Chesed Awards 2013


“Resilience” was the theme of Rudlin Torah Academy’s Chesed Awards Dinner this year, and it proved to be appropriate to the absorbing personal stories told by the honorees.

More than 150 guests filled the November Auditorium at the Weinstein JCC on Sunday, June 2, for an evening of recognition and fundraising.

Inge and Harold Horowitz and Dr. Sy Sibelman received Chesed Awards for their leadership work in the Richmond Jewish community. Inge Horowitz said she feels only gratitude for the opportunities and blessings she has received.

“I regard every hour given to volunteer activities as payback, a payback for my incredible luck to have escaped with my brother and parents from the hell that was Germany in 1937, and to have been privileged to live free in this beautiful country,” she said in accepting the award.

“We are so fortunate! Both of us have enjoyed fulfilling professional lives. We have lived among good neighbors, we belong to a welcoming spiritual home, Temple Beth El, and we take pride in our dynamic Richmond Jewish community. We were blessed with two wonderful children, and then privileged to watch their own children grow into responsible, caring adults.”

Dr. Sibelman, executive director of the Virginia Holocaust Museum, spoke of his deep personal connections in the Jewish community and what it has meant to him, as well as the importance of historical memory for the Jewish people.

Dr. Sibelman recently announced he will be leaving Richmond to accept the Leon Levine Distinguished Professorship in Judaic, Holocaust and Peace Studies at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C.

S. Todd Weinberg, who has coached the middle school boys’ basketball team at RTA for several years, received the ABCD (Above and Beyond the Call of Duty) Award. He thanked the RTA staff and the many RTA parents who have helped him organize and run the basketball program.

Yonatan and Marlena Cantor, who received the Alumni Award, said they were extremely appreciative of the education they received at RTA and are happy to be back in the community with their new baby daughter. The Cantors launched the RTA FAN (Family and Alumni Network) Club in 2012, to build links between alumni of RTA, STOR, and YVA.

A special award also was given to Annabelle Toth, in gratitude for her assistance to Sandra Shull, who runs RTA’s kitchen.

RTA board member Gail Moskowitz, acting as emcee for the evening, thanked Rabbi Hal Klestzick for his long and dedicated service to RTA. Beginning this fall, the boys’ and girls’ high schools, Yeshiva of Virginia and Shaarei Torah of Richmond, will be functioning as separate institutions, and Rabbi Klestzick is leaving RTA to become principal of the high schools.

Rudlin Torah Academy is in its 47th year of providing quality full-time elementary education to Jewish children in the Richmond area. It was chartered in 1966 as the Richmond Hebrew Day School. The Academy is accredited by the Virginia Association of Independent Schools. RTA students continue to excel in national standardized testing with classes generally performing above the 90th percentile, and 95 percent of its students who apply to specialty public high schools in the Richmond region are accepted.

Click here to read the pre-awards article

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