Metro Briefs January 28

Metro Briefs January 28

Pittsburgh Area Jewish Committee will hold its monthly East End Christian-Jewish Dialogue on Thursday, Feb. 4, from noon to 1:15 p.m. at Rodef Shalom. Rabbi Aaron Bisno will be discussing “The Rise of the Nones.” Visit for more information.

Cantor Laura Berman will be officially installed as the first full-time cantor of Temple Sinai on Friday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. during Mostly Musical Shabbat evening services. Berman’s installation will be officiated by her friend, Rabbi Amy Levin, who serves as interim rabbi of Congregation Rodeph Sholom in Bridgeport, Conn. 

Levin most recently served as interim rabbi of Congregation Beth Shalom in Squirrel Hill from 2014 to 2015. Levin is a member of the Rabbinical Assembly’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards and was named Faith Leader of the Year, 2013 by the Rhode Island State Council of Churches.

Berman, a Pittsburgh native, joined the Temple Sinai senior staff in August. Her cantorial education includes completing a Master of Sacred Music and Diploma of Hazzan from the H.L. Miller Cantorial School of the Jewish Theological Seminary. She is also pursuing a Master of Jewish Education through the seminary’s distance learning program. In cantorial school, Berman was the recipient of several awards including the Richard H. Holzer Memorial Prize, awarded to a graduating senior who demonstrates excellence in Judaica. 

In addition to leading the congregation in aspects of prayer, Berman’s responsibilities at Temple Sinai include leading the Temple Sinai Intergenerational Choir, Temple Sinai Band and Shir Joy Youth Choir, teaching adult education courses, working with the Nathan and Hilda Katzen Religious School, tutoring b’nai mitzvah students, performing lifecycle events and providing pastoral care. 

Get ready to party like it’s the early 1960s New York City at Community Day School’s Mad Mensch Winter Gala on Saturday, Feb. 20. The sixth annual gala fundraiser will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Omni William Penn hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh. The Winter Gala is the school’s largest fundraising event of the year, and it is expected to bring together more than 300 community members.

The night will begin with a cocktail reception followed by dinner in the Grand Ballroom and dancing to the music of Gary Racan and the studio e band. The Mad Mensch theme will evoke the sophisticated world of a 1960s Manhattan advertising agency, and guests will be encouraged to dress in glamorous fashions of the era. Community Day School alum and Pittsburgh radio personality Marc “Bubba” Snider of Star 100.7 will serve as the event’s celebrity master of ceremonies. The focus of the evening will be on CDS alumni over the school’s nearly 45­-year history, as well as three individuals.

Community Day School Leadership Award winners Clifford and Rosanne Levine and their four children (all alumni) exemplify the “mensch­-like” qualities CDS seeks to imbue in its students. Cliff, an attorney at Cohen & Grigsby, has played a leadership role in political campaigns, served on various governmental boards and commissions and coached Dynamo soccer for 20 years. Rosanne, a pediatric nurse practitioner, has provided health care to medically under served and neurodiverse communities. Highlights of her community engagement include co­founding the Young Women’s Division of National Council of Jewish Women, co-­chairing the development of the Super Playground in Highland Park and serving as Pittsburgh Allderdice PTO president and on committees and task forces throughout the district.

Pediatrician and CDS parent Dr. Ken Levin is now in his second year as the school’s Institutional Advancement chair. He has ignited a new and vibrant culture of philanthropy at Community Day School in helping to raise more than $1 million for the 2015 CDS annual campaign. He will be honored at the gala as the CDS Volunteer of the Year.

Contact Debbie Iszauk at 412­-521-­1000, ext. 8600 or for more information on how to purchase gala tickets or become an event sponsor while supporting CDS.

Yeshiva Schools of Pittsburgh will honor Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald at its 72nd annual dinner on Feb. 28 at 6 p.m. at the Westin Convention Center.

The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh will host Super Sunday on Jan. 31 and is looking for volunteers. By volunteering at Super Sunday, Federation’s mega phone-a-thon at the JCC Squirrel Hill, the community will come out to make calls for donations that will help strengthen our community at home, in Israel and wherever Jews are in need.

In addition to the Super Sunday phoning, the Federation is also holding a blood drive and a registration drive for the national bone marrow donor database.

There are three sessions throughout the day, and you will have an opportunity at each one to make calls on behalf of Federation, help the agency of your choice earn an extra $1,000, grab some snacks, participate in the blood drive and register for the national bone-marrow-donor database with a cheek swab. Session 1: 9:30 a.m. to noon; session 2: 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.; and session 3: 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, contact

Turkish Jews and the Concept of Home: How do Turkish Jews balance their pride as Turks with the discrimination they face as Jews? Join the Community Relations Council as Marcy Brink-Danan explores this topic in a free lecture on Wednesday, Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. at the Cathedral of Learning. The evening includes an optional pre-lecture tour of the Israel Heritage and Turkish Nationality Rooms and post-lecture reception. For registration inquiries, contact or call 412-992-5247.

Rabbi Danny Schiff will lead three sessions discussing Jewish insights on different challenging ethical issues in contemporary health care. Participants can earn up to two Continuing Medical Education credits per session.

The cost is $36 per class or $90 for all three. The first event is Wednesday, Feb. 17. All classes will be held at the Jewish Healthcare Foundation, Q12T Center, 6:15 to 8:30 p.m. Dinner will be provided. For more information, contact Patti Dziekan at 412-992-5221 or

One Happy Camper Grants up to $1,000 are now available. The Papernick Family Foundation, in partnership with the Jewish Federation’s Centennial Fund for a Jewish Future and the Foundation for Jewish Camp, is offering $1,000 grants to children attending Jewish overnight camp for the first time for a period of 19 consecutive days or more. For more information, go to

Challah for Hunger will be held at the Edward and Rose Berman Hillel Jewish University Center (Hillel JUC) on Thursday, Jan. 28 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. As you braid and bake challah with the students, you’ll learn more about Hillel JUC, the Challah for Hunger program and the students’ efforts to make a difference in the community and around the world. The challah will be sold to raise money for local and global hunger-related charities. For more information, contact Stacy Skiavo at 412-992-5223 or

Bridges: Jewish Women’s Professional Series, a new initiative of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh designed for working women in the Pittsburgh Jewish community, convenes Jewish female professionals in the greater Pittsburgh area through networking and educational events, with the goal of fostering professional relationships.

Throughout the year, the group will plan unique one-hour lunches to discuss important topics facing female professionals today. At the first session, participants will discuss body language and the impact it has on perceptions in the workplace and view a TED Talk led by Harvard Business School professor and social psychologist Amy Cuddy, followed by an interactive roundtable discussion. The session will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 2 from noon to 1 p.m. at Tucker Arensberg, P.C., One PPG Place, 15th floor. Cost is $10. For more information, contact Kim Cohen, director of Women’s Philanthropy, at 412-992-5227 or

The Senator John Heinz History Center will host a celebration of the life and legacy of a true Pittsburgh original, Steelers’ broadcaster Myron Cope, as part of a special public program, “Yoi! Remembering Myron Cope,” this Sunday, Jan. 31, at 1:30 p.m. at the Detre Library & Archives at the Senator John Heinz History Center.

Sports broadcaster Bill Hillgrove will emcee the public event and share some of his favorite Myron Cope stories, while “New York Times” sportswriter and Squirrel Hill native Murray Chass will deliver the keynote presentation. The program will examine a lesser-known side of the legendary broadcaster, exploring Cope’s identity as a sportswriter, Jewish Pittsburgher, and father. 

“Yoi! Remembering Myron Cope” will also feature a multimedia presentation of rare archival material on loan from the Cope family, along with video highlights of his famed career.

Following the program, visitors can visit the football section of the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum to enjoy a special display case that includes Cope’s 1955 Hermes typewriter, vintage Terrible Towels, rare photos, and other memorabilia.

This event is presented by the Rauh Jewish History Program & Archives and by the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum.

The “Yoi! Remembering Myron Cope” program is included with regular museum admission, $16 for adults, $14 for seniors (age 62+), $6.50 for students and children (age 6-17), and free for children (age 5 and under) and History Center members.