In Focus

In focus 5.13.16

in focus sophie bergantino recycling contestPoster contest winner

Sophie Bergantino, an eighth grade student at The Gregory School, won the City of Tucson Environmental Service’s “Do More Blue” recycling poster contest, which was open to students in the fourth through eighth grades, citywide. More than 150 entries were received. The winning poster, with the slogan “Keep Your Earth Green By Recycling,” was enlarged and featured on the side of a Tucson collection truck. It was revealed at a ceremony at the school on Thursday, April 28.

in focus jcc and chaverim sederSeder under the stars

More than 125 people attended a second night Passover seder in the Sculpture Garden at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, hosted by Congregation Chaverim and the Tucson J on Saturday, April 23.  Leading the seder from the head table on the stage were Chaverim’s Rabbi Stephanie Aaron; Nanci Freedberg, event chair; Diana Povolotskaya, cantorial soloist; Paul Tumarkin, guitarist; and Tom Cracovaner, percussionist.






Holocaust remembrance

in focus ua dancers with Bryan Davis and Bill KugelmanHolocaust survivor Bill Kugelman, who turned 92 on May 5, recently spoke to University of Arizona School of Dance students who participated in the production of UA dance professor Amy Ernst’s “In the Shadows of the Dreamers,” which commemorates the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. It was performed at an April 17 fundraiser for the Holocaust History Center. After speaking of his experiences as a prisoner for more than three years at Auschwitz and several other concentration camps, Kugelman held a Q&A session with the students.  Pictured with the students are Bryan Davis, director of the Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center (left); Ernst (kneeling, in black); and Kugelman (standing next to Ernst).


in focus  Loretta Berhmann HD Mom behind all the school supplies (2)Helping the Homer Davis Project

Loretta Behrmann, a retired elementary school teacher from Michigan now living in Oro Valley, celebrated her 80th birthday on April 3 by asking friends and family to donate school supplies for the Homer Davis Project, a program of the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona, which provides assistance to needy students at Homer Davis Elementary School.

in focus tha 8th gradeTHA graduation

Tucson Hebrew Academy celebrated its eighth grade graduation on Wednesday, May 4. Jon Ben-Asher, THA Head of School and a THA alumni, spoke of the bright futures ahead of the graduates “as they carry our mission of excellence, Jewish living and tikkun olam into the world.” Following in THA tradition, members of the eighth grade class departed Sunday for a class trip to Israel. Pictured, top row (L-R): Moses Rast, Lucila Thal, Eva Prouty, Katherine Waterfall-Kanter, Jayden Yalen; middle row: Ana Rosman, Louisa Youngerman; bottom row: Janae Newhouse-Waine; Danika Selmon.


(Shachaf Polakow)
(Shachaf Polakow)

Binational seder

On Friday, April 29, Jewish Voice for Peace-Tucson held a binational, bilingual Passover seder in Ambos Nogales, “both Nogales,” as the towns of Nogales, Arizona and Nogales, Sonora are sometimes known. Forty-five people sat at tables stretching along both sides of the border fence.