface of the most irate Israeli you can sense the ingenuity, the caring and the creativity that are the country’s greatest resources. It’s the bus driver who drives my sister all the way home at the end of the route; the taxi driver who waits outside the hospital to see if the baby was a boy or a girl; and the soldier with a startup business who draws the attention of CEOs around the world. Congregation B’nai Israel, in conjunction with the Community Relations Council of United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, will present the film Israel Inside: How a Small Nation Makes a Big Difference that explores the happier, positive aspects of the nation. The film’s narrator, Tal Ben-Shahar, was a popular psychology professor at Harvard before he moved to Israel. His friends
thought he was crazy because they saw Israel through the eyes of the news. BenShahar’s goal with this film is to change that image of Israel. In the 38-minute film, Ben-Shahar highlights six elements of Israel’s unique success. The film begins by showing the strength of Israel’s family unit and demonstrates how the supportive family environment inspires confidence and conviction. It is true that Israel is a land of tension and adversity, but that same adversity has allowed so many Israelis to acquire a resilience that is not found among their international peers. A love of learning, a sense of responsibility, and the ability to take action all factor into Ben-Shahar’s eye opening window into Israel. I had a teacher in Israel, Rabbi Mordechai Dolinsky, who told me that he visited the Kotel (the Western Wall) for the very first time on the holiday of Shavuot in 1967. It was right after the Six Day war and the first opportunity for civilians to visit the holy site. Rabbi Dolinsky was so taken by the experience that he went back to the Kotel the next day, and the next, and the next, and the next. To the best of my knowledge he still walks or rides the bus to the Kotel each and every day. He doesn’t go to pray, to socialize or for the photo op; he simply goes to spend a few minutes close to G-d at the holiest place on earth. Rabbi Dolinsky makes the trip to the Western Wall each day to remind himself that Israel is not a land of war and politics, but a land blessed by G-d and a land that we are fortunate to inhabit after 2,000 difficult years of exile. Inside Israel helps refocus on what is important: Family, commitment, action, perseverance, and even chutzpah. Discussion lead by Rabbi Haber follows the film. This is the second in a series of films organized by the CRC and hosted at synagogues throughout Tidewater. It is free and open to the community. For more information or to RSVP by Feb 15: email@example.com. To learn more about CRC initiatives, check out www.jewishva.org/crc.
jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 25
Share fun, food and learning at community Women’s Seder Sunday, March 17, 12–2 pm by Laine M. Rutherford
reparing for Passover can be both intense and exhilarating for women. The to-do list fills with chores including; cleaning the house from top to bottom to rid it of chametz (leavened products), hauling out the special Passover china, ironing bubbe’s linen tablecloth, finding exciting Pesach recipes, planning a Seder, or finding a new Seder to attend. With its upcoming Women’s Seder, the Jewish Women’s Outreach Committee of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater is offering a two-hour break from that lengthy list, where women, ages 16 and up, can enjoy a lovely meal, a spiritual gathering, and a blending of all traditions. “In addition to this being a social gathering of women, it’s also an opportunity to learn together, have fun and create a meaningful Jewish community,” says UJFT Women’s Cabinet director Amy Zelenka. “And we know that not everyone has a Seder, and this one will certainly be nonthreatening and welcoming for all who want to come.” Women from a variety of Jewish affiliations are organizing the Seder: Reform, Conservative and Orthodox. That fact alone, the organizers say, ensures there will be plenty of diversity during the meal. The Haggadah, or text that recounts the story of the Jews’ exodus from Egypt, used during the service will also add an interesting element; mixing traditional and contemporary elements, it is a publication of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). (See Hal Sack’s review on page 18) The Seder costs $10 per woman, and is at the Simon Family JCC. There will be no
campaign solicitation and it is open to all women in the community. “All of our Women’s Outreach events are fun, educational and provide a Jewish context to things as casual as cooking, or going to the movies, or an event like this one,” Zelenka says. “This year, the Outreach Committee is teaming up with the Simon Family JCC to make it even more of a community happening.” Miriam Brunn Ruberg and Stephanie Peck, of the JCC, are working together with Kim Fink, Amy Lefcoe and Janet Mercadante to help Tidewater Jewish women get to know each other and widen their circles of friends. Last year, Jewish Women’s Outreach events reached more than 200 women in the community. This Seder is a natural extension from the very popular Jewlicious program, last year’s pre-Passover event. Held in the cafeteria at the Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish Community, Jewlicious featured cooking demonstrations, a tasting menu of delicious Pesach-friendly recipes, and a take-home recipe book of the best Passover recipes our local, well-known cooks have to offer. Attendees raved about the event, and clamored for the cookbooks long after the holiday ended. Zelenka says some of the recipes will be served at the Seder, and a few cookbooks will be available for purchase that day. For a sneak peak of some of the recipes, Like the Jewish Women 757 page on Facebook. To find out more about the Women’s Seder or to RSVP, call Patty Malone, 757-965-6115, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.jewishva.org.
History of Jewish Music Wednesday, March 13, 7 pm
hef Sholom Temple’s Adult Education committee presents “The History of Jewish Music” with Cantor Wally. A look at the Bible shows that the most ancient descriptions of song originate with the Jews. From the ram caught in the thicket near Abraham (the music of the shofar), to Moses and Miriam leading the
Israelites in song across the Red Sea, to commandments to praise God with music in the Psalms, the Jews have been singing since (almost) Day One. Take a listen and participate in this exploration of Jewish music. Free and open to the public. For more information, call 625-4295.
26 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
F eb rua ry 13, W edne s d ay Israel Today series s p o n s o r e d b y C o m m u n i t y R e la t i o n s C o u n c il a n d c o m m u n i t y p a r t n e r s c o n t i n u e s w i t h N e il L a z a r u s f o c u si n g o n D ip l o m a c y f r o m Is r a e l To d a y. H e w ill s p e a k w i t h h ig h s c h o o l a n d c o ll e g e s t u d e n t s o v e r a f r e e di n n e r a t 5 : 3 0 p m ( R S V P r e q u i r e d t o J J o h n s o n @ u j f t .o r g ) a n d a t 7 p m t o t h e c o m m u n i t y ( R S V P r e q u e s t e d J J o h n s o n @ u j f t .o r g ). B o t h e v e n t s t a k e p la c e o n t h e S a n d l e r F a m il y C a m p u s. F eb rua ry 18, M o nd ay Film and discussion a s p a r t o f t h e C o m m u n i t y R e la t i o n s C o u n c il ’s S t e p U p f o r Is r a e l s e r i e s. Wa t c h t h e f il m, Mode rn Is rael a n d e n j o y d is c u s si o n f o ll o w i n g w i t h R a b b i S e n d e r H a b e r. L e a r n a b o u t Is r a e l ’s d y n a m i c, i n n o v a t i v e a n d h u m a n i t a r ia n s o c i e t y. T h is c la s s s h o w s h o w Is r a e l h a s b e c o m e a n i n v a l u a b l e a s s e t a n d m a k e s t h e w o r l d a b e t t e r p la c e. 7p m. A t B ’n a i Is r a e l C o n g r e g a t i o n, 4 2 0 S p o t s w o o d Av e n u e, N o r f o l k . R S V P t o J J o h n s o n @ u j f t.o r g b y F e b. 14. FEBRUARY 20, WED NES D AY The JCC Seniors Club . B o a r d m e e t i n g a t 10 : 3 0 a m, c a t e r e d l u n c h a t 12 p m, g e n e r a l m e e t i n g a t 12 : 3 0 p m, a t t h e S i m o n F a m il y J C C. G u e s t s p e a k e r J a s o n C a p o s s e r e, s a f e t y a n d s e c u r i t y d i r e c t o r o f t h e S a n d l e r F a m il y C a m p u s, w ill s p e a k a b o u t D is a s t e r P r e p a r e d n e s s : w h a t t o d o a f t e r a h u r r i c a n e o r n a t u r a l d is a s t e r, w h a t t o d o b e f o r e, d u r i n g a n a f t e r a n e m e r g e n c y, a n d w h a t k i n d o f h e lp t o e x p e c t f r o m t h e g o v e r n m e n t . F eb rua ry 24, S und ay The Bully Project w i t h g u e s t s p e a k e r K i r k S m a ll e y. T h is y e a r, 13 m il li o n A m e r i c a n k i d s w ill b e b u lli e d. T h r e e m illi o n s t u d e n t s w ill b e a b s e n t b e c a u s e t h e y f e e l u n s a f e a t s c h o o l. S t i c k a r o u n d a f t e r t h e f il m t o h e a r f r o m K i r k S m a ll e y, f a t h e r o f Ty F i e l d - S m a ll e y. A t 11- y e a r s - o l d, Ty t o o k h is o w n li f e a f t e r b e i n g s u s p e n d e d f r o m s c h o o l f o r r e t a lia t i n g a g a i n s t a b u ll y. 4 p m. F r e e. S i m o n F a m il y J C C. S e e p a g e 24 F eb rua r y 25 a nd 26, M o nd ay a nd T ue s d ay The Senior Club a t t h e J C C w ill g i v e o u t M is h l o a c h M a n o t b a g s t o s e n i o r a d u l t s f o r t h e h o li d a y o f P u r i m, 9 a m -1p m. C o n t a c t S h e r r y L i e b e r m a n f o r d e t a ils a t 3 21- 2 3 0 9. MAR C H 3, SUND AY Brith Sholom’s meeting w ill t a k e p la c e a t B e t h S h o l o m H o m e. B o a r d M e e t i n g b e g i n s a t 10 a m. G e n e r a l M e e t i n g a t 11 a m f o ll o w e d b y b r u n c h a t 12 p m. M a r c h 16, S at urd ay Performing Arts at the J p r e s e n t e d b y L e a h Wo h l,* p r e s e n t s M i k e R e is s, o n e o f t h e o r ig i n a l w r i t e r / p r o d u c e r s o f t h e S i m p s o n s, a t t h e S i m o n F a m il y J C C. 8 p m. H e p r e s e n t s The Si mpsons and o the r Jewis h Families , a h ila r i o u s e v e n i n g f e a t u r i n g r a r e c lip s a n d i n si d e s t o r i e s f r o m t h e T V s h o w. C a ll 3 21- 2 3 3 8 t o r e s e r v e a s p o t , o r v isi t S i m o n f a m il y j. o r g. C a s h B a r 7 p m., S h o w 8 p m. $ 3 5 ( $ 3 0 J C C m e m b e r s ). MAR C H 17, SUND AY Brith Sholom w ill h o l d a n I t a lia n D i n n e r P a r t y a t C h e f ’s Ta b l e R e s t a u r a n t i n V i r g i n ia B e a c h. D i n n e r s t a r t s a t 5 : 3 0 p m. M u si c b y B ill y M i t c h e ll. F o r f u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n, c a ll D a l e a t 4 61-115 0. M a r c h 24, S und ay Virginia Opera p r e s e n t s The Pi ra tes of Penzance a t t h e S i m o n F a m il y J C C. E n j o y a s c a l e d d o w n v e r si o n o f t h is c la s si c b y G ilb e r t a n d S u lli v a n, c e r t a i n t o b e l o v e d b y a ll, a n d a w o n d e r f u l i n t r o d u c t i o n t o t h e w o r l d o f O p e r a. 2 : 3 0 p m. S i m o n f a m il y j.o r g o r 3 21- 2 3 3 8 f o r m o r e i n f o r m a t i o n. Send submissions for calendar to news @ ujf t.org. Be sure to note “calendar” in the subject. Include date, event name, sponsor, address, time, cost and phone.
mazel tov to Achievement
who knew? shakers in the magazine’s November publication. Newly married, she is the daughter of Kay and Barry Kesser of Virginia Beach. Susan is a graduate of USC, an executive director of publicity at Warner Bros, and a 2011 recipient of the Publicist Showmanship Award for Television at the ICG Publicists Awards. Visit www.hollywoodreporter.com/lists/ susan-kesser-387142 to see the online feature about Susan!
Susan Kesser, on being recognized by The Hollywood Reporter as part of its Next Gen class of 2012. The magazine’s annual feature highlights 35 superstars, 35 and under, who are moving quickly up the ranks of Hollywood’s entertainment industry. The Hollywood Reporter, in publication since 1930, describes itself as the definitive interpretive voice of the industry that is read by the most powerful people in entertainment. Susan, formerly of Virginia Beach, is featured along with her fellow movers and
Steve Hornstein, a member of the charter class of EVMS who earned a one gallon blood donation pin and shirt from Fairfax Hospital. His Jewish poetry continues to do well. Poems such as Courageous Ann Frank and The Jewish View are in various collections around the world. Steve notes that he remains very grateful for the assistance he has received from Jewish Family Service.
Mazel Tov submissions should be emailed to email@example.com with Mazel Tov in the subject line. Achievements, B’nai Mitzvot, births, engagements and weddings are appropriate simchas to announce. Photos must be at least 300k. Include a daytime phone for questions. There is no fee.
Abrams’ twofer: Star Wars and Star Trek sequels
Barrymore’s Jewish child
rew Barrymore stopped by to discuss marriage and motherhood with the women of The View. Barrymore, who married art dealer Will Kopelman (son of Chanel CEO Arie Kopelman) seven months ago in a traditional Jewish wedding, talked about being married to a “nice Jewish man” from a “nice Jewish family.” While saying she hasn’t converted “yet,” Barrymore did reveal that she and her husband are planning to raise their baby daughter, Olive, “traditionally Jewish.” She also talked about her wedding. “We had a very traditional wedding ceremony with Rabbi Rubinstein, and I did the ketubah, and we wore the yarmulke and were under the chuppah!” Barrymore said. As for her view of Judaism, she said, “I’m there, I love it. It’s a beautiful faith and I am so honored to be around it. It’s so familyoriented and beautiful, and I learn so much and the stories are beautiful, it’s incredibly enlightening. I’m really happy.” (JTA)
he dispute between Star Trek and Star Wars fans about which is superior may be over, since J.J. Abrams is set to direct both. According to Deadline, the man behind the hit ABC series Lost is going to direct the new Star Wars Episode VII. The website cites sources with “knowledge of the situation” who claim it’s a “done deal.” The idea behind creating the seventh movie in the series began after Disney bought George Lucas’ Lucasfilm last October for $4 billion. Abrams’ other space saga, Star Trek, will hit the big screen in May with the sequel Star Trek Into Darkness. According to Disney, Episode VII is aiming for a 2015 release and already has Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3) in charge of the script. Based on Abrams’ previous work, Star Wars Episode VII also should include Khan, the smoke monster and that weird lizard thing from the movie Cloverfield.(JTA)
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Sandy Goldberg 965-6135 firstname.lastname@example.org jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 27
Jewish books illustrated by Sendak sold at auction Two rare Jewish books illustrated by Maurice Sendak were sold at auction days before the posthumous publication of a new book by the author. At Swann Galleries in New York, Good Shabbos, Everybody, by Robert Garvey, sold for $1,440, and Happy Hanukah Everybody, by Hyman and Alice Chanover, sold for $1,920. The books were published in the 1950s by the United Synagogue Commission on Jewish Education prior to Sendak’s publication of his immensely popular Where the Wild Things Are in 1963. “The books were real finds for Sendak collectors,” said Christine von der Linn, senior specialist of art and illustrated books for Swann, adding that they were in unusually good condition and both were signed by Sendak. Sendak’s newest book was published Monday, Feb. 4 nine months after his death last May. My Brother’s Book, published by Harper Collins, combines poetry and art, and was the last book written by Sendak. A tribute to his brother Jack, who died 18 years ago, it is a lyrical work that deals with separation, longing and reunion. The auction last week, part of a sale of
books and art by 20th century illustrators, included the sale of a rare first edition of Where the Wild Things Are for $18,000 that includes a humorous inscription to Reed Orenstein, a friend and collector of Sendak’s work. The first edition was among 62 lots of Sendak items from the collection of Orenstein, who died in 2010. One of the more comprehensive collections of Sendak’s work held by private collectors, it was the first of Sendak’s work to come on the market since his death, according to von der Linn. Other items in the sale included another rare first edition of Where the Wild Things Are without an inscription that sold for $6,240. While some initially criticized Where the Wild Things Are for its overly dark imagery, the tale of how a rebellious boy hero, Max, tames the dark and ghoulish creatures that inhabit many children’s nightmares was instantly popular among children. The book, which has sold more than 10 million copies and been translated into 15 languages, made the Brooklyn-born son of Jewish immigrants one of the most influential children’s writers of the 20th century. (JTA)
New York City to name subway station after Koch New York City will rename a subway station in memory of Edward Koch, the three-term mayor who died last week. U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) will announce that the station at East 77th Street and Lexington Avenue will be renamed the Mayor Ed Koch Subway Station, the Associated Press reported.
Koch, who died Feb. 1 at 88, was buried in Manhattan following a funeral service at a the Temple Emanu El Reform synagogue. Former President Bill Clinton, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Israel’s consul general in New York, Ido Aharoni, all spoke.
Menachem Elon, former Supreme Court justice and Israel Prize winner, dies JERUSALEM (JTA) -- Rabbi Menachem Elon, a former Israeli Supreme Court justice and an Israel Prize winner, has died. Elon, who served on the high court from 1977 until his retirement as deputy chief justice in 1993, died Wednesday, Feb. 6 in Israel. He was 89. He was renowned as an expert on the subject of the applicability of Jewish civil law in a Jewish state. In 1973 he published a book on Jewish civil law that is considered an important work in the field. In 1979, Elon was awarded the Israel Prize for Hebrew law. Elon was born Menachem Fetter in
Dusseldorf, Germany. His family fled to the Netherlands in 1932 before immigrating to then-Palestine in 1935. He studied at the non-Zionist Hebron yeshiva, but was attracted to the religiousZionist movement and became one of the founders of the religious kibbutz Tirat Tzvi in the Beit Shean Valley. He was ordained as a rabbi and served in the Israel Defense Forces as a military prosecutor. Elon worked as a law professor and a professor of Hebraic and Jewish law at Hebrew University. In 1983, he lost to Chaim Herzog in his bid to be president of Israel.
28 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
obituaries Pauline Barker Norfolk—Pauline R. Barker died peacefully in Boone, N.C. on Jan. 29, 2013 surrounded by her loving family. Born in Cleveland, Ohio, she was the youngest of three children born to parents Mary and Charles Roudman. Pauline grew up in Cleveland. A gifted musician, she played several instruments including piano, cello, violin and mandolin. After graduating high school, Pauline joined the Women’s Army Air Corps (WWII) and earned the rank of Sergeant. While stationed in Mitchell Field, N. Y., she met Murray G. Barker, a handsome young man from Richmond, Va. While dating, Murray proposed to Pauline several times before she accepted his proposal. They were married on August 19, 1945 in Cleveland. After serving their country, Pauline and Murray moved to Richmond, Va., and in 1952, moved and settled in Norfolk. Pauline worked at the Naval Safety Center, located on the Norfolk Naval Air Station in Norfolk, as a key-punch department supervisor. In 1995, she retired at the age of 75, and for her outstanding service was awarded the Meritorious Civilian Service Award. She was an avid reader and in her retirement, she volunteered in the Be a Reader program to assist young children with their reading skills. Pauline is survived by her three daughters, Shelley Tarbutton (Kent) of Boone, N.C., Beverley Dozier of Norfolk, and Joyce Bresloff of Centennial, Col. She is also survived by her grandchildren Chelsea Mathis (John), Lennon Redford, Morgan Tarbutton, Courtney Dozier Weeren (Joe),Travis Dozier, Sean Bresloff, Mandi Autry (Mark) and her two great-grandchildren, Michael and Morgan Autry. Our mother Pauline supported and loved her family with all her spirit and heart. She always knew when her children or grandchildren needed her help and gave it selflessly. She was very independent and wise, courageous and strong, gracious and accepting, and selflessly loved us all without end. We will miss her kind, patient, gentle spirit and her smiles and words of love. Pauline was buried next to her beloved husband, Murray, in Forest Lawn Cemetery with Rabbi Micheal Panitz officiating. Donations in her memory to High Country Hospice or High Country Caregiver Foundation of Boone, N.C. H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts. Online condolences may be offered to the family at hdoliver.com.
Yale Dolsey Suffolk—Yale Dolsey was born in Richmond, Va. on Sept. 7, 1923, and died in Norfolk on Jan. 24, 2013. He was 89 years old. During World War II, he was a decorated officer in the United States Army Air Corps, serving as a Navigator in the Pacific. He was an active member of the Portsmouth business community for more than 40 years as the owner of Berman Loans. At Gomley Chesed Synagogue he was past president of the congregation, past president of the Men’s Club, treasurer of Club 35 and served on the temple board of directors. Some of the many honors and awards that he received in his lifetime were: the Blue Yarmulke Man of the Year, Virginia Volunteer of the Year, and the Portsmouth Sports Club Sportsman of the Year. He was a life member of Masonic Lodge #53 in Richmond and Masonic Lodge #1 in Norfolk. He was also a member of the Chesapeake Athletic Club. He had a passion for basketball, and was one of the founding organizers of the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament (PIT). He received many awards for his dedication to PIT, including the Robert Ferrick Award and the Cotton Fitzsimmons Award. Many NBA players have stated that Yale, as a member of the PIT selection committee for over 60 years, was directly responsible for their opportunity to be scouted and selected by the NBA. Yale was a warm, loving, and funny father, grandfather and great grandfather. He was predeceased by his wife of over 50 years, Cecelia, in 1999. They are survived by their children: Linda Bress (Larry), Robert Dolsey (Joan Irvine), and Michael Dolsey; grandchildren: Jodi Dobrinsky (Andy), Shari Mesh (Josh), Brian Bress (Brit Woods), Sarah, Amelia, Joseph and Jackson Dolsey and Allie and Rikki Dolsey, and great grandchildren: Noah and Jordan Dobrinsky, and Maxwell and Sophie Mesh. In 2004, his caring nature and warm smile won the heart of his loving wife Brenda, who survives him. Together, they enjoyed traveling and spending time with their family. He is predeceased by his stepson John Michael Anderson, and survived by his stepdaughter Brenda Michelle Johnson (Jim). Yale’s funeral was held at Congregation Beth El by Rabbi Jeff Arnowitz. Burial followed at Gomley Chesed Cemetery.. Sturtevant Funeral Home. Donations to the Gomley Chesed Synagogue, the National Kidney Foundation, or the American Heart Association.
obituaries Letters of Condolence may be sent to Brenda Dolsey at 5136 N Harbor Rd., Suffolk, VA. 23435. www.SturtevantFuneralHome.com. Maxine Moses Garnher Norfolk—Maxine Moses Garnher, 57, passed away on Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013 in Rockville, Md. after a long battle with cancer. She was the daughter of Bernice Moses and the late David Moses. She is also survived by her husband, Dr. James Garnher; their children Nicole Tercero (Brian) and Paul Garnher; her brother Douglas Moses (Tina) and his children Danielle and Michelle; and her grandchildren Jessie and Matthew Tercero. She lived in Rockville, Md. and Boca Raton Fla. during retirement and made many friends in both areas. She was a loving, caring, generous, gracious, and artistic person and will be missed by many. A memorial service took place at Har Shalom Synagogue in Potomac, Md. She was buried at a graveside service in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Norfolk, with Rabbi Michael Panitz officiating. Memorial donations may be made in her name to the American Cancer Society , designated for cancer research. H. D. Oliver Funeral Apts. Lee Marc Pollack Virgina Beach—Lee Marc Pollack, went for his eternal ride, Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013. Originally from Miami, Fla., he made his home in Virginia Beach after a wonderful 20 year career in the Navy. He then found that his interest in computers would lead him into his second career as a programmer with KIS computers. A member of VFW#392, he would be found there Thursday evenings having good times with friends. Lee was also a member of the Lost Tribe motorcycle club. His weekends were filled taking long rides with tribe members, or with anyone who wanted to enjoy a country ride, or charity poker run. He leaves behind his daughter Victoria Dimaiuat, Son Albert Dimaiuat, grandchildren Alexander, Anthony, and Allissia. As well as cousins, nieces, and nephews and countless friends he considered family. A service was held at Boneshakers Sports Bar & Grill. Donations to a charity run of choice. Condolences may be offered to the family at www.hollomon-brown.com. Steven Meyer “The Hawk” Reinhard Virginia Beach—Steven Meyer Reinhard (“The Hawk”), age 56 passed away Jan. 25, 2013 in Virginia Beach.
He is survived by his partner Filleppa Mutschler, his parents Robert and Shirley Reinhard, one brother Rick Reinhard and his wife Jinx, his aunts Mary Ellen Jackoway and Isabelle Zuckerman. Steve was born in Richmond where he lived for many years and later moved to Virginia Beach. He had lots of hobbies including coin collecting, Three Stooges memorabilia and golf. He was also a charter member of the “Thursday Night Hawks.” The family thanks all friends and loved ones for their good wishes and support. A funeral service was held at Blileys in Richmond. Interment followed at Hebrew Cemetery Congregation Beth Ahabah. Contributions to Feed More, 1415 Rhoadmiller St., Richmond, VA 23220 or feedmore.org.
Jewish groups mourn passing of human rights negotiator Max Kampelman WASHINGTON (JTA)—Jewish groups mourned the passing of Max Kampelman, the top U.S. human rights negotiator who straddled the Carter and Reagan presidencies and helped bring about recognition of the plight of Soviet Jews. Kampelman, died at his Washington home on Jan. 25, according to reports. He was 92. Born in New York to Jewish immigrants from Romania, Kampelman befriended Hubert Humphrey in the 1940s when Humphrey was mayor of Minneapolis, and followed him to Washington as a staffer when Humphrey was elected to the Senate. He eventually went into private law practice, and Golda Meir, the Israeli prime minister, was among his clients. In 1980, President Jimmy Carter asked Kampelman to lead talks in Madrid aimed at drawing Soviet bloc nations into the Helsinki Accords signed in 1975, which enshrined among other rights the freedom to emigrate. Carter’s successor, President Ronald Reagan, was impressed enough by Kampelman’s resolve at the talks to ask him to stay on. Kampelman succeeded in extracting an agreement from the Soviet Union by 1983, a gain that was key in advancing the struggle to free Soviet Jewry. “Many Soviet Jews are probably not familiar with his name, but Max Kampelman was instrumental in keeping their hopes and dreams alive in his leadership with the Helsinki process,” Mark Levin, the executive director of NCSJ: Advocates on behalf of Jews in Russia, Ukraine, the Baltic States and Eurasia, said in a statement. NCSJ was
then known as the National Council on Soviet Jewry. Kampelman advised Walter Mondale in his 1984 bid to unseat Reagan, and was asked back by Reagan in 1985, this time to negotiate nuclear arms reductions. “Max was a giant of global affairs who transcended partisan politics to advance American interests and make the world safer and more humane,” said Robert Satloff, the executive director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Kampelman was active in a number of Jewish groups and helped establish American Friends of Lubavitch in Washington in the 1970s. “He always created more light than heat and had more influence beyond what was recognized,” Rabbi Levi Shemtov, the group’s current director, told JTA. “A lifetime has to be spent making the world a better place, and he made it more peaceful.”
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Ed Koch, pugnacious New Yorker and passionate Jew till his dying day by Ron Kampeas and Uriel Heilman
NEW YORK (JTA)—One of the proudest moments of Ed Koch’s life came during a trip to Israel in 1990, in the midst of the first Palestinian intifada. Koch had recently left City Hall after 12 years as mayor of New York City and was touring Jerusalem when a Palestinian threw a rock at his group, striking Koch in the head. The ex-mayor was bleeding a bit but wasn’t really hurt, and he mopped up the wound with his handkerchief. The incident would become one of Koch’s favorite stories, the moment, he would say, when “I shed a little blood for the people of Israel.” It was reflective of the pugnacity of the man who served three terms as mayor of New York, spent nine years in Congress, earned two battle stars as an infantryman in Europe during World War II, wrote 17 books, and spent the last two decades of his life as a lawyer, talk show host, professor and even restaurant critic—working almost to his last day. Koch, 88, died of congestive heart failure early Friday morning, Feb. 1 at New York-Presbyterian Columbia Hospital. He had been hospitalized twice in recent weeks to drain fluid from his lungs. His death came on the same day as “Koch,” a documentary about his life, opens in theaters nationwide. Tributes to Koch immediately poured in from all corners of the Jewish world, including the Israeli ambassador to the United States, and both sides of the political aisle. “Mayor Koch was a passionate and principled leader and an outspoken defender of Israel and the Jewish community,” said Matt Brooks, the director of the Republican Jewish Coalition. “He chose principle over politics and didn’t engage in partisan bitterness.” The National Jewish Democratic Council hailed Koch as a “consummate and proud Jewish Democrat who advocated fiercely for the U.S.-Israel relationship and the progressive domestic policies in which he truly believed.” Famous for greeting constituents with “How’m I doin?,” the Jewish mayor presided over some of the city’s most difficult years, from 1978 to 1989, and helped spur the recovery that would flourish under one of his successors, Rudy Giuliani. Edward Irving Koch was born in the Bronx on Dec. 12, 1924 to Jewish immi-
grants from Poland. The family moved to Newark, N.J., when Koch was nine, after his father’s fur shop closed during the Depression, but returned to New York in 1941 when business picked up again. After high school, Koch enrolled at City College and worked as a shoe salesman, but his studies were interrupted when he was drafted into the army in 1943. He served in the infantry and after the war spent time in Bavaria helping replace Nazis who occupied public posts with nonNazis, according to The New York Times. He was discharged in 1946 and went to law school at New York University. Koch got his start in politics as a Democratic district leader in Greenwich Village, then worked his way up to City Council, and in 1968 beat incumbent Whitney North Seymour Jr., a Republican, in a race for Congress. Though he served for nine years in Washington, Koch remained a creature of New York, saying he got the “bends” whenever he stayed away from the city for too long, according to the Times. In 1977, Koch ran for mayor, upsetting Abraham Beame, another Jewish mayor who oversaw a fiscal crisis that brought New York to the edge of bankruptcy. Upon taking office, Koch immediately set to cutting the municipal budget, trimming the city’s workforce, reaching a settlement with unions and securing federal aid that had been denied to Beame. In his second term, he turned the $400 million deficit he had inherited into a $500 million surplus. He won a third term with 78 percent of the vote, but then things went sour. His administration was beset by a series of corruption scandals, rising drug-related violence and burgeoning racial tensions. Koch became the target of black ire for closing a hospital in Harlem—a move he later conceded had been a mistake—and for saying that Jews would be “crazy” to vote for the Rev. Jesse Jackson in the 1988 presidential primary, given Jackson’s support for Palestinians and his 1984 reference to New York as “Hymietown.” After losing his bid for election to a fourth term in 1989 when David Dinkins bested him in the Democratic primary, Koch retired into a happy existence as a Jewish Yoda, blessing or cursing political figures as he saw fit and not always hewing to the prescripts of the Democratic Party. In his later years, Koch seemed to swing like a pendulum between Democrats
30 | Jewish News | February 11, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
and Republicans, and his political imprimatur was eagerly sought by both sides. He endorsed Giuliani, a Republican, in his successful mayoral bid in 1993 against Dinkins. He often shared—and sometimes took over— the stage at endorsements for other Republicans, including New York Gov. George Pataki, Sen. Al Ed Koch D’Amato and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Koch stumped hard for George W. Bush’s presidential reelection in 2004, and was not afraid to tell baffled Jewish Democrats why: Bush had Israel’s back, Koch said. Four years later, Republicans hoped to win a repeat endorsement for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), but Koch, alarmed at what he saw as Republican plans to degrade the social safety net he had championed as a congressman in the 1970s, instead threw in with Barack Obama. Almost as soon as Obama became president, however, Koch became one of his biggest Jewish detractors, lacerating the president with criticism for his perceived coolness to Israel. “I believe we are seeing a dramatic change in the relationship between the United States and the State of Israel that adversely affects the State of Israel and it is being orchestrated by President Barack Obama,” Koch said in early 2010, after a cool meeting between the president and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “The president, when he invited the prime minister of Israel, Netanyahu, to the White House, was extremely rude to him, treated him as though he were a Third World tyrant.” In 2011, Koch endorsed Republican Bob Turner for a special election to fill a vacant congressional seat in New York in what was seen as a safe Democratic district, even though the Democratic contender, David Weprin, was both Jewish and stridently pro-Israel. Turner won and many credited Koch’s endorsement with tipping the scales during the campaign. When Obama subsequently retreated from criticism of Israel’s settlement policies, Koch claimed credit. “I believe the recent vote in the 9th Congressional District in New York affected in a positive way the policy of the U.S. on the
Mideast,” Koch wrote supporters in an email. Last year, Koch enthusiastically endorsed Obama in a long video released just before the election— an appearance Jewish Democrats credit with helping boost Obama’s Jewish numbers in Florida, a critical swing state. Yet in recent weeks Koch turned on Obama again, making no secret of his disappointment in Obama’s choice of Chuck Hagel, a former Republican senator with a fraught relationship with the pro-Israel community, for secretary of defense. “Frankly, I thought that there would come a time when he would renege on what he conveyed on his support of Israel,” Koch said of Obama in a Jan. 7 interview with the Algemeiner, a Jewish publication. “It comes a little earlier than I thought it would.” Rabbi Joe Potasnik, the executive vice president of the New York Board of Rabbis, said Koch told him his hero was Harry Truman, another Democratic Party leader unafraid of defying his base. “He admired independence,” Potasnik recalled in an interview Friday. Koch, who never married, held twin passions he guarded ferociously: the Jewish people and New York. After the stone-throwing incident in 1990, Koch took the stone and bloodstained handkerchief to a frame shop, but the shop lost the stone and substituted a fake—which Koch immediately spotted. He was placated only by a letter from Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, who praised him as “the first eminent American to be stoned in the Old City.” Instead of the stone, Koch framed Shamir’s letter along with a photo of his wound. Koch’s tombstone is engraved with his name, his years as mayor, the Shema prayer, and the final words of Daniel Pearl, the Wall Street Journal reporter murdered in Pakistan on Feb. 1, 2002, the same date Koch died: “My father is Jewish. My mother is Jewish. I am Jewish.” His chosen burial place is a non-denominational churchyard at the corner of 155th Street and Amsterdam—selected because he could not imagine spending eternity outside Manhattan.
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jewishnewsva.org | February 11, 2013 | Jewish News | 31
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