Special Sections

Eli Winkelman, 25

Selling challah for social justice

Editorial Intern
06/15/2010

When Eli Winkelman met former President Bill Clinton after a speech at Claremont College, she presented him with a foil-wrapped loaf of challah. That interaction got her and her organization, Challah for Hunger, a mention in Clinton’s book “Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World.”

Eli Winkelman

Rabbi Mendy Weitman, 26

Making a space for Latin American Jews

Staff Writer
06/15/2010

A native of Brazil and former resident of Argentina, Rabbi Mendel Weitman heard the same thing over and over upon his move to New York four years ago: young Jewish men and women, mostly professionals and college students from his continent, would come here, attend synagogue services or some other Jewish function, feel ill at ease in an unfamiliar and often unwelcoming culture, and drop out of Jewish life. They didn’t feel at home.
 

JT Waldman, 33

The Talmudist of comic books

Staff Writer
06/15/2010

JT Waldman put it bluntly: “I’m a comic-book geek. My entire world view is defined by them.” While he grew up in a Reform synagogue, went to Hebrew school and had a bar mitzvah, Waldman was essentially a lapsed Jew by the age of 14. His was the normal stuff of childhood: comic books, video games and Froot Loops. But when he was in college, studying in Spain, his Jewish identity became more apparent.

Sheva Tauby, 28

Remembering the forgotten survivors

Staff Writer
06/15/2010

Growing up in Flatbush, Sheva (Frank) Tauby didn’t hear many stories from her American-born parents about the Holocaust even though many relatives on both sides of the family had perished.

Today, she hears stories all the time.

As founder and director of iVolunteer (iVolunteer.com) she and her husband, Rabbi Tzvi Tauby, arrange for volunteers to visit and assist isolated Holocaust survivors. They meet survivors, screen volunteers, conduct training sessions, raise money and run an array of social events and Shabbat-holiday programs.

Sheva Tauby

Mitzi Steiner, 20

A beit midrash that bridges gaps on college campus

Editorial Intern
06/15/2010

After finding a long-neglected clause in their constitution, Mitzi Steiner reinstated the practice of beginning each meeting of the Hillel student board at Columbia University with a dvar Torah.

Mitzi Steiner

Vivian Lehrer, 29 and Yoni Stadlin, 31

Making camp eco-friendly

Associate Editor
06/15/2010

A day after Vivian Lehrer and Yoni Stadlin got married, they received the best wedding gift of all: a $1.1 million grant to pursue their fantasy project, a Jewish sleep-away camp focused on environmental sustainability.
 

Yoav Sivan, 34

Israeli LGBT rights activist and journalist

Staff Writer
06/15/2010

Two weeks before receiving his diploma from Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism, Yoav Sivan was shaking hands with none other than the president of the United States and hugging the first lady at the annual White House Correspondents dinner.

Sivan is a journalist, political activist and gay rights proponent from Tel Aviv, and the second Columbia Journalism graduate student ever — and first Israeli — to receive a White House Correspondents Association fellowship for his studies.

Yoav Sivan

Alison Laichter, 29, and Yael Shy, 28

Bringing spirituality to Brooklyn — hippies need not apply

Staff Writer
06/15/2010

For Yael Shy and Alison Laichter, sitting down together for a morning meditation was just part of their daily routine as roommates. Two years ago, nearly a decade after meeting on a Birthright Israel trip, Shy and Laichter both got jobs in New York — Shy as director of development and education at the NYU Center on Violence and Recovery, and Laichter as an urban planner for the city — and they decided to room together.

Alison Laichter

Charlie Schwartz, 28

Jewish education technology innovator

Associate Editor
06/15/2010

The many identities of Charlie Schwartz rarely come together in one person: Oberlin College alum, Israel Defense Forces veteran, rabbinical student, independent minyan leader and co-founder of a YouTube-like website. Last month he added another role to the list: father.

Charlie Schwartz

Dmitriy Salita, 28

Fighting for Jewish pride

Staff Writer
06/15/2010

Like most professional boxers, Dmitriy Salita spends hours each day training. Though he lost a junior welterweight championship fight last year, he is hoping for another title shot. Like some boxers, he spends hours each day studying. He’s a business major at Touro College.

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