Support the JCRC and RAGD Gilad Shalit Initiative
June 25, 2011 marks five years since Gilad Shalit, an Israel Defense Force soldier, has been held in captivity by Hamas. The Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Dallas and the Rabbinic Association of Greater Dallas have joined together to bring community awareness to the plight of Gilad Shalit. Displays are up in synagogues and at Levine, Akiba, and Yavneh Academy. Materials and handouts are available. For a list of these materials visit jcrcdallas.org and click on the “Bring Home Gilad Shalit” Action Alert on the bottom left. For more information about what you can do help bring him home to Israel, contact Laura Matisoff, JCRC program associate at email@example.com or 214-615-5292.
Beth Torah Men’s Club garners Quality Club Award
For the fourth consecutive year, the Congregation Beth Torah Men’s Club has been honored by the Conservative movement with the Quality Club Award. Beth Torah is one of 50 Men’s Clubs in the nation to receive the honor, and the only one in Texas.
“We always say we don’t do this for awards, and we don’t, but the recognition is nice,” said Mike Precker, the outgoing Men’s Club president. “It’s a great tribute to our guys who work so hard and care so much about each other and Beth Torah.”
The Quality Club Award is presented by the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs to synagogues that meet detailed criteria of programming, religious observance and leadership. Alan Hoffman, the newly elected Men’s Club president, will accept the award at the FJMC convention in July in Costa Mesa, Calif.
The Beth Torah Men’s Club began its streak under the leadership of Rusty Dworkin, who served two years as president, and kept it going for Precker’s two years as well.
”We’re looking forward to another great year, whether there’s an award at the end of it or not,” Precker said. “Not that there’s any pressure on Alan or anything,” he joked.
Texas Hillel Foundation elects new board president, Howard C. Rubin of Dallas
Serving the region’s largest population of Jewish university students, Texas Hillel has an eight-decade long history of involvement in the wider Jewish and general communities. Texas Hillel is governed by a statewide board of directors, and that board recently elected Howard C. Rubin of Dallas as the organization’s president effective July 1.
Howard C. Rubin is an attorney with Kessler Collins. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and Southern Methodist University, and was chair of BBYO in Dallas in addition to his many years of service on the Texas Hillel board. He and his wife, Ann (a UT Austin graduate), are the parents of two grown daughters, both of whom are also UT Austin alumni. “Howard has been an active leader at Texas Hillel for almost a decade, and is intimately familiar with our engagement strategy. He is deeply committed to enriching student lives,” said Executive Director Rabbi David Komerofsky.
Rubin succeeds David N. Goldstein of Austin, who has been president since 2008. Komerofsky noted, “David Goldstein’s experience as a board member and president of many organizations continues to be a benefit to Texas Hillel. His wisdom, kindness and generosity, combined with his keen business sense and passion for Jewish life, made him just the right board president at the exact time he was needed.” Goldstein was honored as the 2011 Maimonides Community Volunteer of the Year by Texas Hillel. Both Rubin and Goldstein participated in a leadership gathering with Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life at UCLA in 2010.
Rabbi Joel Zeff to join the Jewish Studies Initiative
Rabbi Joel Zeff will join the Jewish Studies Initiative of North Texas on Sept. 2. His presence will help to significantly increase the number of classes taught and the impact JSI will have on the community. Many in Dallas have met and studied with Rabbi Zeff during the times that he has served as a scholar-in-residence, and know what a fantastic pedagogue he is. Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger is eager to have Rabbi Zeff in Dallas. “We are all looking forward to a great year of learning and teaching Torah,” he said. “Rabbi Zeff will be teaching in the adult education programs of a number of North Texas synagogues, as well as in the Florence Melton Adult Mini School program.” To arrange a program with Rabbi Zeff for your synagogue or communal organization, contact Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger, executive director of the Jewish Studies Initiative of North Texas, at 214-789-7241 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New resource for North Texas moms: The Frisco Gan
Chabad of Plano has established The Frisco Gan, a Mothers Day Out program serving the Northwest Plano and Frisco area. Children ages 18 months to 3 years will meet Mondays and Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The gan is located in The Stonebriar Academy, a beautiful facility with access to a covered playground, indoor playscape and a large classroom. Caring for the children will be two experienced and dedicated teachers: Tia Sukenik and Rivkie Block. For more information, e-mail email@example.com.
Honorable Menschen and happy birthday to Sheriff Reservist Robert Epstein
To celebrate his 60th birthday, Robert Epstein invited 140 friends to attend a special screening of “Tombstone” at the Texas Theatre to raise funds to acquire bulletproof vests for the 70 members of the Dallas Sheriffs Reserves. In lieu of gifts, Robert asked his friends to contribute to the Reserves. To date, Epstein has raised more than $10,000, but his immediate goal is $30,000. Bulletproof vests cost about $800 each and they wear out after several years.
Bob is a member of the Dallas Sheriff Reserves. He works about 30 hours per month as a public information officer in the Lew Sterret Jail Lobby. He also works other assignments at the Dallas Golden Gloves and the Hella Shrine Circus. Bob was with the Texas State Guard, Military Police Brigade for three years. The Texas State Guard provided security for citizens during several hurricanes and other emergencies.
News and notes
Congratulations to Daniel Nathan, son of Karen and Bassim Nathan, upon his graduation from Miami Law School. Daniel received his B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin and his M.S. from Texas Tech University. He will be taking his board exams this summer. Best of luck Daniel, and mazel tov. Added congratulations to Adam Greenspan, son of Terri and Alan Greenspan who was recently named Drum Major at J.J. Pearce High School in Richardson.
Mazel tov to Deanna Rozenblum, hair stylist/chemical technician/makeup artist who was selected among many to work on the hit ABC reality show, “Extreme Makeover Weight Loss Edition.” One of Deanna’s contestants was Staci Bridwell, married mother of two, who worked over the course of a year to try and regain her life back through weight loss. Staci meets her everyday challenges, dealing with work, kids, and a husband who suffered a stroke. Pushing past all obstacles she has managed to succeed in getting her life back. Her focus is to continue on her healthy path and help others who are struggling with weight loss. Watch Staci’s journey on “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition,” July 18 at 9 p.m. on ABC. Deanna provides all types of haircare and is available to work in the evenings as well as on Sundays. She can be reached at 818-424-9911. Deanna is married to Kenny Rozenblum and mother of two great boys Jordan and Levi who attend Akiba Academy.