Community invited to participate in joint JFSA & JCF annual meeting

The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona (JFSA) and Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona (JCF) will hold a joint annual meeting via Zoom on Thursday, May 13, 2021, 4:30 – 6:00 pm. Registration information can be found at the bottom of this article. REGISTRATION WILL CLOSE THURSDAY, MAY 13… Read more »

Bat Mitzvah: Sage Elise Wexler

Sage Elise Wexler

Sage Elise Wexler was called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah on April 24, 2021 at Congregation Or Chadash. She is the daughter of Allison and Michael Wexler, of Tucson, and granddaughter of Charlene and Sam Wexler of Chicago, and Jerry and Sue Zandman of Lido Beach, NY.… Read more »

Medical student committed to compassionate care, underserved wins $30,000 scholarship

Gabrielle “Gabi” Mintz

Second-year University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson student Gabrielle “Gabi” Mintz has been awarded the Shirley D. Curson Medical Student Scholarship from the UArizona Hillel Foundation. Second-year medical student, Gabrielle “Gabi” Mintz, in the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson, has been awarded the Shirley D. Curson… Read more »

JFCS hosts “Healthy Relationships Inside the Household” workshop as part of domestic violence prevention program

Dr. Marcela Kepic, Associate Professor of Practice at the University of Arizona

COVID-19 has impacted everyone’s lives, leaving us with a deep sense of grief as we grapple with the loss of loved ones, jobs, freedom, and many other sources of stability and joy. The Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Southern Arizona (JFCS) domestic violence prevention program, LEAH (Let’s End… Read more »

Stuart K. Nelson, Korean War veteran and music lover, dies

Stuart K. Nelson

Stuart K. Nelson of New York City and Tucson, Arizona passed away on April 9, 2021. He is the son of the late Solomon and Helen Nelson and was predeceased by his sister Dr. Anafred Nelson Halpern. Stuart is the cherished husband of Linda Marcus Nelson, beloved father of… Read more »

JFSA Women’s Philanthropy raises funds to address food insecurity at Connections

Hundreds of women came together on March 14, 2021 at Connections, the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona’s (JFSA) signature Women’s Philanthropy event, to honor the Jewish community’s continued philanthropic work and address the growing problem of food insecurity in Southern Arizona in ways both big and small. After a year unlike any other, hunger is… Read more »

State Representative Alma Hernandez re-introduces bill mandating Holocaust education in Arizona public schools

Arizona State Representative Alma Hernandez

State Representative Alma Hernandez, a Democrat representing Arizona’s 3rd district, re-introduced a bill at the start of the legislative session that would make a substantive change to the state’s public school curriculum and have Arizona join 15 other states in mandating Holocaust education in public schools. Presently, there is… Read more »

Updates from Handmaker: Newfound freedoms, just in time for Passover

A collection of pictures of Handmaker residents from April 2021

Late last month, Handmaker finally received guidance from the Arizona Health Department to begin to loosen some of the restrictions that residents have been living with for months. What a relief! And, what a blessing that this happened just in time for Passover! This meant that we could have… Read more »

John “Ryan” Weston graduates

John “Ryan” Weston

John “Ryan” Weston will graduate from Millennium High School in May. He has earned high academic honors, ranking within the top ten in his class, and has been a standout member of his Cross Country (three years) and Track and Field (four years) teams. He has also participated in… Read more »

Uncovering the story of my Doda Anutza: Unsung heroine of WWII

Hanna Druckman, called Doda Anutza by her family

One Sunday afternoon a few weeks ago, I got a phone call from my mother’s cousin, Tzippi, who lives in South Florida and is in her late seventies. “Sha’ron,” she asked, “I know you were close with Doda . Did she ever tell you what she did… Read more »

University of Arizona Hillel Foundation names Jessica Emerson McCormick executive director

Jessica Emerson McCormick, Incoming Executive Director of the University of Arizona Hillel Foundation

The Board of Directors of the University of Arizona Hillel Foundation is delighted to welcome native Tucsonan Jessica Emerson McCormick—who has worked in Jewish organizations, municipal government, and as a writer—as Executive Director of the University of Arizona Hillel Foundation. Jessica will start on July 1, 2021, succeeding Michelle… Read more »

The Sound of music in art: Kinesthetic artist Howard Kline

Howard Kline is a kinesthetic artist. “Music inspires my art,” he says, and it has been a major influence on his paintings. Visual artists work with their sense of touch or sight, but Kline warms up and initiates his day in the studio by first stepping into a soundproof… Read more »

Bat Mitzvah: Celeste Grace Bergantino

Celeste Grace Bergantino

Celeste Grace Bergantino will celebrate becoming a Bat Mitzvah on April 10, 2021 at Congregation Or Chadash (soon to be Kol Ami). She is currently in eighth grade at the Gregory School. She loves dance and art. Celeste is the daughter of Tamar and JR Bergantino.… Read more »

Southern Arizona Jewish community invests in security and combats anti-Semitism

Security director Chelsea Guiterrez at JFSA’s November 17 event honoring Stu and Nancy Mellan

The Southern Arizona Jewish community continues to adopt a strong stance against anti-Semitism and act boldly to prevent attacks against our institutions and constituents. Community leadership continues to advance this priority in both funding and action in 2021. Recent History of Our Program In March 2019, the Jewish Federation… Read more »

Handmaker Jewish Services for the Aging under new ownership

The sale of Handmaker Jewish Services for the Aging to MED Healthcare Partners was finalized on January 26, 2021. The name of the organization will not change with the sale, nor will its commitment to quality care for the elderly in our community. The Handmaker Board, with the support… Read more »

From their table to yours: Passover recipes from community members

Congregation Or Chadash 2017 Religious School Model Seder

Passover may look different this year, but it is still an essential time for us to come together with family and friends (whether in person or via Zoom) to share the story of our deliverance from Egypt. Four community members offer their favorite recipes to help flavor your Passover… Read more »

Veteran and administrative law judge, Irving Winick, dies

Irving Winick

Irving Winick, age 90, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on March 6, 2021. Born on July 11, 1930 in Jersey City, New Jersey, Irving was a graduate of New York University Law School and the Culinary Institute of America. He served in the United States… Read more »

Handmaker residents celebrate Purim

Sarah Segal got into the spirit of Purim during the Zoom Megillah reading at Handmaker on Erev Purim.

Despite COVID restriction adjustments, Handmaker residents had fun celebrating Purim this year! Rabbi and Chani Shemtov and Rabbi and Feigi Ceitlin provided beautiful Mishloach Manot for our residents at Handmaker. Many residents also enjoyed listening to the Megillah Esther on Zoom on Erev Purim, read by Mel Cohen, Dan… Read more »