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2018-11-02 digital edition
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The Jewish Press of Tampa and the Jewish Press of Pinellas County are Independently- owned biweekly Jewish community newspapers published in cooperation with and supported by the Tampa JCC & Federation and the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties, respectively. Copyright © 2009-2019 The Jewish Press Group of Tampa Bay, Inc., All Rights Reserved. 


November 2, 2018  RSS feed

Text: T T T

Lion of Judah group celebrates philanthropy

(L-R) Stacy Leeds, Lion of Judah chair with speaker Arna Poupko Fisher. (L-R) Stacy Leeds, Lion of Judah chair with speaker Arna Poupko Fisher. The Tampa JCCs and Federation’s Lion of Judah Society met for their annual luncheon last month to celebrate the impact that Jewish women are able to make through a philanthropic sisterhood.

“When we put on our Lion of Judah pins, it is a testament of our collective commitment to global Jewry. It allows us to proudly show that we recognize the meaning of tzedakah and together we are transforming the concept of Tikkun Olam, repairing the world, from an abstract dream to a concrete reality ... ” said Stacy Leeds, Lion of Judah Society chair who also provided a moving welcome address at the Seasons 52 restaurant.

Rochelle Walk, the immediate past president of the Tampa JCCs and Federation, also spoke about this year’s International Lion of Judah Conference taking place Jan. 13-15 in Miami, where Leeds will be awarded the prestigious Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland Award for her extensive involvement within our community and the Tampa Jewish Federation. The prominent award is given to Lions of Judah who have demonstrated the highest ideals of leadership and involvement. Each winner is chosen by their respective community as a “women of valor” with a lifetime of commitment to the Jewish world.

The program continued with featured guest speaker Arna Poupko Fisher, who told the group, “In addition to our unique concept of human and religious diversity and our commitment to the notion of inherent dignity of all human beings, is the idea that each of us, as individuals, has a unique mandate to contribute to the success of this world – and we do so by binding ourselves to something greater than ourselves – the collective.”

Fisher, who is on the faculty of the Judaic Studies Department of the University of Cincinnati and is presently serving as guest faculty at the Hebrew Union College, also touched upon the historic and present-day falsehoods and foundations of anti- Semitism.

As the premise of her address, Fisher offered a unique perspective to the Tampa Lions. “The irony of the deeply entrenched anti-Semitic falsehoods is that the anti-Semites did get some of this right: We, as Jews, informed by our sacred texts and sacred history, do have a vision of global influence, and we hope to educate the global community to join us in our commitment to freedom, equality, safety and dignity of all human beings, Jew and non-Jew alike.”

The luncheon closed with what is typically a customary “ask” by Kat Kislak to benefit the Tampa JCCs and Federation’s 2019 Annual Campaign. Kislak is one the Federation’s newest Lions and represents the next generation of philanthropists, alongside her husband Jason Kislak, the current president of the Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Village Assisted Living Residences. In her solicitation she took a different approach – she reiterated how the campaign gifts benefit the community and stressed the importance of welcoming, cultivating and empowering the next generation of lay leaders and donors.

For more information about the Lion of Judah Society, contact Alissa Fischel at or (813) 769-4726.

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