Man of the Year – Youth of the Year
The Florida Region Keeper of the Flame Man of the Year Award is the highest recognition a Club can give to one of its members. It is usually given to individuals who have worked on behalf of the club or region for many years. Leadership, Innovation and Community are considered.
This year for the first time the Florida Region will also make available the Youth of the Year Award. This is given to a youth recommended by a club’s rabbis or school administrators.
- South Florida MOY – YOY Instructions, etc. – Click here.
- Bet Breira Samu-el Or Olom, Miami – Elias Rimland
- Bet Breira Samu-el Or Olom, Miami – Jordan Wilensky YOY
- Beth Am Men’s Club, Longwood – Dr. Mark Davids
- Beth El Men’s Club, West Palm Beach – Peter Weisz
- Beth Torah, North Miami Beach – Daniela Rojzman YOY
- Beth Torah, North Miami Beach – Isaac (Ike) Semeya
- B’nai Torah Congregation, Boca Raton – David Dweck
- Congregation Beth Shalom, Clearwater – Melvin Kerman z”l
- Congregation Ohev Shalom, Maitland – Robyn Kast YOY
- Congregation Ohev Shalom, Maitland – Bart Neuman
- Temple Beth Sholom Men’s Club, Melbourne – Robert Mandel, MD
- Temple Beth Sholom Men’s Club, Melbourne – Julius Sheinman YOY
- Temple Beth Torah Sha’aray Tzedek, Tamarac – Alan Paley
- Temple Beth Torah Sha’aray Tzedek, Tamarac – Rachel Sandhouse YOY
- Temple Israel Men’s Club, Winter Springs – Eric Hoffman
- Temple Israel Men’s Club, Winter Springs – Sam Ihns YOY
- Temple Torat Emet, Boynton Beach – Charlie Deutch
Their awards will be presented at the 2015 Keeper of the Flame banquets.
- Central Florida Man & Youth of the Year at Congregation Ohev Shalom in Maitland – Sunday, November 8, 2015 at 3pm
- South Florida Man & Youth of the Year at Temple Beth El in West Palm Beach – Sunday, November 15, 2015 at 3pm
View last year’s complete 2014 Tribute Journal
Bet Breira Samu-El Or Olom, Miami – Elias Rimland
Elias Rimland was born in Havana, Cuba. In the early 1950’s, his family moved to Miami where he attended Miami Senior High School. At the age of 24, after his mother passed away, he joined his father’s business, a clothing store in downtown Miami.and stayed there till December, 1990.
He is married to Roz and they just celebrated fifty-six years of marriage. They have two sons and a daughter and six grandchildren. They both enjoy travel to exotic world locations.
Elias’ greatest loves are his family and his synagogue. His family has been a member of Temple Samuel Or Olom since 1983. That temple merged several years ago with Temple Bet Breira, a reform congregation. Bet Breira Samuel Or Olom (BBSOO) is the only congregation in Florida that houses two Jewish denominations.
Elias has been a member of the Men’s Club since 1972, going back to Temple Zion. He was fortunate to serve as treasurer of both clubs. He recently received a certificate of appreciation from BBSOO Men’s Club for twenty-six years of total service He is honored to be selected as Man of the Year from the BBSO Men’s Club.
Bet Breira Samu-El Or Olom, Miami – Jordan Wilensky
My name is Jordan Wilensky. I’m 17, and a proud, sometimes too proud, Jew. Ever since I started Hebrew school in 4th grade I’ve know that it was something I was going to come back to again and again. Bar Mitzvah in 2010, Confirmation in 2014, Local NFTY TYG Board member since 2012, and Current NFTY STR Regional Song Leader from Orlando to the Keys. I’m even getting paid to be my Jewish Song-Leading self. My current job is being an After School Care counselor at the Alper JCC. I have a music hobby-hour with the kids every Tuesday and throw a little Hebrew in there and Little Shabbats on Fridays. I often try to educate my non-Jewish friends and it makes me consider regularly the thought of being a Jewish Professional or even a member of the clergy. I love playing guitar and singing, it’s definitely more than just a hobby. I’m a senior at Terra Environmental Research Institute and hope to attend FSU for college. I went to Israel in the summer of 2014 and went to the URJ Kutz Camp this past summer to learn all about being a leader and more specifically a Song Leader. It’s not easy to be Jewish sometimes, but hey, it’s my favorite part about me.
Beth Am Men’s Club, Longwood – Dr. Mark Davids
Dr. Mark Davids is grateful to be Congregation Beth Am’s honoree for The Florida Region of FJMC’s Chaverim Kol Yisroel – Keeper of the Flame Man of the Year Award 2015. When I notified Mark of the honor, he replied, “Couldn’t they find someone else more worthy?”, Dr. Davids is thankful for the recognition.
Mark is a Podiatric Physician and Surgeon who has served the Central Florida area for the past 30 years. Born and educated in suburban Philadelphia, he received his B.S. from Muhlenberg College before going on to earn his podiatric medical degree from Temple University. He competed his surgical residency in Philadelphia before moving to Longwood with his wife, Debbie, an attorney and currently an Underwriting Counsel with Williston Financial Group, in 1985. He has been in private practice in Longwood and DeLand and recently relocated his practice to Debary.
He has been involved in the education of Jewish youth at Congregation Beth Am and at the former Beit Hamidrash for over 12 years. Currently he serves as the “T’fila Specialist” teaching prayer to grades 3-7 at Beth Am and assisting with B’nai Mitzva training. Most Shabbat mornings he can be found reading Torah and greeting congregants and guests coming to Beth Am or serving as a Sh’liach Tzibur on the bima or working in the kitchen with Artisans Catering to prepare the Kiddush luncheons. A twice Past-President of Beth Am who counts bringing Rabbi Rick Sherwin to Beth Am as one of his accomplishments, he is especially proud of Debbie who is the current President of the congregation.
When not treating patients or serving at Beth Am, Mark can often be found acting on one of the local stages in Central Florida. He has been a Reverend, a Russian prisoner, a bum, an asylum lunatic and a federal agent to name a few roles. He is most proud of having had the opportunity to portray 9 characters and Dennis Shepard in The Laramie Project and as Carr Gomm in The Elephant Man. Having taken a 35-year hiatus from acting after college, Mark looks forward to spending more time on stage.
The son of Bernice and Joe Davids of Maitland, Mark has been married to Debbie for 31 years. They are proud parents to Aaron, a Florida State alumnus who currently manages Full Circle Insurance in Orlando and Benjamin, a University of Florida graduate in his 3rd Year at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine.
Beth El Men’s Club, West Palm Beach – Peter Weisz
Peter Weisz is the son of two survivors of one of the Holocaust’s darkest chapters – the extermination of the Jews of Hungary. Born in 1947 in the Transylvanian community of Baia Mare (Bye-uh Mahr-eh) where his parents met after their liberation, Peter and his family arrived to New York harbor in 1951 amidst a tide of Jewish immigration.
Settling in Indianapolis, Peter’s family founded a chain of successful retail food stores. Peter’s parents wisely chose not to shield him from the horrors of the Holocaust that devoured Peter’s grandmother and 72 other members of his family. Peter received a B.A. from Indiana University, and during his years in Bloomington, was a founding member of the Theta Xi Fraternity chapter there. The next two years were spent in Washington D.C., first as a volunteer in the domestic peace corps (VISTA) and later at George Washington University School of Business.
For twenty years Peter worked alongside his father, Zoltan, growing their company into a major force in the local supermarket industry. At the same time, Peter was raising three children and making a name for himself in the community through active involvement and Board leadership in the Indiana Retail Grocer’s Association. His interest in the general community was evident through a commitment of life membership in the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, NAACP, and Junior Achievement. Peter received the L.L. Goodman Young Leadership Award in 1989, and served on the board of the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis from 1985-1990. In 1992, he participated in the prestigious Wexner Heritage Leadership Program. He has served the Jewish community in the capacity of State of Israel Bonds chairman from 1988-1990, and chaired or served on too many Jewish volunteer boards and committees to note here.
Peter’s volunteer work for the Hasten Hebrew Academy began in 1972 as a founding board member. He was also a founding board member of the HAI Foundation. In 1995, Peter became Director of Development for the Hasten Hebrew Academy, a position he held for 7 years. During this time he helped the school secure several grants, the largest from Lilly Endowment ($3.5M), and oversaw a building expansion that added new, much needed space to the school.
Since 2002, Peter has undertaken to utilize his broad-based knowledge of computers, graphic design, writing, publishing and business in his consultancy firm, Weisz Marketing Services. He also works avidly as an author and publisher (Peter Weisz Publishing) and has authored several books dealing with Holocaust-related themes. His publishing firm specializes in producing personal histories of successful community and business leaders. Peter has written, or ghost-written, ten such biographies to date. All have met with strong critical acclaim. He has also penned several screenplays, countless articles, and produced videos and multimedia presentations on a variety of topics ranging from a one hundred year history of the Indianapolis Jewish community to effective marketing to Jewish consumers. Peter is the recipient of several graphic design awards. Information about Peter’s creative work may be obtained at his website: www.peterweisz.com.
Peter and his family relocated to West Palm Beach, Florida in August of 2008 where he continues his work as a freelance author, publisher, lecturer, and marketing consultant, serving a diverse group of private and corporate clients. He has designed and executed successful promotional and fund-raising campaigns in behalf of corporate clients, not-for-profit charitable groups, political candidates and many more. Peter owns and operates Peter Weisz Publishing, LLC, a boutique book publishing company. His most recent books, published in 2015, are “Yearning to Breath Free” and “No Is Not An Answer!”
Peter serves on the Steering Committee of Partnership 2Gether, an agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Palm Beach. He is a member of Temple Beth El and the Temple Beth El Men’s Club of West Palm Beach. He served as the Co-Chair of the 2015 Temple Beth-El Gala Steering Committee. He is a member of the AIPAC Capitol Club and serves on its Political Leadership Committee. He has served on Jewish Teen Engagement Committee of the Jewish Federation. Peter was a member of the Wexner Heritage Foundation’s Jewish Leadership Program as well as the ADL’s Glass Leadership Initiative. He is a founder of the Palm Beach Israeli Film Festival.
Peter enjoys composing music, caricature drawing, travel, writing puzzles, swimming, snorkeling, weight training, reading biographies, and horseback riding.
Peter is married to Dr. Alla Weisz, a family practice and research physician. He and Alla are the parents of Max Weisz, 27, of Des Moines, Iowa; Martin Weisz, 15, a sophomore at the Benjamin Upper School; and Andrew Weisz, 11, a 7th grader at the Benjamin Middle School.
Peter is also the father of Sandor Weisz, 38, of Chicago, Lillian Weisz Silverstein, 36, of Nyack, NY. and Oliver Weisz, 30, of New Orleans. He is the grandfather of Ezra Weisz, 6, and Zella Weisz, 4, of Chicago; and Benno Silverstein, 1, of Nyack, New York.
Beth Torah, North Miami Beach – Daniela Rojzman
Daniela Rojzman was born on November 25th, 1997 in Buenos Aires, Argentina and lived there until she was almost 5 years old, when, in September 2002 she and her family moved to Miami, Florida. She has since then been a member of Beth Torah, a community which she loves and is proud to be a part of , and has actively participated in many events the synagogue has offered her.
From kindergarten through 8th grade, Daniela attended Hochberg Preparatory School, Beth Torah’s Day School for elementary and middle school students. During this time, she was also an active participant in Kadima, the middle school branch of the Conservative Jewish youth group, along with many other community service events at Beth Torah and in her community at large. As a young girl, Daniela began to feel an extremely strong connection with her Jewish heritage and the State of Israel, which only continues to increase as she has grown. Since Daniela’s completion of middle school, she has attended Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School. She is very active in the United Synagogue Youth of USCJ (USY). During the 2014-2015 school year, Daniela was Chapter President of the BTBRC chapter of USY, where she worked hard to increase chapter membership, while planning programs to increase USYer’s affiliation with the conservative movement, Social Action and Tikkun Olam, and the State of Israel. After attending Alexander Muss High School in Israel during the Summer 2014 through the conflict Operation Protective Edge, Daniela’s connection to the State of Israel and her desire to work towards peace expanded greatly. She is now on her USY Regional Executive Board as her region’s Executive and Israel Affairs Vice President and on the International General Board of USY working on the Israel Affairs committee. She hopes to influence thousands of Jewish teens all over the United States and Canada to work hard in supporting Israel and in achieving peace and to fight for the future of the Conservative movement.
Daniela loves being a part of the Conservative movement, but understands some of the issues that currently affect it, and hopes that she can, now and in the future, work towards fixing them. In college, Daniela hopes to study international relations, while working alongside those with both similar and different goals and to be able to take the lessons that she has learned with her involvement in different Jewish organizations to help build a safer world in the future.
Beth Torah, North Miami Beach – Isaac “Ike” Semaya
Our good friend Isaac (Ike) Semaya always delivers. Ike grew up in the East New York/Brownsville section of Brooklyn NY. He graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School June 1951. While there, he worked in his family’s garment factories learning pattern making and cutting. After graduation, he worked full time and attended Central Needle Trades High School (Fashion Institute today) at night to hone his skills. If that wasn’t enough, Ike started to call on clients and chain stores to sell his family’s line.
Ike was drafted into the US Army on December 6, 1956. After serving in Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina he was discharged December 5, 1958, with the rank of Specialist 4th Class (same as Corporal).
A few weeks after his discharge, Ike was introduced to the beautiful and vibrant Iris Cohen. They were married a year later on January 3, 1960.
Ike continued his active service in the US Army Reserve 69th Infantry Regiment in New York known as the FIGHTING 69TH. He was discharged on December 5th 1961 with the rank of Sargent.
Joyfully Ike and Iris’ first child David was born on June 30,1962. Their daughter Ellen was born on November 2, 1964.
The Semaya family moved to North Miami where Ike was hired to work for Ford Shade and Drapery. A few years later, Ike went into business as a partner at Irving of Hollywood. In 1982 they closed that company and Ike went to work as a shop-at-home Sales Associate for Burdines Department Store. That department was sold to Sultan & Sons. Ike continued applying his skills there until his retirement on December 31, 2007.
Ike and Iris had built a new home in North Miami Beach in January 1969 where they still happily reside. They joined Beth Torah Congregation in 1970. Iris found a second home there as a pre-school care giver.
After participating in many after school events, Ike was invited to join the Beth Torah Board of Directors where he has held many trustworthy positions. He served as House VP; maintaining and decorating the shul; including creating a new torah mantel which is still in service. Ike was Synagogue Treasurer, controlling costs and working with many shul Presidents and committees preparing budgets. Ike served as School VP where he worked with many Bar and Bat Mitzvah students and their families. After more than 15 years on the Executive Committee, Ike was honored with the title of Vice President for Life.
Their children David (Masako) and Ellen (Ron) each are married. They have delivered five grandchildren: Isaac, Rachael, Hanna, Benjamin and Jack.
Ike has always been a proud member of the Beth Torah Men’s Club. He participates in many Men’s Club events. He is currently the man who delivers all the shul mailings including the Men’s Club’s Yellow Candles to the main distribution Post Office. We are proud to honor Ike Semaya as our Man of the Year; Ike delivers.
B’nai Torah Congregation, Boca Raton – David Dweck
David Dweck’s Jewish journey began of mixed Jewish parents in beautiful Brooklyn NY. His Ashkenazi mother of Russian and Polish decent married a Syrian Jew whose parents were born in Allepo. David went to Solomon Schechter Hebrew Day School in White Plains, NY and was Bar Mitzvah’d at the Kotel in 1975. After completing Scarsdale High School, he attended the University of Miami while working during the summers at Media Sound, a famous NY recording studio. In 1983 he took time off to volunteer on Kibbutz Ha’on and later finished his studies at UM. 1985 he volunteered for Israel at the Nivatim Air Force Base under Captain Ron Huldai, now current mayor of Tel-Aviv.
He has two children. Evan is studying at the School of Visual Arts in NY. Evan was Bar Mitzvah’d at the Kotel as well as at B’nai Torah. His daughter Gabriella who is a freshman at Georgia Tech, was also a B’nai Mitzvah at B’nai Torah.
David has been a member at B’nai Torah for 17 years and is the immediate past Co-President of the B’nai Torah’s Men’s Club and has been an active member of the choir for seven years. He has been active and supported numerous charities including ADL, AIPAC, FIDF, Home Safe, and is currently on the Advisory Board of Life Net for Families and current board member of The Caring House Project Foundation.
His passions are music, singing and playing drums, basketball and classic cars from the 60’s. Professionally, he’s been an active real estate investor and licensed Realtor for over 25 years. He is the Founder and President of Boca Real Estate Investment Club and has spoken both on a local and national level on real estate investing. He has been quoted and written about in local and national media including CNBC, Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Fortune Magazine and the Today Show.
Congregation Beth Shalom, Clearwater – Mel Kerman, z”l
This year’s Man of the Year award is presented posthumously to Melvin B. Kerman, who, as President of our club, President of the Florida Region, and member of the International Board of the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs, worked tirelessly to advance brotherhood and community for our members and our brethren.
About ten years ago, with some encouragement from our rabbis, Mel Kerman set out to revive the CBS Men’s Club that had fallen dormant. With a small group of like-minded men, Mel got things rolling again. He coaxed men to join, planned and publicized events, and generally buttonholed everyone and bugged them non-stop about what the Men’s Club was up to and why they should be participating. And bit by bit, member by member, our Men’s Club grew, bound together in prayer, service and brotherhood.
With his bold mission of “Involving Jewish Men in Jewish Life”, Mel forged a new alliance with guys who cared about strengthening the synagogue and the community. Guys who needed a place to interact socially and spiritually found not only a home, but a family at CBS. Mel’s perspective of considering all fellow Jews as “family” has taken a firm grasp at CBS. Our Men’s Club is now a place where guys feel comfortable connecting with one another and building friendships that last a lifetime. It’s now a place where we feel a sense of unity, belonging, and fulfillment. We realize, like Mel, we are all brothers here.
Meanwhile, more than any of us, Mel recognized the importance of being part of a worldwide movement of Jewish men through the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs. While the rest of us were focused on doing things on a local level, Mel was looking for ways to connect with the Florida region and with the International FJMC.
After serving as chapter president for two years, Mel went on to become a Vice President of the Florida region, and later its president, and then served on the international board. Even after Mel was stricken by cancer, he was working to organize events on the state level.
Sadly, after a lengthy illness, Mel lost his fight in September of 2014. And we in the CBS Men’s Club and throughout the Florida Region lost a leader, a doer, and a friend. For what he accomplished, Mel certainly earned our thanks and our respect. And in retrospect, we all wish that Mel had received this much-deserved honor while he was still alive.
Mel is gone now, and it’s too late for us to thank him personally for what he did for each of us individually, for our club, for our congregation, and for the Florida Region. But we are indebted to him – for his dedication, his passion and his encouragement to those who have followed behind him.
The fact that this is not your typical Man of the Year presentation should serve as a reminder to all of us that life is, indeed, fragile and fleeting, and that we shouldn’t put things off. And we can each honor Mel’s memory by resolving not to delay showing appreciation or thanking someone else for what they have done.
Zichrono Livracha. May he rest in peace.
Ohev Shalom, Maitland – Robyn Kast
Robyn was born in Central Florida to Marcy and Michael in 1997. She has two siblings; Jeffrey, 22 years old and Jessica (better known as Jessie), 20 years old. She attends Winter Park High School, will graduate in June 2016 and currently maintains a 4.5 weighted GPA. Robyn has always admired her sister, Jessie and wanted to follow in her footsteps; which she has done.
She has been involved in Jewish life since entering preschool at the JCC; attending Jewish Academy of Orlando and Congregation Ohev Shalom religious school, joining Olim in the fourth grade, joining Kadima in the sixth grade, joining USY in the ninth grade, attending Camp Machaneh Ohev at COS as a camper and a counselor, participating in the COS annual youth plays, singing in the COS High Holiday choir, and participating in the COS Madrachim program. In high school, she was one of the founders of a Jewish Club for Jewish Americans, which she plans to extend past graduation, is a member of the National Beta Club (she is now President of the Winter Park High School chapter), is a member of the National Honor Society, a member of the French Honor Society, and Secretary of the Psychology Club.
She was involved in competitive figure skating for ten years and decided to give this up to spend more time in Jewish life. She has been tutoring and helping Hebrew School students for many years and plans to help others with their Jewish education after graduation.
Robyn’s Bat Mitzvah was held on a Saturday and she conducted the majority of the service. This included reading her Haftorah and all but one of the entire Torah portions for that Shabbat. She asked her sister, Jessie to read the first portion. Robyn continues to read Torah, has read Haftorah on Yom Kippur and reads a portion of the Megillah on Purim. She continues to encourage others to participate in the Torah service. Her family recently took a vacation cruise and Robyn conducted the Friday night services on board the ship to the delight of the passengers.
A biography of Robyn would be incomplete without listing all of her activities in USY.
In 9th grade, she was the ninth grade representative for the USY Chapter on the Board and designated one of the “Young Leaders” regionally. She was on the Decorations Committee for Regional Convention. In 10th grade, she was Membership and Kadima Vice President on Chapter Board and sat on the Membership/Kadima Regional General Board as the Membership Chair. She was also the chair of the Registration Committee for Regional Convention. In the 11th grade she was on the Mercaz Sub-Regional Board as Vice President and one of the three USYers chosen to be grade programmers by the International Committee for International Convention. In the 12th grade she was elected Regional USY President for the Southeast Region (HaNegev), which includes 7 States, as well as Barbados, and Puerto Rico. In order to obtain this position, she was required to present her reasons for being the candidate of choice. Her answer was, “I love USY and it has changed me to the person I am today.” She has started a new program for USY this year, which parallels the Scouting tradition of earning merit badges. Members can earn a badge for bringing 2 people to convention, leading Friday night services and encouraging members to read Torah.
After graduating from High School, Robyn plans to attend college majoring in Journalism and Public Relations. Her goal is to work for a large organization that is trying to improve conditions in the world. She will continue with USY, join Hillel and a Jewish sorority.
Robyn is always present to lend her help and support for the betterment of Congregation Ohev Shalom.
Ohev Shalom, Maitland – Bart Neuman
Bart has been married to Judith for 45 years. He has 2 children; Charla married to Michael Milbach, Michael and Jenna plus 1 granddaughter. Bart has a sister Judy with her husband Ted and four children and a brother Neal with his wife Penny and three children.
Bart graduated from Westfield Senior High School in New Jersey and then attended The University of Pennsylvania and Graduated from the Warton College of Business in 1965. Later he received an MBA from the University of Chicago in 1969. He served in the US Military from 1965-1967 and took the Graduate Record Exam in Qui Nhon, Vietnam in a tent under conditions of 100+ degrees.
After Grad school, Bart moved to Philadelphia and went to work for IBM and was assigned to their HealthCare division. After three years he started his own firm-RMC Group which supplied software and consulting services to various healthcare clients. He later sold the company and joined KPMG Peat Marwick in their Healthcare consulting division. After two years Bart became a partner. Next he ran the Mid-West division and retired at the young age of 55 because he could. Bart was far too active to stay retired for very long, so he started his own consulting firm and was courted by ACS based in Dallas, Texas to become the Executive Vice President running their Healthcare Consulting Practice.
After obtaining a private pilot license, the GI Bill afforded him the opportunity to obtain advanced ratings. He holds an instrument rating and is twin engine qualified. He and Judy have owned three airplanes (thanks to the sale of RMC Group) of which the last one was a Golden Eagle twin engine Cessna. Through the years, Bart have enjoyed snow skiing, scuba diving, hot air ballooning, golf and much more. He has had the experience of flying in US Air combat trainers and took one of the last round trip flights on the SST Concord from New York to London with his wife.
Bart and his wife have been raising/training seeing eye/service dogs for 14 years. He truly is our COS Most Interesting Man! He and Judy moved to St. Cloud, Florida in 2001 and shortly after joined Congregation Ohev Shalom.
He became a very active member of the Men’s Club in 2004. He served on the Board of Directors and has been Co-President for 2 terms of which he is currently serving. He has held various positions such as VP Programming, VP Publicity, Chaired Hearing Men’s Voices and continues to support the community Minyan. Bart has been an integral part of the growth of the COS Men’s Club. Amongst his biggest achievements are attracting new members to our board, reading Torah at Men’s Club Shabbat, attracting other Men’s Club members to read Torah, High Holiday Ushering, working our Super Bowl Fundraiser, helping chair/organize our 1st Man of the Year (MOTY) program along with the three other Shuls in 2014, serving as liaison to help foster the relationship between the other conservative Shuls in Central Florida, assisting with the Youth Program with regard to the Purim Festival and Chanukah dinner annually. He has served on the board of Trustees for COS, currently is a Board Member of the FJMC Florida Region and is always present to lend his help and support for the betterment of Congregation Ohev Shalom.
Temple Beth Sholom Men’s Club, Melbourne – Robert Mandel, MD
Robert was born in Milwaukee and moved to Miami Beach at age 15. Graduated from Miami Beach High School, 1956. B.S. from U. of Miami, 1960. Doctor of Medicine, U. of Miami School of Medicine, 1963. Internship, Michael Reese Medical Center, Chicago, 1963-64. Radiology Residency, U. of Miami and Jackson Memorial Hospital, 1964-67. Chief Resident 1966-67. Board Certified in Diagnostic Radiology and Radiation Oncology, 1968. Active duty with U.S. Army 1967-69, serving as Chief of Radiology in 600 bed hospital in Okinawa. Rank of Major and awarded the Meritorious Service Medal. Also taught as Instructor, Okinawa/Japanese hospitals with the U. of Hawaii Medical School.
Returned to private practice in Miami 1969-72 and then full time at the U. of Miami School of Medicine, Assistant Professor 1972-73. Moved to Indialantic July, 1973, joining the staff of Brevard Hospital/Holmes Regional Hospital where he practiced for 27 years, including as Chief of Radiology. Other teaching appointments include Adjunct Professor, U. of Central Florida; Professor and Chairman, Research Dept. of Medical Imaging, Florida Institute of Technology; Adjunct Professor, Brevard Community College. In 1968 he was named a Diplomate of the American Board of Radiology and in 1982 was honored with the prestigious Fellowship in the American College of Radiology.
Robert has served as synagogue president nine times. He was also Men’s Club president 3 terms. He also served the Florida Region/FJMC as Secretary, VP for Special Projects, Executive VP and President. Served on the Advisory Board to the International FJMC President and Treasurer of the International FJMC Foundation for Jewish Life. Served as President of the Brevard Jewish Community Council. Member of the Holmes Regional/HealthFirst Foundation Board, 1981-2014.
Other honors include U. of Miami Outstanding Service Award, 1973; Inducted into the Miami Beach Senior High School Hall of Fame, 2013; Membership in the Royal Society of Medicine, London and the Israel Medical Association, American Division; Emeritus Staff, Holmes Regional Medical Center. Retired in 2000
Robert and Gloria have been together for 60 years and have two children, Lori Beth and David and three grandchildren, Alex, Ashlyn and Sam. He is a Woodworker, Bonsai Artist and ”Chef”.
“Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass… Life is about learning to dance in the rain”
Robert (Bob to many of us) has been an inspiration and a mentor for all temple leadership with whom he has worked. He is a big reason for the success of our club over the years. I personally appreciate all the teachings and guidance he has provided me and our executive Board. We all thank him for the past 20+ years of service at all levels of FJMC – making him an obvious choice for our 2015 Man of the Year Honors.
Temple Beth Sholom Men’s Club, Melbourne – Julius Sheinman
Julius was born July 15th 1999 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and was adopted and brought into the covenant by his parents Stuart and Johanna in February of 2000. With his sister Hanna, adopted from South Korea in 2003, his family celebrates broad range of diverse heritage of Jewish American, Italian, and Asian cultures, or as he would call himself “Judasianocan!”
Originally raised in central New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania, his family moved to Brevard County Florida in 2004. He entered religious school Kindergarten at Temple Israel and later with his family joined Temple Beth Sholom in Melbourne at 3rd grade. At this early age Julius had already began to exhibit his vibrant personality and passion for helping others. As a student leader and classroom technology assistant, he was recognized by his principal to represent West Melbourne Elementary School for Science by reciting the pledge at a Brevard Public Schools board meeting. Julius commitment to his schools continued through his high school years where he now attends Melbourne High School where as a sophomore, he has already logged over 450 hours of volunteer service hours to his school assisting the Administration, Guidance departments and Information Technology departments.
As a post Bar Mitzvah, Julius continues to serve as a student aide and office assistant at the Temple Beth Sholom Religious School. In 2014, TBS joined the South Orlando Jewish Congregation, USY SOJUSY chapter. With his outgoing personality and infectious smile, he rallied and recruited his TBS peers to join USY and help to almost double the membership. He was recognized for his leadership by being nominated as a “Young Leader” and invited to participate in the USY Regional General Board Weekend. Later that year, he was elected SOJUSY Chapter Vice President, and appointed USY, HaNegev Regional Communications / Social Media Manager.
Julius is proud of his Jewish heritage and proudly wears his kippah (a collection of 300+) at school on a daily basis and introducing his friends to the latest Israeli rock music. For the past three years his family has hosted visiting Israeli high school students as part of a delegation of 40 to honor astronaut Illan Ramon. Julius went a step further by organizing his high school to welcome the entire delegation that included a formal greeting by the school’s principal and administrative staff, a special luncheon prepared by culinary arts students, and interactive classroom visitations. The event helped to elevate his classmate’s appreciation and understanding for the State of Israel.
Julius has an entrepreneurial spirit and has recently launched a small photography and multimedia service, engaged at Bar Mitzvah, sweet sixteen and school events. When asked what his motto in life is, he enthusiastically recalled a quote that he and his USY counterparts say,
“THINK MORE, DO MORE, BE MORE!”
Julius is looking forward to pursuing a career in Corporate Cruise Line Hospitality Management.
We could not be more proud of our 2015 Youth of the Year Honoree this year – he clearly demonstrates a passion for helping his friends, his classmates, the community and the entire TBS family.
Temple Beth Torah Sha’aray Tzedek, Tamarac – Alan Paley
Alan is a native of Fairlawn, New Jersey and relocated to South Florida in 1982. He served in the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War and currently holds the position of State Commander of the Jewish War Veterans, as well as Commander of the Coral Springs Post. Additionally, he is a founding member and Treasurer of the newly formed Veterans Coalition of Coral Springs. He is very active in numerous local and national programs centered on helping both veterans and their families.
Alan and his family joined Temple Beth Torah in 1995 and in addition to being regular Shabbat morning shul goers, he began attending the Saturday evening Mincha, Maariv and Havdalah services around the same time. To this day, he assists Rabbi Gold in running the Saturday evening Minyan. He is frequently joined by his sons, Ben and Isaac. Ben, a senior at FAU in Jupiter will often lead services when he is in town, and Isaac, who is an 11th grader at Ben Gamla High School in Davie, usually begins the Mincha service by reciting the Ashrey. Alan also has a daughter Cara, who made Aliyah in 2014 and currently resides in Tel Aviv.
He joined the Executive Board of Temple Beth Torah in 2000 and held the position of Treasurer for three years. He re-joined the Board in 2011 again as Treasurer, and continues to hold that position today. He is a working member of the newly reactivated Men’s Club, and actively serves on a variety of synagogue and Men’s Club committees.
Outside of the temple, Alan works full-time in the logistics industry. Alan is very excited about the path that the Men’s Club of Temple Beth Torah Sha’aray Tzedek is now on, and is optimistic that this will be another successful year for them.
Temple Beth Torah Sha’aray Tzedek, Tamarac – Rachel Sandhouse
Rachel Sandhouse has been a member of Temple Beth Torah Sha’aray Tzedek since she was born, beginning with pre-school, then moving on to Hebrew School, then to Kadima and USY. She currently attends Judaica High School, is part of the three year leadership program, Akiva, through CAJE, and is part of this years’ Confirmation class. She is currently the Executive Vice President and Religious Education Vice President of the USY Chapter board, and is currently the sub-regional correspondent for the Hanegev USY region. She was also chosen as the young leader representative for her chapter last year. This December, she will be representing her chapter at the USY International Convention in Baltimore, Maryland. Rachel can be found at Shabbat services most Saturday mornings reading Torah or leading the congregation in Musaf.
Currently, she is the Treasurer of the sophomore class at JP Taravella High School in Coral Springs, the web coordinator of the Latin Club, and the Treasurer of the Interact Club. She is also a member of the Foreign Language Honor Society, the Shape Club, and the Tennis team.
In her spare time, Rachel enjoys playing tennis, reading, and cheering on the Gators.
Temple Israel Men’s Club, Winter Springs – Eric Hoffman
This year, Temple Israel is honoring Eric Hoffman as our Men’s Club “Man of the Year” for 2015. Eric Hoffman is the current president of Temple Israel, and we are so proud to present him as our “Man of the Year.”
Eric Grew up far away from the sunshine state, being born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska.
He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from University of California in San Diego, a Masters Degree from the University of Illinois, and his PhD from Oregon State University. Eric met his wife Amanda in Lincoln, Nebraska, and now have been married for 21 years. Eric has now been teaching at The University of Central Florida for 11 years, and is an Associate Professor of Biology – with a focus in Conservation Genetics. One of the highlights of Eric’s career as a professor was his designation as a Fullbright Scholar, wherein he was awarded a sabbatical trip to Brazil, where he furthered his studies in Conservation Genetics.
Eric and Amanda have two children – daughter Gabrielle, has started her college career at University of Maryland. The Hoffman’s son William is a Sophomore at Winter Springs High School. Amanda is a Special Education teacher at Lake Mary high School.
The Hoffman’s joined Temple Israel as soon as they moved to the central Florida area. Upon joining the temple, Eric immediately became involved with the Mens Club and became part of the Executive Council. After two years of service with the Men’s Club he became Vice President of the Men’s Club and joined a number of key Temple committees. Eric served 2 years as Treasurer for the Temple and then became Chairmen of the Ways and Means Committee. Eric then served a year as Second Vice President, and two years as First Vice President. Currently, Eric is in the second year of his term as the President of Temple Israel.
We are glad that Eric’s family and friends will be able to share in this special Simchah, and know how proud his family is of him. It gives us great pleasure to honor a man whose leadership has kept the temple together during some challenging times, and whose service and stewardship continues to be integral to Temple Israel, as our synagogue thrives and grows!
Temple Israel Men’s Club, Winter Springs – Sam Ihns
Temple Israel is incredibly proud to honor our “Youth of the Year” for 2015, Sam Ihns!
Sam is in his senior year at Lyman High School. Sam, the son of Joe and Barbara Ihns, was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He moved to central Florida in 2003 and his family joined Temple Israel soon thereafter. Sam attended Hebrew school at Temple Israel, where he had his Bar Mitzvah in 2011. Sam was a member of Kadima, and then USY. Since his Bar Mitzvah, Sam has continuously led Friday night services at least one time a month for the last five years. Sam has volunteered and helped Temple Israel in many ways over many years.
Additionally, Sam is an exceptional student. He is a member of the Junior National Honor Society, and a National Merit Scholar Finalist. Sam is also a member of MAT, a competitive high school math team, at Lyman High School. Sam is an avid rower on his high school rowing team, and is pursuing a rowing scholarship. Sam has been actively recruited by several schools including MIT and Princeton. He is interested in computer science, and enjoys rock climbing.
We are all very proud of Sam’s accomplishments and we all look forward to sharing in this special Simchah!
Temple Torat Emet, Boynton Beach – Charlie Deutch
Charlie grew up in Riverdale New York where the household battle was always heated as to what to call their address, The Bronx or Riverdale. His father always said, “If the zip code said Riverdale, I am making my return address Riverdale” His father was and still is always right.
Charlie began his young adult life at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale where his Rabbi and Mentor was Rabbi Avi Weiss. Charlie became the first student at John F Kennedy High School to where a Kippah to class every day. Activism and getting involved has always been his Montra.
Side by Side with Avi Weiss and Charlie Kramer, Charlie worked to seek out hidden SS criminals that were living in the Bronx and Brooklyn and was directly involved, along with many others, in the apprehension of Valerian Trifa.
After graduating High School, Charlie went to Queens College where he became a part of Concerned Jewish Youth, the religious part of Betar, and helped provide security during a major demonstration in the City, in favor of Menachem Began. Charlie also learned how to refute Jews for Jesus and did that each day on Campus. That is probably why he was only at Queens College for 1 year.
Charlie always had a fascination with food which prompted him to go to New York City Community College in 1979 and get his Associates Degree in Culinary Arts. Charlie was also very active in the Student Government and was Chief Justice of the Student Body.
While going to school, Charlie worked for Interstate United at Chase Plaza and New York Plaza serving 3-5000 per day Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Charlie became the Youngest Assistant manager they had at that time.
In 1982, Charlie went back to finish his Culinary career at Florida International University majoring in Hospitality Management. He was also very active in Hillel and became one of the first Hillel President’s on campus.
Shortly after he received his degree, Charlie moved back to New York to Work for Sky Chef’s at LaGuardia Airport and then John F Kennedy Airport in the International flight kitchen. He was then promoted to Manager of Food and Beverage Purchasing for Ogden Entertainment Services Nation Wide.
In 1988, Charlie’s life would change for the better as he met his future wife Cheri on a blind date and in 1989 they became Mr. and Mrs. Deutch.
In 1990 after accepting a position at the West Palm Beach Auditorium and Stadium where he would run the food service in both facilities and act as the Chef for all back-stage catering, Cheri and Charlie moved to Florida to begin their new life together. Brittany was born shortly after in 1991 then Elana in 1997. Charlie’s Angels are his life and happiness.
In 2003 Charlie made a move to the dark side and became a Sales Representative for Cheney Brothers, a Full Service Food and Supply Company where he still works and hopes to retire.
The Deutch family joined Temple Torah of West Boynton Beach (now Temple Torat Emet) in 1993.
Cheri and Charlie became founding members of the Young Family Club and Charlie sat on the PTO of the original Regional Religious School as a Co- President.
Charlie did not stop there.. He sat on the Temple Board and Executive Board. He also ran the food for the Purim Carnival’s, sat on the membership, 25th anniversary, Shabbat with a Twist, Emergency Response Committees and was the Co-Chair of the Youth Committee.
Charlie is proud to say he served 2 terms as the Men’s Club President and now serves as a Vice President of the Florida Region for the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs.
Charlie is honored and humbled at the same time to receive this great honor of being the Temple Torat Emet Men’s Club Man of the Year for 2015. What makes this even more special is that the MOY Committee at Temple Torat Emet is comprised of all Past recipients who Charlie is proud to call his Mentor’s and Friends.