Our Town

Project Isaiah high holiday food drive underway

Committee members and synagogue social action leaders, L-R: Judith Weiser, Rabbi Batsheva Appel, Marc Sbar, Susan Kasle, Beverly Sandock, Nanci Levy, Steve Slaff, Mary Ellen Loebl, Carol Fabrizio, Rabbi Ruven Barkan, Lisa Schachter-Brooks, and Diane Katz. (Debe Campbell/AJP)

The annual community-wide Project Isaiah High Holy Days hunger project kicked off Sept. 15. It is coordinated by the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona’s Jewish Community Relations Council, with monetary and food donations benefiting the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona. Synagogues and Jewish agencies will collect donations. The… Read more »

Interfaith agency presents token of appreciation

Photo Debe Campbell/AJP

Jill Rich, social action chair of the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona, presented Federation CEO & President Stuart Mellan with a token of appreciation from Catholic Community Services Casa Alitas program on Sept. 13. JFSA has supported Casa Alitas over the past six… Read more »

People in the news 9.27.19

Hon. John Peck

At its annual conference and meeting of 130 judges, magistrates, and court officers earlier this month in Prescott, the Arizona Justice of the Peace Association elected the Hon. John Peck president. Peck is the presiding judge of the Ajo Justice Court, elected to a second term in 2018, and… Read more »

Young Men’s Group aims for community interaction

Back row (L-R): Oren Riback, Matt Landau, Tom Brannock, Stephen Segal, Isaac Figueroa (past co-chair), Jeff Winkelman (co-chair), Howard Cohen, David Kornberg, Alec Berens, Christian Yoder. Front row: Adam Miller, Eric Mellan (co-chair), Antar Davidson, Sam Bowman, Eric Natter.

The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Young Men’s group held its annual leadership development retreat Aug. 23-25 on Mt. Lemmon, facilitated by Jewish Federations of North America National Young Leadership Cabinet co-chair Adam Miller, from Orange County, California. The 13 young men participated in leadership development programming including community… Read more »

Young Women’s Cabinet plans to ‘Be the Change’

(L-R) Lindsay Berkman, Elyse Adams, Kathy Gerst (co-chair), Trinh Tofel, Miriam Emerson, Caitlyn Citrin Low, Mary Rose Goldstein, Jamie Kippur, Aimee Katz, Bronwyn Sternberg, Lillie Hansen, Meg Knight, Jenny Rothschild (co-chair), Katie Stellitano-Rosen. Not pictured: Jennifer Selco and Karen Sadow.

The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Young Women’s Cabinet held its annual retreat Aug. 17-18, themed “Be the Change.” The Cabinet spent 24 hours celebrating Shabbat, getting to know each other, learning about the Tucson Jewish Community, and the mission of the Federation.… Read more »

Men connect through ChaiLife gathering

L-R: Nolan Shifren, Todd Sadow, Ted Glenn, Damion Alexander, Michael Wexler, Jeff Wortzel (co-chair), Ben Pozez, Michael Shiner, Adam Goldstein (co-chair), Josh Hurand, Isaac Figueroa.

The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona ChaiLife members gathered Saturday, Aug. 24 to reconnect. ChaiLife was created for those men who have graduated from the Young Men’s Group and want to remain connected to the Federation and their chevra (group).… Read more »

Tucson J introduces goat yoga – no kidding!

Participants at the Tucson Jewish Community Center weekly Goat Yoga class get a workout and then some. They are joined by miniature kids from Goats of Tucson Yoga. At the hour-long evening program, the yogis usually are more interested in the costumed creatures than yoga poses, especially when plank,… Read more »

PJ Library celebrates founder’s birthday

Harold Grinspoon, the founder of PJ Library, celebrated his 90th birthday July 27. Members of Southern Arizona’s PJ Library prepared a gift for Grinspoon, thanking him for making free Jewish-themed books available every month for children across the world, ages 6 months-8 years. The colorful birthday-thank you book, created… Read more »

Business briefs 9.13.19

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Keith Marcum joins the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona as communications and marketing manager. Most recently, he managed marketing and sales for Kuumba Made Inc., in Tucson. Before that, he was marketing manager at IMPACT of Southern Arizona, a Tucson non-profit. He is a graduate of James Madison… Read more »

People in the news 9.13.19

“Pick Up the Beat,” an exhibit of paintings, prints and drawings by artist Howard Kline, is on display through Oct. 26 at Gallery2Sun, 100 E. Sixth Street. For more information, visit www.howardkline.com.… Read more »

Business Briefs 8.30.19

Molly Sheehy joins the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona as a project manager in the campaign department after six years in national service, most recently managing an AmeriCorps VISTA Grant with Arizona Serve. After receiving a degree in human development from Prescott College and serving a term as an… Read more »

People in the news 8.30.19

Dick Belkin, who divides his time between Tucson and Coronado, California, recently published his second beach-inspired children’s book, “The Coronado Kid,” earning him recognition in the city’s Eagle Journal. Proceeds from the book and its precursor, “Coronado Dog Surfing Olympics,” go to the Coronado Historical Association. An earlier children’s… Read more »

People in the news 8.16.19

Cantor Bryce Emily Megdal, a Tucson native, was ordained as a cantor on May 27, 2019 in Los Angeles by the Academy for Jewish Religion California. She will continue to work as a b’nai mitzvah teacher at Kehillat Israel Reconstructionist Synagogue of the Pacific Palisades as well as teach… Read more »

Business Briefs: 8.16.19

Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona has hired Aviva Zeltzer-Zubida, Ph.D., as vice president for planning and community engagement, succeeding Oshrat Barel, who will continue at JFSA into the fall to assure a successful transition. Zeltzer-Zubida was born in Moldova, grew up in Israel and completed her graduate work at… Read more »

BBYO teen leader featured in national publication

Chapter and regional leaders from Tucson and Scottsdale at the BBYO International 2019 Kallah summer program. (L-R) Gabe Friedman and Sam Goldfinger of Tucson, and Caroline Carter, Elsa Harris and Mimi Yonover of Scottsdale.

Tucsonan Sam Goldfinger, president of Tucson’s AZA chapter of BBYO, was featured in an article “A Shabbat to Remember and Never Forget” from eJewishPhilanthropy, an independent online publication. Sam and five other teens gave a D’var Torah honoring visiting Holocaust survivors during BBYO’s International Kallah summer program in Lake… Read more »

Homer Davis Elementary School teachers overjoyed by donation

Homer Davis Elementary School teachers are thrilled with the school supplies donation from Truly Nolen staff and customers. (Mary Ellen Loebl/JFSA)

Truly Nolen volunteers recently delivered $700 in cash and more than a dozen boxes of school supplies donated by Truly Nolen customers and staff to Homer Davis Elementary School. Truly Nolen is a community partner in the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona’s community outreach program, “Making a Difference Every… Read more »

Business briefs 7.12.19

Josie Shapiro

Josie Shapiro will join the staff at the Jewish History Museum as the 2019-2020 Zuckerman Fellow. Shapiro will serve as curator of community engagement, which includes program development work. Shapiro has been active in social movements for more than 15 years. They studied Women’s Studies and Chicana/o Studies at… Read more »

Israeli Scouts perform in Tucson

The Israeli Scouts Tzofim Friendship Caravan performed their high-energy song and dance show for about 200 people at the Tucson Jewish Community Center on Thursday, June 20. Prior to the show, the scouts spent the day at Camp J. They gave a morning show for the camp, the Taglit… Read more »

Shinshiniyot celebrate b’not mitzvah

(L-R): Rabbi Batsheva Appel, Rotem Rapaport, Ron Benacot, and Cantorial Soloist Marjorie Hochberg

About 60 community members celebrated with Tucson’s outgoing shinshinyot (Israeli teen emissaries), Rotem Rapaport and Ron Benacot, as they were called to the Torah at Temple Emanu-El on Saturday, June 15. The young women had celebrated coming of age with parties in Israel, but neither had read from the… Read more »