Tell us a little about yourself.
Born in New Jersey, I moved to Ridgefield, Connecticut when I was eight. Graduating from Cornell University with a Masters in City and Regional Planning, my city planning jobs were all for Community Development Corporations, working on affordable housing. My husband of thirty years and I have two daughters-- Danya who lives in D.C., and Alia, a senior at the University of Vermont.
I just completed a three-year Co-Presidency with my chapter. I have coordinated the Hadassah CHECK IT OUT program where we have educated over 16,000 students since 1998 about Breast and Testicular Cancer. I am working on a Hadassah L’Dor V’Dor multi-generational program for my region, which involves bringing together life members who have not been involved with Hadassah.
I am a Holocaust educator, and currently teach at my synagogue. I am on the Boards of the Merrimack Valley Jewish Federation and the Groton Interfaith Council. I am a Co-founder of the Groton Area Jewish Community Group and help coordinate food for Christmas day for shut-in seniors. I brought the movie Paper Clips to my town that resulted in students collecting over 1.5 million pennies, which are now displayed in a container at our middle school.
How did you get involved with Hadassah?
How did you get involved with Hadassah? I was made a life member by my mother-in-law in 1991. I vividly remember attending the Hadassah program that day at her Chapter, and being pinned by a sweet older member. I kept saying “I haven’t done anything for Hadassah,” and she responded that I will. My mother-in-law’s sister was Miriam Portman, who was a Region President of Hadassah Northern New England and a National Board Member. She was my Hadassah mentor. When I moved to Groton, MA, I looked for a local Hadassah chapter to join. Coincidentally, I became a member of Nashoba Valley Hadassah, which was a chapter that Miriam had mentored and helped establish.
What is it about Hadassah that resonates with you?
I love that Hadassah helps me feel connected to the State of Israel. I love supporting cutting-edge research and medical care at the Hadassah Hospitals. I am passionate about organizing and creating programs and Hadassah gives me that opportunity. I am big on L’Dor V’Dor, and Hadassah allows me to be a link in the chain of supporting Judaism and Hadassah from generation to generation.
Share something you would like people to know about you
Share something you would like people to know about you In the summer of 2015, my husband and I drove from Krakow to Bialystok (in Poland), where my ancestors had lived and were murdered during the Holocaust. There are two Holocaust Memorials in Bialystok, the only proof that there was Jewish life in the region. We formed a family-and-friend volunteer crew of 11, to restore the largest cemetery in Bialystok, where all the gravestones were knocked down or vandalized. This restoration will help to ensure that the cemetery will not be built upon by the Polish government.
Previous Members of the Month
"Her grandmother made her a life member at birth."
Find out more about Stephanie Weitzman›
Los Angeles, CA
"She gives much of her energy to repairing the world."
Find out more about Stacey Dorenfeld›
"Hadassah has taught me to be a stronger advocate for Israel, Zionism and Jewish values."
Find out more about Shelly Cohen›
"Sarrah works with a technology start-up company, building global strategic partnerships."
Find out more about Sarrah Bechor›
"I chose Hadassah because its main focus is Israel."
Find out more about Ruth Fein›
"She finds it incredibly important to give back to the community she was raised in."
Find out more about Robin Fischel›
Las Vegas, NV
“Board certified pediatrician passionate about Hadassah.”
Find out more about Randi Lampert›
“I owe much to Hadassah, including meeting my husband.”
Find out more about Randi Cohen›
Paula M. Schiff
Walnut Creek, CA
"Along with my wonderful Hadassah members, I have presented three Israel advocacy programs."
Find out more about Paula M. Schiff ›
"Melissa founded the “Leorah” chapter."
Find out more about Melissa Liverman›
Maxine, Rochelle and Alana Schube
"Our goal in coming forward with our story is to show that breast cancer doesn’t care how old you are."
Find out more about Maxine, Rochelle and Alana Schube›
Martha Jo Katz
"For 18 years she worked a model."
Find out more about Martha Jo Katz›
"I love being part of a group where I feel a true kinship to the other members."
Find out more about Lori Reszutek›
San Diego, CA
“From the beginning, I have been impressed that Hadassah is almost completely volunteer driven.”
Find out more about Lori Good›
“I love that Hadassah is this amazing organization for Israel, about Israel, in Israel.”
Find out more about Leslie Gonzalez›
Vernon Hills, IL
"After losing her vision, Keeley developed a line of hair fragrances."
Find out more about Keeley Kossof›
"Katie hopes one day to help her daughter become a Young Woman of Hadassah."
Find out more about Katie Perez›
"Holly has spent most of her career doing communications and PR for nonprofit groups."
Find out more about Holly Seltzer›
“Hadassah supports everything I feel strongly about.”
Find out more about Helene Schilian›
“I grew up witnessing my mother’s deep commitment to Hadassah.”
Find out more about Hannah Cohen›