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Ohel Bais Ezra Siblings Celebrate Side By Side

Siblings of brothers and sisters with disabilities recently joined Ohel for their first Sibs Side by Side 5K Marathon. It was an incredible event, with all of the participants running, walking, and jogging together across the finish line. Many were holding hands while they finished, and the camaraderie and friendship were felt by everyone.


Last week, the marathon participants once again spent some time together, as they met in the beautiful Carlos and Gabby’s party room for a special celebratory dinner. The marathon participants were joined by members of the Ohel staff as well as representatives from the OPWDD.

The group was moved by the Ohel video “Siblings: Unspoken Challenges, Unrelenting Love,” which has already been seen by thousands. Participants reflected upon the bond that they share with their siblings and played a game that illustrated the unique nature of the sibling relationship. As both the individuals with special needs and their siblings shared stories about their relationship, there were tears, smiles, and laughter throughout the room.

Jordan Silvestri, residence manager of Ohel Bais Ezra’s East Broadway residence, along with the rest of the East Broadway residence staff, received an award from the OPWDD representatives in recognition of Ohel’s achievements in creating programming for, and recognizing the unique role of, siblings of individuals with developmental disabilities.

Just before dessert, all of the individuals with special needs were presented with awards as well, recognizing their fantastic achievements in the marathon. With great big smiles, they posed with their awards before a room full of raucous applause. Throughout the night there were unbelievable feelings of camaraderie, equality, and joy. After a fantastic dessert, everyone parted ways, looking forward to the next sibling event.

For more information about Ohel’s Sibshops program, please contact Azriel Steiner at 718-686-3492 or e-mail v

Touro’s College Of Pharmacy Commencement

Following musical interludes from Harlem’s Cotton Club All Stars band, and with friends and family members cheering them on, the 86 graduating students of the third class of the Touro College of Pharmacy received their PharmD (Doctor of Pharmacy) degrees recently at commencement ceremonies held at Columbia University.

The class of 2014 entered the college two years after its opening in Harlem—the first pharmacy school to launch in New York City in 68 years and the only pharmacy program in Manhattan. The school’s mission is to improve the public’s health by educating a diverse student body who will serve underrepresented communities and work to minimize health disparities.

Interim Dean Zvi Loewy, Ph.D., welcomed the audience of over 650 graduates and supporters. In his congratulatory remarks, Dean Loewy reminded the graduates of the many changes that have taken place in the pharmaceutical industry since they entered school four years ago.

“Since you entered the doors of the College of Pharmacy in the fall of 2010, more than 100 new drugs have been approved. The big pharmaceutical companies have acquired the biotechnology companies that are proficient in the development and manufacturing of the new biological-based therapeutic products. There have also been many changes in vaccines, diagnostics, and in the methods of delivery of drugs,” Dean Loewy said. “You, too, have changed, and I can promise you the change will continue. But remember, the Touro College of Pharmacy will always be there for you, as change continues, and you progress and develop in your careers.”

Touro College President and CEO Alan Kadish, M.D., continued with the theme of change, noting that that the dramatic changes under way in the health care delivery system will challenge the graduates as they strive to retain their core values and the sanctity of the health care provider-patient relationship.

“Each of us needs to remember and recognize that serving society and improving the health of individual patients is really what we’re all here for,” President Kadish said, adding that the changing environment will call for greater sensitivity, creativity, and effort as compared with generations past. “Pharmacists, as an integral part of the heath care team, have the ability to take this increasingly complex formulary of drugs that we have and make sure that we deliver better care and improve people’s lives.”

Keynote speaker Dr. Lawrence J. DeLucas, O.D., Ph.D., a professor at the School of Optometry and director of the University of Alabama Comprehensive Cancer Center Structural Biology Shared Facility, inspired the audience with his personal story of having pursued his dream of becoming an astronaut after obtaining five degrees and becoming an amateur astronomer. After seven years of trying to become selected by NASA, he finally was successful and flew on the Columbia Space Shuttle in 1992. Two years later he served as chief scientist of the International Space Station at NASA headquarters.

Dr. DeLucas told the graduates that he always loved science and chemistry but he did not know what he wanted to do with his life and lacked confidence. He advised them to dream, but also to turn their thoughts into action. The three key attributes for success, he said, are optimism, passion, and persistence.

Regarding their future careers, he advised them, “Of all the learning that you will do when you leave Touro, the best teachers will be those patients who come before you. Take time to listen to what they say. The genuine concern that you show will provide the important framework for your own intellectual growth and your patients’ well-being. Take the time to thoughtfully educate your patients and they will continue to educate and nurture you.”

The assembled graduates and well-wishers also heard inspirational remarks from Steven Elrod, 2014 degree candidate, who was among the several standout students receiving recognition and awards. Elrod received the United States Public Health Service Excellence in Public Health Pharmacy Practice Award last year. He will begin his post-graduate residency at the prestigious Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. v

Orleans Antique Lighting: 50 Years Of Excellence

By Rochelle Maruch Miller

That Orleans Antique Lighting is the premier lighting source for discerning homeowners and decorators is not surprising. Specializing in 19th and 20th century European and American lighting, Orleans is the largest antique lighting store in the Northeast. Arguably the definitive source for all things lighting-related, they are a third-generation, family-owned company who handle all of your cherished belongings as if they were their own. Marvin and Lenny are an absolute pleasure to deal with, and they offer you the highest quality at the best prices available anywhere. Orleans Antique Lighting is an importer of exquisite European lighting.

Since its inception 50 years ago, Orleans Antique Lighting and Restoration has earned a sterling reputation for unsurpassed service, quality, and integrity. Evolving from its beginnings as a small business in Oceanside, the company soon took root as a lighting wholesaler, and began selling to the public 25 years ago. Located in Freeport, Long Island, Orleans specializes in lighting, featuring gorgeous chandeliers, scones, floor and table lamps, and other pieces. They are master restorers who take immense pride in the superb quality of the work. All items are restored to perfection on premises, with meticulous attention to every detail. Whether it is one of Orleans’s own unique pieces or a treasured family heirloom, they will provide honest, courteous, and professional service.


For Lenny Schimmel, who joined his father at the company 21 years ago, being at the helm of Orleans Antique Lighting and Restoration is a labor of love. “We all love what we do—it comes through in our work,” he explains. All of our pieces are one-of-a-kind; everything has to be perfect. I am personally involved in every aspect of the business. I travel to Europe to handpick the pieces we carry. When I fill a container there are 200-300 chandeliers. We are direct importers. There is no middleman, so we are able to provide our customers high quality pieces at significant savings. We do all types of restoration and carry a wide selection of replacement parts.”

At Orleans, customer satisfaction is of paramount importance. Their client base is multi-generational, spanning the Five Towns, Long Island, and the entire tri-state area (and beyond!). Every customer is afforded personalized, professional, and patient service. Every customer is a valued member of the Orleans family and will find an unparalleled selection of lighting options to reflect their unique personality and light up their home beautifully.

“In the 21 years that I have been here, I’ve found the styles in lighting to be cyclical,” Lenny said. “In the past, it was modern, whereas now, we are seeing a return to traditional, with more crystals.” Whether you favor traditional or contemporary décor, Orleans Antique Lighting and Restoration has a plethora of lighting possibilities for you.

Whether you are looking for a special heirloom treasure or a unique vintage one-of-a-kind find, Orleans’s beautiful pieces have the detailed craftsmanship, fine details, rich finishes, and solid materials of the lost art of yesterday’s quality.

Orleans handles all forms of restoration, rewiring, polishing, brazing, soldering, and mountings. They have a large parts department inventory. At Orleans you will find thousands of globes, lampshades, and parts for all types of lighting. Peruse their website or visit their magnificent showroom to experience their stellar selection.

Orleans Antique Lighting and Restoration is located at 68 West Merrick Road, Freeport, NY 11520; 516-623-8600. Visit v

BINA Stroke/Brain Injury Expo, June 11

The BINA organization will be hosting its second annual Stroke and Brain Injury Expo, a unique event in Brooklyn, on Wednesday, June 11, 6:00–9:00 p.m. at the Canal Jean Building (2236 Nostrand Avenue, between Avenues H and I.) An invaluable opportunity for brain-injury survivors and caregivers, this informative event will present a wealth of information regarding rehabilitation services and options.

This year’s expo will feature a section for researchers and investigators from leading facilities who will be available to answer questions about the latest research and clinical trials. Exhibits will include world-renowned adult and pediatric rehabilitation facilities, legal and Medicaid resources, home and vehicle accessibility options, and expert practitioners in the fields of physical, occupational, and speech therapies.

An instructor from an adaptive driving school for the disabled will be on site with a modified car, and a wheelchair-accessible vehicle will also be on display. Be prepared to gain a wealth of vital information for both adults and children traveling on the road to rehabilitation following an acquired brain injury.

A brief program at 7:30 p.m. will feature a presentation by prominent attorney Harry Rothenberg, Esq., of the Rothenberg Law Firm, on the topic, “The Challenge of Brain Injury: A Journey for the Entire Family.” Mr. Rothenberg is an expert in traumatic brain injury litigation and a popular lecturer, known for his entertaining and humorous weekly segments on the parashah.

There is no charge for admission and the hall is wheelchair accessible. Plentiful parking will be available and light refreshments will be served.

The only organization of its kind in the Jewish community, BINA provides critical services, including rehabilitation referrals, case management, crisis intervention, caregiver support, and educational events to thousands of stroke and brain injury survivors of all ages and their families in the United States, Canada, Israel, and Europe who are struggling to navigate the complex and overwhelming world of brain injury rehabilitation.

Brain injuries resulting from car accidents, falls, strokes, brain tumors, and other neurological conditions can affect every function: walking, speech, memory, behavior, swallowing . . . the ripple effects on every member of the family are enormous and life-altering. BINA can be contacted at 718-645-6400 or v

Yeshivat Sha’alvim
And Team HASC
Run Talmon Marathon

By Joseph M. Boniuk

I started my journey up the first hill, not quite unlike the rest of my mornings in yeshiva. This morning, I would be the first of many. I was not afraid though, for I had made sure that I was hydrated and loaded on carbs from the night before.

This past Friday, May 23, 33 members of Yeshivat Sha’alvim participated in the Talmon All-Men’s Marathon, proudly wearing matching purple running shirts with the words “Team HASC Talmon” across their chests. The group consisted of students, kollel members, and even rebbeim and their children representing their yeshiva. It was an effort as a yeshiva to perform an act of chesed, and the result was the yeshiva collaborating with HASC to raise much-needed money for camper scholarships.

Camp HASC provides over 300 children and adults with intellectual and physical disabilities the opportunity to enjoy an unforgettable camp experience. Camp HASC serves the social, therapeutic, academic, recreational, and medical needs of all its campers with a positive, “person first” approach to care. Many talmidim of the yeshiva are staff members at Camp HASC, and there was no reluctance to strengthen the connection. HASC gained money and support, and Sha’alvim was proud of the opportunity for achdut and performance of such a beautiful and impactful chesed. HASC was elated to have a third prosperous Team HASC come forward this year, after the amazing successes at the Fort Lauderdale and Jerusalem marathons.

That morning, I walked into the “beis” a few minutes later than I would have preferred, 5:55 a.m. for a 6:00 Shacharit. We boarded the bus and heard a shiur from Rav Ari Waxman, menahel of the overseas students at Sha’alvim, en route to the yishuv. The scenery was beautiful, the group was jovial, and the atmosphere smelled of chesed.

When we arrived at Talmon, after driving around four or five Arab villages, we all went to sign in and get our bibs with numbers and tracking chips. I put on my sunscreen, aviator sunglasses, and Tzahal bucket hat and headed toward the starting line. I was slightly surprised to see a gang of bikers preparing to lead us, but then they announced the start of the race and there was no more thinking—only breathing and running for a five kilometer run, the shorter option of the race for those physically untrained yeshiva guys like me. Emotions ran high. There was a plethora of bright colors, a large crowd of supporters, and the climate was warm.

Around a half hour later, I reached the last incline and decided to run all out through the finish line. I drank a few cups of water, returned my bib, and received a Talmon Marathon jersey for my efforts. My parents, who were visiting for the wedding of my cousin, arrived and we took some pictures. After the race, the times were posted on a board. I was 30:16 in 155th place, 23/32 in my category—not too shabby for someone who sits and learns all day.


While I was running, I was thinking “Ma rabu ma’asecha, Hashem!” The view of the Shomron hills was nothing short of breathtaking (as if I had any left). The number of people running seemed like a herd of animals but looked like a vibrantly colored flock of birds with bright yellows, neon-oranges, and royal purples. I thought how beautiful it was that so many people had appeared to support Israel’s presence in its territories and how many yeshiva students from Sha’alvim had come and raised money for Camp HASC.

Our inclusion in the event was organized by Eli Rozenberg and Yaakov Feldstein, second-year Sha’alvim students and counselors at Camp HASC. They had approached the administration, asking to brainstorm ideas to raise money for Camp HASC. The marathon became an agreeable option, and everything moved forward quickly under their leadership. They facilitated recruitment, sponsorships, T-shirt orders, and all of the logistics for Team HASC Talmon. They also served as the middlemen between the organizations of the marathon, HASC and Sha’alvim, none of whom had worked together before.


Rav Yechezkel Yakovson, the rosh hayeshiva of Sha’alvim, Rav Ari Waxman, menahel of the overseas students, and Rav Judah Mischel, director of personnel and programming at Camp HASC, all enthusiastically supported the joint effort. In R’ Yakovson’s written haskamah (approval) of the event he quoted the Gemara in Sotah (14a) “Torah techilato gemilut chasadim v’sopha gemilut chasadim—Torah’s beginning and ending is acts of kindness.” Yonatan Sklar was the technical organizer, doing all the behind-the-scenes work from the HASC end, and photographed the run. Team HASC’s Coach Michal gave us sound nutritional and preparation advice. Working together as a yeshiva for this worthy cause were students, kollel members, rebbeim, and their children, all raising money, running, and just coming to help the large crowd of supporters cheer on the runners.

Yaakov Feldstein described the experience: “We spend day in and day out learning in the beit midrash, but we can’t forget the importance of chesed and doing things for other people, especially allowing these beautiful souls the opportunity to come to Camp HASC. We’re trying the best we can to make as big a kiddush Hashem as possible.”

And a tremendous kiddush Hashem it was. There is no doubt that Friday’s success will pave the road for others to join and contribute to the constant effort in acting selflessly for others and making the world a better place. Donations can still be made at To contact Eli Rozenberg and Yaakov Feldstein, e-mail v

Ambassador Oren Addresses Lander’s
40th Commencement

Touro College conferred Michael Oren, Ph.D., Israel’s ambassador to the United States from 2009 to 2013, with an honorary doctorate at the 40th annual commencement exercises at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center on Memorial Day.

At the ceremonies, Touro awarded 699 baccalaureate and associate degrees to graduates from the Lander College for Men in Kew Gardens Hills (LCM); Lander College for Women-the Anna Ruth and Mark Hasten School in Manhattan (LCW); Lander College of Arts & Sciences-Flatbush (LAS, with separate men’s and women’s divisions); the School for Lifelong Education in Brooklyn; and Machon L’Parnasa–Institute for Professional Studies, also in Brooklyn.

In his remarks, Dr. Oren, now the Abba Eban Chair of International Diplomacy at the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya at the Lauder School of Government, Diplomacy, and Strategy in Israel, and a contributor at CNN, warned that despite the ever-growing list of enemies calling for the destruction of the Jewish people, the greatest threat we face is the one aimed at our own narrative.

“Today the danger is from those who deny that there ever was a story at all,” Dr. Oren said. “They deny that our temples ever stood in Jerusalem. They deny that the Holocaust ever occurred. And worse—they deny that there ever was or is a Jewish people.”

Dr. Oren said that as a boy he suffered from learning disabilities so severe that the future Israeli ambassador could only read a transliterated version of his bar mitzvah portion. Over the course of his life, he said, he has enjoyed much success and lived through heartbreak as well, referencing his sister-in-law, who was murdered by a suicide bomber during a visit to Jerusalem, and his son, who was wounded while serving in the Israeli army. But he said that his story, like that of the Jews, is about triumphing over tragedy.

“In each generation, forces will arise that will attempt to end our story, to destroy our storytellers, and to deny our story altogether,” said Dr. Oren. “But once again, they will fail. They will fail because of your successes, your faith, and your courage. Your success is our success and in saying mazal tov to each and every one of you, I say mazal tov to the Jewish people everywhere.”

The program began with valedictories from four Touro graduates: Yehuda Lehrfield of LAS men’s division, who will attend the University of Maryland School of Dentistry in the fall; Aliza Batya Agress of LCW, an assistant editor of Hamodia; Aryeh Michael Ginsburg of LCM, who will attend the Albert Einstein College of Medicine; and Sara Chana Ackerman of LAS women’s division, who will continue her studies at the Touro College School of Health Sciences.

Dr. Alan Kadish, Mr. David Raab, Dr. Stanley L. Boylan, Dr. Michael Oren,  Dr. Robert Goldschmidt, Dr. Mark Hasten, and Rabbi Moshe Krupka

Dr. Alan Kadish, Mr. David Raab, Dr. Stanley L. Boylan, Dr. Michael Oren,
Dr. Robert Goldschmidt, Dr. Mark Hasten, and Rabbi Moshe Krupka

Dr. Mark Hasten, the chairman of the board of trustees of Touro College, then introduced Touro President and CEO Dr. Alan Kadish, who discussed the significance of ‘strength in numbers’ versus the accomplishments and sacrifices of the individual—for both the Jewish people and the secular world.

“We’re all part of a collective, working as a unit, as a family, as a tribe, as a faction, and as a Jewish people,” said Dr. Kadish. “But at the same time, we each have importance as individuals. The fact that each one of you matters is what we celebrate today.

“Along with other proud Touro graduates and alumni, you will forge ahead with perseverance, talent, intelligence, and education and make a contribution to yourselves and the Jewish people. As we face the challenges of the next decade, our society and our people will be well prepared.”

Dr. Kadish also marked the observance of Memorial Day by noting the sacrifice of our military officers.

“We recognize each fallen individual,” he said. “At the Vietnam Memorial, we say the name of each fallen soldier; we mourn the loss of their potential contribution individually and for the common good.”

The Lander Colleges were established to provide accessible, world-class educational opportunities to the observant community. Within a supportive and Torah-rich environment, the Lander Colleges offer a challenging academic program to equip students with a superb education and to expand and deepen their knowledge of Torah. Rather than elevating one at the expense of the other, the schools teach the immeasurable value of both scholarship and a commitment to Torah and mitzvot.

Students can choose from a wide range of disciplines—from the classic liberal arts and sciences to highly focused pre-professional programs. Over the last several years, graduating seniors have continued their education at some of the most prestigious graduate schools in the country, including Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University, and the University of Chicago.

At the conclusion of the 2014 commencement season, the Touro College and University System is expected to have awarded approximately 6,000 doctor of philosophy, doctor of osteopathic medicine, doctor of pharmacy, juris doctor, master’s, baccalaureate, and associate degrees to students from 32 schools and colleges located in the U.S. and around the world. v

An Evening For New MSWs At Touro

“Making a Difference” was the theme underlying the recent spring 2014 Touro College Graduate School of Social Work Community Day, where students, faculty, and alumni gather twice a year to meet and engage with one another and experts in the field of social work.

This year’s spring meeting, titled “An Evening for New MSW Professionals,” presented a unique opportunity for the community of the graduate school of social work to hear from top executives in social services on how to obtain and maintain their “dream” job.

Dr. Steven Huberman, founding dean of the graduate school, began the event with a brief and powerful discussion of current events, tying them to social work values and ethics, followed by an inspiring introduction of the distinguished speakers as “role models and mentors in the social work field.”

Associate Dean Dr. Melissa Earle expanded on the purpose of the night’s theme by reading a meaningful and moving poem given to her by an alumnus of the school on “What a social worker makes.”

With the audience held spellbound, Dr. Earle ended the poem with, “I make a difference—and so will all of you.”

Speaking from her personal experience, Tina Atherall, LMSW, executive vice president of Hope for the Warriors, a nonprofit organization that addresses the needs of the military and veteran population and families, emphasized the importance of good mentoring.

“Find the best mentor you can,” Ms. Atherall told the assembled students, explaining how her mentor affected her growth as a student and allowed her to look beyond her original focus. Ms. Atherall also advised the audience to know in advance who their interviewers will be when applying for jobs so they can be as prepared as possible.

“Simplification,” said First Deputy Eric Brettscheider of the New York City Administration for Children Services, is the key to interviewing. “Choosing your words is critical,” he said, cautioning the students not to use fancy words, or overuse “buzzwords” in order to build themselves up when speaking to an interviewer.

Amy Dorin, LCSW, senior vice president for behavioral and community health at F.E.G.S. Health and Human Services, opened her presentation dramatically by advising students, in order to secure an interview: “Get a license!” She explained that, in today’s world, the job market is increasingly focused on credentials. Additionally, Ms. Dorin said that it is important to be comfortable with technology because most agencies are using technology to keep track of records, analyze data, and other critical functions.

David Mandel, CEO of Ohel Children’s Home and Family Services and chair of the school’s professional advisory board, said that when he conducts an interview, he wants to know the applicant as a person. He asks, “Tell me one mistake you made in your life and how you wished you could change it.” With this question, Dr. Mandel explained, he can tell more about the person than any other perfunctory interview questions that could be asked.

A question and answer period followed the presentations, during which students and alumni were able to ask the members of the panel and faculty questions that resonated for them personally about obtaining and maintaining a social work position, obtain advice on their resumes, and begin to build their networks. v

YU Presents Conflict-
Resolution Workshop For Rabbis

A group of rabbis convened in New York City for a three-day seminar, May 19–21, on mediation training, organized by Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future–Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary, in conjunction with the Kukin Program for Conflict Resolution at YU’s Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.

The training was presented by attorneys Adam Berner and Sequoia Stalder, both expert trainers in the field of mediation and conflict resolution.

“By definition, rabbis here and in all places are serving so many different roles—in the pulpit, as teachers, and as educators, working with many people, and people have differences,” said Berner, an alumnus of RIETS and Cardozo and an assistant professor at Cardozo. “This workshop is a frame of how best to help these leaders deal with differences, how to manage the realities of being in a community, and how to take conflict and see it is an opportunity for growth, learning, and change, for themselves and for others.”

Through a combination of discussion and collaborative role-playing activities, the training was designed to teach participants “how to maximize the chance of being on the positive side of a conflict,” said Stalder, who founded a company to provide workplace mediation training and serves as an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution. “We create a framework for a dialogue, teaching specific skills that support that dialogue. We teach how to get to the root of the conflict, with the goal being collaboration, to determine how the needs of both sides can be met.”

For Rabbi Shaanan Gelman, the workshop and the topics it covered hit close to home.

“Not a week goes by without me being personally engaged in conflict resolution in some form, whether it’s communal, ritual, familial, or on an organizational level,” said Gelman, rabbi of Kehilat Chovevei Tzion in Skokie, Illinois. “This conference provided the building blocks of managing conflicts on all fronts of the rabbinate, infinitely valuable skills which touch upon every aspect of the job and teach you to understand all sides of a contentious issue.”

Other attendees viewed the training as a vital part of their ongoing rabbinic education.

“This training was about seeing conflicts from different angles and how to effectively work towards a resolution.” said Rabbi Jeremy Donath, who leads Congregation Darchei Noam in Fair Lawn, New Jersey. “It’s great to be able to come back to my alma mater to learn and engage in the growth process. To be connected to YU and have the opportunity to attend these trainings is really an asset for me in my perpetual education.”

“This unique collaboration between all aspects of the University, convened by the Center for the Jewish Future, brings best practice from the legal field to bear on rabbinic leadership,” said Rabbi Levi Mostofsky, director of the CJF’s Department of Continuing Education. “In addition to developing the rabbi’s capacity to mediate, the experience broadened one’s view of conflict, with broad application in personal, professional, and even religious life.”

“As a spiritual mentor and a role model, these are life skills that a rabbi needs,” added Berner. “It’s a privilege to be able to come back to YU, 20 years after I graduated, to help both the rabbinic community and the legal community.” v

JEC Students Learn Financial Literacy

Following the success of last year’s inaugural program, students at the Jewish Educational Center of Elizabeth’s Yeshiva Elementary and Rav Teitz Mesivta Academy divisions were treated to another round of financial literacy training by the renowned multinational financial organization PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The program, launched as part of PwC’s “Earn Your Future” $160 million commitment over five years to provide financial literacy education in schools across the country, was introduced to JEC through PwC partner and JEC board member and parent Brian Ness.

“As someone from PwC and a parent in the school, there was such momentum from last year’s successful program that I wanted to bring my team back to JEC this year,” he said. “It is rewarding to know that we are the only yeshiva day school in the NY metropolitan area that has a program like this.”

Building on last year’s modules, 25 PwC professionals, ranging from first-year associates to senior managers, covered topics that included money management, budgeting, credit, trustworthiness as it pertains to lending money, and investing.


“Statistics have demonstrated the severe limitations of children’s and even adults’ financial literacy,” he said. “If we start young enough, the kids will use these concepts as they grow to help themselves and their families.”

Students in grades 3–11 participated in age-appropriate modules that encouraged dialogue with the professionals and each other in small working groups.

Mr. Ness also shared excitement over a video contest that he conducted leading up to the recent visit. Students were asked to submit one-minute videos depicting how they save money and plan their finances. There were over 30 submissions and all participating students received an array of exciting prizes.

JEC administrators were especially impressed with the sophistication of the program. “The level of interaction was appropriate for each age group,” said Rabbi Eliyahu Teitz, associate dean of the Jewish Educational Center. “We look forward to a continued partnership with Brian and PwC for many years to come.”

Perhaps most refreshing was the presence of a JEC alumnus as part of the PwC team. Mr. Ness pointed out, “Sammy Rosenzweig is here. It’s a nice opportunity for our alumni, who have grown into the business world, to get a chance to return as role models and give back to the school in such a dynamic manner.”

For more information, please contact Adina Abramov at 908-355-4850 or v

JEC Annual Dinner, June 17

The Jewish Educational Center of Elizabeth, NJ, invites the community to its annual dinner, to be held on Tuesday, June 17. Come together to celebrate the school and another great year. Special awardees are Marty and Miriam Knecht, Guests of Honor; Harry and Mimi Stadler, Lev Tov; Esther Captan, Educator of the Year; and Malvina (Stella) D’Onofrio and Dennis Van Ness, Special Service Award. The dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. at the Venetian. Visit to place an ad or make a reservation. v


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Posted by on June 4, 2014. Filed under In This Week's Edition. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.