Join us virtually for the annual Lion of Judah Event, featuring Mary Relles, Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland Award recipient, and keynote speaker Marlee Matlin, Academy Award-winning actress and activist.

Connect with fellow Lions for an exciting evening of celebrity spotlights, powerful speakers, touching tributes and post-program Schmooze Rooms. 

We welcome you to invite a special woman in your life (daughter, sister, friend), with whom you share philanthropic values, to join you for this program.

Registeration is now closed

About Lion’s Leap | About Women’s Philanthropy | About Lion of Judah


Tuesday, December 7 
7:00 p.m. – 8:15 p.m. 
Virtual program

Registration is now closed

  • A Lion of Judah is a woman who makes a minimum annual gift of $5,000 to the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia.
  • You will be sent a link and password to join us virtually as we draw closer to the event.
  • Closed captioning will be available during the event. 
  • There will be post-program Schmooze Rooms to connect with your fellow Lions. 
  • You will have an opportunity to make your gift during the event.
  • We hope you will consider Taking the Leap! For more information on Lion’s Leap, please click here.

For more information about this event, please contact Lindsay Davidman, Director of Women’s Philanthropy, at ldavidman@jewishphilly.org or 215.832.0502


Mary Relles has been a guiding light for the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia for decades. Passionately devoted to our mission of ensuring a vibrant Jewish community for generations to come, she ardently serves on a number of Jewish Federation boards, including  the Board of Trustees, Women’s Philanthropy Board, Women of Vision Executive Committee, Endowments Committee, and more.

Beloved and respected by her peers and community, Mary is known for her generous spirit and support of a wide-range of worthy causes. Close to Mary’s heart is Jewish summer camp, and she is a strong advocate for making those experiences accessible for all children.

She is a leader not only within the philanthropic world, but also in the corporate world at her family-run business SofterWare, Inc.

Mary and her husband Nathan have 4 children and 12 grandchildren. 


National Women’s Philanthropy established the Kipnis-Wilson Friedland Award in recognition of Norma Kipnis-Wilson and Toby Friedland, founders of the Lion of Judah pin. This award recognizes extraordinary women who have set a high standard for philanthropy and volunteerism in their communities.

Philadelphia is proud to honor strong women who exemplify the spirit and vision of the Lion of Judah through a commitment to tzedakah and tikkun olam:

2018 Lyn Neff
2016 Phyllis Finkelstein
2014 Connie Smukler
2012 Ann Spain z”l
2010 Lana Dishler
2008 Beth Reisboard
2006 Cis Golder z”l
2004 Annabelle Fishman

“Live Generously: Healing the World, One Person at a Time”

Marlee Matlin received worldwide critical acclaim for her film debut in Paramount Pictures’ Children of a Lesser God, earning her the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Actress. In 2021, she was nominated for an Oscar as Executive Producer for the Live Action Short,
Feeling Through.

She is Emmy nominated for her appearances in Seinfeld, Picket Fences, The Practice and Law and Order: SVU. Among her vast acting portfolio, she has starred in her own NBC series Reasonable Doubts as well as The West Wing, Switched at Birth and The L Word.  This year, Marlee has been praised for her role in the Sundance Film Award-winning movie, CODA.

Though Marlee lost her hearing when she was only 18 months old, she never let her challenges dictate her future or deter her dreams. Marlee has dedicated herself to raising awareness for many humanitarian causes, including diversity and LGBTQ+ rights.

We would like to thank Joan Garde for generously sponsoring the speaker fee for this event.


Tami Astorino | Karen Kramer | Sarah Vogel


Julie Savitch

Tracy Gordon

Ellyn Golder Saft
Campaign Co-Chair
Jessica Solomon
Campaign Co-Chair

Lauren Danneman
Campaign Corps Member

Lysa Puma
Campaign Corps Member
Jen Thomas
Campaign Corps Member

Marni Davis
Senior Director
Affinities & Volunteer Engagement

Lindsay Davidman
Women’s Philanthropy


Nona Levin Abrams
Ande Adelman
Susanna Lachs Adler
Jan Albert
Myrna Zeitlin Asher
Marcy Bacine
Andi Barsky
Elyse Berger
Lisa Berkowitz
Bryna Berman
Sharyn Berman
Penny Bernick
Ariann Bernstein
Penni Blaskey
Sally Cooper Bleznak
Sheree Bloch
Ilene Cantos
Barbara Cooperberg
Susan Carol Cutler
Kelly Dash
Lana Dishler
Lorraine Drobny
Donna Feinberg
Suzanne S. Feld
Arlene Fickler
Caren Fox Fires
Phyllis Malissa Finkelstein
Annabelle Fishman
Sharon Freedman
Susan R. Freedman
Beth Frezel
Tracy Ginsburg
Belinda Glijansky
Julia Goldberg
Lisa Goldenberg
Rosalie Goldberg
Stacey Goldman
Paula Goldstein
Shira Goodman
Adele Aron Greenspun 
Julie Gubernick
Jennifer Hoffman
Margie Honickman
Jackie Kaiser
Sharon Klazmer 
Jill Kleeman
Heather Klein
Jamie Klein
Pamela Kofsky
Beth Krouse
Jill Kurtzman
Cari Lasdon
Sara W. Laver
Lori Levin
Michele Levin
Sharon P. Levin
Stefani Levin
Marla Luterman
Debra Magerman
Jodi Miller
Meredith Moss
Julie Perilstein Mozes
Lyn Neff
Holly Nelson
Gail Norry
Judy Novick
Sue Panitch
Jayne Perilstein
Naomi Prusky
Beth Reisboard
Mary Relles 
Robin Robbins
Marjorie Roshkoff
Lyn M. Ross
Linda Roth
Renée G. Sackey
Carolyn Saligman, Ph.D.
Sherrie Savett
Mimi Schneirov
Lisa Schoenberg
Susan Schwartz
Rita Siegle
Marsha Silberstein
Chaile B. Steinberg
Rachel L Steinberg
Rabbi Lynnda Targan
Dr. Bettyruth Walter
Margie Perilstein Wargon
Janna Weinerman
Tracy Winig
Amy Wittenstein
Marian Wolgin
Jane Zolot
Debra Zweben