Archive | April, 2010


Shalom From the Shabbat Lady

Posted on 22 April 2010 by admin

By Laura Seymour

Dear Families,

Each week there are thoughts in this column to make you think Jewishly. This week, take the Jewish Trivia Challenge. Good luck! (Answers are at end.)

1. What is the Jewish day of rest called?

2. Which holiday celebrates the Jewish New Year?

3. In which garden did Adam and Eve live?

4. Which Hebrew word means peace, good-bye and hello?

5. Who built an ark to save his family and the animals from a flood?

6. Which prophet was swallowed by a large fish?

7. On which holiday is the Megillah of Esther read?

8. Who was the young shepherd who killed a giant named Goliath?

9. To whom did G-d speak from a burning bush?

10. What was the departure of Moses and the Israelites from Egypt called?

11. Which holiday comes from the Hebrew word meaning booths or huts?

12. According to the Torah, who offered his son to G-d as a sacrifice?

13. What kind of bird returned to Noah and the ark with an olive branch in its beak?

14. Who was the firstborn son of Adam and Eve?

15. Where did Moses receive the Ten ­Commandments?

16. Who had his hair cut by Delilah while he slept?

17. Who was given a coat of many colors by his father, Jacob?

18. What is the Hebrew word for a Chanukah menorah?

19. What was the name of Adam and Eve’s third son?

20. What do you call the pointer used to read the Torah?

21. In English, what is the first word of the Sh’ma?

22. What word is said after a blessing?

23. Who was Moses’ sister?

24. Near the end of the Passover seder, for whom is a door opened?

25. How many stars must appear in the sky as a sign that Shabbat has ended?

26. Who had a dream about a ladder that reached up to heaven?

27. What is the first book of the Torah?

28. What is the Hebrew word for charity?

29. What does the word rabbi mean?

30. In the Book of Genesis, whose wife turned into a pillar of salt?

31. What is the Hebrew name given to a Jewish prayer book?

32. What is the Hebrew word for the canopy used in marriage ceremonies?

33. What does the word Havdallah mean?

34. Which holiday is known as “the Feast of Weeks” and comes seven weeks after Passover?

35. Who was Abraham’s wife and Isaac’s mother?

36. How many sons did Jacob have?

37. The ancient walls of which city fell down when Joshua shouted and people blew shofars?

38. Which person in the Bible was also known as Israel?

39. What were the names of Isaac and Rebekah’s two sons?

40. Who succeeded Moses and led the Jewish people back to Canaan?

41. What are the two official languages of Israel?

42. Which book of the Bible is read during Shavuot?

43. What was the name of Joseph’s youngest brother?

44. What was the name of Moses’ wife?

45. How many daughters did Jacob have?


1: Shabbat. 2: Rosh Hashanah. 3: The Garden of Eden. 4: Shalom. 5: Noah. 6: Jonah. 7: Purim. 8: David. 9: Moses. 10: Exodus. 11: Sukkot. 12: Abraham. 13: Dove. 14: Cain. 15: Mt. Sinai. 16: Samson. 17: Joseph. 18: Chanukiah. 19: Seth. 20: Yad (hand). 21: Hear. 22: Amen. 23: Miriam. 24: Elijah. 25: Three. 26: Jacob. 27: Genesis or Beresheet. 28: Tzedakah. 29: Teacher. 30: Lot. 31: Siddur. 32: Chuppah. 33: Separate. 34: Shavuot. 35: Sarah. 36: Twelve. 37: Jericho. 38: Jacob. 39: Jacob and Esau. 40: Joshua. 41: Hebrew and Arabic. 42: Book of Ruth. 43: Benjamin. 44: Zipporah. 45: One — Dinah.

Laura Seymour is director of camping services and Jewish life and learning at the Jewish Community Center of Dallas.

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Calling all singles! Do you have questions?

Calling all singles! Do you have questions?

Posted on 22 April 2010 by admin

J*Date Philosophy

Part 2: The art of J*Dating

Minutes after creating a J*Date profile you’ll probably start receiving winks, flirts and messages. Being fresh meat on the J*Date market means you’re feeling pretty popular right now, but how do you turn the views into dates? And what do you do when someone else’s profile catches your eye?

First, use the J*Date tools to your advantage. Search for your type, using the new tags for not only age and area but hobbies and personality traits too. Next, let someone know you are interested. When the views, winks and flirts are used and reciprocated, you know the other person is intrigued as well. A new tool called “Click Alert” lets you click a “yes” or “no” button if you’re interested, but the results are revealed only if both people click “yes” so feelings aren’t hurt. J*Date search can keep you busy for a long time as you narrow and broaden your scope. Once you know there’s mutual curiosity, it’s time to send a note.

When you write your message, make sure it is not about you! We can read enough about you by reading your profile. The message should be about why you like the other person, what caught your eye and what you have in common. Make the message specific to the person you’re writing to, and add a compliment or two for good measure. The message should be more than three lines but not more than a long paragraph. And by no means should you ever copy and paste a generic e-mail; it’s always obvious (yes, always)!

If you’re on the receiving end of a message, you can easily check to make sure the writer actually read your profile by looking for specifics. If you think the writer is attractive, you like their profile and their message, then go ahead and write back. But don’t wait to o long. You should reply within the next day or two, just as you would if the message were a voicemail to return after you gave out your number at a bar. The reply should be gracious but brief and consist of a thank-you, a return compliment and your phone number. That’s it.

The key to Internet dating is to get off the Internet as soon as possible. Think about it: Because of the profile questions, you already know more about the other person than you would after a typical first date. So if you start trading long and intense letters, all you’re going to do is create unnecessary anticipation. A lot of people can have good rapport on paper, but now you have built-up expectations no one can meet. You’ll have plenty of time to e-mail, instant-message and text once you’re dating.

If you’ve received a phone number, pick up the phone within 48 hours. Don’t call during the day when most people are at work, and don’t call on the weekends when most people have plans. If you’ve decided to call someone, you are hopefully doing so with the intent of wanting the other person to pick up, so call when they’re most likely to answer.

Once you get on the phone, cut to the chase. Again, you don’t want to spend too much time chatting before you know if there’s chemistry in person. Make plans for drinks sometime within the next week, leaving the evening open in case that drink turns into dinner.

Tips for the date itself are coming up in “Part 3: Going on a J*Date.”

Tamar Caspi Shnall recently married a Dallasite but has 15 years’ worth of dating advice to share! If you have any dating dilemmas you can e-mail her at:

Moishe House Dallas opens its doors to Jewish young adults

By Rachel Gross

Damon Mathias, Raymond Kira and Yoni Sallmander have been friends for 16 years. The men, now all 25, are taking on a new role as the residents of Moishe House Dallas.

Moishe House is a network of 29 homes throughout the world that serve as grassroots centers for young Jewish adults ages 21 to 30. It aims to create a framework for a variety of programs revolving around Jewish community, Jewish learning and tikkun olam.

The Dallas House opened last month in Uptown. This is the second Moishe House to come to Dallas; the first one closed last year when one of its members got engaged.

The men hope Moishe House, or “MoHo” as they refer to it, will become an outlet for post-college adults to meet.

“Before the Moishe House, the only things available were synagogue groups, mixers and J-Date,” Sallmander said. “Moishe House is a natural, relaxed environment. We’ve only been doing this for a month, but can see the need for it. This is what people have been looking for.”

The first event was a brunch that attracted 25 attendees. Since then, they have had a Shabbat dinner, movie night, happy hour and “Torah on Tap” at the Gingerman where Rabbi Zvi Drizin of the Intown Chabad discusses pertinent Jewish topics.

They are required to host five to six events each month; these will revolve around spiritual, communal, cultural, fun, tzedakah activities. Other ideas include going to a museum, the Arboretum, sporting events, boating trips and more. In return for planning activities, they receive a program budget and rent subsidy.

“We are a social group but also a Jewish group,” Kira said. “We don’t want to lose that part of it, but not every event is centered on learning the weekly parsha. We want to make sure we have the Yiddishkeit, and Torah on Tap gives us that. The elements have come together perfectly and that’s what will make us successful.”

Mathias added that their laid-back approach and variety of events will attract people. There are no membership fees and most events are free; the only cost is buying tickets at some venues.

“We are going to keep everything fresh and pick events that people will enjoy consistently, but won’t get stale,” he said. “We need to find that perfect balance. The goal is to be inclusive for everyone.”

Moishe House was started in 2006 by David Cygielman and Morris B. Squire to create a meaningful way for young adults to acclimate to life after college. It is funded by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, Jim Joseph Foundation, Righteous Persons Foundation, and locally supported by Morton H. Meyerson, Jaynie Schultz and Ron Romaner, Howard  and Leslie Schultz and MB and Edna Zale Foundation. The Dallas Moishe House is the only one in Texas.

Kira, Mathias and Sallmander all attended Akiba and Yavneh academies and believe their immersion in, and knowledge of, the Dallas Jewish community will also contribute to their success. The idea is simple: to allow young Jewish professionals to meet in a comfortable setting and make new friends. There are no strings attached.

“The social scene changes after college,” Kira said. “If you wait around for two events during the year, you aren’t going to meet many people. The three of us are hands-on visionaries. People are looking for friendships and that’s what we can provide.”

The men recently returned from a Moishe House national retreat in Wimberly, Texas. The next Shabbat dinner will take place on April 23, followed by an ‘80s themed party on April 24 and a movie night next week.

They said having these positions is cultivating them as future Jewish leaders. The best part of their jobs is the social aspect — meeting new people and bringing the young Dallas Jewish community closer.

“In 10 years, we’ll all be 35 and will know how to be community leaders,” Sallmander said. “We all grew up in different parts of the Jewish community and came together to create this. It’s something fun for us to do together.”

“People are looking for an excuse to get out,” Mathias added. “Having the Moishe House helps. It gives people a way to get together and know each other.”

For more information, visit

JConnect Dallas: New networking group for 40-plus launches in the Metroplex

By Rachel Gross

Friendship, networking, making connections and having fun — those are the goals of JConnect Dallas, a new group for the 40-and-over Jewish crowd.

JConnect, a nonprofit social networking group, recently established by local Jewish community members who felt there was a need to reach out to this age set. Their plan is to create a variety of opportunities for people to meet and share interesting experiences.

The inaugural event, which drew 120 attendees, took place April 8 at the Aaron Family JCC. Relationship Coach Deanna Frazier spoke about her book “Dating 101: The Second, Third or Fourth Time Around” and provided insight into the dating world.

Committee member Rob Weiss got the idea for JConnect two and a half years ago when he moved back to Dallas. Newly divorced, he attended support groups, did online dating and went to synagogue events, but never found anything he related to.

“We want to build the Jewish community and hope people who are in similar life situations can bond,” he said. “The idea of including people over 40, regardless of their relationship status, is appealing. I have always felt that a good social network of friends is a much more comfortable atmosphere for meeting new people, without the pressure of a date. We want this group to be about individuals and their choices. We are committed to making 40-plus life in the Dallas Jewish community more exciting.”

He added that he hopes JConnect becomes an avenue to share thoughts and make lifelong friendships.

The committee includes Laura Brown, Isaac Gian, Gail Herson, Jan Kessler, Robin Littrell, Barry Mellman, Marsha Ring, Patty Traub, Nelson Weil and Rob Weiss. They contacted various Jewish organizations and synagogues to get the word out. There is no cost to be part of the group.

Although the next event is still in the planning stages, attendees at the kickoff were asked what future activities they would be interested in. There was an overwhelming response for sporting events, speakers and trips.

Barry Mellman believes this is a way to bring together those from different parts of the Jewish community who may not have other ways to meet.

“I hope people develop friends and their social network. I feel we can be the next generation for our children to show them that we can have fun,” he said. “We want people to make friends and go to dinner or a movie together. It’s important that people realize that everyone can be their friend.”

Susan Rosenbloom learned about JConnect through her synagogue’s singles group and thought attending would be a great way to meet like-minded individuals.

“I believe it’s time that Dallas does something for people who are not under 30,” she said. “There is a whole population that misses out. I met people I didn’t know before and I’m looking forward to attending other events.”

Bill Hoffpauer added that he enjoyed the first event, and feels the enthusiasm of the committee will make JConnect successful.

“We need this. The older we get, the harder it is to meet people, especially in a large Jewish community like Dallas,” he said. “Sometimes it’s just about making Jewish friends to connect with.”

For more information, e-mail

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Dallas Doings

Posted on 22 April 2010 by admin

J-Serve community service day, April 25 at Levine

J-Serve, the National Day of Jewish Youth Service, will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. on April 25. Jewish students in sixth through 12th grades will take part in community service. Since 2005, J-Serve has been a part of Youth Service America’s Global Youth Service Day.

Locally, it is sponsored by BBYO, Temple Shalom, USY, ATID, Tiferet Israel Congregation, Congregation Adat Chaverim, Temple Emanu-El, Congregation Shearith Israel, NFTY and the Center for Jewish Education of the Jewish Community of Greater Dallas. About 200 students are expected to attend.

Students in sixth through eighth grades will do projects on-site at Levine Academy, and others will go to various locations across the community. Some of the organizations they will serve are: Family Gateway, Carter BloodCare, Grace Unlimited, Legacy, Echad, Children’s Medical Center, Golden Acres, Soldiers from America and Israel, Vogel Alcove, Jewish Family Service and more.

J-Serve provides teens with the opportunity to fulfill the Jewish values of gemilut chasadim, acts of loving kindness; tzedakah, just and charitable giving; and tikkum olam, the responsibility to repair the world. Across the globe, all on one day, teens will join each other to make their community and the world a better place.

The day will also include a boys-vs.-girls tzedakah war and all money raised will go to the Jewish Youth Tzedakah Foundation for them to distribute the funds. Carter BloodCare will host a blood drive at Levine Academy from 1 to 5 p.m.

J-Serve 2010 is in partnership with Repair the World and Rock the Vote and is underwritten by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation.

Teens must register to participate. To sign up or for more information, visit

Howard Cohen feted for 40 years of leadership

Congratulations to Howard Cohen, most tenured partner, for 40 years of innovative and dedicated leadership at Waldman Bros., a 71-year-old Dallas area insurance and financial services firm. Howard was honored with a surprise luncheon held in the Waldman Bros. atrium on March 29. In attendance were his wife, Carol Gene; their children Kay Ellen and Jacob Pollack, Barbi and Scott Cohen, Wendy and Gary Tobias and Lauren and Mark Cohen; and his nine wonderful grandchildren, along with more than 50 devoted partners, employees and many of their spouses. The company closed for the duration of lunch to allow all employees to celebrate together in true family fashion. Steve Waldman, Waldman Bros. CEO, praised Howard in a thoughtful public toast, crediting him for his integral role in developing Waldman’s stellar reputation. “Our firm’s character has never wavered, due in large part to your kindness, genuine love of people and desire to keep Waldman Bros. a close-knit family.” Steve presented Howard with a beautiful piece of Steuben crystal mounted on an engraved base. His distinctive national awards over the years are too numerous to list. Howard’s generosity in the nonprofit community is widely known, as is his role as mentor in the lives of many.

Dr. Arlene Jacobs to speak on Sjogren’s syndrome

For many years, I knew that my daughter, Linda Wisch-Davidsohn, had an auto-immune disease called Sjogren’s syndrome. I also knew that she was under the care of an excellent rheumatologist, Dr. Scott Zashin. However, it was not until recently that I found out the reasons for the seriousness of the disease, and Linda has many of them.

Sjogren’s syndrome often is undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. The symptoms of Sjogren’s syndrome may mimic menopause, drug side effects or medical conditions such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, scleroderma, vasculitis, chronic fatigue syndrome or multiple sclerosis as well as a host of other auto-immune diseases. Sjogren’s can be primary or secondary. Since all symptoms are not present at the same time and because Sjogren’s can involve multiple organ systems, physicians and dentists sometimes treat each symptom individually and do not recognize that a systemic disease is present. The average time from the onset of the disease to diagnosis is well over six years. In Linda’s case, her symptoms began in her late 30s, but it took almost 20 years to put the pieces of the puzzle together.

Some of the symptoms are dry eyes and vision disorders, dry mouth, thrush, salivary gland problems, gastrointestinal disorders, recurrent bronchitis and pneumonia, gynecological issues, as well as blood vessel and neurological involvement and joint disorders. Although there is no cure for Sjogren’s syndrome, there are some treatments available that may help with the aggravating discomfort. The best news of all is that Sjogren’s syndrome is treatable, and early diagnosis and proper treatment may prevent serious complications and greatly improve the quality of life for individuals living with Sjogren’s.

The Dallas Area Support Group of the Sjogren’s Syndrome Foundation will hear Dr. Arlene Jacobs, board certified obstetrician and gynecologist, who is a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. She is also a member of the Dallas County Medical Society and the Texas Medical Association as well as the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons. She has a medical practice in Plano.

Dr. Jacobs will speak on “Gynecological Manifestations of Sjogren’s” at 1 p.m. on April 24 at the Baylor College of Dentistry, Room 211, 3302 Gaston Ave.

Because of limited seating, RSVPs should be made to Jamie Wilson, support group leader,

A very special ‘Fiddler’ plays at the JCC on May 2

Habima Theatre will present a special cast in an adaptation of “Fiddler on the Roof” at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 2 in the Zale Auditorium at the Aaron Family JCC, 7900 Northaven Road, Dallas. Tickets are $5 general admission and $18 preferred seating.

For more information, contact Laura Seymour at 214-239-7110 or

The Habima Theatre performers are a troupe of adults with developmental special needs. They work together with wonderful volunteers to create a truly memorable performance.

Beth Torah food drive

In preparation for Beth Torah’s Karen Leynor Mitzvah Day on April 25, the congregation is holding a food drive with a goal of 2,000 food items. Readers are asked to contribute the following before Mitzvah Day: dried beans, cookies, snack crackers, cake mix, pasta side dishes, jello, toiletries (soaps, shampoos, deodorant, toothpaste, diapers, feminine products), any non-perishable food items in small servings (no bulk unless packaged separately). Monetary donations are also gratefully accepted. Congregation Beth Torah is located at 720 W. Lookout Drive, Richardson.

On the business scene

Quadrant Capital Partners announced last month that Randall Fleisher, former managing director of CB Richard Ellis’ Dallas Debt and Equity Finance platform, has joined Quadrant as a partner. Since 1993, Mr. Fleisher has built a career in commercial real estate finance and has spent the last 14 years with CB Richard Ellis. Mr. Fleisher has consistently been recognized as a member of the Colbert Coldwell Circle as one of the highest producing employees within CBRE. In his new role, Fleisher will provide debt and equity advisory services to his clients and relationships as well as those of Quadrant. In addition, he will help expand Quadrant’s distressed debt investment programs including Quadrant Residential Partners and Quadrant Commercial Partners.

Prior to his employment with CBRE, Mr. Fleisher was an attorney with the law firm of Monk Goodwin in Manitoba, Canada, where he practiced real estate and commercial law. He holds a Bachelor of Law from the University of Manitoba; a Bachelor of Business Administration, Finance, Investment and Banking from the University of Wisconsin; and a Master of Science, Real Estate and Finance from the University of North Texas. “Randy and I have invested together in a number of assets and businesses,” says Quadrant President Michael Young, “His business acumen, skill set and relationships are well suited to growing the Quadrant platform.”

Located here in Dallas, Quadrant Capital focuses on investing in what it believes are mispriced real estate assets and mispriced debt opportunities. Over the last 12 months, Quadrant has acquired a number of pools of distressed residential, consumer and commercial loans. While actively pursuing additional distressed real estate loans and assets, Quadrant will also expand its commercial real estate finance franchise.

A member of Shearith Israel, and president of the Levine Academy school board, Fleisher is married to Lisa and has two children.

Art Show and wine pull at Shearith next weekend

Congregation Shearith Israel will host the Israel Expressions Art Exhibit and Sale, May 2-5. Admission is free and open to the entire community. The exhibit, sponsored by the state of Israel, is the largest display of Israeli art ever brought to the United States. It will feature many types of art from Israel, including jewelry, pottery and wall art. The range of work reflects the variety of styles that comprise Israel’s culture. This 96-hour exhibit and sale is a wonderful way to see beautiful art and support Israel at the same time. Exhibit Coordinator Itzhak Assour is a former colonel in the Israel Defense Forces who found his art talent after a career-ending injury in the army.

An opening night reception on May 2 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. will feature a Wine Pull. This complimentary reception is sponsored by Glazers and Spice of Life with appetizers and wine. The wine pull is an event in which participants pay $10 to blindly select, or “pull,” a bottle of wine. Of course, the labels are hidden, thus adding to the mystery and surprise! The fun is in knowing that you could pick one of the expensive gems worth much more than $10. Tickets can be purchased at the front desk during business hours or at the event itself.

For more information on the Israel Expressions Art Show or the Wine Pull, please contact Mona Allen at 214-939-7318 or

Further details can also be found at

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Dallas Doings

Posted on 15 April 2010 by admin

Mark Kreditor presents ‘Jews of the American Songbook’ on April 22

Mark Kreditor, pianist and educator, will present “Jews of the American Songbook – From Gypsy to Bye Bye Birdie” at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 22 in the Zale Auditorium of the Jewish Community Center of Dallas, 7900 Northaven Road.

The program will focus on fascinating and little-known stories about, and music written by, four of the most extraordinary composers of Broadway musicals – Jule Styne (“High Button Shoes,” “Bells Are Ringing,” “Funny Girl,” “Gypsy”); Frederick Loewe (“Brigadoon,” “My Fair Lady,” “Gigi,” “Camelot”); Charles Strouse (“Annie,” “Bye Bye Birdie,” “Applause, “Rags”); and Marvin Hamlisch (“A Chorus Line,” “They’re Playing Our Song,” “The Way We Were,” “The Goodbye Girl”).

Mark Kreditor has been educating and entertaining people from coast to coast about the Jews of Tin Pan Alley for more than two decades beginning at Boston’s popular sing-a-long piano bar, Lilly’s, while attending college. Currently, he teaches full classes at the Florence Melton School at the J, at Yavneh Academy and at churches and synagogues from coast to coast.

Come for a magical musical evening to celebrate the incredible work of these composers and benefit the Florence Melton Adult Mini School and the Cultural Arts Department at the J. For information about sponsorship opportunities, please call Rachelle Weiss Crane at 214-239-7128 or Judy Cohn at 214-239-7115.

Tickets for the event are $18 in advance / $25 at the door. For tickets call 214-739-2737 or purchase online at

‘Dancing with Torah’

Former Dallas resident Robert Curry, who lived in Big D from 1992 to 2002 where he worked in the Dallas market in commercial and industrial products, found his niche in the theater world when he became involved with producing theatrical productions. He found the right cast for his prize-winning documentary “Dancing with Torah.”

“Dancing with Torah” was chosen as the “Best Historical Documentary” in the New York International Film and Video Festival.

Shot in 2000 in Dallas, London and the Czech Republic, it tells the story of 12-year-old Zachary Fine Albert’s quest to acquire a Czech Holocaust Survivor Torah for the Dallas Holocaust Museum.

Featured prominently in the film are Dallas Holocaust survivors Mike Jacobs, Emanuel (Manny) Rohan, Edith Molnar, Rosalie and William Schiff and Helen Neuberg. Rabbi Emeritus of Temple Shalom, Kenneth D. Roseman, is the narrator.

“Dancing with Torah” has been shown at festivals, and in educational settings throughout the United States and Canada. In 2006 it was screened internationally at the Jewish Motifs Film Festival in Warsaw.

Curry said, “It took several years to finalize the production of the film, to help Zach raise funds, and countless trips to London, the Czech Republic and other sites in Europe to achieve their goal.”

Currently, Curry resides in Corpus Christi and Rockport, where he works in pension and retirement planning. Continuing his interest in filming and writing, he helped start the Rockport Film Festival, sponsored by the Rockport Rotary Club and the Rockport Center for the Arts. His next documentary is “Into the Light: The Life and Art of Maurice Schmidt.”

Today, the Torah rests proudly in the Dallas Holocaust Museum. For Zach, it is a dream fulfilled. He is the son of Nancy and David Albert of Plano.

WRJ/Emanu-El Sisterhood experiences the ‘Chai Life’

The Women of Reform Judaism/Sisterhood of Temple Emanu-El experienced the ‘Chai Life’ on March 25. It was the donor event of the year.

They met at Temple at 9:30 a.m., registered and received beautiful hand-designed nametags (made by Leah Beth Kolni and Denise Segal). Half of the group left to tour five gorgeous condos at One Arts Plaza in the downtown Arts District. The luxury residences were casual and elegant with 11-foot ceilings, 10-foot glass windows and huge full-width terraces with absolutely gorgeous views of downtown Dallas. The other half of the group toured a magnificent home on Strait Lane. The Aberly/Lebowitz residence was designed by Philip Johnson in the early 1960s as a “Historical Modern” period structure connecting contemporary architecture to historical form. The art collection, with particular emphases on photography and large-scale sculpture both indoors and out, was phenomenal.

Participants met at noon at Fedora’s in One Arts Plaza for a most delicious-three course lunch in this spectacular restaurant. They were welcomed by Lucy Billingsley, who shared the history and development of this unique combination of commercial and residential living. You can dine at five different restaurants or walk to the Meyerson Symphony, the Winspear Opera House or the Wyly Theater!

The day included a marvelous raffle of a $1,000 gift certificate generously donated by Eiseman Jewels; a Dallas Symphony package for four with dinner, donated by Harold and Leah Pollman; dinner for two at Stephan Pyle’s restaurant; a biovisage facial by Renee Rouleau at her spa; gorgeous mother-of-pearl jewelry donated by Deborah Gaspar; an overnight stay at the Ritz Carlton Hotel including breakfast; and a $250 gift certificate from Neiman Marcus.

The day was complete with raves about the great fun that everyone enjoyed. A few comments: “Bravo!!!” “WOW! Chai Life turned out great!” “Many congratulations and kudos for the success and the benefits reaped by the WRJ/Sisterhood!”

Generous donations have supported the Good Works programs of WRJ/ Sisterhood. These include the Food Bank, Israeli Scouts, the Boy Scouts of America, Chai House, Children’s Medical Center, Coalition for the Homeless, Vogel Alcove, Jewish Family Service, the Domestic Violence program, Lifeline, Meals on Wheels, Habitat for Humanity, United Sisterhoods of South Africa, Israeli Home for Children, Temple Emanu-El Preschool and Religious School and others.

Sunday baseball league for youngsters

Annie Glickman tells the TJP that “a group of baseball enthusiasts is putting together a Sunday league for youngsters. I wanted to let folks know that a group of young boys play on Sunday mornings, 9:45 a.m. at Jamestown Park, just south of LBJ. The coach is Barry Brodsky. All practices and games will be on Sundays. More players between first and third grades are needed to form teams. At this point, there is no cost to participate but everyone will have to buy their uniforms when the final teams are formed.” Interested parents should contact Annie Glickman, 972-312-0355, as soon as possible.

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Around the Town with Rene

Posted on 15 April 2010 by admin

Richard ‘Dick’ N. Abrams elected as a director of ZBT Foundation

Richard “Dick” N. Abrams, Rho (Illinois) ’63, has always believed in the value and importance of education. Several years ago he made a commitment of an annual gift to the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation. Recently he decided to join the ZBT Foundation board so he could continue to give back. “The fraternity was instrumental in any success I’ve had,” he said. “It gave me some of the seeds that allowed me to grow.”

As a high school senior, Dick had no intention of going to the University of Illinois, but while visiting in Champaign with a high school friend who was a member of ZBT, he decided to enroll at the university and join the fraternity.

“The fraternity did a lot for me, and I did a lot for ZBT during my time there. I was involved in a lot of campus activities, which was encouraged by ZBT,” he recalls. He served as a pledge father; and when the chapter began struggling with recruitment, he stepped in and volunteered to be rush chairman. It was a move, he says, that helped the chapter grow again. “ZBT cultivated leadership qualities in me, helped me study and made me more sociable. It helped magnify and expand on what I had already achieved.”

Dick attended law school for a year and a half after graduating from college even though he wanted to go into the business world. His father was an attorney and after realizing how miserable his son was, he encouraged him to leave law school. He remembers that Saturday morning like it was yesterday. Within days he was in the dean’s office withdrawing from school, and soon afterward accepted a job at Arthur Young, one of the big eight accounting firms (which eventually became Ernst & Young in 1989).

After four years as a tax CPA, Dick became a stockbroker, and started his own business in 1970 providing funeral financing to consumers. He stumbled into the business when one of his real estate tenants (a funeral home) was unable to pay the rent one month and the owner offered to have Dick take over one of his receivables. Before long, Dick’s funeral financing business expanded across the country. He now owns several niche companies in the funeral financial business.

In 2000, he began serving as a director for a bank and bank holding company in Fort Worth while still living in Chicago. After several months, he was asked to step up to become CEO and chairman of the bank and holding company. He commuted for a year and a half between the two cities until he permanently moved to Texas.

Dick makes it a priority to give his time and treasure to community needs, serve on nonprofit boards and, more recently, provide financial assistance to families through the Jewish Federation in Fort Worth and sponsor student scholarships for mortuary schools. He’s involved in the Fort Worth Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Metropolitan Black Chamber and the Democratic Party. He also donates free caskets to the local police and fire departments for their fallen heroes.

He lives in Fort Worth full-time and is married to Julie, a licensed real estate broker and publisher of the Hispanic weekly newspaper in Fort Worth. They are parents of three adult children, who have carried on his entrepreneurial spirit, and a stepdaughter. He also has four granddaughters and one grandson and can’t wait for his family to increase!

Founded in 1952, the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation assists the brothers of Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity by funding scholarships, academic programs and leadership programs to maximize their personal development and prepare them to be leaders of society.

Zeta Beta Tau fraternity was founded as the nation’s first Jewish fraternity in New York City in 1898. It has 85 chapters and colonies in the United States and Canada and more than 110,000 alumni. ZBT is a brotherhood of Kappa Nu, Phi Alpha, Phi Epsilon Pi, Phi Sigma Delta and Zeta Beta Tau.

Yom HaZikaron service

The Yom HaZikaron service, commemorating Israel’s fallen soldiers, will take place at Ahavath Sholom this Sunday, April 18, at 7 p.m. It is a time for all Jews to come together to remember the Israeli soldiers who have continued to give their lives defending our homeland. We remember all the soldiers, those who died in the years preceding the creation of the state of Israel and those who died afterward to ensure its continued existence. The program is presented by the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County with financial support from the Dan Danciger/Fort Worth Hebrew Day School Supporting Foundation. Shoshana Howard is serving on the Planning Committee. For more information, please call the Federation office at 817-569-0892.

Yom HaAtzmaut celebration

The Yom HaAtzmaut celebration of Israel Independence Day is a unique opportunity for everyone to learn more about Israel. It will be held at Beth-El Congregation, Wednesday, April 21, at 6 p.m. The Bein Hametarim musical group from our partner region, in the Western Galilee, will entertain with Israeli songs and dances to celebrate Israel’s independence. The group, made up of five young men and women, is directed by a teacher from the ORT Akko High School. All of the singers have “day jobs” such as being soldiers and students, and they are participating in this “mission” to connect our community to theirs. The performance will be followed by an Israeli dinner. The cost is $6 for adults and children over 12, and $4 for children 3–12. All children under 3 are free. If you plan on attending, please RSVP to the Federation office at 817-569-0892 as soon as possible.

The program is sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County with financial support from the Dan Danciger/Fort Worth Hebrew Day School Supporting Foundation and Hartman, Leito and Bolt, LLP.

News and notes

Happy Birthday greetings to a handsome toddler, Louis Bogart, who proudly bears his late great-grandfather’s name. Louis celebrated his second birthday on March 2 at a family gathering at the home of his great-grandmother, Ann ­Bogart. He’s the son of Lisa and Derek Bogart, brother of Sara and Sasha and grandson of Vicki and Sanford Bogart. Needless to say, he has a family that adores him. Speedy recovery wishes to Sonia and Bennie Luskey, Bootsie and Joe Coggin and Cookie Kaftan. Sonia and Jerry Hecht enjoyed the recent visit of their granddaughter, Melanie Hecht of New York. She’s the daughter of David Hecht and Carrie Satterfield.

Do you know of any high school or college graduates receiving special honors? We would like to recognize these young people in the Texas Jewish Post. Please let us hear from you! Call Rene, 817-927-2831, or e-mail

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In My Mind’s I

Posted on 15 April 2010 by admin

By Harriet P. Gross

Today we sit squarely between Yom HaShoah and Israeli Memorial and Independence Days.

The last two are certainly not unrelated to the first. Without the Holocaust, Israel might not have needed a day to remember the many who fell in its defense. It might not have become an independent nation at all.

Which is to say that I’m not as afraid of those who deny that the Holocaust happened — we know they’re certifiably crazy — as I am of Jews who believe that because it’s so far in the past, we should give up the Holocaust and “move on.”

I review a lot of books these days, and find many Jews who are not ashamed to say they don’t want to read, or even hear about, another Holocaust-themed book; some insist they’ve had enough Holocaust altogether. I wouldn’t be so concerned if they were expressing unhappiness, even fright, over the horrors those memories reawakened. But what they’re actually saying is they’re “tired” of the Holocaust as a topic in today’s literature. That’s what concerns me.

I maintain that even a cursory glance at current writings will prove that if you eliminate Holocaust tales and references from your Jewish reading list, there’s not much left to choose from. It’s everywhere: in fiction and nonfiction, in history and biography and memoir, in plays and poetry. We can’t get away from this theme, even if we want to.

Why should we want to? Decades after the world went mad in so many ways — ghettos, camps, cruelty and killings, and feigned ignorance that taught us how yellow the stream of human cowardice can run — how can we permit ourselves to run away?

The books accumulate in my office, overflowing shelves, piled on tables, chairs, the floor. I cannot possibly do justice to them all. But I’ll offer you a sample here. New publications and new translations, all fresh and raw despite the age of their subject matter:

“The Wedding in Auschwitz,” by Erich Hackl. The Austrian novelist is inspired by the true story of Rudi and Marga Friemel, who married in 1944, a union that survivors considered “a victory — a proof that we were still alive.”

“Selfless,” by David Michael Slater. This novel could be a modern Jewish “You Can’t Take It With You,” with the tale-teller’s scheming and teasing sisters and his father, the plagiarist writer. The author’s comedy is not funny when he injects some Holocaust survivor grandparents into the mix.

“Chance Encounter,” by Sanford R. Simon. He was a business writer before creating this post-Holocaust fiction, contrasting and analyzing the mindsets and actions of an assimilated American Jew and a Gentile German banker, while trying to trace relatives lost during World War II. Are they really so different?

“A Lucky Child” is the memoir of Thomas Buergenthal, who survived Auschwitz and its infamous death march as a boy of 10. His book is graced with a foreword by Elie Wiesel, who begins by asking about this belated storytelling, “Are there rules to help a survivor decide the best time to bear witness to history?”

“Penguin Luck,” by Kay Mupetson. In her novel, this corporate lawyer of many years’ experience creates a much younger alter ego, a small-firm attorney who is visited by Holocaust ghosts relentlessly demanding that she must “carry on for us.”

“Kiss Every Step,” by Doris Martin. Her entire Polish family, parents and five children, somehow survived the Holocaust. The former Dora Szpringer says that although this fact alone is amazing, “What is more remarkable is how we survived.” Here, her siblings help tell the story.

“Run for Me Too,” by Neva Gould. This historical novel fulfills the long-ago promise of one survivor, now a retired physician in Chicago, who gives voice to the victims of the Croatian town in which she grew up.

These are my “lucky seven” books of the moment — lucky because they’re the products of people who lived long enough to write their own stories, or were written by people who cared enough for those already gone to tell their stories for them.

Please read, and please think. Please say “Never again!” rather than “Enough already!” At our recent seders, all of us came out of Egypt together once more, a yearly passage. But now, we Jews must acknowledge coming after the Holocaust, all together, every day of our lives. We’ll do our best “moving on” by remembering, and making the world move with us.


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Ask the Rabbi

Posted on 15 April 2010 by admin

By Rabbi Yerachmiel D. Fried

Dear Rabbi Fried,

We have recently become observant, this being our first Passover kept according to strict Jewish law. We never heard about selling the chametz to a non-Jew before; all we knew was not to eat bread. We also learned that leavened products not sold to a non-Jew are forbidden even after Passover, which was a real shocker to us! This leads to our question: We have a significant amount of Scotch and bourbon from years past; some of it consists of rare limited-edition bottles passed down from our parents to be used for simchas and special occasions. Since this is made from barley and wheat hops, it would constitute chametz which was not sold all the years before we became observant, so (we’re a little afraid to ask) what is the status of all that shnapps we own?

Marc and Stacie N.

Dear Marc and Stacie,

Congratulations on your new level of observance! I trust you had a very meaningful Pesach, given your heightened sensitivity to many of the subtleties unnoticed, which reveal the true richness and depth of this beautiful holiday experience.

Generally speaking, you are correct in your understanding that leavened items owned by a Jew and not sold to a Gentile for Passover become forbidden for consumption after Pesach. This is actually a rabbinical law, under the category of “k’nas,” or penalty, for the transgression of a Torah law. The Torah prohibits not only the consumption of leavened grain products on Passover, but the ownership of those foodstuffs as well. This applies to all of the five species of grain: wheat, barley, spelt, rye and oats. This is outlined in the Torah’s statements: “For a seven-day period you shall eat matzot, but on the previous day you shall nullify the leaven from your homes…. For seven days, leaven may not be found in your houses…” (Exodus 12:15, 19). “No leaven of yours shall be seen throughout your boundary for seven days…” (Deuteronomy 16:4).

The simple meaning of these verses is that one must eliminate all leavened products from their homes completely during Passover, beginning with the day preceding the holiday. The Talmud, however, explains that the prohibition is only upon leavened products, or chametz, owned by a Jew. Chametz owned by a Gentile is permitted to be in the home of a Jew during Pesach, provided it is in a separate area marked as a reminder not to consume that food. This opens up the possibility of one owning storehouses of leavened products and not having to dispose of them as one can sell them to a Gentile. The nature of the sale is complicated and not relevant to this discussion, but it is performed by most rabbis for those who request that the rabbi be their messenger to sell their chametz before Pesach.

When one had the ability to sell his or her chametz and did not do so, the penalty of the chametz becoming forbidden as a reprimand for the transgression takes hold. Those unsold products become forbidden for consumption or any other form of benefit.

This, however, applies only when the items not sold constitute a Torah-level transgression of owning chametz. Not all leavened products fall under that category, and some authorities hold that owning shnapps is a rabbinical, not Torah-level, transgression on Pesach. This means that although it should be sold, if it was not, it is not forbidden after Pesach. This has to do with the nature of the production of shnapps, as well as its mode of consumption, based on Talmudic discussions beyond the scope of this article.

Since now you are trying to fulfill these laws, you are revealing that you do not take them lightly. The only reason you did not fulfill this law previously was out of ignorance, not malice. This, coupled with the opinions that owning shnapps is not a Torah-level transgression, frees you from this penalty. Therefore, you may continue to use your shnapps; it is still considered kosher and will be sold with the rest of your chametz for years to come. L’chaim!

Rabbi Yerachmiel D. Fried, noted scholar and author of numerous works on Jewish law, philosophy and Talmud, is founder and dean of DATA, the Dallas Kollel. Questions can be sent to him at

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Shalom From the Shabbat Lady

Posted on 15 April 2010 by admin

By Laura Seymour

Dear Families,

As we look at all that is happening in the world today, we wonder about what we can do to make the world a better place. Judaism calls that “tikkun olam — fixing the world.” It is our obligation to do our part. The challenge of tikkun olam is our fear of acting. Too often, we stand back and think that someone else will do the task. However, if everyone thinks another will act, the world will not get better. The time is NOW for everyone to act. We begin by learning — explore needs in your community. Find something that you can do or contribute to. Giving time is best, but often giving money is important as well. Save your change — it can change the world!

Text: Everything is foreseen, yet the freedom of choice is given. The world is judged with goodness, and everything depends on the abundance of good deeds.

—Pirke Avot 3:19

* Judaism teaches there is a plan for the world we are given free will, a choice to make decisions about our actions. What does it mean to have free will?

* “The world is judged with goodness” means that we look for the good rather than the bad in the world. Why do some people always see the negative? Why is it better to see the goodness in the world?

* The Mishnah says that everything depends on lots of good deeds. Why are good deeds important? Why do we need lots of good deeds and not just a few? What are some of the good deeds that you can do?

Value: Courage — ometz lev

“Ometz lev” actually translates as “strength of heart.” These are emotional, internal qualities. Courage is having the inner strength to take charge. Courage offers us the strength needed to face difficulty, danger, pain and fear. There is a midrash about the Israelites crossing the Red Sea. Moses raised his staff and the sea didn’t split. Everyone was afraid but one man stepped up and went forward. When he did, the sea split. Nachshon had courage and faith in G-d.

Things to do:

•Know what you stand for and be willing to be counted.

•All of us are afraid at times but we must learn to handle our fears.

•Think about a time when you did something that you were afraid to do.

Laura Seymour is director of camping services and Jewish life and learning at the Jewish Community Center of Dallas.

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One Night, One Community, One Cause event: ‘Death of a Salesman,’ May 13

One Night, One Community, One Cause event: ‘Death of a Salesman,’ May 13

Posted on 15 April 2010 by admin

By Deb Silverthorn

“We often think about ‘Jewish community’ only as it relates to whatever organization we work with or represent. But the word ‘community’ is made up of two significant words: ‘common’ and ‘unity.’ We as Jews share a unifying point, the Torah, and a common goal, partnership,” said Levine Academy Head of School Marion Peterson. “I can’t think of a better way to model a Torah-centered partnership and the true sense of community than supporting the One Night, One Community, One Cause fundraiser.” The Thursday, May 13 event will headline Arthur Miller’s Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning drama “Death of A Salesman” at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre at the AT&T Performing Arts Center. The evening will benefit Akiba, Levine and Yavneh academies and the Jewish Community Center of Dallas.

“This historic partnering is an opportunity to raise much-needed funds for scholarships and cultural programming,” said JCC Director of Cultural Programming Judy Cohn. “While schools have stretched their budgets to the limits, and fundraisers are being held on many levels, community and families pulling together in an all-for-one and one-for-all effort might make the difference. We must be there for our children.”

“The ‘One’ fundraiser is the ideal response to the gathering of day school volunteer and professional leaders convened by the Center for Jewish Education last spring,” said Jaynie Schultz, chair, Center for Jewish Education of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas. “The concept of coming together to support essential community institutions is taught in our schools and JCC. Our community is ‘walking the talk’ and setting a strong example for all our local organizations to galvanize around their common needs and move forward together.”

“Donations are important but here is a chance to place our fingerprints on a group effort,” said Dan Prescott, an unsurpassed community volunteer, noting that the JCC and all day school beneficiaries of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas were invited to participate in the program. “There’s a great feeling about us all coming together, showing a ­microcosm of the community.”

Schultz said, “Dan Prescott immediately understood that although fundraising is important to help our schools provide scholarships, the collaboration of the schools and JCC with this event is a turning point.”

“There is an oxymoronic metaphorical significance in the schools and the J joining together in this effort for Miller’s ‘Death of a Salesman,’ the quintessential tragic social drama. But not so for our children as a result of this event,” said Marion Peterson, head of school at Levine Academy and an “English teacher by love.” “The money will be used to fund scholarships for those who need them so Jewish children can experience a sense of community and not feel abandoned.”

Written in 1949, the timeless tale is the portrait of a family and the collapse of the notion that personal success is measured by one’s financial prosperity. In the play, Willy Loman is ‘Everyman’ and we are all part of a system pushing the lie that materialism measures the worth of people. To exclude basic human values — knowledge, community and love — is to court disaster, and in Loman’s case, self-destruction.

The Dallas Center for the Performing Arts’ production features Broadway, television and film actor Jeffrey DeMunn, whose credits include “The Green Mile,” “The Shawshank Redemption,” “The Majestic,” “The Mist,” “Law and Order,” the revival of Arthur Miller’s “The Price,” and “Our Town.”

“Hinei ma tov umanaim, shevet achim gam yachad. The concept of brothers coming together is evident here,” said Rabbi Zev Silver, a member of Akiba Academy’s leadership team. “The nicest part of this is the achdut, the unity of faculties, parents, community members and leaders coming together. This is good for our community and for the Jewish people.”

“The children from these schools and throughout the community are the beneficiaries of the programs of the J including the Glee Club Camp, J Players, Youtheatre, FamiliArts and much more,” Cohn said. “These kids are our community, and we are theirs.”

Sponsors for the One Night, One Community, One Cause event will also receive invitations to a private concert, on May 12, by Israeli violinist Vadim Gluzman and his wife, pianist Angela Yoffe. Gluzman, who appears regularly with major orchestras throughout the world and recently made his debut with the Chicago Symphony, plays a 1690 Stradivarius violin, on extended loan to him by the Stradivari Society of Chicago. Gluzman and Yoffe’s concert tour is sponsored by the Central Area Consortium and the Western Galilee Partnership of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas.

“The pursuit of Jewish education at all levels has always been a priority of this community. Yavneh Academy is pleased to work with the other day schools and the JCC to help ensure that education will be available to as many students as possible,” said Carol Kreditor, president of Yavneh Academy’s board of directors. “Jewish education, while focusing on the standard religious academics, also teaches and encourages our students to live a Jewish life and take an active part in their community. Working with the other day schools and the JCC helps us provide Jewish education and also sets an example of how to work together as a community.”

For more information about the event and sponsorship opportunities, or to purchase single tickets at $100 a piece, call Judy Cohn at 214-239-7115 or e-mail

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Dallas Doings

Posted on 08 April 2010 by admin

The Legacy Senior communities Holds Senior Auxiliary Meeting

The Legacy Senior Communities recently hosted a meeting of their Auxiliary at The Legacy at Preston Hollow. Co-chairs Linda Garner and Cheryl Colen planned the meeting to showcase The Legacy at Preston Hollow community, which was recently refurbished. They discussed how to further the activities of the Auxiliary, whose purpose is to enhance the physical, emotional and intellectual lives of seniors living at their two Legacy Communities – The Legacy at Willow Bend in Plano and The Legacy at Preston Hollow in North Dallas.

They also discussed future programs and fundraising events.

“The activities of the Auxiliary will directly impact the lives of our residents and their families at both of our Legacy communities,” said Andrea Statman, director of development of The Legacy Senior Communities, Inc. “With the support of the Auxiliary, we will be able to continue to provide all of the extra amenities and programs that make our communities special.”

The Legacy at Willow Bend, Plano’s first and only life care retirement community, is situated on a 28-acre site at Spring Creek Parkway between Preston Road and Ohio Drive. The Legacy at Willow Bend offers resort-style services and amenities for active, independent seniors, as well as all levels of health care services on-site. The community features 103 independent living apartment homes, 12 custom independent living villas, 40 assisted living apartment homes, 18 memory support suites, and 60 private skilled healthcare suites.

The Legacy at Willow Bend is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit retirement community owned by parent company, The Legacy Senior Communities, Inc. The Legacy at Willow Bend, the only Jewish-sponsored life care retirement community in Texas, is open to people of all faiths. For information, call (972) 468-6208, or visit

The Legacy at Preston Hollow, formally known as Veranda Preston Hollow, is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit, faith-based senior living residence that offers a continuum of care allowing residents to stay in place with assisted living, short-term rehabilitation, skilled nursing, and long term care.

Built in 2001, the community features 41 assisted living apartments, 113 skilled nursing beds and a state-of-the-art Medicare unit. The Legacy at Preston Hollow is the Dallas Home for the Jewish Aged and a partner agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas. The community is family service-oriented and open to people of all faiths. For questions regarding admissions, please call 214-363-5100 or visit

Tycher Library to host author Angella Nazarian on April 18

The Tycher Library invites the community to its Spring Author Event at 11 a.m. on Sunday, April 18. Angella Nazarian will speak about her book, “Life as a Visitor,” which narrates her travels to 50 different countries. Born on one side of the world and raised in the other, uprooted from Iran to Beverly Hills, Nazarian wrote this work, which is part memoir, part travel diary and a visual delight. She will sign her book at the event. For more information, please contact Joan Gremont, Tycher Library director, at or 214-239-7132. The Tycher Library is maintained by the Center for Jewish Education of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas.

Three Dallas business and community Legends to be honored by Texas-Israel Chamber of Commerce

The Texas Israel Chamber of Commerce will honor three North Texas business and community leaders for their efforts in building economic cooperation and business development between companies in the state of Texas and the nation of Israel as well as their focus on innovation in their respective fields.

Raanan Horowitz, President and CEO of Elbit Systems of America, and Dr. David E. Daniel, President of The University of Texas at Dallas, will be honored at the chamber’s Annual North Texas Business Awards Dinner on April 15. Stanley R. Levenson, CEO of Levenson & Brinker Public Relations, will receive the “Texas-Israel Bridge Builder Award.”

“I can’t think of three more deserving business leaders to receive this prestigious recognition at our annual business awards dinner,” said Greg Yavner, president and CEO of the Texas-Israel Chamber of Commerce. “Each of these leaders understands the important strategic relationship between Texas and Israel, have a demonstrated track record of strengthening economic ties between companies in Texas and Israel as well as in volunteer service to the chamber.”

The  program is expected to draw  over 400 business and community leaders from across Texas and Israel and will include remarks by Mr. Elad Sharon Tshuva, Vice-Chair of Delek Group, which is heavily involved in multi-billion dollar projects between Israel and the U.S., many in Texas.

Texas is Israel’s third-largest American trading partner, with a growing volume of trade and licensing transactions consisting of computer-related hardware and software, biomedical products, electronic data transmission, telecom, homeland security,  medical products, clean technology, defense products/systems and food.

The Honorary Event Chairman is Sheldon I. Stein, Vice-Chairman-Head of Southwest Investment Banking for Bank of America Merrill Lynch

For further information, e-mail or call 214-576-9646 or 9639.

DATA of Plano initiates women’s mission to Israel, Purim activities for adults and kids

This past November, Carol Aaron took 15 participants from the DATA/JWRP (Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project) mission to Israel around the Metroplex to learn more about opportunities to be communal leaders in the Dallas Jewish community. Among the organizations they visited were Chai House, JFS Food Pantry and The Legacy at Willow Bend.

After this mini-mission, Karen Van Creveld, a member of DATA of Far North Dallas, took her children and their friends to the JFS Food Pantry.

Ruthie Henkin, a member of DATA of Plano, said, “We need to get our kids involved with chesed.” Bringing her inspiration into action, Ruthie arranged for DATA of Plano to visit The Legacy at Willow Bend on Purim.

It is amazing to see the ripple effects that started last summer when DATA of Plano and DATA Far North Dallas took women to Israel and got them inspired. Carol Aaron, seeing this passion took the time to educate the women by taking them around Dallas. They women are now getting into action and becoming leaders in the community by sharing the warmth of Judaism with the broader community.

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