Congregation Beth Aaron (CBA) is gearing up for its 44th dinner to be held at Congregation Ahavath Torah in Englewood on March 1. The designated honorees truly represent the character of CBA, which unites members of all ages and stages of life into a unified, dedicated and warm community. Guests of honor are Esther and David Schnaidman. Shelly Leffel Service Awardees are Deena and David Fisher and Eitan Shapiro. Young Leadership Awardee is Eli Kahn. These guests represent three generations of leaders whose commitment to Beth Aaron is being lauded at the upcoming dinner.
Rabbi Larry Rothwachs of CBA, together with his wife, Chaviva, have engendered this feeling of family within the congregation for 18 years. They are both proud and grateful to have the guests of honor as members of their community.
“How fortunate our community is to have had these wonderful individuals lead our Beit Knesset,” Rabbi Rothwachs said. “Their devotion and dedication to our shul is nothing less than remarkable. They have diligently served our community in countless ways and have worked tirelessly on behalf of the shul. Our beloved honorees are true ‘doers’ and we have all been the fortunate recipients of their tireless efforts.”
The Shnaidmans, parents of Shoshanna and Jason Silberman, Ephraim and Rivkah Schnaidman and Chanan Schnaidman, as well as grandparents of five, moved to Teaneck after their marriage in 1986. They purchased their home on the Beth Aaron side of the neighborhood and became members of the congregation in 1990. Alongside many young families, they became involved in the activities of the shul. For Esther the sisterhood offered her opportunities to serve in many roles. As a librarian professionally, Esther was drawn to the shul’s book club and often shares her experience and guidance with the group. For David, who professionally serves as a project manager at JP Morgan Chase, CBA offered many opportunities for leadership. David has served as financial secretary, member of the financial arrangements committee, gabbai for the hashkama minyan for more than 20 years and gabbai and baal tefillah at the bais medrash minyan on the yomim noraim. He also offers the Sunday morning shiur for daf shavua and is a volunteer for the arba minim committee.
The Schnaidmans commented, “We feel blessed to be part of our wonderful Beth Aaron Kehilla which has played such a pivotal role in our lives and in the lives of our children. It has been an inspiration and privilege for us to be able to participate in and be part of Beth Aaron’s dynamic growth.”
Representing the next generation are the Fishers, who joined Congregation Beth Aaron 15 years ago upon moving to Teaneck. They are the parents of Shmuli, 16; Sorah, 13; and Chaim, 10.
Deena and David expressed, “The shul is a warm and friendly place that offers something for everyone. The learning opportunities are vast. The youth department is top-notch and offers enriching opportunities to our children, two of whom are currently group leaders. Most importantly, the rabbi and Chaviva are not only our rav and rebbetzin but are our role models from whom we have gained invaluable spiritual and emotional support.”
Over the past 15 years, Deena has served as co-president, as well as other board positions, of the sisterhood. She has been involved with the nominating committee, the youth committee and the mishloach manot project. She has also organized meals for new parents in the community. David has served on the board of directors and security committee, for which he obtained a $75,000 homeland security grant for the shul. He also serves on the chevra kadisha and as a greeter on Shabbat. Together Deena and David volunteer for community chesed organizations including Shearit Ha’Plate, Tomchei Shabbos and have hosted numerous new families.
Kahn moved to Beth Aaron at age 4. He recalled, “Every year, I’d see my mother and father give their minds as well as their time to anything the shul needed––a lesson (that was) hammered into the minds of my sisters and me for our whole lives. So naturally, I did the same.”
Kahn has been involved in the mishloach manot project and has served on the men’s club, the house committee, the seudah shlishit committee and the youth minyan.
After spending almost two years at Yeshivat Hakotel, Kahn is currently a junior at Yeshiva University where he is majoring in history and political science. He is looking forward to a career as a history instructor. In addition to his involvement at Beth Aaron, he has been to Poland several times, where he has accompanied the Names Not Numbers groups and has participated in summer camps in Poland sponsored by the Lauder Foundation..
The dinner will take place on Sunday, March 1, at 5 p.m., at Congregation Ahavath Torah, 240 Broad Avenue, Englewood. To sign up for the dinner and/or contribute an ad for the honorees, go to www.bethaaron.org/dinner.
By Pearl Markovitz