February 28, 2020

JNF Breakfast, Yad Vashem Event, ‘Shoah’ Screening

From left: Donna Elyassian, senior director of development at American Society for Yad Vashem, and Eitan Weiss, deputy chief of mission at Consulate General of Israel in Los Angeles. Photo courtesy of American Society for Yad Vashem

American Society for Yad Vashem held the first of its three-part series “#EducateAgainstHate” at Sfixio restaurant in Beverly Hills, on Jan. 30.

During the event, award-winning filmmaker Roberta Grossman screened her documentary “Who Will Write Our History,” the story of Emanuel Ringelblum and the secret archive of the Warsaw Ghetto.

Attendees included Holocaust survivor and Yad Vashem benefactor Susanne Czuker; Stanley Stone, executive director at American Society for Yad Vashem; and Donna Elyassian, the organization’s senior director of development.

The next two events in the Yad Vashem series will be held at the same location. On Feb. 27, USC history professor Steven J. Ross will discuss his book “Hitler in Los Angeles: How Jews Foiled Nazi Plots Against Hollywood and America,” and participate in a Q&A session with Frank Mottek of KNX-AM. On March 26, Yad Vashem Holocaust historian Na’ama Shik will discuss “Women in Resistance: The Heroic Role of Women in the Holocaust,” with a Q&A moderated by Academy Award-winning Israeli filmmaker Guy Nattiv.

American Society for Yad Vashem supports the efforts of Yad Vashem, the Holocaust remembrance center in Jerusalem.


Lori Klein, vice president of the Center for Designed Philanthropy at the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles. Photo courtesy of the Jewish Community Foundation of L.A.

The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles (JCFLA) has named Lori Klein vice president of its Center for Designed Philanthropy, also known as “The Center.” 

According to a Jan. 31 announcement, Klein will be responsible for managing grantmaking programs and helping donors establish meaningful charitable legacies that maximize the impact of their giving.

“We are pleased to welcome Lori Klein to The Center and as a member of our senior management team,” JCFLA President and CEO Marvin Schotland said in a statement. “She brings extensive experience in strategic planning, program development and management, grantmaking, volunteer management, mentoring, and organizational and board development.”

Klein previously served as the executive director of the nonprofit Students 4 Students, which seeks to end college homelessness, and as associate chief program officer and senior vice president of the Caring for Jews in Need initiative at The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles.

With more than $1 billion in assets, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles describes itself as the “largest manager of charitable assets and planned-giving solutions for local Jewish philanthropies.”


From left: Lorraine Sais of the Museum of Tolerance; Lien Heidenreich-Seleme, director of Goethe-Institut Los Angeles, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Stefan Schneider and Hilary Helstein, executive director of the Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival. Photo courtesy oftheL.A. Jewish Film Festival

A screening of “Shoah” was held at the Museum of Tolerance (MOT) on Jan. 27 in commemoration of International Holocaust Remembrance Day and the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. The 1985 documentary by renowned French filmmaker Claude Lanzmann ran in its entirety for 9 1/2 hours.

According to Hilary Helstein, executive director of the Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival, which organized the screening in cooperation with MOT and the Goethe-Institut, roughly 150 people attended.

Attendees included Lorraine Sais of the Museum of Tolerance, Lien HeidenreichSeleme, director of Goethe-Institut Los Angeles, and Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Stefan Schneider.

The screening was one of several programs held throughout the day to commemorate International Holocaust Remembrance Day.


From left: Valley Beth Shalom Rabbi Ed Feinstein, JNF LA Board Member Mark Wittcoff, JNF Breakfast Co-Chair Judy Levin, LA Board President Alyse Golden Berkley, former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Danny Ayalon and Breakfast Co-Chair Allen Brodetsky.

Jewish National Fund (JNF) held its fourth annual Breakfast for Israel on Feb. 4 at the Hilton in Woodland Hills. 

The event featured former Israeli Ambassador to the United States Danny Ayalon in conversation with Valley Beth Shalom Rabbi Ed Feinstein on “No Hate, No Fear: A Discussion About Anti-Semitism.” They broached topics including the Mideast peace plan recently proposed by President Donald Trump, the resurgence of anti-Semitism and the work being done by JNF “to strengthen and support Israel,” according to a release by JNF.

“Israel is where it is today thanks in large part to Jewish National Fund,” Ayalon said during the conversation. 

Appearing in the Los Angeles area in advance of Tu B’Shevat, Ayalon credited JNF with the abundance of trees planted in Israel, saying, “Israel is the only country in the world that has more trees today than it did 50 years ago.”

Ayalon approved of Trump’s Israeli-Palestinian peace plan saying, “I appreciate the plan because it doesn’t pay lip service to Israel’s security and doesn’t compromise on recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.”

Judy Levin and Allen Brodetsky chaired the event, which also featured JNF Los Angeles Executive Director Lou Rosenberg, who discussed the work JNF does on the ground in Israel and the organization’s “One Billion Dollar Roadmap for the Next Decade” campaign.


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