18 Jewish Difference Makers to be honored Dec. 8: Press Run

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BEACHWOOD, Ohio — Honoring Jewish Difference Makers: The 2022 Cleveland Jewish News 18 Difference Makers will be honored at 6 p.m. Dec. 8 at Park Synagogue, 27500 Shaker Blvd. in Pepper Pike. Let’s take a look at this year’s recipients:

Rebecca Bar-Shain, Certified Financial Planner/Partner, Cedar Brook Group; Julia DiBaggio, Program Director, Ohio-Israel Ag & CleanTech Initiative, The Negev Foundation; Rebekah Dorman, Founder/Principal, Kadima Consulting, LLC; Aaron S. Evenchik, Partner, Hahn Loeser & Parks, LLP; Rabbi Yossi Freedman, Director, Downtown Chabad; Robert T. Glickman, Managing Principal, McCarthy, Lebit, Crystal & Liffman Co., LPA; Len Gold, Retired Senior Cost Accountant, BASF Construction Chemicals; Todd E. Gurney, Partner, The Eisen Law Firm Co., L.P.A. Stewart Kohl, Co-CEO, The Riverside Company; Susan Krantz, Partner, Zinner & Co.; Eliana J. LeVine, Community Volunteer; Andrew Mizsak, Principal Consultant, Main Street Consultants; Andrew E. Randall, President and CEO, Cleveland Private Trust Company; Alan Rosskamm, Community Volunteer; Heather Schlang, Volunteer, National Council of Jewish Women/Cleveland; and Dr. Daniel I. Simon, President, Academic and External Affairs and Chief Scientific Officer, Ernie and Patti Novak Distinguished Chair in Health Care Leadership at University Hospitals Health System; Professor of Medicine and Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine; Jim Strassman, President, Strassman Insurance Services; and Neil M. Tramer, Partner, Tramer, Shore & Zwick.

In addition, Lois Goodman will receive the Sam Miller Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Yanowitz family will be presented the Generation Award at this, the eighth annual awards celebration.

The criteria for selection for the 18 Difference Makers is as follows: They must have turned at least 18 years old by July 31, 2022, and have ties to Northeast Ohio; they should be making a difference in Northeast Ohio’s Jewish community by being active through a nonprofit organization, volunteer group or professional endeavor; and they must demonstrate the “mensch-like” characteristics of honor and integrity. The 18 Difference Makers do not have to be Jewish, but their efforts must help better the Northeast Ohio Jewish community.

The in-person event will begin with cocktails and hors d’ouevres, and will be followed by a seated dinner and the awards ceremony.

Individual tickets cost $118, and table sponsorship is $1,500.

You can email glloyd@cjn.org with questions, and visit cjn.org/18dm to purchase tickets and sponsorships. To purchase a congratulatory ad in the CJN’s 2022 18 Difference Makers special section publishing Dec. 9, contact Vice President of Sales Adam Mandell at amandell@cjn.org or 216-342-5191.

For more information, contact events manager Gina Lloyd at glloyd@cjn.org or 216-342-5196.

Combating antisemitism: In the last five years, a recent Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple release states, Ohio has seen a 92-percent increase in incidents of antisemitism. “People are reporting more antisemetic behavior at their workplace, within schools and colleges, and in other parts of their lives,” said the temple’s Upper School Director Staci Cohen. “Frustration, fear, anxiety and stress have all increased and people are asking themselves what they can do to better understand the problem and how they can help to address it.

“These are hard conversations for which we all need help.”

As such, the temple’s Upper School students, at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 5, will participate in a workshop, run by the ADL, focusing on antisemitism in schools, on college campuses, and in the social media students encounter every day. The workshop is designed to empower Jewish students to combat antisemitism by giving them the tools to respond when they encounter hateful messages.

Fairmount Temple, in fact, is welcoming all students grades 7-12 to join in on this special program, regardless of whether or not they are enrolled in its religious school. Parents are asked to encourage their 7-12th grade students to attend. If a student is planning to attend, they should let Cohen know here so that she can welcome them personally on Dec. 5.

Also, Fairmount Temple wants also to empower adults to combat antisemitism by inviting them to attend its Shabbat evening service at 6:15 p.m. Feb. 3. The guest speaker will be temple member and Cleveland Regional Director of the Anti-Defamation League James Pasch. The Cleveland Regional ADL serves Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia and Western Nationwide. The ADL is the largest anti-bias educator in the United States and advocates for a strong response to antisemitism and all forms of hate.

Celebrating Chanukah at the Mandel JCC: The Mandel JCC, 26001 S. Woodland Road in Beachwood, is inviting families to celebrate Chanukah during two activity-packed holiday programs scheduled for December. The J has also partnered with the Cuyahoga County Public Library to present monthly Hebrew language story times for preschoolers at the Beachwood Branch Library, 25501 Shaker Blvd. in Beachwood, in December, January and February.

The family programs are being organized by Sarah Jaffe Kasdan, The J’s new Jewish life and culture program manager, who joined the staff in July. These new family programs are designed to celebrate Jewish holidays and culture. In this new role, Kasdan will be expanding Jewish family programming and enhancing Jewish content across The J.

— The first December event is J Family Days: Meet the Latkes, from 1-3 p.m. Dec. 4 at the Mandel JCC’s Stonehill Auditorium. This free event is for families with children ages 3-11. You are invited to celebrate Chanukah at The J with a fun day of crafts, snacks, activities for the whole family and stories, including Meet the Latkes, by author Alan Silberberg.

Make your own menorah and decorate Chanukah cookies and marshmallow dreidels. This event is made possible by a Shoresh Grant from the Jewish Education Center of Cleveland. Registration is required at mandeljcc.org/latkes.

— Next, at 4 p.m. from Dec.19-22 is the Nightly Chanukah Candle Lighting at the J. This free event takes place in the Mandel JCC lobby. Join the Mandel JCC’s Camp Wise, J-Day Camps, Early Childhood Center and Playmakers Youth Theatre staff and youth participants for daily Chanukah candle lightings, blessings and songs.

For more information, contact Sarah Jaffe Kasdan at skasdan@mandeljcc.org, or 216-831-0700 ext. 1414.

— Also upcoming is Chanukah on Ice, from 5:30-6:30p.m.Dec. 18 at the Wade Oval Skating Rink in University Circle for families with children ages 5 and older. Join The J for a Chanukah party on ice and enjoy ice skating for the whole family, as well as Chanukah goodies and a menorah lighting. Cost is $5 for Mandel JCC members, and $7 for the community. Registration is required at mandeljcc.org/chanukahonice.

— And, Hebrew Storytime will take place from 4-4:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, Dec. 14, Jan. 11 and Feb. 8 at the Beachwood Library. These free events are for children up to 6 years old. Meet the ShinShinim (teen emissaries from Israel) for a monthly Hebrew storytime. Read a Hebrew book, learn songs and complete a craft project. This program is both for native Hebrew speakers as well as those who want to learn more Hebrew and is presented in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Public Library Beachwood branch.

Get updates on University Heights events: The city of University Heights is informing its residents that they can stay up to date on all events taking place in the city, including those at John Carroll University and at Heights Libraries, by signing up for the University Heights Community Calendar, powered by Yodel.

To sign up, visit here.

Start composting: Did you know that food waste is the single largest component of our landfills? Well, the city of University Heights is telling you that it is so. About 40 percent of food grown for consumption ends up in a landfill, and once there creates methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Food waste is the single largest component of our landfills, but you can learn to compost most food waste to, instead, create rich soil.

No matter what city you call home, you can learn how by visiting here.

John Carroll nursing program: John Carroll University has this week announced the appointment of Melissa Cole as the institution’s inaugural Director of Nursing and Strategic Healthcare Innovation. Cole will oversee JCU’s recently announced Bachelor of Science in Nursing program and the expansion of John Carroll’s academic healthcare portfolio. To see a brief video, visit here.

New oral drug for lowering cholesterol: If you, like many, have an ongoing battle against high cholesterol level, here’s something of interest.

Cleveland researchers, in a study led by a team from University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University, have detailed a small-molecule drug that lowers cholesterol by 70 percent in animal models.

According to a University Hospitals release, after statins, the next leading class of medications for managing cholesterol are PCSK9 inhibitors. These highly effective agents help the body pull excess cholesterol from the blood, but unlike statins, which are available as oral agents, PCSK9 inhibitors can only be administered as shots, creating barriers to their use.

The UH/CWRU team, in its study describes an orally administered small-molecule drug that reduces PCSK9 levels and lowers cholesterol in animal models Published in Cell Reports, the findings represent a previously unrecognized strategy for managing cholesterol and may also impact cancer treatments.

“Cholesterol lowering is one of the most important therapies we have to prolong life and protect people from heart disease, which is still the number one cause of morbidity and mortality in the Western world,” said Dr. Jonathan S. Stamler, senior author and president of the Harrington Discovery Institute at UH, in the release. “Statins only lower cholesterol so far. This is a drug class that we think would represent a new way to lower cholesterol, a new way to hit PCSK9.”

Central to cholesterol regulation are LDL receptors, which sit at the surface of liver cells and remove cholesterol from the blood, thereby lowering serum levels. PCSK9 in the bloodstream controls the number of LDL receptors by marking them for degradation. Therefore, agents that inhibit PCSK9 increase the number of LDL receptors that remove cholesterol.

Nitric oxide is a molecule that is known to prevent heart attacks by dilating blood vessels. In the new study, Stamler and colleagues showed that nitric oxide can also target and inhibit PCSK9, and thus lower cholesterol. They identify a small molecule drug that functions to increase nitric oxide inactivation of PCSK9. Mice treated with the drug display a 70-percent reduction in LDL “bad” cholesterol.

As to how the discovery pertains to cancer, emerging evidence suggests targeting PCSK9 can improve the efficacy of cancer immunotherapies.

“PCSK9 not only targets LDL receptors for degradation, it also mediates the degradation of MHC 1 on lymphocytes, which is used for recognition of cancer cells” said Stamler. “PCSK9 is effectively preventing your lymphocytes from recognizing cancer cells. So, if you inhibit PCSK9, you can boost the body’s cancer surveillance. There may be an opportunity one day to apply these new drugs to that need.”

Maltz Museum free events: The Maltz Museum, 2929 Richmond Road in Beachwood, is opening its doors for no-cost or low-cost winter special holiday events.

The Maltz Museum will be open from 11a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov.25-27, for Thanksgiving weekend. There is a cost of $12 for adults and $10 for students and seniors; and $5 for youths.Admission is free for members and children under 5.

Museum members will a receive a 25-percent discount Nov. 15 to Dec 18.

Free events will include Holiday Happines: A Multicultural Celebration , from 1:30-3 p.m. Dec.11; and Hear Our Voices: Annual MLK Day Celebration, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 16.

For more information about these and other events, call 216-593-0575, or visit maltzmuseum.org.

Heights Libraries happenings: The Greater Cleveland Food Bank Drive-thru Mobile Pantry will visit the Lee Road Library branch,2345 Lee Road in Cleveland Heights, from 5-7 p.m. Nov. 28. Fred fresh produce will be given out to families and individuals in need. You must be 18 years or older and have a photo ID. Make sure your car trunk is clean. Food is given on a first-come, first-served basis. The line starts on Ormond Ave. The event will be held rain or shine. If you have questions, contact the Libraries’ Community Engagement Associate at 216-932-3600,ext. 250.

— “Read with a Librarian” will be held from 5-7 p.m. Nov. 29 at the Noble Neighborhood branch, 2800 Noble Road in Cleveland Heights. Caregivers of children in K-5th grade are encouraged to sign their children up to practice reading out loud with a librarian trained in early literacy techniques. Bring your favorite books or choose from a selection hand-picked by the children’s librarians.

Individualized reading sessions are 20 minutes long and include a prize for participating. Reservations are required. To make a registration, call the Noble Neighborhood branch Children’s Department at 216-291-5665, ext. 1330.

— Baby Rhyme Time Drop In will be held from 9-9:45 a.m. Nov. 25 at the niversity Heights Library,13866 Cedar Road. Stop by the UH library to introduce your baby to the joys of storytime. There will be books, bounces, bubbles, and Coco the storytime bear. This event is for babies up to 12 months of age.

Siegal to get Medal of Honor from Israel’s President: Michael Siegal, the former Jewish Federations of North America board chair, is one of five notable leaders who will be awarded the prestigious Israeli Presidential Medal of Honor, according to an announcement issued by the Office of President Isaac Herzog. The prize, which is the highest civil medal awarded by the president of Israel, will be presented in recognition of Siegal’s extraordinary commitment to the Jewish nation and to advancing ties between Israel and North American Jewry.

Siegal is the Executive Chairman of Olympic Steel, Inc., and served as the Chairman of The Jewish Agency for Israel from 2017-2022, the Chair of Israel Bonds from 2007-2010, the Chair of Jewish Federations of North America from 2012-2015, and the Chair of the Board of the Jewish Federation of Greater Cleveland from 2010-2013.  Siegal, along with his wife Anita, helped establish the Michael and Anita Siegal One Happy Camper Scholarship Fund with the Foundation of Jewish Camping.

“I am deeply honored and humbled to be receiving this award,” said Siegal, in a release. “I am proud to stand on the shoulders of those who created and prayed for a Jewish nation to exist. It is a privilege to be alive when Israel is reaching its 75th anniversary and along with my fellow recipients, to have played our small part in assisting the advancement of the Jewish people and State.”

If you would like to see an item included in Press Run, send me an email, at least 14 days prior to an event, at jeff.piorkowski@att.net.

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