Meet Louis Numkin, Executive VP, Hadassah Associates
It is my honor to be invited to provide this month’s Hadassah Associates column.
In an effort to introduce myself, my initial Hadassah tie was through my mother who was a Life Member since she was a young woman. Though I was always active in Jewish organizations (Young Judea, USY, AZA, and Hillel), after my father died in 1981, I helped organize and lead events for Hadassah Vanguard, a singles group dedicated to helping Jewish women meet Jewish men. Over a couple years, our DC-metro Vanguard group brought together many at quality events. During that period, I became an Associate in a Myrtle Wreath ceremony held at the Israel Embassy in Washington, DC, with my mother as my sponsor. For years I joined squads of members performing inventories for businesses that contributed to Hadassah or helped with ad sales or even staffed the Hadassah Thrift Store in downtown Silver Spring, MD.
Through all of these activities, Hadassah was just another Jewish organization to me. Then, in 2012, my mother died, and I entered my year of mourning. This was the year her beloved organization was holding its Centennial Celebration in Israel and I decided to make an extended visit to our homeland to honor Mom’s 99 1/2 years on this earth. The Hadassah events and side trips were eye-opening and heart-rending to me. As part of my stay, I joined a Hadassah Associates post-convention tour which was very enjoyable and meaningful. It introduced me to some of our national officers and gave me the opportunity to donate a bench in memory of my dear parents to be used in the Sarah Wetsman Davidson Tower. Since then, I’ve been elected to the National Associates Board and now as an Exec VP.
As we grow, we should never forget our roots. I now understand how what I did as a young man supported the life-saving work done in our internationally acclaimed Hadassah hospitals. On subsequent Israel visits, I accompanied our National President while visiting recuperating soldiers, graves of those who gave their lives, the President of Israel, and got to see the inner workings of both Mount Scopus and Ein Kerem as well as its state-of-the-art below-ground operating rooms.
No matter if you are a female member or male Associate of Hadassah, you have a right to be proud and marvel over the good this organization does to benefit individual patients, the State of Israel, and the world. It amazes me to think that this world-class institution grew out of a dream-seed planted in Eretz Yisroel by Henrietta Szold.
Just a month ago, I represented Hadassah and our Associates by manning a booth at the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America presentation in Washington. Only a few blocks from the White House, Hadassah Associates provided info about this year’s Men’s Health Initiative, helping in the fight against this dreaded disease. Should you wish more info on our efforts or to channel a donation to this fight, visit our website at hadassah.org/associates.
Associates are strong supporters of Hadassah, holding events around the nation, assisting in running conferences, donating money and time, and aiding members in meetings and activities. If you are not yet an Associate or are a member who has males in your family who are not yet Associates, please consider joining our group. And, if you are an Associate interested in doing a little more, please let us know. Our national Associates Board is always looking for committed men desiring to help, so please contact me or our National President, James Rotenberg.
Thanks for your attention,
Executive Vice President, NCHA