My Jewish story begins with my parents — both Holocaust survivors. When they moved to America, and settled in Rochester New York after the war, they were fortunate to find a support system to welcome them, in the form of services from the Jewish Agency, and the embrace of the Jewish community around them. Ultimately, my parents were able to put the horrors of their past behind them, lay a foundation for their new lives, and raise a Jewish family in peace.
From a young age, I was raised to understand the meaning of tzedakah, the Jewish community’s deep moral obligation to charitable giving and social justice. As an adult, fresh out of college and working in my first public accounting job in Buffalo, New York, I was searching for way to find my own Jewish community. By chance, every year our accounting firm volunteered for our local Jewish Federation by helping to tally up the donation cards after “Super Sunday,” their annual day of community fundraising. I saw firsthand how diligently the organization’s funds were raised and the thoughtful way they were used to support individuals and communities. So when several years later I moved to Chester County, I immediately became involved with an organization that shared my passion for tzedakah: The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia.