October 20, 2018

Moving and shaking: Doc Rivers, Mayor Eric Garcetti and the ADL

“The city rests on a foundation of public safety,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said at the fourth annual Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) Los Angeles dinner honoring both the mayor and businessman Mitch Julis on Oct. 2 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel.  

HSAC is a non-partisan, voluntary coalition of high-level business, government, academic and law-enforcement leaders dedicated to improving the response capabilities of the greater Los Angeles region through public-private partnership. The group looks for innovative ways to improve communication, response and resilience in the face of natural disaster, terror attacks or other emergencies.

HSAC board member Lawrence Bond; Mitch Julis, co-founder of Canyon Partners and recipient of Chairman’s Award; UC President Janet  Napolitano; Bobby Shriver; HSAC Chair Peter Lowy; Josh Friedman, co-founder of Canyon Partners.

“It’s not a question of if, but of when,” said former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, the evening’s keynote speaker. Napolitano, who is currently president of the University of California, urged people to develop plans to “prepare, react and repair” in the face of emergencies. 

HSAC does just that, leveraging private resources from businesses that could be on the front lines of a public response.  

“But we don’t spend a dime of taxpayer money,” said Westfield Group co-CEO Peter Lowy, chairman of Los Angeles’ HSAC executive committee (and of TRIBE Media Corp., parent company of the Jewish Journal), in his remarks. 

Julis, co-chairman and co-CEO of Canyon Partners, LLC, accepted his award by praising the work of HSAC, and stressing the value of creativity in tackling the problem of security.

Among those in the packed ballroom were Marc B. Nathanson, chairman of Mapleton Investments; Joshua Friedman, Canyon Partners co-chair and co-CEO; Charlie Beck, Los Angeles Police Department chief; Daryl Osby, L.A. County Fire chief; James Featherstone, general manager of the City of L.A. Emergency Management Department; Sherry Lansing, former film studio executive; Mickey Kantor, former secretary of commerce and attorney Patricia Glaser.

— Staff report

With NBA training camps underway and a new season looming mere weeks ahead, Los Angeles Clippers head coach and president Doc Rivers met with sick children and their families at Chai Lifeline West Coast’s new Beverly Hills offices on Sept. 15.

L.A. Clippers Head Coach Doc Rivers visited children and families of Chai Lifeline West Coast. Photo by Yehudis Schoen 

Chai Lifeline, a nonprofit with regional offices in the United States as well as affiliates in Canada, the United Kingdom, Belgium and Israel, boasts the motto: “Fighting illness with love.” Its programs target the social, emotional and financial needs of ill children, their families and their communities, aiming to restore normalcy to family life. 

“Don’t let clutter get in your way. Don’t be a victim. And allow yourself to follow your dreams,” Rivers told more than 50 children, some seriously ill. 

Chai Lifeline West Coast director Randi Grossman said Rivers’ visit was particularly appropriate.

“NBA players show tremendous dedication and spirit every time they walk onto the court. Our children have those same qualities — and that’s what is helping them and their families get through the pain of their illnesses.”

Dr. Michael Levi, the Clippers’ team podiatrist and longtime supporter of Chai Lifeline, arranged the visit by Rivers, who flashed a grin and conversed with guests, signing basketballs and jerseys and posing for pictures. After taking part in an impromptu question-and-answer session, the coach told the group he hopes to make a return visit to Chai Lifeline next summer wielding the coveted Larry O’Brien NBA Championship trophy. 

— Oren Peleg, Contributing Writer

The Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) annual El Caballero Golf Tournament in Tarzana raised $393,000 while honoring Jon Cookler, Jack Sheldon Neinstein and Ken Miles for their contributions.

31st Annual ADL/El Cab Golf Tournament honorees Jack Neinstein, Jon Cookler, Ken Miles. Photo courtesy of ADL

More than 160 golfers laced up for the Sept. 10 event, which attracted 350 dinner guests.

Cookler took home the Sam Saltsman Award for years of leadership and dedication to ADL and El Caballero. His father was one of the club’s first members, and Cookler remains a devoted member of the country club. Cookler and his wife Faith are ADL leaders at the regional and national levels. 

In his acceptance speech, Cookler described an anti-Semitic incident that precipitated his involvement 30 years ago and explained why the ADL’s cause still grips him: “I am not concerned about those who are different — different from you or me. I am concerned about those who are indifferent — indifferent to the hate, bigotry and anti-Semitism in our world today,” he said, according to a press release.

Neinstein and Miles accepted the Corporate Community Service Award on behalf of NSBN LLP, a financial services company. Neinstein, a partner at NSBN, and Miles, managing partner, both shared personal connections with the ADL’s purpose and its importance. Miles highlighted their TEAM NSBN Takes Action Program, which supports a wide variety of causes, including the Los Angeles Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity and the Jewish National Fund. 

Alison Diamond and Ron Salter served as co-chairs of the event. Attendees took part in a full day of activities, including 18 holes of golf followed by dinner, the awards presentation and a live auction.

— Oren Peleg, Contributing Writer

The Open Temple’s Sukkot on the (Canal) Farm brought some unique, local spirit to the holiday in a celebration in the Venice Historic Canal District. 

Some 30 young families gathered Oct. 11 on Sherman Canal from 3:45 to 6 p.m., where they were treated to a pumpkin patch, sukkah, petting zoo — featuring guinea pigs, ducks, turtles and more — and an enchanted reading forest sponsored by PJ Library, according to Rabbi Lori Shapiro, founder of The Open Temple in Venice. There was a learning session about the holiday as well.

Bunnies and babies. Photo Courtesy of Open Temple

“There are a lot of farming events that are going on nationally for Sukkot, and I thought how great would it be to do one on the canal for our community,” Shapiro said. “We’re offering community-building events where people can meet one another. 

“We’re really generating some momentum. There were lots of people with lots of babies.”

The Open Temple aspires to reach out to unaffiliated and intermarried families. Shapiro described it as a pop-up community that rents space in the Electric Lodge, where it will begin celebrating Shabbat on the third Friday of every month, beginning in January.

— Ryan E. Smith, Associate Editor

Moving and Shaking highlights events, honors and simchas. Got a tip? Email ryant@jewishjournal.com.