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Around the Town — June 2008

Posted on 09 June 2008 by admin

Federation holds 72nd annual meeting

At the June 5 annual meeting of the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, featured speakers were Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker (Congregation Beth Israel), David Saul (Congregation Ahavath Sholom), Danielle Snailer and Stephanie Posner (Congregation Beth Shalom), and Michele Nations (Beth-El Congregation). They spoke about how local Jewish education programs funded by the Federation have affected each of their respective congregations. It was wonderful to see how many people of all ages have been touched by this funding.

Outgoing President Arnie Gachman gave a State of the Federation speech imploring everyone to continue the good work that the Federation has accomplished over the last few years. Alan Luskey was given the Wolens Award; all of the volunteers who led the programs committees were recognized; and special staff awards went to Karen Anisman, Patty Garsek, Len Schweitzer, Gene Posnock and Linda Hoffman. Elections were held for the Jewish Family Services Committee, and the following were elected for two-year terms: Cynthia Gilbert, Marcia Kurtz, Susan Luskey, Alex Nason, Beverly Ross (chair) and Phil Sawyer. Elections were held for the board of directors for the Federation, and elected for three-year terms were Karen Anisman, Marilyn Englander, Patty Garsek, Rick Klotz, Roz Micklin, Shayne Moses and Barry Schneider. Elected to one-year terms were Eddie Feld, president; Barry Schneider, vice president campaign/allocations; Patty Garsek, vice president administration; Len Schweitzer, vice president community relations/secretary; and Larry Brunell, treasurer. The following outgoing board members were thanked: Arnie Gachman, Larry Coben, Terri Kravetz, Shirley Morris, Cindy Simon and Bruce Weiner. The meeting concluded with a rousing speech by new President Eddie Feld.

The Federation Annual Campaign is winding down and if you have not made a pledge yet, please call the Federation office at 817-569-0892. Pledges for 2008 do not need to be received in full until Dec. 31, 2008.

DOE and Israel agree to increase cooperation

DOE Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Alexander (Andy) Karsner and Director General of Israel’s Ministry of National Infrastructure Yehezkel (Hezi) Kugler, on May 21, signed an agreement to further U.S. and Israel cooperation on advanced renewable energy and efficiency technologies. The Implementation Agreement establishes a framework for future cooperation. Activities include but are not limited to collaborative research and development of new and improved sources of high-temperature thermal energy storage; electric vehicle and plug-in hybrid electric vehicle battery technologies and utilization approaches; biofuel production and use, including enzyme catalysts for conversion of biomass to biofuel, using microalgae to produce biofuels, and boosting production by taking advantage of power plant CO2 emissions to accelerate algae growth; and advanced technologies for efficient water desalinization techniques, such as photovoltaic-powered reverse osmosis. Activities under this Implementation Agreement could include information exchanges, seminars, programs for research visits, exchange of personnel between research establishments, joint research and development projects, and collaboration between leading research and development centers in the United States and Israel. Under the agreement, both parties will designate members of a Bilateral Working Group to promote and manage cooperative activities. Andy, the son of Blanche and Dave Karsner of Fort Worth, resides in the Washington area with his wife, Maria, and daughters.

Added congratulations to grads we missed

Caleb Myers, son of Bill Myers and Juanita Myers, received a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and marketing from the University of Arizona. He is the grandson of Adeline Myers and the late Nat Myers.

Laura Finucane, daughter of Tim and Michelle Finucane, graduated from North Crowley High School and will attend the University of Oklahoma.

Rachel Romano, daughter of Randee Kaitcer, graduated from the University of Oklahoma, summa cum laude. She will attend Baylor Law School.

Allison Siegel, daughter of Nancy and Adam Siegel, graduated from the University of Colorado. She’s the granddaughter of Evelyn and Martin Siegel.

El Holley, son of Monica Braverman, graduated from Arlington Heights High School. He will attend the Dance Department Master Teacher program at Oklahoma City University.

Melissa Beldon, daughter of Lori and Robert Beldon, graduated from Fossil Ridge High School and will attend Texas State University.

Shana Berenzweig graduated from New York University’s Wagner School with a master’s degree in public administration and nonprofit management. The daughter of Harold and Ellen Berenzweig, she plans to move to Austin.

David Lee Williams, son of Laura Williams, graduated from Fort Worth Country Day and will attend Rutgers University.

Lisa Bond, daughter of Steve and Cindy Bond of Atlanta, graduated from Georgia Highland College with a degree in nursing. The granddaughter of Corrine Jacobson, she was in the National Honor Society.

Marissa Berenson, daughter of Bill and Mara Berenson, graduated from Fort Worth Country Day and will attend SMU.

Amanda Hollander, daughter of Ira and Sandy Hollander, graduated from law school at Georgetown.

Alyson Moses graduated from Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law. She is the daughter of Buddy and Rochelle Moses, granddaughter of RD and Beverley Moses of Fort Worth. Alyson will practice law with the firm of Moses, Palmer and Howell of Fort Worth.

Let us hear from you if you know of more grads. It’s a joy for the TJP to publish these special achievements.

Around the Town with Rene
Baylor All Saints to Open Joan Katz Breast Center

Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth has announced plans to unveil a comprehensive breast center in the Tarrant County community. The Joan Katz Breast Center will serve the community and surrounding areas by providing men and women, diagnosed with breast cancer, services for every aspect of treatment from screenings to patient and family support groups.

“We look forward to working closely with local physicians, breast cancer survivors, our patients and members of our community to provide hope and quality treatment for the many women afflicted with breast cancer,” said Steve Newton, president of Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth.

Named on behalf of breast cancer survivor, Joan Katz, the Center will serve patients and their families by developing interaction between multiple specialists and services in one centralized location. Patients of the Center will be given a nurse navigator who will assist them in coordinating services from initial diagnosis through final treatment and follow-ups.

“The Center will be a vehicle that can facilitate the comprehensive care and treatment for the breast cancer patients in the community,” said Anita Chow, M.D., an oncology surgeon on the medical staff at Baylor All Saints. “As a physician who treats patients with breast cancer, it is an honor and an exciting opportunity to be involved in The Joan Katz Breast Center project.”

The All Saints Health Foundation intends to conduct a $2.4 million campaign for the construction and operational expenses, along with an $11 million endowment campaign. The Foundation plans to invest the endowment funds into the on-going operational and program needs of the Center.

The facility, to be located on the first floor of the medical office building, will offer comprehensive breast services by permitting the patient to utilize the multiple facilities at Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth.

“With the opening of the Andrews Women’s Hospital, Baylor All Saints has made an enormous commitment to this community on behalf of women. This commitment continues with the Joan Katz Breast Center – a unique facility to Fort Worth,” said All Saints Health Foundation President Freddy Jones. “We are very grateful to Joan Katz, who is more than just an advocate and believer – she is a survivor who has taken on the mission of sowing hope to all those diagnosed with breast cancer.”

The Center plans to begin serving the community in late 2009. The Breast Center will offer diagnostics and care under unified leadership, the latest advanced mammography equipment, dedicated breast radiologists, nurse navigator and social work services for efficiently guiding men and women through individualized breast care.

Sherree Bennett, the nurse navigator for The Joan Katz Breast Center, said, “I am blessed to work with such a tremendous team of professionals as we navigate women through the troubled waters of breast cancer. As both a registered nurse and a survivor, I am able to offer empathy, education and support for the journey. The Joan Katz Breast Center will be a wonderful refuge for men and women facing breast cancer, their loved ones and our community.”

Beth Alden DuPertuis Memorial Scholarship awarded to Phoebe San Antonio

Mazel tov to Phoebe San Antonio, daughter of Randy and Patricia San Antonio who is this year’s recipient of Beth Alden DuPertuis Memorial Scholarship. Dedicated in loving memory to Beth DuPertuis who lost her life in a tragic accident in November 2000, the scholarship was established in 2001 by the Grapevine High School Fabulous Fillies Dance Team in honor of Beth’s service to numerous GHS campus organizations. Beth was a team assistant to the GHS Fillies and a member of the GHS Yearbook Staff. She was a service-oriented young lady who gladly gave of herself to benefit others. Candidates for this scholarship are nominated by GHS staff members in recognition of outstanding service to one or more campus organizations. Tax deductible donations for this scholarship are accepted on a year round basis at Wells Fargo Bank, Grapevine. Donations may be made directly to the Beth Alden DuPertuis Memorial Scholarship Fund. Funding for this scholarship is based solely upon donations to this fund.

A member of Congregation Beth Shalom in Arlington, Phoebe has been a volunteer counselor at Camp Impact which provides five days of summer camp to many homeless and/or battered children from the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. This year, Phoebe also volunteered on numerous projects that included Colleyville clean up, Southlake’s Art in the Square, teen court, modeling for a pre-prom event, and more. She will be attending the University of Arizona in the fall.

Sultanov and Hummel to perform for Daytimers

Next event for the Daytimers will be a musical program presented by Dacy Sultanov, cellist, accompanied by Aileen Hummel on the piano, Wednesday, June 18, at noon at Beth-El Congregation. Their program entitled Paganini and Pop includes a variety of music-from Classical, to the Oldies (20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, etc), to Broadway, Musicals, popular Tunes and more.

The program will include Paganini’s “Variation on A string,” “Brahms Hungarian Dance,” as well as “Somewhere My Love,” “Fascination,” “Sentimental Journey,” “I Could Have Danced All Night,” “Mona Lisa,” Scot Joplin’s “Entertainer” and “Ragtime Dance” and several others.

Lunch is catered by Boopa’s Bagel Deli and guests have a choice of turkey and hummus on a sesame bagel, chicken salad on a honey wheat bagel, or cream cheese and lox on pumpernickel bagel plus chips, cookie, coffee or tea. Cost is $8 per person, or guests may attend for the program only for $3. Deadline for reservations is Monday, June 16.

Dacy Sultanov was introduced to the cello by her mother when she was seven. She spent more than a decade at the Central music schools in Riga, Moscow, and later at the Moscow Conservatory. She is the widow of Alexei Sultanov, who won the Van Cliburn Piano competition in 1989, and they subsequently moved to Fort Worth. After his death in 2005, she began to perform again.

Aileen Hummel, the pianist, who is also a flutist, is passionate about her music, family, and travel. She currently works at several senior centers.

For reservations for Daytimers events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens Daytimers is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Diana Coben Einstein named associate program director at Dallas’ Temple Emanu-El

Marcy and Larry Coben are ecstatic. They will soon be traversing the freeways frequently between Fort Worth and Big D since their daughter, Diana Coben Einstein, will join the staff of Temple Emanu-El in Dallas in July as associate program director. Diana grew up in Fort Worth and will be moving to Dallas this summer with her husband, Heath, and their daughter, Levyn.

According to Temple Emanu-El’s bulletin The Window, “Diana’s responsibilities will be Temple’s holiday programming, family Shabbat programs, outreach programming and special events throughout Temple. She looks forward to working with Temple members in a variety of ways, helping members make strong connections to their Jewish identity and Temple community, through a variety of exciting programs and opportunities.

“The former assistant director of special events at the New York University Medical Center Development Office and assistant director of the Jewish Women’s Foundation of New York, Diana will bring outstanding program experience to Emanu-El. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Brandeis University and her master’s in public administration with an emphasis on nonprofit management from George Washington University.”

A hearty welcome to the Metroplex to the Einstein family.

News and notes

Mimi and Hal Klotz were wonderful hosts to their children on a recent cruise to Alaska. Their entourage included their daughter and son-in-law, Marcy and Greg Phillips, and their daughters, Lauren and Natalie, and sons, Rick, Steve and Alan and his very special friend, Gretchen.

Speedy recovery wishes to Bob Stien, recuperating from recent surgery.

Welcome guests in our town earlier this week included former residents Lori Railenau and three of her youngsters, Phoebe, Atara and Maccabee of St. Louis. The Railenaus were houseguests of longtime friends, Kim and Abe Factor and sons.

Happy first anniversary greetings to Ari and Ellen Bond, who celebrated by touring Paris, London and Brussels.

Rosalie Schwartz is just back from a two-week trip to Atlanta, where she loved visiting with her sister Marilyn Myers and her family.

Add to our recent listing of college grads: Elizabeth Blum from New York University. She’s the daughter of Marvin and Laurie Blum, and granddaughter of Elsie Blum.

Ladies have a night out

Marti Herman and Tricia Haber, along with Yvonne Harrison, hosted a Ladies’ Night Out on Friday, May 30. The hostesses organized a VIP party for 50 women for the opening night of “Sex and the City” at the Hulen Movie Tavern.

Guests were told to put on their most fabulous shoes, and prizes were awarded for footwear, dresses and correct answers to trivia questions. Many of the ladies are members of Beth-El, Ahavath Sholom or Beth Shalom, and they might have been the only group in the audience who knew what the lead character, Carrie Bradshaw, meant when she said “mazel tov.”

An ‘American Girl’ shopping trip with Shea

It was a few Sundays back but one that will live in my memory eternally. It was my great-granddaughter Shea Doty’s seventh birthday and I had promised her a birthday shopping trip to the American Girl Shop in the Dallas Galleria. Fortunately, Shea already had her American Girl doll, Julie, a gift from her paternal great-grandmother, Mary “Omi” Davidsohn of Houston. Julie has long blond straight hair and brown eyes, just like Shea.

My gift was to be matching outfits for Shea and her American Girl doll, Julie, which she adores. Of course, Shea found just what she wanted — a skirt, blouse and jean jacket for each of them — which added up to a healthy tune, but worth every penny when I saw the joy in Shea’s eyes. The two-story building housing the American Girl collections was jammed to the rafters with eager bright-eyed youngsters accompanied by their moms, dads, siblings, aunts, and friends.

We enjoyed sharing a brief encounter with Debbie (Mrs. David) Bodzy and her precious 7-year-old, Jackie, who clutched her American Girl doll to her bosom — a gift, she told me, from her Bubbe Bessie Bodzy.

If any of my readers have young daughters, granddaughters or nieces in their midst, give them a special treat at the American Girl shop at the Dallas Galleria.

The memory is oh so sweet!

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Around the Town — May 2008

Posted on 09 May 2008 by admin

Child prodigies from Israel to perform in Fort Worth June 1

An unprecedented and memorable opportunity will present itself to the Metroplex when eight children from Israel who are prodigies in piano and violin perform in Fort Worth this Sunday, June 1, at 6:15 p.m. at Congregation Ahavath Sholom, 4050 S. Hulen. This is their only public concert, other than Las Vegas, in the United States. They are visiting the U.S. as part of the 60th anniversary celebration of Israel.

The extremely talented youngsters, ages 11–14, are known as the Kiryat Bialik Youth Violin Ensemble. The ensemble is part of the Kiryat Bialik Conservatory in Israel, which was founded in 1970 and has been led since 1994 by Mrs. Anna Asaf. Its mission is to provide a high level of musical education to the youth of Israel.

One of the students who will be performing is piano prodigy Alon Petrilin, the winner of the Golden Chanukah Lamp competition in Berlin. The remaining students are seven of the top violinists from this youth program.

Celebrating the founding of Israel as a modern nation 60 years ago is very important to the Jewish community in Tarrant County. This event, which follows a community event on May 11, continues the theme of “Israel Today and Beyond.”

In addition to their stop in Fort Worth, the Kiryat Bialik Youth Violin Ensemble will also perform in Las Vegas as well as Mexico City later in the month.

This concert is open to the public. Tickets are $18 in advance and $25 at the door for adults, and $5 in advance and $10 at the door for students.

For information, call 817-731-4721.

Hadassah presents women’s program on cervical cancer

The Fort Worth Chapter of Hadassah is excited to invite all women and their teenage daughters from the Fort Worth and Tarrant County area to a “Lunch and Learn” on the important issue of preventing cervical cancer. Beginning at 12:30 this Sunday, June 1, at Beth-El Congregation in Fort Worth, Hadassah will present a program dedicated to safeguarding the health of women everywhere through preventive health practices and treatment.

Hadassah urges women and teenage girls to attend this vital, informative program that will empower women of all ages to make informed choices for the improvement of their own, their daughters’, their aunts’ and their families’ personal health and well-being.

Unlike most cancers, cervical cancer can be prevented. Recent research has shown that HPV is the cause in almost all cases of cervical cancer. The two age groups of women most susceptible to HPV and cervical cancer are between the ages of 15–27 and 55–75. Come to this luncheon and take control of your cervical cancer risk!

Three experts who will be present and are well qualified to answer all of your questions include Valerie Lowenstein, Nancy Jo Reedy and Sue Story.

Valerie is Hadassah’s national chair of Women’s Health and HPV and Cervical Cancer and immediate past president of the Boston Chapter of Hadassah.

Nancy Jo Reedy, RN, CNM and MPH, is the recipient of the 2007 Hattie Hemschemeyer Award, the most prestigious award of the American College of Nurse Midwives. Her many accomplishments include founding the midwifery practice at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, which is the largest midwifery service in the United States. She is currently the director of THC Nurse Midwives in Fort Worth and has a longstanding commitment to underserved women and to the nurse-midwifery profession caring for women, babies and nurse-midwives.

Sue Story, a board certified nurse-midwife, is a specialist in HPV and cervical cancer. The mother of two grown children, she is warm, open and approachable, perfect for addressing the concerns of both teenagers and their mothers.

Hadassah has a dedicated working luncheon committee of Laurie Blum, Rhoda Bernstein, Jill Imber, Karen Telschow Johnson, Randee Kaitcer, Lihi Zabari Kamen, Karen Kaplan, Mona Karten, Elyse Kitterman, Orit Paytan, Zoë Stein Pierce, Debby Rice, Naomi Rosenfield, Cindy Simon and Laurie Werner.

For more information, you can contact Jill Imber at 817-926-7968, Debby Rice at 817-332-0022 or Lihi Kamen at 817-764-3452. See you there!

As an added note: congratulations to Hadassah stalwarts, Mona Karten and Debby Rice, who will serve the chapter in the top leadership position of co-presidents in the coming years.

Sankarys raise $19,000 for neuroblastoma treatment

On Wednesday, May 21, Alexa Sankary’s mom took her and her fellow members of Trinity Valley School’s Girl Scout Troop 2440 to Cook Children’s Medical Center. It was a very special trip for Alexa and her friends. At Cook, they delivered a check for $19,000 for neuroblastoma treatment and research to the hematology/oncology unit. Dr. Megan Granger accepted the check on behalf of the center, and said the money would be used for neuroblastoma research, family and parent education and support.

The Sankarys raised the money through the first annual Walk for Neuroblastoma last month. The walk was in memory of Michael Mancuso, Alexa’s friend who died of the childhood cancer last year. The walk also honored 2-year-old Kyla Moore, who is in treatment for neuroblastoma.

Adam Korenman graduates, is commissioned

The weekend of May 16–18 was of major importance to Dr. Michael and Etta Korenman. Their son Adam graduated from Boston University and received his commissioning from his ROTC unit. Adam received his first salute as a lieutenant in a very moving ceremony at historic Faneuil Hall. He will be part of the Charles River battalion, National Guard reserve unit. In the meantime, he is looking to pursue writing for television, film and books. Dallas folks will see him soon when he comes in to perform with The Rif (www.therifband.com), an amazing band.

The Korenmans celebrated that evening with big brother Joey, sister Sarah, Joey’s fiancé Amy Myers, and former ourtowners, Drs. David and Rachel Wexler and sons, Ariel and Yoel. Yoel is a freshman at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy.

Mazel tov to grads

Congratulations to our college grads: Michael Cobert, son of Ann and Scott Cobert, has earned his master’s degree in biomedical engineering and has been accepted to the doctorate program at Southwest Medical School.

Ken Cooper graduated from Cal State at Long Beach with a bachelor’s in film and television production. He is the son of Debbie Cooper and Mark and Semé Cooper. Ken is also the grandson of Shirley and Larry Goodwin and Jean and Arvie Cooper. Samantha Cooper graduated from R.L. Paschal Senior High School. She is the daughter of Sheila and Scott Cooper, and granddaughter of Jean and Arvie Cooper. Samantha is also the granddaughter of the late Charlotte and Max Fleischmann.

Shani Kaesler, daughter of Stephanie and Todd Webster, graduated from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. She is also the granddaughter of Harry Kahn and of the late Doris Kahn. Shani plans to practice law in California.

Matt Owen graduated with a BFA in communications design from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, N.Y. He is the son of Marla and Foster Owen and the grandson of Colleen and Charlie Owen and the late Charlotte and Max Fleischmann. Matt will remain in New York to work full time for Dress Code NY, a graphic design company where he has been interning this last year.

Mallory Paul received her degree from the University of Texas. She is the daughter of Carol Paul and Tommy and Karen Paul and the granddaughter of Sylvia and Al Wexler.

Haim Vasquez Echeverri graduated from UNT with degrees in psychology and international studies. He and wife, Sarah, will be on the move to New Orleans, where he has been accepted to Loyola Law School.

Daniel José Zeilicovich graduated from the American Hebrew Academy. He is the son of Graciela and Rabbi Alberto Zeilicovich and the grandson of Carlota and Isaac Vainstein and Clara Zeilicovich and the late Moshe Zeilicovich. Attending the graduation with the Zeilicovich family were good friends, Rose and Al Sankary, who also had special nachas when they attended their grandson Matt Bodzy’s graduation from Arizona State in Tempe. Matt is also the grandson of Bessie Bodzy and the late Irv Bodzy.

We would still like to hear about your grads. Please send the details to Rene at news@texasjewishpost.com.

Hadassah: all in the family

Where does the time go! The older I get, it seems the faster it goes. I’m not complaining Every day is a bonus and a blessing!

It hardly seems possible that Laurie Barnett Werner, a third-generation Hadassah leader, has completed her three-year term of office as president of the Greater Southwest Region of Hadassah. Laurie and her sister, Rhoda Bernstein, who also serves on the national board of Hadassah, follow proudly in the footsteps of their mother, Madlyn Barnett, and late grandmother, Ella Brachman, both outstanding Hadassah leaders and devotees. Their Hadassah family also includes Debby Brachman Rice, who was recently elected a regional vice-president and has edited the Regional News bulletin/magazine for long years, and Karen Kaplan, who has served in many Hadassah executive positions. Their family contribution of service to Hadassah also included their aunt, the late Dora Brachman Ginsburg, and her daughter, the late Rowena Kimmell. Accolades are due Laurie Werner, who brought the Southwest Region to new heights of success and leaves it in good shape to her successor, Barbara Shurberg.

New homes for former ourtowners

Reports of former Fort Worthians tell me that Shirley Cohen. Natalie Cohn, Hanna Hochster and Nancy Rakoover are enjoying their new home at the plush Legacy in Plano. In the meantime, I chatted with former ourtowner, Cecily Renov, who is happy as a lark in her new home in an elegant hotel in Hollywood, Calif., near both her son and family, Michael and Kathy Renov and daughters, and daughter and son-in-law, Sheila and Marc.

JFS seniors celebrate Mother’s Day

The JFS seniors had a wonderful celebration for Mother’s Day. They partied on Friday, May 9 with roses, a special breakfast and small gifts. The talented Cherkosovs played sentimental “Mom” music on the piano and violin for them and it was delightful!

It was also an important holiday for the Russian seniors. May 9 is Russian Independence Day. It is the day Russia celebrates its victory over the Nazis in World War II. Aron Goldenberg, who served bravely at the Russian front during this time, was honored with pleasure by the JFS seniors for his service. Mr. Goldenberg is 95 years old and still participates in the JFS senior program.

Congrats to grads

Congratulations to Mallory Paul, daughter of Carol Paul and Tommy Paul and granddaughter of Al and Sylvia Wexler, and Taylor Luskey, daughter of Susan and Allan Luskey, who both graduated from the University of Texas at Austin. And, too, Matthew Bodzy, son of Becca and Allen Bodzy and grandson of Rose and Al Sankary and Bessie Bodzy and the late Irv Bodzy, who graduated from Arizona State University in Tempe. Added congratulations to Rabbi Baruch and Graciela Zeilicovich on the graduation of their son, Danny, from the American Hebrew Institute in North Carolina.

Camp Shalom seeks counselors

Patty White, director of the Lil Goldman Preschool and Camp Shalom, tells the TJP she is looking for Jewish teens and young adults (age 17 and older) to serve as counselors at Camp Shalom this summer. Camp Shalom is the only Jewish summer camp in Tarrant County. For more information, please call Patty at 817-737-9898.

Ahavath Sholom honors confirmands

The 2008 confirmation class of Congregation Ahavath Sholom will be honored at a family Shabbat dinner at 6 p.m. on Friday, May 30. The Kiryat Bialik Youth Ensemble from Israel will be attending also. Cost is $15/adults, $8/children 5–12 and free for children under 5. Shabbat services and confirmation exercises will be at 8 p.m.

The class includes Savannah Berman, daughter of Karen and Danny Berman; Marc Bumpus, son of Elaine and Rodney Bumpus; David Goldstein, son of Suzanne Goldstein and Red and Julie Goldstein; Erie Kuptsin, son of Polina and Michael Kuptsin; Sheryl Lysyansky, daughter of Faina and Emil Lysyansky and Melanie Smith, daughter of Annette and Mitchell Smith.

On Saturday morning, Rabbi Mauricio Balter, Rabbi of Hakrayot Masorti Congregation in Kiryat Bialik, Israel, will be the special guest speaker at Shabbat services, at 9:30 a.m. Children of Torah Troop will lead the services.

Adult education class on sacrifice

A three-week adult education class at Congregation Ahavath Sholom on “Blood, Gore and Connecting with G-d: Struggling with Sacrifice in Judaism” will be led by David Saul. The classes will be held on May 28, June 4 and June 11 starting at 7 p.m. All interested persons are welcome to attend. Information is available by calling Congregation Ahavath Sholom, 817-731-4721.

Saul said, “Although sacrifices seem alien to us, they make sense within the ancient Israelite worldview. What can we learn from the range of positions on sacrifices we see in our texts and tradition?”

Fanny Brooks is 90

Three rabbis from two different Beth-El congregations joined to celebrate the simcha of Fanny Brooks’ 90th birthday at Fort Worth’s Beth-El Congregation on May 9.

Fanny is an active part of Beth-El and Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger acknowledged her as one of his “regulars.” Prior to coming to Fort Worth, she was a member of Beth-El in San Antonio. Rabbi Sam Stahl and his successor, Rabbi Barry Block, made the trip north to share their recollections of Fanny and join in the tribute.

A musical service, June 6

Come to Beth-El Shabbat services and so much more on Friday, June 6 at 8 p.m.! During the service, there will be an exceptional performance featuring violinist Curt Thompson, TCU professor and director of the Mimir Chamber Music Festival, and José Feghali, also a TCU music professor and a Van Cliburn International Competition gold medalist. They will play selections from the upcoming Mimir Chamber Music Festival, the premier festival in the South Central United States dedicated exclusively to the study and performance of chamber music.

Curt Thompson, the founder and director of the Mimir Chamber Music Festival, serves as associate professor of violin at TCU. He has given recitals throughout Europe and Latin America, and has been a featured artist in festivals in Brazil, Mexico and Spain. Thompson holds Bachelor and Master of Music degrees and the prestigious Performer’s Certificate from Indiana University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Rice University in Houston.

Gold Medalist and winner of the Chamber Music prize at the 7th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, José Feghali has been artist-in-residence at TCU’s School of Music since 1990, and is associate director of the Mimir Chamber Music Festival. His concert appearances include such renowned orchestras as the Berlin Philharmonic, Concertgebouw of Amsterdam, Gewandhaus of Leipzig, and the Shanghai and Beijing symphony orchestras. He has performed in all the major cities in North America.

Hollace Weiner honored by B’nai B’rith; past award winners recalled

There were many touching moments at B’nai B’rith’s Jewish Person of the Year Dinner held at Mira Vista Country Club on May 4, especially when Hollace Weiner, who has led a myriad of worthy projects for both our community and Beth-El Congregation, received this year’s award. Also paid tribute to were previous winners including Leon Brachman, (named twice), Jerry Wolens, Lou Barnett, Leon Gachman, Madlyn Barnett, Sandra Freed, Sherwin Rubin, Bernie Appel, Leroy Solomon. Buddy Freed, Karen Brachman, Hortense Deifik, Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger, Beverly Moses, Dr. Ron Stocker, Stuart and Rebecca Isgur, Miriam Labovitz, Harry Kahn, the father-and-son team of Leslie and Jeff Kaitcer, Dr. Michel Ross, Dr. Al Faigin, Marcia Kornbleet Kurtz (who was honored twice), Al Wexler, Lon Werner, Earl Givant, Al Sankary and David Beckerman. Also recognized were late community leaders who had received the Isadore Garsek Lodge’s high honor during some point in their lifetime. Among them were David Greines, the first honoree in 1951. Additionally, I.E. Horwitz (named twice), Sol Brachman, Ella Brachman, Maurice Rabinowitz, Sophia Miller, Rabbi Isadore Garsek, Dr. Frank Cohen, Rabbi Robert J. Schur, Dr. Abe Greines, Dr. Harold Freed, Mickey Goldman, Sid Raimey, Ben Coplin, Sheldon Labovitz, Charlie Levinson, Burnis Cohen, Larry Kornbleet, Ruby Kantor, Rowena Kimmell, Wally Nass, Herby Berkowitz, Manny Rosenthal, Sam Weisblatt, Cecile and David Echt, Faye Berkowitz and Seymour Kanoff.

We will all think of each one of these rare community servants and the many good tasks they performed for the betterment of our community and city.

The Jewish Person of the Year Committee included Marvin Beleck, Robert Chicotsky, Gerald Hecht, Rich Hollander, Harry Kahn, Jeff Kaitcer, Mike Luskey and Alex Nason.

New officers of the Lodge include Foster Owen, president; Dan Sturman, Scott Cobert, Ebi Lavi, vice presidents; Jeff Kaitcer, secretary; David Hecht, treasurer; Leslie Kaitcer, warden; Charlie Freid, chaplain; and Earl Givant, Gerald Hecht and Harry Kahn, officers at large. Named to the board of directors were Marvin Beleck, Robert Chicotsky, Alvin Daiches, Rich Hollander, Joe Klein, Michael Kuptsin, Dr. Bruce Miller, Dr. Irv Robinson, Dr. Barry Schneider, Leroy Solomon, Dr. Gene Vertkin and Rabbi Alberto Zeilicovich.

We would like to hear from our readers. Send us your news to news@texasjewishpost.com.

Two Beth-El members honored

Beth-El Congregation is celebrating honors accorded to two of their outstanding members. First and foremost, spiritual leader Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger, who was recently designated as one of the outstanding brilliant personalities by Fort Worth magazine, will be honored again this evening (Thursday) by State of Israel Bonds at their 60th Anniversary Awards Reception hosted by Laurie and Len Roberts at their home. A distinguished theologian, Rabbi Mecklenburger was the 1986 recipient of the Federation’s Leon and Fay Brachman Young Leadership Award. He was also named one of the community’s “Movers and Shakers” by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. In 1988 and in 1992, B’nai B’rith named him “Jewish Man of the Year.”

Co-chairs for the evening are Maddy Lesnick and Roz Rosenthal. Serving on their Tribute Committee are Louise and Gordon Appleman, Sandra and Sol Brody, Sara Betty Gilbert, Sherri and Joseph Gorsd, Judie B. and Bob Greenman, Terri and David Halpern, Eileen and Mort House, Laurie and Howard Kelfer, Diane and Sam Kleinman, Marjorie and Alan Kottler, Louise and Hugh Lamensdorf and Phyllis and Sheldon Levy. Also, Carol and Richard Minker, Shirley and Herman Morris, Joan and Sam Rosen, Beverly and Michael Ross, Kristin and Michael Sankary, Paul Schwartz, Rose-Marie and Len Schweitzer, Cindy and Robert Simon, Natalie Simon, Roger Simon, Jude and Marc Sloter and Dorothy and Harold Winston.

Guest speaker is Ambassador Yoram Ettinger, a veteran Israeli diploma and specialist on U.S. policy in the Middle East.

Added pride for Beth-El: Their president, Marc Sloter, is one of the “Forty Under Forty” to be honored by the Fort Worth Business Press on Wednesday, May 28 at the Fort Worth Club.

B’nai B’rith recognizes Person of the Year and scholarship winners

Last Sunday evening at Mira Vista Country Club, in a total surprise announcement made by last year’s Man of the Year honoree, David Beckerman, he named local author Hollace Weiner as B’nai B’rith’s Person of the Year. An outstanding leader and historian at Beth-El Congregation, Hollace has brought various aspects of Texas Jewry to the forefront with noteworthy success and interest in her well-accepted historic books.

Isadore Garsek Lodge BB leader Charlie Freid, who has done a super job as scholarship chairman for long years, announced that this year’s winners were high school seniors, Ace Factor, son of Kim and Abe Factor and Steven Gershengoren, son of Alex and Oyueor Gershengoren. A National Merit Scholar, Steven expressed his thanks to B’nai B’rith, adding that he was the first member of his family to have the opportunity to go to college and that some day he hoped he would be able to repay this mitzvah. Steven was educated at the Hebrew Day School and Fort Worth public schools. He is the grandson of Ilya and Udel Elgert, members of the JFS Seniors group who were unable to attend the dinner, and the brother of Lena, who was excited to see her younger brother so honored.

Brandon Chicotsky, son of Donna and Robert Chicotsky, spoke about “Hillel on the College Campus.” Foster Owen is president of the Isadore Garsek Lodge. Alex Nason is the retiring president.

‘Daytimers’ to tour Japanese Garden

Next event for the “Daytimers” will be a tour of the 7.5-acre Japanese Garden in the Fort Worth Botanic Garden on Wednesday, May 21. The group will meet at Beth-El at noon for lunch, and then carpool to the garden.

The garden was built in 1970 and many of the plants and construction materials were donated by Fort Worth’s sister city, Nagaoka, Japan. Attractions at the garden include a meditation garden, a moon viewing deck, a pagoda and fish food dispensers to feed the hundreds of koi in the garden’s ponds.

At the heart of the landscape is a system of ponds, surrounded by hills and enclosed by a network of interconnected paths, pavilions, bridges and decks. Built in the tradition of Edo-period (1600–1868) stroll gardens, the Fort Worth Japanese Garden integrates several styles of garden design into a single landscape. Examples of the “Hill-and-Pond,” “Dry Landscape,” “Tea Garden” and “Enclosed-Garden” types are all expressed here. The garden features architectural elements derived from venues historically associated with Japanese gardening. Included are Buddhist temples, Imperial villas, the estates of Samurai lords and the townhouse gardens of wealthy merchants.

Lunch will be catered by Jason’s Deli, and guests have a choice of turkey breast, chicken salad or tuna salad. The $10 charge includes lunch and the garden tour. For persons who wish to attend the tour only, cost is $4. Mike Blanc is arranging car pools for the trip from Beth-El to the garden.

For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Fort Worth Hadassah ‘Lunch and Learn’ at Beth-El, June 1

The Fort Worth Chapter of Hadassah is excited to invite all women and their teenage daughters from the Fort Worth and Tarrant County area to a “Lunch and Learn” on the important issue of preventing cervical cancer. Beginning at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 1, at Beth-El Congregation, Hadassah will present a program dedicated to safeguarding the health of women everywhere through preventive health practices and treatment.

This informative program will empower women of all ages to make informed choices for the improvement of their own, their daughters’, their aunts’ and their families’ personal health and well-being.

Unlike most cancers, cervical cancer can be prevented. However, most women don’t know that the Pap test may not find abnormal cells in the cervix until cancer has already developed. There is now a new test that can be given along with the Pap smear to detect the virus that causes the abnormal cells. It’s called the human papillomavirus test (HPV test). Recent research has shown that HPV is the cause in almost all cases of cervical cancer. The two age groups of women most susceptible to HPV and cervical cancer are between the ages of 15-27 and 55-75. Experts who are qualified to answer all of your questions include:

• Valerie Lowenstein, Hadassah national chair of women’s health and HPV and cervical cancer. Valerie is the immediate past president of the Boston Chapter of Hadassah.

• Nancy Jo Reedy, R.N., CNM, MPH. Recipient of the 2007 Hattie Hemschemeyer Award, the most prestigious award of the American College of Nurse Midwives. Nancy Jo’s many accomplishments include founding the midwifery practice at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, which is the largest midwifery service in the United States. She is currently the director of THC Nurse Midwives in Fort Worth and has a long-standing commitment to underserved women and to the nurse-midwifery profession, caring for women and babies.

• Sue Storry, R.N., CNM, M.S. Sue is a board certified nurse-midwife and is a specialist in HPV and cervical cancer. The mother of two grown children, she is warm, open and approachable, perfect for addressing the concerns of both teenagers and their mothers!

Hadassah has a working luncheon committee of Rhoda Bernstein, Alicia Buescher, Jill Imber, Karen Telschow Johnson, Randee Kaitcer, Lihi Zabari Kamen, Karen Kaplan, Mona Karten, Elyse Kitterman, Posy McMillen, Orit Paytan, Zoë Stein Pierce, Debby Rice, Naomi Rosenfield, Cindy Simon, and Laurie Werner. Mark your calendar now to be at Beth-El Congregation on Sunday, June 1, at 12:30.

For more information, you can contact Debby Rice at 817-332-0022, Lihi Kamen at 817-764-3452 or Jill Imber at 817-926-7968.

Community gala to celebrate Israel at 60

Join in the party on Mother’s Day as we honor Israel at 60! A community birthday gala celebrating 60 years of independence will be held Sunday, May 11, 6:30 to 10:30 p.m., at Beth-El Congregation, 4900 Briarhaven.

Step through the doors and find your senses assaulted by the tastes, aromas and sounds of Israel. Listen and dance to modern Israeli, Classic, Yemenite and Chassidic melodies sung by sabra Yoel Sharabi, who will captivate you with his wide repertoire and dynamic style. Be inspired by a short ballet piece performed by Liliya Aronov and Assaf Benchetrit, both Israelis who are now with the Texas Metropolitan Classic Ballet.

Cocktails will be served at 6:30, and dinner will be served at 7:30. Dietary laws will be observed. Cocktail attire is requested.

Tickets are $25 per person and may be purchased with cash at the Federation office; by checks sent to 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109; or by credit card by calling 817-569-0892.

Babysitting is available by reservation only.

All reservations must be made by May 5.

This event is sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County with financial support from the Foundation of the Jewish Federation, Dan Danciger/Fort Worth Hebrew Day School Supporting Foundation, the Molly Roth Fund, the Israeli Community of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, Yad B’Yad/HaShomer, and Ruthy and Eldad Erez; and endorsed by Beth-El Congregation, Congregation Ahavath Sholom, Congregation Beth Israel, Congregation Beth Shalom, the WRJ groups of Beth-El and Beth Shalom, Hadassah, the Jewish Education Agency, Brite Divinity School and TCU Jewish Studies, and UNT Jewish Studies.

‘Daytimers’ enjoy Broadway show tunes

“Always,” “Alexander’s Ragtime Band” and a special version of “My Favorite Things” were only a sample of the greatest show tunes ever written for Broadway. These, and the entire program, were written by Jewish composers, and Genie Long and Brad Volk entertained the “Daytimers” with a wonderful afternoon of their music.

Genie told the group that it was hard to find a hit tune that was not written by a Jewish composer or lyricist. The large crowd responded enthusiastically, and occasionally sang along with a program of old favorites. And Genie was presented with a spray of flowers by Corrine Jacobson.

Next event for the “Daytimers” will be a tour of the Fort Worth Japanese Garden, a 7.5-acre Japanese Garden in the Fort Worth Botanic Garden on Wednesday, May 21. The group will meet at Beth-El at noon for lunch, and then carpool to the garden.

The garden was built in 1970 and many of the plants and construction materials were donated by Fort Worth‘s sister city, Nagaoka, Japan. Attractions at the garden include a meditation garden, a moon viewing deck, a pagoda and fish food dispensers to feed the hundreds of koi in the garden’s ponds.

For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129; or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Community Yom HaZikaron service at Ahavath Sholom, Tuesday, May 6

A community Yom HaZikaron service will be held at Congregation Ahavath Sholom, Tuesday, May 6, 7 p.m. This service, commemorating Israel’s fallen soldiers, 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 of the soldiers, those who died in the years preceding the creation of the state of Israel and those who have died since then to ensure its continued existence. This event 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. For more information, please call the Federation office at 817-569-0892.

Israeli ensemble, child prodigy Alon Petrilin to give concert, June 1

We have all heard of “once in a lifetime” opportunities. Congregation Ahavath Sholom will present one such activity — a concert by the Kiryat Bialik Youth Violin Ensemble, featuring child prodigy pianist, Alon Petrilin, to help celebrate the 60th anniversary of Israel.

The concert will take place Sunday, June 1, 6:15 p.m., at Ahavath Sholom, 4050 S. Hulen. The entire community is invited. A reception with the musicians will follow.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Beth-El seniors celebrate seder

The Senior “Mini” Seder had a record crowd of 150 people to celebrate Passover on Tuesday, April 15. Thanks to the generosity and, of course, the culinary expertise of B’nai B’rith International under the cooking skills of Harry Kahn and his “minyan” of minions, everyone was treated to a wonderful meal. Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger and Rabbi Baruch Zeilicovich shared in the honor of leading the seder. Prior to the start of the seder, seniors Arianna and Armenek Cherkosov treated the attendees with Jewish music on the violin and piano. A big thank-you to the members of Hadassah and the Sisterhood of the Temple in Colleyville for their generosity. All participating JFS seniors and some community families in need were able to have Pesach “fixin’s” to help them observe the holiday. The senior program is going strong but always has room for new members. It meets every day at Temple Beth-El from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Please call Hedy Collins, senior program director, at 817-569-0898 if more information is needed.

Diana Krompass receives awards

On April 17, Diana Krompass received two awards at Tarrant County College’s 2008 Student Salon. The salon is a show of all the artwork for students at TCC.

She received first place in Water Media for her painting of flamingos and another award for her mixed media painting entitled “From Generation to Generation.” The latter was a painting using various mediums in pastel colors which had a menorah and the words l’dor v’dor in Hebrew on it.

Diana has been in our community for 20-plus years and has been a teacher at Lil Goldman preschool for over 10 years. She is married to Mathew Krompass and is the proud mother of Liel, Mayan and Amit. Liel graduated from Duke University and is currently attending Harvard Law School. Mayan attends the University of Texas and is currently in Israel for a year. Amit is currently attending Paschal High School.

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Around the Town — April 2008

Posted on 09 April 2008 by admin

Around the Town with Rene
Hollace Weiner’s newest book a must-read

Fort Worth author and historian Hollace Ava Weiner is on a roll! Her recently published “Jewish ‘Junior League’: The Rise and Demise of the Fort Worth Council of Jewish Women” is expected to reach the heights and popularity of several of Weiner’s previous books.

“From its founding in 1901 through the second half of the twentieth century, the Fort Worth Section of the National Council of Jewish Women fostered the integration of its members into the social and cultural fabric of the greater community. Along the way, it championed important social causes, including an Americanization school for immigrants and literacy initiatives. But by 1999, facing declining membership — and according to some, decreased relevance to the lives of Jewish women — the Council’s national and local leaders found themselves confronting the end of the group’s existence.

“Hollace Ava Weiner has mined the records of this organization at both the local and national levels, interviewed surviving members and examined Fort Worth newspapers and other local historical documents. Her lively and careful study reveals that the Fort Worth Council of Jewish Women was, in fact, so successful that it prepared the way for its own obsolescence. By century’s end, the members and the times had changed more rapidly than the Council.

“While ‘Jewish “Junior League’ focuses on a particular organization in a particular city, it simultaneously serves as a case study for the exploration of important themes of women’s and Jewish history throughout the 20th century.

“Hollace Ava Weiner, a former writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, is also the author of ‘Jewish Stars in Texas: Rabbis and Their Work,’ now available in paperback from Texas A&M University Press. She is the editor of ‘Lone Stars of David,’ a coffee table anthology that won the 2006 Deolece Parmelee Award from the Texas Historical Foundation. A native of Washington, D.C., she resides in Fort Worth” with her husband, Dr. Bruce Weiner.

The book is chock-full of photos of well-known women and will bring to mind much of the good deeds done by Council and their dedicated members.

Harry Labovitz joins local MetLife firm

On the business scene, MetLife Financial Group of Texas, an office of MetLife, is pleased to announce that Harry Labovitz has joined the firm as a financial services representative.

Labovitz is a longtime resident of Fort Worth and the past president of Congregation Ahavath Sholom and Mid-Continent Region, USCJ.

MetLife Financial Group of Texas, an office of MetLife, offers a broad array of financial products and services including life, disability income, long-term care insurance and annuities, mutual funds and investment products. The company is located at 6500 West Fwy., Suite 950, Fort Worth, TX 76116, 817-377-5300.

MetLife is a subsidiary of MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET), a leading provider of insurance and financial services with operations throughout the United States and Latin America, Europe and Asia Pacific regions. Through its domestic and international subsidiaries and affiliates, MetLife, Inc. reaches more than 70 million customers around the world. MetLife is the largest life insurer in the United States (based on life insurance in-force). The MetLife companies offer life insurance, annuities, auto and home insurance, retail banking services and other financial services to individuals, as well as group insurance, reinsurance and retirement and savings products and services to corporations and other institutions. For more information, please visit www.metlife.com.

On the political scene

Prominent Republican politico and activist Craig Goldman will manage the southwest operation for Republican presidential contender John McCain. From a recent issue of the Dallas Morning News, we note that Goldman ran McCain’s Straight Talk American political action committee during the 2006 election cycle. It includes Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kansas, Oklahoma and Nebraska. Goldman was an aide to former U.S. Sen. Phil Gramm. He ran unsuccessfully for the GOP nomination for the Texas House seat to replace Rep. Ann Mowery, who resigned. Raised in Fort Worth, he is the son of Carol and Ronnie Goldman.

Manchester Dance Ensemble to perform for Yom HaShoah program

On Thursday, May 1, 7 p.m. at Beth-El Congregation, the Tarrant County community will commemorate the Holocaust with its annual service and program. This year we are honored to have the Manchester Dance Ensemble perform their “Spirit Unbroken” and “In Anticipation of a New Nation.” Both pieces were choreographed by Lesa Broadhead, who is also the artistic director of the Manchester Dance Ensemble. These two dance works combine contemporary dance and music in order to emphasize the healing aspects, the power and the impact of the Holocaust as well as the formation of the state of Israel. On May 16, 1999, the MDE performed at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the first dance performance in the museum’s existence. The MDE has performed diverse works, from “Cinderella” and “Sleeping Beauty” to “We Shall Stand Tall,” dedicated to the victims of 9/11, and “At Last,” dedicated to Martin Luther King, Jr. The ensemble, which has performed in their native Ohio, in New York and in Washington, D.C. is a pre-professional, not-for-profit company of talented dancers between the ages of 11 and 18.

This 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, Brite Divinity School and TCU Jewish Studies Program, Martin Hochster Memorial Post #755–Jewish War Veterans, Multicultural Alliance, TCU Hillel/University Ministries, Congregation Ahavath Sholom, Beth-El Congregation, Congregation Beth Shalom and Congregation Beth Israel. For more information, please call the Federation office at 817-569-0892.

Around the Town with Rene
Fort Worth Hadassah Lunch and Learn: ‘What Women Need to Know about HPV and Cervical Cancer’

The Fort Worth Chapter of Hadassah is excited to invite women from Fort Worth and Tarrant County to a special Lunch and Learn on Sunday, June 1, 2008 at Beth-El Congregation. Beginning at 12:30 p.m., they will present an educational session to teach important facts about cervical cancer and how to prevent it.

The program encourages women to take their health into their own hands, learn the facts and spread the word. Hadassah’s “What Women Need to Know” was designed to empower women with key information and take advantage of one of the most important talents women have: communication.

Unlike most cancers, cervical cancer can be prevented. Did you know that there’s a new test you can have along with your Pap smear to detect the virus that causes HPV? It’s called the human papillomavirus test (HPV test). Recent research has shown that HPV is the cause in almost all cases of cervical cancer. Did you know that the two ages women are most susceptible to HPV and cervical cancer are 15–30 and 55–75?

Come to this luncheon and take control of your cervical cancer risk! Experts on hand to answer questions include Valerie Lowenstein, immediate past president and national chair of “What Women Need to Know about HPV and Cervical Cancer”; Melissa Mendelson, National Hadassah women’s health and advocacy associate specializing in HPV and cervical cancer; and Dr. Douglas Tatum, assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth and the city’s leading expert on HPV and cervical cancer.

Hadassah’s working luncheon committee includes Debby Rice, Lihi Zabari Kamen, Karen Johnson, Elyse Kitterman, Karen Kaplan, Jill Imber, Cindy Simon, Randee Kaitcer, Orit Paytan, Mona Karten, Zoë Stein Pierce, Posy McMillen, Naomi Rosenfield, Laurie Werner and Rhoda Bernstein.

For more information, please call Debby Rice at 817-332-0022 or Lihi Zabari Kamen at 817-764-3452. See you there!

Thirteenth Mitzvah Day more successful than ever

Two hundred people representing Fort Worth’s religious community — Beth-El, Ahavath Sholom, and Arlington’s Beth Shalom — participated in the 13th Mitzvah Day on April 6. Sixteen nonprofit agencies across Tarrant County benefited from the various projects. The Blood Drive collected 27 units of blood, which exceeded the target goal of 20. The mitzvot will even extend beyond Tarrant County since one of the activities was “Cards for Soldiers,” which will be sent to U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Mitzvah Day Co-chairs Dan Halpern and Jenny Solomon from Beth-El, Ben Weiger from Beth Shalom and Elaine Bumpas from Ahavath Sholom are grateful to all the volunteers who helped make the event a success.

The co-chairs thank Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger, Rabbi Baruch Zeilicovich and Rabbi Ned Soltz for their consistent and unwavering support. Additionally, thanks to the three congregation presidents, Mark Sloter, Al Fagin and Stuart Snow. Thanks also to the wonderfully helpful Beth-El staff, who are always present and know exactly what to do to make an event like this run so smoothly.

Dan Halpern acknowledged men from the two congregations who provided the food for 200 hungry workers. Men’s Club President Marvin Beleck and the Ahavath Sholom Men’s Club provided breakfast. Beth-El MRJ President Mike Kalpin and the Men of Reform Judaism provided the delicious lunch.

Halpern acknowledged Registrars Corrine Jacobson and Ellen Rubinson, as well as Mileyna Razack, who coordinated the T-shirts. Because of some last-minute publicity, there were dozens of people who walked in and wanted to help.

Finally, Halpern expressed his thanks to the team captains: All Church Home for Children, David Levine; Cards for Soldiers, Gloria Sepp; Carter Blood Bank, Genie Long; Friends of the River, Laurie Kelfer; Gladney Center, Joan Katz and Carol Minker; Habitat for Humanity, Marty Rubinson; Hebrew Rest, Jerry Weiner; Hospice, Terri Halpern; Food Bank, Linda Hoffman; Meals On Wheels, Lynell Bond; Ronald McDonald House, Howard Bellet, Faye Slater and Ann Cobert; Oak Park Retirement Center, Monica Braverman; Ellen Rubinson, Linda Hoffman, Angie Kitzman and Sonja Stein.

Brandon Chicotsky to speak about anti-Semitism on campus

Brandon Chicotsky, a young key figure on the local, state and national scene, will be the guest speaker at Fort Worth’s Isadore Garsek Lodge’s B’nai B’rith Jewish Person of the Year Dinner on May 4 at Ridglea Country Club. Born and raised in Fort Worth, he is the son of Donna and Robert Chicotsky.

He will speak on “The New Hate: Defending Israel and The Jewish Identity on College Campuses.”

Brandon Chicotsky is the founder of Texas Ventures, an entrepreneurs’ organization offering early-stage investments to young companies. He is an alumnus of the University of Texas at Austin, where he began acting on his passions for public service and strengthening the U.S.-Israel relationship.

He is a champion for Texas Hillel, the center for Jewish student life at his alma mater. On campus, he worked with Texas Hillel as a member of Texans For Israel to battle Israel’s detractors and anti-Semitic academia. In 2006 the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) awarded Brandon and his activist colleagues the Duke Rudman Award, their highest activist award for campus pro-Israel advocacy.

In 2007, Brandon established an Israel Travel Fund, which financed his third study abroad in the Middle East region. He is a member of the Texas Breakfast Club, AIPAC, NORPAC, Hillel International, B’nai B’rith, and Texas Ventures.

During his four years in college, Brandon worked on several national races. As a former president of Austin’s largest political charter, he co-managed a successful U.S. presidential campaign office of 40 interns and hundreds of volunteers. The office gained enough attention to garner a visit and cover story from NBC’s Tom Brokaw.

In the summer of 2006, Brandon organized pro-Israel students along the East Coast to join him in Senator Joe Lieberman’s re-election campaign in Connecticut. Prior to this campaign work, he interned in the Washington, D.C. headquarters of AIPAC. Some of his department work included meetings with candidates running for federal office to educate them on Israeli issues.

Brandon has studied abroad with numerous visits to the Middle East, Mexico and Central America. His trips to the Middle East region have included meetings with the Israeli military, cultural leaders and government officials over issues of Western economic interest, military conflict and counter-terrorism. He is an active advocate for America’s interest in the Middle East and frequents Washington, D.C. to lobby on legislative items concerning the region.

Currently, Brandon runs Texas Ventures in Austin and aids local candidates for public office. He aspires to work in the Jewish Liaison’s Office of the White House in 2009 and will pursue graduate studies in public affairs.

Rabbi Mecklenburger recognized

Congratulations to Beth-El’s Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger, who was recognized in Fort Worth Texas magazine’s March issue as one of Fort Worth’s “14 Brilliant Minds.” Writer Gail Bennison says that “the 14 gifted and very accomplished individuals recognized … have pushed their life’s work in innovative directions for the good of all mankind.” Mecklenburger was singled out as a “Modern Day Philosopher” for his accomplishments within Beth-El and within the Fort Worth community. He is the only religious leader recognized in this issue.

Mother’s Day party honors Israel at 60

The community is invited to join in a significant event at a party on Mother’s Day honoring Israel at 60. The community birthday gala will celebrate 60 years of Israel’s independence.

The May 11 evening celebration will be held at Beth-El Congregation, 4900 Briarhaven, Fort Worth.

As you step through the doors you’ll find your senses assaulted by the tastes, aromas and sounds of Israel. Listen and dance to modern Israeli, classic, Yemenite and Chassidic melodies sung by sabra Yoel Sharabi, who will captivate you with his wide repertoire and dynamic style. You will be inspired by a short ballet piece performed by Liliya Aronov and Assaf Benchetrit, both Israelis who are now with the Texas Metropolitan Classic Ballet.

Cocktails will be served at 6:30 p.m. and dinner will follow at 7:30 p.m. Dietary laws will be observed. Cocktail attire is suggested.

Tickets are $25 per person and may be purchased with cash at the Federation office; by checks sent to 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109; or by credit card by calling 817-569-0892. Babysitting is available by reservation only. All reservations must be made by May 5, 2008.

Sponsors include the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County with financial support from the Foundation of the Jewish Federation, Dan Danciger/Fort Worth Hebrew Day School Supporting Foundation, the Molly Roth Fund, the Israeli Community of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, Yad B’Yad/HaShomer, and Ruthy and Eldad Erez.

The gala is endorsed by Congregations Beth-El, Ahavath Sholom, Beth Israel, Beth Shalom, the WRJ groups of Beth-El and Beth Shalom, Hadassah, the Jewish Education Agency, Brite Divinity School and TCU Jewish Studies, and UNT Jewish Studies.

JWI closing luncheon, May 7

Jewish Women International are secure in the choice of their president for the coming year. Ina Singer, who has served as head of the group for the last eight years, will continue leading JWI to greater successes. Ina tells the TJP that the closing luncheon will be held on Wednesday, May 7, 11:30 a.m. at the Olive Garden. Luncheon reservations are $7.50 and should be made with Rita Hoffman, 817-370-7209. JWI makes significant contributions to many local charitable and service organizations.

Around the Town with Rene

Lizzy Michan, Marc Bumpuss, Karen Silverberg, Steven Silverberg, Emily Cobert, and Carly Karten at the Community Purim Carnival.
Rosanne and Billy Rosenthal honored
Fort Worth philanthropists Rosanne and Billy Rosenthal came in for well-deserved added honors last week when the Multicultural Alliance presented their major award to them. Billy is the third member of his immediate family to receive the award. His father, the late Manny Rosenthal, noted community leader, received the award 20 years ago, and his mother, Roz Rosenthal, was recipient of the award nine years ago. The alliance was formerly known for years as the National Conference for Christians and Jews and later as the National Conference for Community and Justice.

In the past 29 years, the Rosenthals have been major benefactors to Cook Children’s Medical Center, Susan Komen for the Cure, Trinity Valley School, the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Texas Christian University, Beth-El, Modern Museum, Texas A&M, UT and the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, among others.
Among the past recipients of the award are Rabbi Robert Schur, M.J. Neeley, Dr. Edwin Guinn, Dr. John Richardson, Dr. Frank Cohen, David Beckerman, Van Cliburn, Hazel Harvey Peace and, last year, Tim Sear, Alcon executive.

Dinner chairs were Howard and Joan Katz, longtime friends of the Rosenthals. In acknowledging his friends, Howard said, “The work of the Multicultural Alliance, to teach young people that we can all be different but that our DNA is pretty much the same and that those differences enhance our society — that’s what Billy and Rosanne have demonstrated in their lives.”

Proceeds from the dinner support the Alliance’s programs, such as Camp CommUNITY for high school students and a weeklong retreat for seminary students. Both programs offer opportunities for young people to share life experiences with people of other cultural, racial and religious backgrounds.

Beth-El’s 13th annual Mitzvah Day, Sunday, April 6
Across Tarrant County, members of three Jewish congregations will be engaged in meaningful volunteer activities as part of Beth-El Congregation’s 13th annual Mitzvah Day. Over 200 volunteers will combine their efforts on behalf of 16 community-wide projects on Sunday, April 6. Mitzvah Day originated in Tarrant County at Beth-El Congregation, and congregants from Fort Worth’s Ahavath Sholom and Arlington’s Beth Shalom continue to join in giving back to our community.

A wide array of volunteer projects will meet the needs of almost every volunteer. Planting, building, sorting clothing and food donations, cooking or making cards for American service men and women are a few of the opportunities available, according to Chair Dan Halpern.

A new project for this year is assisting “Friends of the River” in a cleanup of the Trinity River and its banks. Volunteers can also assist Meals on Wheels to assemble and deliver pet food donations for Meals on Wheels clients’ four-legged friends.

Families with children can find child-friendly activities like preparing lunch at Ronald McDonald House for delivery to families staying in the house and at local hospitals. The Tarrant Area Food Bank also provides an opportunity for families to work together to help those less fortunate.

Finally, Halpern encourages everyone to double their mitzvah by giving blood to Carter BloodCare. There is a constant need in Tarrant County for donated blood, as someone needs blood every three seconds. The bloodmobile will be available through the afternoon, and Halpern encourages volunteers to come back for lunch at 12:30 and stay to donate blood.

Agency projects include All Church Home for Children, Friends of the River, Gladney Center for Adoption, Habitat for Humanity, Hebrew Rest Cemetery, Hospice, Meals on Wheels of Tarrant County, Mission Arlington, Mission Metroplex/YWCA, Oak Park Retirement Center, Ronald McDonald House, Tarrant Area Food Bank and Women’s Center.

Mitzvah Day begins with check-in and breakfast, followed by a short prayer service at 9 a.m. in the Great Hall. By 9:30, volunteers will be heading out to agencies throughout the area to work. Lunch will be provided at 12:30 for those finished with their projects.

Pre-registration is not required, although Halpern encourages potential volunteers interested in a particular agency project to let him know in advance.

“But if you just come on April 6, we will find something for you to do,” he says.
For more information or to sign up for a particular project, call Dan Halpern at 817-426-3239.

‘Shushan Idol’ hits Beth-El
Hundreds of people attended the Community Purim Carnival on Sunday, March 23 at Beth-El Congregation. Lunch was served by the Beth-El Brotherhood while the attendees shmoozed and bought tickets for the carnival. The celebration began with Tarrant County’s first annual “Shushan Idol” show, written by award-winning Richard Allen. Although Mordechai, King Ahasuerus, Queen Esther, Vashti and Haman vied for the Idol title, the Jewish community was the winner this year. By the sounds of laughter and clapping, it seems that the contest was a big success.

The carnival was full of fun and even included a station for each of the Purim mitzvot. Children who visited the Mishloach Manot (sending gifts), Reading the Megillah, Seudat Purim (meal of Purim) and Matanot Le’evyonim (gifts for the needy) booths enjoyed giving, getting and eating hamantaschen! In addition, they were rewarded with extra tickets for participating in all four booths. The youngsters also enjoyed face-painting, pie-throwing, ring toss, Mordechai’s Muffin Game, Shushan Shuffleboard, Purim Plinko, Wheel of Purim, Hit Haman’s Hat, and two bounce houses. Everyone enjoyed the sno-cones, popcorn and hamantaschen. The committee — Ilana Knust, Rivka Marco, Ruthy Erez, and Shirley Ben-David — worked very hard to make sure the carnival was both fun and educational. The smiles on the tired faces as they left seemed to say they had succeeded.

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, many Tarrant County organizations helped to make the carnival a success. BBYO, FWUSY, FWFTY, the Junior Youth Group of Beth-El, the religious schools of Beth-El and Ahavath Sholom, JEA, Beth-El’s WRJ, Beth-El Brotherhood and TCU Hillel.

From Mona
Hi all,
It’s been a long, busy winter. I don’t know about you, but I sure am glad it’s spring! And we’re having another Girls Night Out. I would love to see all of you there. We’ll be meeting at Lucile’s on Camp Bowie at 7 p.m. next Thursday, April 3. If you can be there, e-mail Cindy Simon at teamsimon@sbcglobal.net.
The Regional Conference is coming up on May 16–18 in McAllen. We’ll be honoring our wonderful Laurie Werner as she steps down as region president. If you’d like to attend, please let me know.
Enjoy this pretty weather before it changes again!
Mona

WRJ breakfast May 4
Women of Reform Judaism will hold a Membership Appreciation Breakfast on May 4.

The menu includes quiche, fresh-fruit salad and coffee as well as good company and a special program.

All Sisterhood members will be honored with a free breakfast and enthralling speakers in Beth-El’s Great Hall. This is your opportunity to mingle with old friends and make some new ones. Members will vote for WRJ’s 2008–2009 executive board at the event of the year! This is the way the WRJ board thanks their membership for their support and dedication in helping the Beth-El Sisterhood reach new heights in 2008. The daughter and granddaughter of the legendary Stanley Marcus (as in “Neiman Marcus”) will speak during the breakfast meeting about their new book, “Reflection of the Man: The Photographs of Stanley Marcus.” In their first Fort Worth appearance, these two women — Jerried Marcus Smith and professional photographer Allison V. Smith — will tell the stories behind the pictures.
We know of Stanley Marcus as the retailing wizard who turned Neiman Marcus into an international shopping destination. However, many of us did not know that he was a gifted photographer who snapped candid shots of the rich and famous. Books will be for sale, and Marcus’s daughter and granddaughter will sign them.

This program is chaired by fellow WRJ “sisters” Carolyn Bauman Cruz, Solace Weiner and Liz Cooper. Questions? Please contact Carolyn Bauman Cruz at carobaucruz@sbcglobal.net, or Liz Cooper at liz.cooper@tx.rr.com. Want to bring a friend? No problem. Non-WRJ members are welcome to attend for a nominal charge of $5. Reservations should be made with Liz Cooper at liz.cooper@tx.rr.com.

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Around the Town — March 2008

Posted on 09 March 2008 by admin

Around the Town with Rene
Federation allocates $8,600 to Taglit-birthright israel

Taglit-birthright israel received an allocation of $8,600 from Federation’s 2007 Campaign to ensure the continued existence of the Jewish people by strengthening Jewish identity, Jewish communities and solidarity with Israel. Birthright israel has been increasing the annual number of Jews visiting Israel by providing the gift of first-time educational trips to Israel for thousands of Jewish young adults, mostly unaffiliated with any Jewish community. Thus far, over 150,000 young adults, ages 18–26, have participated in this first-time peer-group educational trip of 10 days.

Research continues to show that a visit to Israel relatively early in life is one of the most effective ways to maintain Jewish identity and continuity. Participants in past birthright trips report consistently stronger feelings about “connection to local Jewish community, to Jewish history, to worldwide Jewry and to Israel.” Major goals being accomplished by birthright israel include:

• Making a significant difference in the lives of young Jews between the ages of 18 and 26

• Making a meaningful difference in the relationship between Israel and Jewish communities

• Offering tools to broaden the basis of Jewish education

On a recent birthright trip, one of our Tarrant County college students, Jared Snow, remarked, “The highlight of the trip had to be our visit to the Western Wall. Returning home, I knew I would always look back at this 10-day journey as one that helped me strengthen my Jewish roots and establish a true affinity towards Israel.”

For more information about Taglit-birthright israel or how to take advantage of this free experience in Israel, contact Federation Executive Director Mort House or Mona Karten at the Federation, 817-569-0892.

Taglit-birthright israel is only one of 47 recipient organizations which received allocations from the Federation’s 2007 Annual Campaign. Please support Campaign 2008 by contacting Mort or Mona at the Federation. Your support makes a difference in the lives of thousands of people and will make a difference in your life as well.

Five previous presidents of University Democrats at UT–Austin open Dobie office for Barack Obama

The past five presidents of University Democrats at UT–Austin have come together to open and manage an office in Dobie Mall for the Barack Obama campaign to help with get-out-the-vote efforts on campus and in student living areas. Recognizing Sen. Obama’s ability to energize the youth and college vote and his willingness to change the political atmosphere in Washington, the presidents are managing this public venue to help win Texas.

The past five presidents (and their presidential terms and contact) represent students from across the state of Texas:

• Marcus Ceniceros, El Paso (Fall 2004–Spring 2005), 915-383-2800

• Alex Hunt, Corpus Christi (Fall 2005), 361-533-1842

• Brandon Chicotsky, Fort Worth (Spring 2006), 817-800-1798

• Nick Chu, Grapevine (Fall 2006–Spring 2007), 817-773-6905

• Ben Trotter, Wichita Falls (Fall 2007), 940-631-0095

“We intend for this office to be the premier venue for students to phone-bank, take on campus visibility and get students to vote,” the past presidents said. “Sen. Obama has done a tremendous amount to mobilize the youth and get them excited about the political process; now it’s our turn to do our part. Barack Obama is a once-in-a-generation kind of politician and has the ability to shape the next generation of voters. We want his vision for America to come to fruition. This office will make that possible.”

University Democrats does not endorse presidential candidates as a group, but this group of student leaders felt it necessary to take their support to campus. The five previous presidents are ready to offer campus the opportunity to help Sen. Obama win the Democratic nomination and help press toward his victory in November.

“All five previous presidents have spent countless hours helping the Democratic Party and we will use our experience and resources to help Barack Obama win the nomination. This is our best effort yet.”

‘Daytimers’ hear Tamás Ungár

Over 60 “Daytimers” were impressed by a performance, last Wednesday, by pianist Tamás Ungár, executive director of Piano Texas Festival and member of the TCU piano faculty.

Dr. Ungár gave the “Daytimers” an intimate look behind the scenes to learn how a piece of classical music is constructed, and the various themes and keys developed. Roz Rosenthal commented at the “Daytimers” committee meeting what an impressive and educational program it was. Committee members thanked Rosanne and Bill Margolis for working the door, and Al and Sylvia Wexler for managing the luncheon buffet table.

Next event for the “Daytimers” will be a trip to the Amon Carter Museum to see the exhibit, “Intimate Modernism: Fort Worth Circle Artists in the 1940s.” Following a docent-guided tour of the exhibit, the group will gather in the Carter Members’ Lounge for lunch catered by Ol’ South Pancake House.

Lunch and museum tour are $8/person. Guests have a choice of kosher salami, turkey breast or tuna salad sandwich. All include chips and cookie, soft drink or bottled water. Or guests may attend for just the tour for $3.

For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

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Around the Town — February 2008

Posted on 09 February 2008 by admin

Beth-El Congregation Race for the Cure Education Night to feature Dr. Robyn Young

Beth-El’s Women of Reform Judaism will present experts on the cutting edge of research and treatment for breast cancer to answer your questions at a Race for the Cure Education Night. This panel is free and open to anyone in the Jewish community.

Dr. Robyn Young is a medical oncologist, focusing her practice solely on breast cancer. She is the director of the Breast Center at the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders in Fort Worth. WRJ is teaming Dr. Young with Sarah Pirzadeh, MS, CGC, a genetic counselor working at the Moncrief Cancer Resource Center.

If you have a family history of breast cancer or wonder what the genetic risks might be for you and your children, you should know that many women who get breast cancer have no family history of the disease. Education is your best defense against breast cancer!

The program will be held on Wednesday. March 5, 6–8 p.m. at Beth-El, 4900 Briarhaven Road, Fort Worth.

Seating and food are limited to people who RSVP by March 1. RSVPs should be made to Roberta Gerrick, robertasboutique@aol.com.

Women’s event at Ahavath Sholom

I have it on good firsthand authority from my No. 1 daughter, Linda Wisch Davidsohn of Dallas, that you are in for a special treat when Naomi Ackerman presents “Celebrate Jewish Women’s History Month with ‘Flowers Aren’t Enough.’”

The program will be held at Congregation Ahavath Sholom on Monday, March 3. The women’s event 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.

Lunch will be served at 11:45 a.m. with the program following at 12:15 p.m.

Fees are $18 per person for luncheon and program or $10 per person for program only. Your check or charge is your reservation. Reservations for the lunch, program or babysitting, using your credit card, should be made immediately by calling the Federation office, 817-569-0892. Please make checks payable to the Jewish Federation and send to 4049 Kingsridge, Fort Worth, TX 76109.

“Flowers Aren’t Enough” is the brainchild of Naomi Ackerman. In 1998, she was invited to do a program on domestic violence for a group under the auspices of Israel’s welfare ministry. Instead of a standard lecture on the topic, Naomi created an original monologue based on interviews with abused women at a shelter in Jerusalem. Since that time she has performed this program in Israel, the United States, Australia and many other places.

Ms. Ackerman holds a B.A. from Hebrew University and teaching credentials from the David Yellin Teachers Seminary in Israel. With stage credits in drama and musicals as well as television and film, she is also a professional clown and stilt walker. Currently she specializes in conflict resolution, working to promote peace between Arabs and Israelis. Her most recent project is “Women’s Voices,” a show featuring stories about Middle Eastern women. For more information go to www.naomiackerman.com.

Committee members include Terri Kravetz, Linda Hoffman and Susan Fine.

Busy winter for the Sherwins

For Daniel and Blanca Sherwin and their families, this Chanukah was not only a celebration of lights this winter but also a celebration of the two lives that came into theirs. The arrival of twin boys, Seth Isaac and Matthew Louis, on Nov. 30 ushered in a month of celebration. Blanca delivered her dos candelitas just before Chanukah’s ocho
candelitas.

Earlier that month, on Nov. 16, the Texas A&M University Texas Engineering Extension Service program along with the Mansfield Police Department honored Blanca for being an “Outstanding Instructor.” She is a commissioned peace officer and state certified instructor with the Texas Commission of Law Enforcement, Officer Standards and Education. Her award was sponsored by U.S. Senator John Cornyn, who provided the grant for training, and presented by Director Tom Sheehan of the Texas Engineering Extension Service. Blanca is recognized for providing outstanding training in Spanish for emergency responders and delivering the course to over 800 police officers in the state of Texas. She set up 44 classes throughout Texas. The training has helped police officers learn Spanish and understand the Hispanic community.

As if that wasn’t enough to celebrate, Dan Sherwin was promoted to patrol sergeant by the Mansfield Police Department on Dec. 12. The winter celebrating continued with the brit milah of Matthew and Seth on Dec. 23. Rabbi Alberto Zeilicovich of Congregation Ahavath Sholom officiated and Dr. Al Faigin, president of Ahavath Sholom, was honored as the mohel. The ceremony concluded with a beautiful poem by proud Bubbe Felice Sherwin and a song dedicated to Matthew and Seth by their aunt, Hazzan Robbi Sherwin of Austin. Blanca presented handmade coffee mugs with actual prints of the twins’ feet on them to Richard Ondrizek, M.D. of Burleson, Al Faigin, D.O. of Fort Worth, Dr. Gwen Tang of Arlington, Kevin Doody, M.D. of Bedford and Dr. Carole Rogers of Jewish Family Services in Fort Worth. Blanca recognized all the doctors for having a part in the healthy development and delivery of Matthew and Seth.

Happily kvelling over the twins are grandparents Ken and Felice Sherwin of Fort Worth, and Margo and Cliff Constable of Willow Park.

For more information on Spanish courses or classes, go to Blanca’s Web site, www.blancasherwin.com.

Bogarts in the news

My friend Herbie Bogart tells me that he and Libby made it to their 25th anniversary last Nov. 20; daughter Erin had a second son, James Elliot Scott, last August; and daughter Shawn has moved to Austin and is head cookie decorator for a notable bakery by the name of Quack’s. Shawn has been mentioned in two recent news articles. She was written up in the Austin paper last October for her Halloween cookies, and then again on an Austin American Statesman blog for her election cookies. She is also making cookies for an Obama campaign event sponsored by a women’s group that supports him.

The Austin American Statesman Feb. 19 edition said:

“Shawn Blythe and Art Silver show off the cookies that are serving as ballots in a Hillary/Obama cookie poll being conducted at Quack’s 43rd Street Bakery in Hyde Park. If you like Hillary, you buy a cookie with an H, and if you favor Obama, you buy the O cookie. Blythe, the bakery’s cookie decorator, said that, as of Tuesday afternoon, Obama had a 37-21 cookie lead. Silver, who owns the bakery, says they’re just doing this for fun. There is, however, a cookie poll tax. Each cookie costs $1.50. Vote early and often, and don’t forget to wash it down with milk.

“‘Political shortbread cookies, Hillary or Obama, your choice $1.50,’ says the sign in the cookie case. You’ve got cookies decorated with red or blue H’s or O’s. You vote by buying cookies. The poll started Monday.

“‘We did it really as a fun thing to generate some interest,’ said Art Silver, the bakery’s owner, who isn’t leaning one way or another. ‘We haven’t heard anything negative, and this is an opinionated neighborhood. So if they don’t like something, they’ll let you know.’”

Ahavath Sholom donor dinner a success

The Ladies Auxiliary of Congregation Ahavath Sholom held a very successful donor dinner Friday evening, Feb. 15. Suzie Humphries, a noted Texas celebrity, entertained the audience with anecdotes about her life. She was warm, funny and totally delightful. The Mediterranean-themed dinner, prepared by the hard-working kitchen crew, was delicious. The courses never ended. The dolmas, hummus, soup, kabobs, baked apples, baklava, etc., were all wonderful. For those who requested recipes, they are in the process of being copied and will be made available in the near future. Many thanks to volunteers Elsie Blum, Rose Sankary, Bessie Bodzy, Diane Oberstein, Bootsie Coggan and Graciela Zeilicovich. Their cooking skills and dedication to CAS seem to know no bounds! Thanks also to Maria Loya for her hard work. The new table linens were a beautiful addition and added to the ambience of the Brachman Parlor. Thanks to all for making the event a success.

Jewish soul music

Rabbi Moshe Cotel, who will be presented in “A Jewish Life at the Classical Piano” concert at Congregation Ahavath Sholom, 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28, is a composer/pianist who presents an uplifting, unique mix of classical piano and personal stories. His is unlike any other performance work, sermon or lecture. Rabbi Cotel draws you into his lessons as a masterful storyteller and artist. His presentation is humorous and uplifting. The companion piece to each lesson serves as a reflective pond that embellishes the meaning of the lesson. The music content mirrors each lesson. The accompanying piece is not an afterthought but is equal and integral to the lesson.

Cotel has received annual ASCAP awards since 1975 and is a Fellow of the American Academy in Rome. His works have been produced by major performance organizations in the United States, as well as foreign agencies including Radiotelevisione Italiana and the Israeli Broadcasting Authority. He has been the recipient of numerous awards and grants such as National Endowment for the Arts, American Music Center and Meet the Composer, and his works have been played and broadcast throughout the world. His music has been published by Transcontinental Music and Israeli Music Institute as well as Midbar Music Press, his own imprimatur. For many years he was chair of the Composition Department of the Peabody Conservatory of Music of Johns Hopkins University. He has been listed in “Who’s Who in American Music,” “International Who’s Who in Music” and “Who’s Who in World Jewry.”

A dessert reception will follow the concert. A $3 donation will be appreciated. Children are free.

This event is co-sponsored by Congregation Ahavath Sholom, the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, and Rose and Al Sankary.

Rabbi Cotel will also perform in Dallas on March 1 at 5 p.m.

Beth-El to feature three thought-provoking, entertaining, dynamic speakers on Live from NY’s 92nd St. Y

Beth-El Congregation is pleased to announce the continuation of the Live from NY’s 92nd Street YTM program series for the Tarrant County community. The satellite broadcast program series features engaging, candid and provocative interactive discussions with today’s most compelling leaders, artists and authors. This spring’s speakers are no exception. Each program will feature a speaker and discussion from the local area immediately following the broadcast. And if the speakers are not enough to entice you, a delicious dessert buffet will be served during each program. A $3 suggested donation is appreciated and all are welcome. This program is made possible though the generous support of Beth-El Congregation and the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County.

Starting on March 4 at Beth-El is nationally-syndicated radio talk show host Dennis Prager, described in the Jewish Week as “one of the three most interesting minds in American Jewish life.” Prager offers compelling arguments in favor of Judaism, developed over many years of speaking to people from virtually every religion and culture. A popular radio talk show host since 1982, he is the author of “The Nine Questions People Ask About Judaism,” “Why the Jews?” “The Reason for Anti-Semitism” and “Happiness Is a Serious Problem.” He has been a columnist for Moment magazine for 20 years. Mort House, executive director of Jewish Federation of FWTC, will lead a post-broadcast discussion.

When she speaks on April 8 at Beth-El, political commentator Cokie Roberts will describe remarkable women who helped build our nation by facing challenges and becoming reformers and advocates for education, orphans and abolition. Roberts and her husband Steve write a weekly column syndicated in newspapers across the country. Her books “From This Day Forward,” which she co-wrote with her husband, and “We Are Our Mothers’ Daughters” were best-sellers.

Federation Director Mort House said, “We are excited to have Katie Sherrod, an independent writer, producer and commentator based in Fort Worth, to lead our post-discussion. Sherrod has won several awards in newspapers, radio and TV, including the Dallas Press Club Award for her 2001 PBS documentary “Freedman’s Cemetery Memorial: A Place of Healing,” narrated by Alfre Woodard, and the Exceptional Media Merit Award from the National Women’s Political Caucus. She was inducted into the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame in 1987 for outstanding contributions in the field of communications, and named one of Fort Worth’s Outstanding Women in 1988 and Texas Woman of the Year in 1989.

Norman Lear, the creator and producer of Emmy Award-winning television series “All In the Family,” “Maude,” “Sanford and Son” and “The Jeffersons,” will be a Fort Worth guest on April 28. Lear is a pioneer of a genre of programming that addresses pressing social issues with unusual candor. He is the founder and chairman of Act III Communications, a multimedia holding company with interests in the recording, motion picture, broadcasting, publishing and licensing industries. In 1980, Lear formed People for the American Way, which defends constitutional freedoms.

Beth-El is proud to welcome two-time Emmy-Award winning writer, Richard Allen, to lead the discussion after the broadcast. Allen also serves as professor and chair of radio-television-film at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. The recipient of Emmy Awards in 2001 and 2002 as associate writer for CBS’s daytime drama, he is also a three-time Writers Guild Award nominee, and winner of a Soap Opera Award, a Media Access Award and the Environmental Media Award.

You can be part of the discussion. Experience community, here and nationally. Learn, listen and question. Together, we are one community dedicated to strengthening Jewish education.

Beth Shalom golf tournament April 29 to benefit Komen Foundation

Scott Sherwin is a proud member of Congregation Beth Shalom in Arlington and serves on its board. Scott tells the TJP: “One of Judaism’s primary requirements is to the devotion of helping those in need through tzedakah (derived from the Hebrew tzedek, meaning “justice” or what is right). So, what better choice than devoting our efforts by way of the Susan G. Komen Foundation? To that end, we are sponsoring a golf tournament on April 29 at Mansfield Country Club. Though you may be involved or participating in other worthwhile events, there are still ways you can participate and support Beth Shalom’s worthy project.

“You might consider playing or gathering others for Shalom’s first-ever benefit golf tournament ($75 per player). Or, you could be a sponsor or a contributor.

“April 7 is the deadline for enrollment and contributions.”

‘JCC Without Walls’

The week of Feb. 3–10 was full of exciting speakers and activities for the “JCC Without Walls” program. On Monday, Feb. 4, David Saul talked to a group of 20 people about “The Split Between Early Christianity and Judaism.” The next evening, Sara Pirzadeh explained “Hereditary Cancer in the Jewish Population: What You Need to Know” to a small group. On Feb. 6, Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker spoke to a group of 15 about “Proving The Bible Through Archaeology or the Development of the Alef-Bet.” Also on Wednesday, Dr. Carole Rogers and Lynell Bond gave “Tips for The Sandwich Generation” to an intimate group. On Feb. 7, Rabbi Sidney Zimelman led 25 people in a discussion about “A Page of Talmud: Unraveling Its Mysteries.” Lastly, on Sunday, Feb. 10, over 30 people gathered to cheer on David Narrett and Louise Vermillion as they competed in “Are You Smarter than a Fifth-Grade Hebrew Student?” hosted by Steve Karten. Seven fifth-graders — Hannah Stansbury, Amanda Leventhal, Sarah Silverberg, Molly Karten, Aaron Lax, Ariella Listig, and Mallory Kleinman — helped both contestants to win an imaginary $1,000,000! Fun was had by all.

It was an informative and entertaining week. The events took place at Beth-El, Ahavath Sholom and Beth Shalom and involved participants from all of Tarrant County. It was truly a community-building experience. One program did have to be canceled — “Great Chefs of Tarrant County.” If you are interested in participating as a “chef” (if you like to cook and share your recipes with others), contact Mona Karten at the Federation at 817-569-0892. They may be able to put on this program later in the year.

This special event was sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County.

50th anniversary celebration of Van Cliburn’s win at the first Tchaikovsky Competition

The Van Cliburn Foundation has announced plans to honor pianist Van Cliburn on the 50th anniversary of his historic win at the first International Tchaikovsky Competition, which was held in Moscow in 1958 at the height of the Cold War. Cliburn’s anniversary will be celebrated on the great lawn of the Kimbell Art Museum on Saturday, March 1. United States President George W. Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin have both agreed to act as honorary chairmen for the gala event.

Van Cliburn was 23 when he traveled to Moscow to participate in the International Tchaikovsky Competition. Despite Cold War tensions, the Russian people received his performances with overwhelming enthusiasm throughout. His final round concert on April 11, 1958, included the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 and the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3. The international audience included Queen Elisabeth of Belgium and her daughter, Marie José, the last Queen of Italy, seated in the imperial box.

The awards were presented by Dmitri Shostakovich on April 14, and Van Cliburn received the coveted gold medal. Premier Nikita Khrushchev himself gave permission for the Soviet judges to award the first prize to Van Cliburn; even though he was an American, they considered him to be the best pianist.

At home, the victory was celebrated throughout the United States, and included the only New York ticker-tape parade ever bestowed on a classical musician, as well as the May 19, 1958, cover of Time magazine. Shortly thereafter,. Cliburn’s recording of the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 became the first classical LP in history to sell more than one million copies.

Van Cliburn has played for every U.S. president in office since 1958. Most famously, in 1987, he was invited to perform at the White House for Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev during their summit meeting to sign the INF Treaty. After the state dinner, he played a formal recital in the East Room, and for his last encore he surprised the political adversaries by playing “Moscow Nights” and singing along with the Soviet president and his wife. Columnist George Will stated that the day would be remembered as “the day the Cold War was lost.”

Cliburn’s position as unofficial cultural ambassador between East and West is further evidenced by the acceptance of Presidents Bush and Putin to serve as honorary chairmen of this year’s historic celebration. In 2003, when Cliburn was honored with the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom, Bush cited his contributions as an artist and unofficial ambassador for the United States, stating that he had “the continued respect of [his] peers and the lasting admiration of the American people.” Putin awarded Cliburn the prestigious Russian Order of Friendship in 2004 as “an acknowledgment of [his] major personal contribution to the development of Russian-American cultural ties.”

The gala celebration on the Kimbell lawn will be held in a conservatory-inspired custom tent, boasting red carpet, chandeliers, damask linens and large floral arrangements to replicate the décor found in one of Russia’s Grand Palaces. Former President and Mrs. George Herbert Walker Bush, former President Bill Clinton and Senator Hillary Clinton, Mrs. Tricia Nixon Cox, Mr. David Eisenhower and Mrs. Julie Nixon Eisenhower, Mrs. Gerald Ford, Ms. Luci Baines Johnson, Mrs. Ronald Reagan and Mrs. Lynda Johnson Robb will make the Presidents’ Honor Circle a distinctive part of the March 1 event.

“I am grateful for the honor my many friends of long standing have bestowed upon me in their desire to remember this 50th anniversary,” Cliburn remarked. “I vividly recall the details of my first trip to Russia as if it were yesterday. It has always been my feeling that great music evokes the same deeply felt emotions that run through all human beings: Americans, Russians and people of the rest of the world. Classical music truly is universal.”

Inspired by Cliburn’s extraordinary dedication and artistry, a group of Fort Worth music teachers and private citizens established the Van Cliburn Foundation and International Piano Competition in 1962. The competition is held every four years and is the most visible expression of the Van Cliburn Foundation’s commitment to the highest standards of musical achievement. Today, the competition is regarded as one of the world’s pre-eminent musical events. Continuing Van Cliburn’s legacy of tireless musical outreach worldwide, the Van Cliburn Foundation arranges for its winners to perform hundreds of engagements throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. It produces nationally and internationally broadcast television documentaries and syndicated radio programs, and streams the entire competition live on the Internet.

Around the Town

Tamás Ungár
FW Symphony a success at Carnegie Hall

One of my very good friends filled me in on the recent highly successful performance of the Fort Worth Symphony’s concert at Carnegie Hall in the Big Apple. The event was very well supported locally, with some 800 tickets purchased by Fort Worthians.

Among those at the Saturday evening performance were Gail Granek, Roz Rosenthal and granddaughter Ashlie and her fiancé, Mary Frances Antweil with her daughter, Julie Silverman of Albuquerque, N.M., and son and family Mark and Suzie Antweil and their daughter, Elexa, of Larchmont, N.Y. Julie, by the way, who had dinner with former ourtowner Becky Victor, brought personal greetings to Becky’s many friends here. Also Melinda and John Hayden (she’s the daughter of Sylvia and Al Wexler, and is a member of the FW Symphony staff). Others were Ellen and Bernie Appel, Marvin and Laurie Blum and daughter, Lizzie, a student at New York University. Marvin is a member of the Symphony board. Also New Yorkers, Michael and Natalya Gilbert, son and daughter-in-law of Cynthia and Burton Gilbert. The young Gilberts were concert guests of grandmother, Sara Betty Gilbert, who will celebrate her 90th birthday in March.

On Sunday, the Fort Worth Symphony performed the much loved “Peter and the Wolf” narrated in both Spanish and English by acclaimed actor John Lithgow. Glimpsed in the audience were Roz, Billy and Rosanne Rosenthal, Gail Granek and Leslie and James Gurland and their 5-year-old son, Ari, who is a special favorite of his Fort Worth “Tante” Dr. Carole Rogers. Welcome guest at the Rogers home earlier this week was mom, Anita Dellal of West Orange, N.J.

Suzie Humphrey on Ahavath Sholom schedule this Friday night

We mentioned last week that the dedicated trio of amazing women, Natalie Cohn, Hanna Hochster and Pearl Rubin, will be honored for their long association with the CAS Gift Shop at the Ladies Auxiliary Donor Dinner this Friday night following 6 p.m. Shabbat services at Ahavath Sholom. The program will also include the very talented and popular Suzie Humphrey, who during her 20 years as a radio and television talk show host has hobnobbed with movie stars and politicians and interviewed the great and “near-great.” One of her greatest accomplishments is that she is a breast cancer survivor and has helped other women go through the journey as she did. Late reservations can possibly still be made with Linda Lavi.

‘Daytimers’ to hear Tamás Ungár

The “Daytimers” are looking forward to a performance by pianist Tamás Ungár, executive director of Piano Texas Festival and member of the TCU piano faculty. The program is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 20, at noon, at Beth-El Congregation.

Dr. Ungár will give the “Daytimers” an intimate look behind the scenes to learn how he and his students prepare for a performance. He has earned worldwide acclaim for his powerful performances and innovative programming. A regular guest artist at numerous music centers in the United States, he also performs and teaches frequently all over the globe. Some of the highlights of recent seasons include performances with the Sacramento Symphony Orchestra, performing as soloist/conductor of Mozart piano concertos at the University of Leeds as artist-in-residence and a return visit to present a solo recital and master class series at the Liszt Academy in Budapest; and this time he is performing for “Daytimers.”

In addition to his performing commitments, Tamás Ungár has become one of United States’ best-known and most respected teachers of the piano. As founder and executive director of the TCU/Cliburn Piano Institute and member of the TCU piano faculty, he attracts students from across America and as far afield as Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, China, England, Germany, Greece, India, Israel, Kazakhstan, Korea, Hungary, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Poland, Republic of Georgia, Singapore, Russia and Taiwan. His students have received prizes in national and international competitions, and have performed in prestigious music centers.

Dr. Ungár studied with Alexander Sverjensky at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music; with Lajos Hernádi at the Liszt Academy, Budapest; and with György Sebök at Undiana University, where he earned his D.M. As the first performing musician ever to receive the coveted British Leverhulme Fellowship, he served as artist-in-residence at York University during the 1984–85 season. Dr. Ungár records exclusively for CALA Records. The “Daytimers” committee is indebted to Roz Rosenthal for arranging for this outstanding educator and performer.

Lunch at $8 per person will be catered by Potbelly Sandwich Works. Guests have a choice of turkey breast, pizza sandwich (marinara, provolone, mushrooms), or tuna salad and Swiss. All are on whole-wheat bread with chips and cookie, coffee or tea. Or guests may attend for just the program for $3.

For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

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Around the Town — January 2008

Posted on 09 January 2008 by admin

Around the Town with Rene

Polly Boardman
A garden in memory of

Polly Boardman

Polly Boardman was a young girl who was born and raised here in Fort Worth. She was the daughter of Ceil Boardman Canter and Dr. Bill Boardman. She attended Paschal High School and Temple Beth-El Religious School, studied dance with TCU Ballet and was an active member of Alton Silver BBG.

On July 4, 1975 at the age of 16, Polly’s life was tragically cut short after being struck and killed by lightning but her smile lived on.

At the time of her death, her friends, the Jewish youth of Fort Worth, planted a tree and dedicated a plaque in her memory at the Dan Danciger Jewish Community Center, located off Old Granbury Road. Since the closing of the JCC, the plaque has been cared for by Dr. Al Faigin until a new home could be found.

That home has now been found.

At this time, Polly’s family is creating the Polly Boardman Memorial Garden at the Sonnenschein Chabad Jewish Center of Fort Worth. The garden, being designed by Mrs. Etta Korenman, will be located in the backyard playground area of the center where today’s Jewish youth will have a place to play and learn.

At this time, the family asks you to help make this tribute to Polly a reality. If you would consider a $100 donation, they would be that much closer to their goal.

Please make your tax-deductible check out to Chabad of Fort Worth, and make a note that it is for Polly’s garden. You can mail it to: The Sonnenschein Chabad Jewish Center, 5659 Woodway Drive, Fort Worth, TX 76133.

All donations will be greatly appreciated.

An official dedication of the garden will take place on its completion.

Any questions can be directed to Polly’s brother, Aaron Boardman, at 817-292-5018.

‘Daytimers’ enjoy Nasher trip

Fifteen intrepid “Daytimers” braved the cold winds to visit the outstanding exhibit at Dallas’ Sculpture Center, “Woman: The Art of Gaston Lachaise.” This was the first major museum retrospective of the artist’s work to be shown in Texas.

Led by an outstanding docent, Gerry Balsley, a volunteer at the Nasher Center, the group heard about Lachaise’s inspiration, his muse, his lover, his wife, Isabel Dutaud Nagle. Even though Isabel was small and slim, his passion for her inspired some of the most beautiful sculptures of voluptuous women that have ever been created; more than 40 of them are on view at the Nasher.

Those attending included Mike Blanc, Michael Cohen, Roberta Corder, newcomer Martin Isadore, Adelene Myers, Roz Rosenthal, Barbara Rubin, Rosalie Schwartz, Len Schweitzer, Sonya Stenzler, Barbara Weinberg, Sylvia and Al Wexler, Richard Yentis and Bernard Zilberg.

Next event for the “Daytimers” will be a performance by pianist Tamás Ungár, executive director of Piano Texas Festival and member of the TCU piano faculty. The program is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 20, noon, at Beth-El Congregation. Lunch at $8/person will be catered by Potbelly Sandwich Works.

For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Around the Town with Rene
Tzedakah Sunday is Feb. 3 — please answer the call

Once again, Tzedakah Sunday volunteers will be calling you asking for your gift to the Jewish Federation Annual Campaign.

By now you know that programs at Lil Goldman Early Learning Center, Jewish Family Services, Tarrant County synagogues, UNT Jewish Studies Program, Melton Adult Mini School, BBYO, Jewish War Veterans and other local programs are funded by the Annual Campaign.

In fact, 50 percent of the allocable dollars raised in Tarrant County stays in Tarrant County.

The other 50 percent is used to fund regional and national agencies including university programs (Hillel), birthright israel, Jewish Children’s Regional Service, Jewish Council for Public Affairs — to name just a few. The largest portion ($312,000) of allocable funds from Campaign was sent overseas to fund programs of the Jewish Agency and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, aiding needy Jews in Israel and around the world.

So now that you know where the money goes (47 different places) and the thousands of lives the Annual Campaign contribution affects everyday, PLEASE ANSWER THE CALL. It’s for you; it’s for all of us. Better yet, why not join the Mitzvah Corps at Beth-El, Sunday, Feb. 3, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.? Volunteers are needed to help make phone calls, do administrative tasks or assist with refreshments. Shifts are three hours in length. Call the Federation at 817-569-0892 to learn how you can help our community.

Live generously. It does a world of good.

Marcy Paul hired as YMCA racial equality director

Congratulations to Marcy Paul, who was recently hired to be the director of the Department for Racial Equality at the YMCA in Fort Worth/Tarrant County. It’s a really interesting position and a pretty big deal.

The department focuses on education, advocacy and public policy in Fort Worth and Tarrant County. “Dialogue on Race” is the foundation of the education program. It is a four-week workshop which encourages people to learn from one another about how racism diminishes us all. The hope is that by participating in the program, people can change, grow, celebrate and participate in their communities in ways that create positive changes.

Marcy said, “This position/job was a 50th birthday gift to me. As I look at who I am — my values, beliefs, politics and ideological perspectives — it all comes down to my upbringing in Evanston, Ill., which borders Chicago, and my Reform Jewish education with its foundation in social justice and human rights. I gave a sermon at my synagogue in high school, in the early 1970s, about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous speech, “I Have a Dream.” My dream was that one day we would all be able to sit in a sanctuary and pray together — black, white, heterosexual, gay and lesbian. While I didn’t realize the impact of what I was saying then, I certainly understand this now at 50.”

Michael Railenau wins award

Former Fort Worth Hebrew Day School top brass, Michael Railenau, Solomon Schechter Day School adult educator in St. Louis, came in for a special award when JProStl named him among the recipients of the 2007 Peer Excellence Awards. The six honorees will be acknowledged at a Recognition Luncheon at the Jewish Federation Building in St. Louis on Jan. 29.

Federation major givers gather

Despite the championship football game being played, Jeanie and Henry Luskey’s beautiful home was packed on Sunday, Jan. 20 with some of the Jewish community’s most generous folks. They were treated to four wonderful speakers who emphasized the good works that are being funded by the Jewish Federation. Cheryl Kimberling began the evening by speaking about the Multicultural Alliance, of which she is president. Following Cheryl, Al Fratina described the amazing tikkun olam (repairing the world) that the youth group at Beth Shalom performs every year with Camp Impact. Brandon Chicotsky gave an impassioned speech about Hillel and how it transformed his life. Lastly, Len Cole, liaison to birthright israel from UJC, painted an exciting picture of ever-increasing numbers of young adults going to Israel and standing by on waiting lists to go. He suggested that getting the parents and grandparents of birthright alumni involved in discussion groups might be an advantage for both birthright israel and the Federation.

The speakers were well received, and everyone enjoyed the delicious food catered by Bistro Louise. It could have been the frigid weather or most probably, the delightful company that kept people shmoozing well into dessert. As in the past, a good time was had by all as the Annual Campaign of 2008 began. Please follow the example of these generous donors as you make your 2008 pledge.

‘Are You Smarter than a Fifth-Grader?’ Jewish Style

Back in ourtown, the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County is sponsoring a game of “Are You Smarter than a Fifth-Grader?” Jewish style during “JCC Without Walls” Week 2008. It will take place on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 1 p.m. at Congregation Ahavath Sholom. The religious schools of Tarrant County are supplying the fifth-grade participants, but at least four adult contestants are needed. Send nominations for those four spots by e-mail to Mona Karten at m.karten@
tarrantfederation.org. The chosen four will be announced via e-mail. Make sure to come and cheer the four fifth-graders (one from each synagogue) and the four adults.

Lunch will be on sale for $5 at Ahavath Sholom between noon and 1 p.m.

Symphony League note cards

In 1969, the Symphony League started a very successful fundraiser that lasted over 30 years — Oktoberfest. For many years it was the major fall festival in Fort Worth. The Oktoberfest logo was created to honor Tarrant County Medical Examiner Dr. Feliks Gwozdz. Feliks and his family performed at Oktoberfest for many years. Later their mascot was named Feliks.

With the discontinuation of Oktoberfest in 2000, Feliks was given a new haircut, mustache trim, a tuxedo instead of lederhosen — and Feliks became Manny the Maestro. Manny is a tribute to symphony supporter and longtime Symphony League member, the late Manny Rosenthal. His wife Roz contributed a tux of Manny’s for the Maestro’s wardrobe. You will see Manny the Maestro at Bass Hall helping to sell Children’s Concerts raffle tickets.

The Symphony League had local artist Mary Apple design note cards as a fundraiser many years ago. Mary sketched FWSO musicians and used four designs for the cards. These are for sale at various league functions during the year.

‘JCC Without Walls’ Week 2008

Sun., Feb. 3

Yom Limud –
Religious-school teachers in Dallas;
no religious school

8 a.m.-5 p.m.: Tzedakah Sunday
(at Beth-El)

10 a.m.: Adult Education
(at Beth Israel)

Mon., Feb. 4

Noon: Downtown Torah Study – Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger
(at Haltom’s)

7:30 p.m.: “The Split Between Early Christianity and Judaism” – David Saul
(at Beth-El)

Tues., Feb. 5

7:15 p.m.: Jewish Learning Institute – Rabbi Dov Mandel
(at Chabad House)

7:30 p.m.: “Hereditary Cancer
in the Jewish Population:
What You Need to Know”
– Sara Pirzadeh
(at Ahavath Sholom)

Wed., Feb. 6

7 p.m.: “Proving The Bible Through Archeology or The Development of the Alef Bet” – Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker (at Beth Israel)

7:30 p.m.: “Tips for the Sandwich Generation” – Dr. Carole Rogers and Lynell Bond (at Beth-El)

Thurs., Feb. 7

10 a.m.: Melton class
(at Ahavath Sholom)

7 p.m.: Beth Shalom Sisterhood
Card-Making Class (at Beth Shalom)

7 p.m.: “Judaism and Psychology,
Part II” – Rabbi Baruch Zeilicovich
(at Ahavath Sholom)

8 p.m.: “A Page of Talmud: Unraveling Its Mysteries”
– Rabbi Sidney Zimelman
(at Ahavath Sholom)

Fri., Feb. 8

8 p.m.: “Synaplex” Service
(at Beth-El)

8 p.m.: Scout Shabbat Service (at Ahavath Sholom)

Sat., Feb. 9

10 a.m.: Tot Shabbat
(at Beth-El)

9:30 a.m.: Torah Troop and
FWUSY Produce to Reduce Service
(at Ahavath Sholom)

10:30 a.m.: Davening and Donuts (at Ahavath Sholom)

6:45 p.m.: “Great Chefs of Tarrant County” demonstrations, tastings, discussion
(at Beth-El; reservations required by Feb. 6)

Sun., Feb. 10

9:30 a.m.: WRJ Hamantaschen Bake-In (at Beth-El)

Noon: Informal lunch
(at Ahavath Sholom)

1 p.m.: “Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader? Jewish style”
(at Ahavath Sholom)

1 p.m.: Ahavath Sholom Men’s Club Film
(at Ahavath Sholom)

Info:

‘JCC Without Walls’ Week is sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County. All events are free and open to the public. For more information or to RSVP for the “Great Chefs” event, please call the Federation office at 817-569-0892.

Around the Town with Rene

Edythe Cohen
Reception Jan. 11 to honor Edythe Cohen for turning 80, but not elderly

To celebrate Edythe’s 80th birthday Jan. 11, her friends are planning a Kabalat Shabbat reception from 5 to 6 pm at Beth-El Congregation preceding Friday evening services. Edythe’s many friends – accumulated during decades in the business world, in the Jewish community and on the tennis court – are invited to celebrate her fourscore years of success. Co-chairing the birthday reception are Jacquelyn Loeb and Joan Brotman, who plan to serve light hors d’oeuvres. Rabbi Mecklenburger and Edythe will lead participants in the Sabbath blessings over the candles, wine, and challah.

For those not acquainted with Edythe, she earned her spurs as a western wear executive, operating the Rodeo Shop, at one time the nation’s largest wholesale chaps company. She simultaneously volunteered backstage as president of the Stage West Support Group. Her success extends to the tennis court, where her forehand still guides many doubles teams to victory. At Beth-El, Edythe has chaired the Adult Education Committee, served on the board, and worked as the Temple’s first paid program director. As manager of the Judaica Shop since 2003, she has moved the gift shop to greater profitability.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., Edythe Kunen Cohen and her husband Noel moved their chaps manufacturing business to Fort Worth in 1964 to be closer to their customer base, which included country-western celebrities, rodeo riders, ranchers, and motorcyclists. Noel passed away in 1981, leaving Edythe to operate the business, located on Camp Bowie Blvd. West.

Within five years, Edythe was president of the Western and English Manufacturer’s Association, quite a notch in her belt. “As owner of a relatively small company in the industry,” she recalled, “that position enabled me to learn a lot from the major corporations, such as Justin and Panhandle Slim.” Also, as a newly single adult, Edythe became president of Jewish Women on Their Own, a B’nai B’rith interest group geared to widowed, divorced, and unmarried women. Later, she served as president of Fort Worth’s Jewish Women International, formerly called B’nai B’rith Women.

On the regional level, Edythe has taken leadership and study workshops offered by the Union of American Hebrew Congregations-first in New Orleans and later in Princeton. She has served on the local boards of such diverse groups as the Daytimers and the Miss Rodeo Texas Pageant and is a volunteer usher at the Van Cliburn Amateur Piano Competition. In her younger days, she was a volunteer teacher at the National Council of Jewish Women’s Americanization School, teaching English and civics to immigrants. Travel, both overseas and across the U.S., has always been part of her active schedule, including visits to see her sons – Jim, who lives in Estes Park, Colo., and Bill, who lives in Bethesda, Md., with his wife, Michelle, and their 3 children.

What is next for Edythe Cohen? “My current goal,” she says, “is to get older, but not to be elderly.”

‘Shabbat Lady’ to speak on provocative topic at WRJ brunch

Laura Seymour is known throughout the Metroplex as “The Shabbat Lady” – which, coincidentally, is the title of her column in this newspaper, the Texas Jewish Post. Beth-El Congregation’s Women of Reform Judaism featured Seymour in 2004 as part of their annual meeting. She addressed the issue of “Keeping Your Children and Grandchildren Jewish,” to wide acclaim from congregants of all ages.

Beth-El’s WRJ is proud to bring back Laura Seymour as the keynote speaker for the 2008 Donor Brunch and Silent Auction. However, her topic this time is a little juicier, according to Roberta Gerrick, WRJ’s program chair.

“We heard Laura speak at the WRJ biennial convention in Dallas,” Gerrick said. “Her topic was ‘Women in the Torah: Sex and Power,’ and she had the room full of women rolling with laughter.”

Seymour’s vast knowledge of Judaism and love of study combine to enhance this particular topic. She presents ideas that allow women (and men) to change their perspective on biblical events. As an example, Seymour challenges the audience to review their thoughts on Adam and Eve. If Eve wasn’t present at the beginning of creation when God gave the directions about what fruit not to eat, whose job was it to tell Eve?

“Laura’s take on the story of Esther was hysterical, but might be a little too risqué to be repeated here,” Gerrick said.

In addition to hearing Seymour’s dynamic presentation, attendees have the opportunity to bid on a host of fabulous items during the silent auction. Previous auction items have included memorabilia from the Dallas Cowboys, Texas Rangers and Dallas Stars, concert and symphony tickets and more.

The annual Donor Brunch benefits the Beth-El Religious School and other WRJ causes. Tickets for non-members are $25, and there will be no on-site registration. Checks payable to WRJ can be mailed to Beth-El Congregation, 4900 Briarhaven Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. Please include the name, address and phone information for each attendee. All reservations must be in by Jan. 22.

Daughters of Abraham to meet Jan. 15

The regular meeting of Daughters of Abraham will be held Jan. 15 at 7 p.m. at the Muslim Mosque on Diaz St. Please contact Corrine Jacobson at 817-294-7844 if you need further information on to arrange for a ride. Pilgrimage will be discussed with one of the Muslim women just returned from Mecca. Jews and Christians will discuss trips to Israel and what it has meant to them and their religious beliefs.

‘Daytimers’ programs

The “Daytimers” group will travel to the Nasher Sculpture Center to see the outstanding exhibit, “Woman: The Art of Gaston Lachaise.” The group plans to meet Wednesday, Jan. 16, at the Intermodal Transportation Center at Ninth and Jones at 11:45 a.m. Box lunches from Jason’s Deli will be delivered to the train station, and participants will have lunch on the train. From there, the group will take DART to the Nasher Sculpture Center, where a docent-guided tour of this show’s sculptures of beautiful, full -bodied women will begin at 1:45 p.m. In addition to this exhibit, there are nine new sculptures in the garden that have never been publicly viewed before.

Lunch choices are turkey breast on white, chicken salad on whole wheat, and tuna salad on rye. The cost for the lunch, bottled water, train and DART fare and the guided tour of the exhibit is $15 per person.

Barbara Rubin tells the TJP they hope to limit the group to about 20, so please get your reservations in early. For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Bingo fun!

There will be a bingo night for Jewish singles and the rest of the Jewish community on Sunday, Jan. 20, 4 p.m. at Congregation Ahavath Sholom on Hulen Street in Fort Worth. Carol Schwartz is the contact for this event.

Admission is only $5 and includes a T-shirt, your first game (1 board) and a dauber. Additional games are $3 each. The jumbo kosher hot dog dinner is only $5. Great prizes will be awarded during the program.

The community is urged to come join the fun and excitement!

CJS will have reserved seating. Call Carol, 817-731-3186, and tell her to save you a seat.

Rabbi Sharon Brous to visit Beth-El as scholar-in-residence Jan. 24

Noted rabbinical leader and guest lecturer Rabbi Sharon Brous will be the Larry Kornbleet Memorial Scholar-in-Residence, Thursday, Jan. 24, 7:30 p.m., at Beth-El Congregation.

Rabbi Brous, founder and rabbi of IKAR, a vibrant new Jewish spiritual community in Los Angeles, will speak on “When the World is on Fire: Jewish Responses to Catastrophe.”

She was included in the Forward’s annual list of the 50 most influential members of the American Jewish community in 2004, 2005, and 2006. It described her as “one of the most dynamic religious leaders to be ordained in recent years.” She is a regular commentator on National Public Radio, and speaks and writes frequently about emerging spiritual communities, human rights and conflict resolution. Ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary, she received a master’s degree in human rights from Columbia University.

The program, free to all, presented by the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, will be followed by a dessert reception. No reservations are necessary.

Save the date: ‘JCC Without Walls’ week coming

Starting Sunday, Feb. 3, the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County is sponsoring a week of informal Jewish education and culture for all ages to be held at the four congregations of Tarrant County. Watch for the schedule in a flyer in January as well as your synagogue bulletins in February. All events are free. For more information, please call the Federation office at 817-569-0892.

‘Daytimers’ Nasher trip scheduled

An aerial view of the Nasher Sculpture Center
Photo: Tim Hursley, 2003
“Woman: The Art of Gaston Lachaise” was selected by the Star-Telegram as one of the top five exhibits to visit the Metroplex this year, and the “Daytimers” are going there. This is the first major museum retrospective of the artist’s work to be shown in Texas.

The group will meet Wednesday, Jan. 16, at the Intermodal Transportation Center at Ninth and Jones at 11:45 a.m. Box lunches from Jason’s Deli will be delivered to the train station, and participants will have lunch on the train. From there, the group will take DART to the Nasher Sculpture Center, where a docent-guided tour of this show’s sculptures of beautiful, full-bodied women will begin at 1:45 p.m.

The singular woman in the title of the exhibit is in reference to Lachaise’s inspiration, his muse, his lover, his wife, Isabel Dutaud Nagle. His passion for her inspired some of the most beautiful sculptures of women that have ever been made, and more than 40 of them are on view at the Nasher. In addition to this exhibit, there are nine new sculptures in the garden that have never been publicly viewed before.

Lunch choices are turkey breast on white, chicken salad on whole wheat, and tuna salad on rye. The cost for the lunch, bottled water, train and DART fare, and the guided tour of the exhibit is $15 per person.

The group will be limited to about 20, so please get your reservations in early. For reservations for “Daytimers” events, call Barbara Rubin, 817-927-2736, or Sylvia Wexler, 817-294-1129, or checks can be mailed to Daytimers, Jewish Federation, 4049 Kingsridge Road, Fort Worth, TX 76109. The Sylvia Wolens “Daytimers” is a program of Congregation Beth-El with financial support from the Jewish Federation.

Hanukkah Heroes a success
Shoshana Thoma-Isgur tells the TJP that this past month the JEA (Jewish Education Agency) successfully completed its first Hanukkah Heroes fundraising campaign, which raised $4000 for the JEA kids!

By sending Hanukkah Heroes cards to loved ones, donors honored and remembered the heroes in their lives while becoming Hanukkah Heroes to the kids of the JEA. For each $25 donation, the JEA sent out a custom-designed holiday card with a personalized greeting to the donor’s chosen recipient. Many generous folks took advantage of this opportunity to give a profoundly meaningful gift to family and friends while supporting the JEA’s programs, including the Lil Goldman Early Learning Center and Camp Shalom. When you go by the LGELC, you will also see a special art piece crafted by the Pre-School kids in honor of the Hanukkah Heroes, with some very creative assistance from Miss Diana (Krompass). Everyone’s participation in the Hanukkah Heroes campaign is appreciated, and according to future plans this will be an annual event to support JEA programs.

The Hanukkah Heroes campaign would not have been possible without the hard work of the Hanukkah Heroes Committee: Lisa Clark, Jen Ratner, Naomi Rosenfield, Shoshana Thoma-Isgur and Monika Worsley, as well as Director Paddy White. They especially want to acknowledge the work of Lisa Clark, who designed the beautiful Hanukkah Heroes card with handprints from LGELC students. A heartfelt “thank you” to the Hanukkah Heroes Committee and dedicated JEA staff who supported the committee’s efforts.JEA’s first Honorary Bubbie and Zaydie:
Rose and Al Sankary
On Dec. 7, the JEA held its first Honorary Bubbie and Zaydie event, a Chanukah Kabbalat Shabbat and dinner, to thank Rose and Al Sankary for their years-long generous support of the JEA. The children performed Chanukah songs and skits for Rose and Al, their guests, and parents and supporters of the JEA. The JEA also presented the Sankarys with a special gift, a beautiful glass chanukiah. Rose and Al led everyone in saying the Chanukah blessings, and everyone sang “Happy Birthday” to Al in both English and Hebrew. After the program, guests enjoyed a special Chanukah dinner, including potato latkes and sufganiot (jelly doughnuts!). Rose and Al also brought a delicious birthday cake for everyone to share.

The JEA thanks all the folks who helped make the Chanukah Kabbalat Shabbat so special, including Morah Rachel (Yaacobi) and Shoshana Howard, by working with the children to put the program together. The JEA thanks its board members who volunteered, including Suzie Herman, Marcia Kurtz, Hal Ratner and Yossi Yaacobi. They also thank Cindy Simon and Ann and Scott Cobert for their invaluable help.

Although the Sankarys have never had children at the Lil Goldman Early Learning Center or Camp Shalom, they have helped make the JEA what it is today. Al said he and Rose donated because they believe in excellent Jewish and secular education for children. At the Chanukah Kabbalat Shabbat event, Al and Rose demonstrated their support is stronger than ever, by making another $10,000 donation to the JEA. What a wonderful Chanukah gift to the JEA kids! Accolades to Rose and Al Sankary, the JEA’s Honorary Bubbie and Zaydie.

Robert Simon and the JEA board extend a hearty mazel tov to Shoshana Thoma-Isgur, fundraising chair of the JEA, for all of her hard work and leadership.

Yasher koach to Shoshana.

News and notes
Hadassah prez, Mona Karten, is on the job! It’s that time again for mah jongg cards. If you would like to buy one, please send your check for $6.50 (regular) or $7.00 (large print) to Barbara Weinberg, 4600 Westlake, Fort Worth 76132. Please make check payable to Barbara.

Hadassah has changed the date for the Girls’ Night Out to Jan. 17 at Mi Cocina. Look for the invitation in the next few weeks.

Speedy recovery wishes to Cynthia Labovitz.

Karen and Kal Silverberg and their kids, Stephen and Sarah, are ecstatic. They’ve finally convinced his folks, Elaine and Herb Silverberg, to become our-towners, after long years in Corsicana and Waco. The senior Silverbergs are comfortably residing at Broadway Plaza. The TJP adds our “welcome” greetings.

Michael Mooney, who has been stationed aboard a submarine carrier, spent the weekend here with his folks, Ruthie Bogart and Larry Currie, grandmother Ann Bogart, and members of their family. Michael is enroute back to his new station in New Hampshire, accompanied by his mom, who is sharing the driving for the long trip.

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