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Hadassah Leadership Academy Alumnae Association 2009 HLA Distinguished Alumna Announced

PRESS RELEASE

Contact:  Ruth Gursky, Chair, HLA Alumnae Assn., hlaalum@hadassah.org, 212.741.4445

            Hadassah Leadership Academy Alumnae Association 2009 HLA Distinguished Alumna Announced (New York, NY - June 24, 2009) - The Hadassah Leadership Academy (HLA) Alumnae Association announced that MYRNA RODKIN, a member of the first HLA graduating class from the Florida Atlantic Region, will receive its fourth annual HLA Distinguished Alumna Award, the highest recognition the HLA Alumnae Association gives its members.

            The HLA Distinguished Alumna Award was created to honor an HLA graduate who demonstrates leadership, service and significant achievements that benefit Hadassah and the recipient’s local Jewish and/or civic community.

            After graduating from the HLA program in 2000, Rodkin created two special programs: “Book & Author Luncheon,” which continues to draw large audiences, raise substantial funds and garner publicity for the Florida Atlantic Region, and “Florida Atlantic Region Jewish Film Festival,” which lasted for four years. She served as the Region’s Organization Vice President for three years, followed by a three- year term as the Region’s Executive Vice President; recently, Rodkin completed her three-year term as President of the Florida Atlantic Region.

            In her local community, Rodkin identified the program “Building Bridges over Troubled Waters” as her “most meaningful” project because it “helped save patients’ lives and brought resource information to caregivers of all ages.” Held in November 2008, this program evolved from her work with the Alzheimer's Association of Southeast Florida Chapter.

            Elaine Ellish, Former National Hadassah Vice President, described Rodkin as a leader who “made a commitment to Hadassah and has never wavered from it.” After meeting with Rodkin, Ellish stated that she “knew [Rodkin] was what Hadassah was looking for. Intelligent, eager to learn, love for Hadassah and Israel.”

            After being informed that she was the 2009 HLA Distinguished Alumna Award recipient, Rodkin replied: “I am thrilled and honored to receive this award. Hadassah is a wonderful organization and I have enjoyed working on behalf of Hadassah for all these years.”

            Also nominated for this year’s award was Madeleine Policzer, Broward Region Leadership Vice President. Ruth Gursky, Founding Chair of the HLA Alumnae Association, called both nominees “perfect examples of how the Hadassah Leadership Academy helps to mold committed volunteers into effective and valuable leaders who go on to make a meaningful impact in Hadassah and their communities."

            The Hadassah Leadership Academy is a two-year program of Jewish study and leadership development training followed by a third year in which the participants create and implement a project designed to support Hadassah's mission and enhance the organization at the local level. The HLA Alumnae Association was established to support Hadassah Leadership Academy graduates and help them maintain and expand their network of friends and colleagues who experienced this unique educational adventure.

            For more information on the HLA Alumnae Association Award Presentation, contact hlaalum@hadassah.org or visit:  http://www.hadassah.org/hlaalum.

            The HLA Alumnae Association was established to support the extraordinary cadre of trained leaders who graduated from the Hadassah Leadership Academy. The HLA Alumnae Association strives to strengthen members’ ties to each other, to Hadassah and to Israel; draw on each other’s knowledge, strengths and experiences; carry on the HLA tradition of learning; develop leadership opportunities for others; and help each other succeed as we learn, grow and lead in Hadassah and our local communities. For more information on the HLA Alumnae Association, visit: http://www.hadassah.org/hlaalum.

            Founded in 1912, Hadassah, The Women’s Zionist Organization of America, is the largest Jewish membership organization in the United States. In Israel, it supports pacesetting medical care and research, education and youth programs, and reforestation and parks projects. In the US, Hadassah promotes health education, social action and advocacy, Jewish education, volunteerism and leadership skills, Young Judaea and connections with Israel. For more information on Hadassah, visit:  http://www.hadassah.org.



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