Jewish history endowed

Joshua Holo, dean of Hebrew Union College–Los Angeles, has announced that a course at the school is being endowed in honor of Bay Area father-and-son rabbis, the late Joseph Asher, who was senior rabbi at San Francisco Congregation Emanu-El for 19 years, and Raphael Asher, who just retired after 33 years at Walnut Creek Congregation B’nai Tikvah. The course, Modern Jewish History, is required for all rabbinical and education students and thus “will serve the core education of our students, year in, year out,” Holo said. “We chose Modern Jewish History, because it deals with the period through which the senior Rabbi Asher lived and during which many of our thinkers — about whom the younger Rabbi Asher is a scholar — flourished. The $100,000 campaign is still afoot,” he added.


Art on display

Norm Levin

Cindy Ostroff and Norm Levin, both of San Rafael, had works on display at the Marin County Fair’s art exhibition over the July Fourth weekend. One of Ostroff’s etchings was jury-selected for the show. Levin, a photographer, had six photos exhibited, including one that won a special award for Best Group Portrait in the “Smile!” category. Levin said he took the picture of five women at Point Reyes Station “surprisingly, with my Samsung Galaxy cellphone. I always carry it with me, because you just never know.”






Terry Baum

Terry Baum of San Francisco plays Lorena Hickok in “Hick: A Love Story, The Romance of Lorena Hickok and Eleanor Roosevelt.” The playwright and actress is co-writer of the production with Pat Bond. It plays through July 27 at the Eureka Theatre in San Francisco. Baum uses Hickok’s writing and Roosevelt’s letters to create her character. “And in the spirit of Roosevelt, all performances are free,” notes the publicity … Mona Golabek’s one-woman show “The Pianist of Willesden Lane,” which played to sold-out shows at Berkeley Rep earlier this year, is now on stage at 59E59 Theaters in New York City. It’s based on Golabek’s book about her mother’s life in England after fleeing Hitler on the Kindertransport.




Short shorts

Mark Leno

Alli Rosen is leaving Hazon of the Bay Area, where she was food justice program associate, to attend graduate school at the University of Michigan School of Social Work. Deborah Newbrun, who recently resigned as the agency’s director, has started the consulting business Get Set Go: Community Adventures, bringing her experience in the Jewish outdoor, camp, environmental and agency worlds “into a singular practice,” she writes. Drisana Davis is the new Hazon Bay Area director … Sharon Zarrabi of San Mateo’s Peninsula Temple Beth El is among 31 educators in North America to receive the Harold Grinspoon Foundation Award for excellence in Jewish education. Zarrabi received $1,500 along with opportunities to publish in an upcoming best-practices journal … State Sen. Mark Leno received the Hannah G. Solomon

Award from the National Council of Jewish Women’s San Francisco Section on June 15. It’s presented annually to an individual who has helped to change and expand the role of women in vital areas of community life … Some 140 members of Pleasanton’s Congregation Beth Emek celebrated “Shabbat Under the Stars” at nearby Harvest Park on June 27. “The way we experience our space and our connection to one another takes on new dimensions in a lovely park. We feel a little less earth-bound, even as we are lying on the earth itself,” said Rabbi Larry Milder.


by Suzan Berns

This columnist can be reached at [email protected]