November 21, 2018

Moving and shaking: Kadima Day School, Touro College and community preparedness

Kadima Day School has announced Greg Kovacs as the new head of school. Kovacs, whose hiring became effective July 1, has more than 15 years of leadership experience, including time spent as executive director of the C5 Youth Foundation.

Greg Kovacs, head of school at Kadima Day School.  Photo courtesy of Kadima Day School

“We are thrilled to welcome Greg to Kadima,” Rabbi Jay Strear, former board president, said in a press release. “Greg shares a mindset, commitment and great optimism for the task of continuing to move Kadima forward, and will be a great asset to our community.” 

Kadima, a Jewish day school in the San Fernando Valley serving a broad Jewish population, has an early childhood education center, an elementary school and a middle school. 

“Much of Kadima’s success is due to the commitment and dedication of its administration, faculty and staff, students and parents,” Kovacs said of his co-workers in a statement. “I have been highly impressed with the warmth, professionalism and concern for the best of every student that has been obvious since my first moments on the Kadima campus.”

Kovacs, a Southern California native, has a bachelor’s degree in social science and economics from UC Irvine and a master’s in business administration from USC.

Kovacs received the Outstanding Organization Award in 2013 from the American Society of Public Administrators. He has served on the UCLA Nonprofit Management Certificate Program Curriculum Advisory Board and the College Access Brain Trust Committee.

— Amanda Epstein, Contributing Writer

Lydia Lanxner, coordinator of disaster preparedness at Laniado Hospital in Israel, was one of several experts who spoke at the “Community Responsibility, Community Preparedness” panel event on June 7. The gathering at Nessah Synagogue, an Iranian-American congregation based in Beverly Hills, also included a prayer on behalf of Israeli victims of terror.

Lanxner, who has recently been involved in training European-Jewish leaders on community preparedness, was part of the event focusing on community-wide security issues and implementing a plan of action.

From left: Simon Wiesenthal Center Associate Dean Rabbi Abraham Cooper; Urie Lieberman, director of West Coast Friends of Laniado Hospital; Laniado Hospital’s Lydia Lanxner; and West Coast Friends of Laniado Hospital board member Sol Goldner. Photo by Arye D. Gordon/courtesy of West Coast Friends of Laniado Hospital 

Joining Lanxner were Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Simon Wiesenthal Center associate dean; Urie Lieberman, director of West Coast Friends of Laniado Hospital; Horace Frank, Los Angeles Police Department captain; and Ivan Wolkind, The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles chief operating and financial officer.  

West Coast Friends of Laniado Hospital, an organization that raises funds for the nonprofit hospital based in Netanya, organized the event. The hospital’s mission is to “create an environment for community preparedness in Israel and in Jewish communities overseas,” according to a press release.

Rabbi David Jacobson has been named director of college affairs for Touro College Los Angeles (TCLA), a position that will see him active in recruitment, community engagement and increasing program offerings. He will work closely with Michael Hamlin, TCLA’s recently appointed academic dean.

From left: Touro College Los Angeles Director of College Affairs Rabbi David Jacobson and Touro College Los Angeles Academic Dean Michael Hamlin. Photo courtesy of Touro College

“TCLA’s commitment to educational excellence, without compromising the Jewish values parents and schools have worked so hard to maintain through high school, reflects my own personal and professional ethics of high standards for both Judaic and general learning,” Jacobson said in a statement.

He added that he was drawn to the school “because of its dedication to both academic pursuits and Jewish tradition.”

Jacobson has a doctorate and master’s degree in education from UCLA and was the founder and executive director of Yeshiva Educational Services, Inc., which works to improve Jewish and secular studies in Jewish day schools.

“We are very excited that Rabbi Jacobson has decided to join our team,” Alan Kadish, president and CEO of Touro College and University System, said in an Aug. 10 statement.

Touro College was chartered in 1970 to enrich Jewish heritage, and there are now 18,000 students enrolled in its many schools and divisions. TCLA was founded in 2005 and has baccalaureate degree programs in psychology, business management and Judaic studies, with additional core courses in health sciences.

— Ryan E. Smith, Associate Editor

Moving and Shaking highlights events, honors and simchas. Got a tip? Email