July 19, 2024
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UJA-Federation of New York Honors Philanthropic Women at Annual ‘Heart Matters’ Event

(Courtesy of UJA Federation) UJA-Federation of New York recognized Evelyn B. Kenvin, Jodi J. Schwartz and Klara Silverstein for their commitment to philanthropy and support of UJA at its Heart Matters event on May 16 in New York City.

Evelyn B. Kenvin received the Defender of Zion award. Evelyn is an active member of UJA’s Israeli Judaism Committee and Jewish Life Cabinet. She was previously chair of the Commission on the Jewish People and chair of the Business and Professional Women’s Division.

Jodi J. Schwartz received the Heart Matters Award. Jodi’s involvement with UJA has included chairing the Caring Commission and serving on the Executive Committee of Women’s Philanthropy. Her current roles include member of the Board of Directors and chair of the Impact and Performance Assessment Division.

Klara Silverstein received the Lotte Bravmann z”l Eishet Chayil Award. Klara has held many positions at UJA, including chair of the women’s campaign and later chair of the annual campaign. She was also a member of the Board of Directors.

Natan Sharansky, a former refusenik who spent nearly a decade in a Soviet prison, shared his perspective on the crisis in Ukraine. He is an Israeli politician, human rights activist, author and Genesis Prize recipient. “When I was growing up in Ukraine, to be Jewish meant that you were born diseased,” Sharansky said. “Today, if you’re Jewish, you’re blessed to be part of the people and of the country that will never leave you alone.”

Keynote speaker Ruth R. Wisse, professor emerita of Yiddish Literature and Comparative Literature at Harvard University and distinguished senior fellow at the Tikvah Fund, discussed her latest book, “Free as a Jew: A Personal Memoir of National Self-Liberation.”

At a reception prior to the program, accomplished artist Donna Salamon presented, for the first time, Let There Be Laughter, her art installation that showcases the evolution of Jewish humor. Donna is the founder of HaYotzerArts, a creator of non-traditional curricula that merge spirited, big-tent Judaism with the arts. She is a NY Lion and a board member of UJA Interboro Women.

The event was hosted by Interboro Women and chaired by Candice Koerner and Seryl Ritter.

Funds raised support UJA’s humanitarian response to the war in Ukraine and ongoing COVID recovery efforts.

For more information,

please visit ujafedny.org. 

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