Bernice and I grew up in homes where tzedakah was part of our every day life. Bernice’s mother was active in Hebrew Ladies Charity and Hadassah. My mother brought family to Norfolk who survived the Holocaust and provided them with a home and a business. My father served on the executive committee of Beth El Temple. Even my grandfather was a founder of the B’nai Abraham congregation on 20th Street.
Led by our parents’ examples, Bernice and I served on the boards of many local Jewish agencies and our synagogue. I am proud that my service has led to several awards including Beth El’s man of the year in 1967, honorary Vice-President in 1974 and the 2001 UJC Endowment Achievement Award.
Today, Bernice and I have seen the growth of the Jewish community from it’s first Federation home to the new Sandler Family campus. We have had the pleasure of contributing to Jewish organizations like the Hebrew Academy, Beth Sholom Home and the Tidewater Jewish Foundation from their inception. I feel that it is our responsibility to continue supporting our Jewish organizations beyond our lives. Our Judaism is our heritage and it is the legacy we leave for many generations to come.