A rabbi, a cantor and a congregation president are all held up by a robber who points a gun at them. “Let me at least give one more sermon before you shoot me,” pleads the rabbi. “Let me at least sing Kol Nidre once more before you shoot me,” cries the cantor. “Shoot me first,” begs the president. (credit to Internet)
These past two years have been challenging for me as CBS President. It has often been difficult, time consuming and immensely iintense. It is a nearly full-time job. From the myriads of meetings, dealing with the consistent and difficult strains of budgets; working hand in hand with the staff and clergy; leading fundraising efforts; and, so much more....
And, yet, it has also been the most personally rewarding and enriching experience of my life. Being able to be of meaningful and impactful service and help to the Congregation and Community lifts the soul.. I feel truly blessed to have been given this opportunity.
Thank you! I love CBS!
We have much to be proud of and celebrate! Just a few of our accomplishments these past two years:
* Hurricane Harvey (do I need to say more?)
* Celebration of CBS ' 60th Anniversary, honoring beloved Sandra Weiner.
* Celebrating Cantor Mark Levine 's 10th Anniversary.
* Goldberg Montessori School lease renewed and extended.
* Rabbi Teller's long term contract renewed and extended.
* Cantor Levine's long term contract finalized.
* Synagogue Administrator, Melissa Magenheim 's contract renewed and extended.
* Hazan in Residence David Krohn's contract renewed.
* Life & Legacy and Endowment Fund programs reinvigorated to secure our financial future.
* Security issues are aggressively and responsibly addressed.
* Line of credit paid off.
* Past budgetary deficit reduced in half or less.
* Long term debt significantly reduced.
We formally recognized and thanked some very special people!
* Presentation of plaque to Adam Hightower, our Choir Director, for his many years of love, devotion and contributions to making the CBS Choir succeed and thrive, and his impact upon our High Holiday experience.
* Presentation of plaque and a Resolution by CBS Board of Trustees honoring and thanking Elliot Gershenson for his volunteer efforts and leadership as Financial Vice President and Chair of the Financial Affairs Committee, to right our financial ship and steer us towards a dynamic culture of philanthropy at CBS.
* Presentation of a Resolution by CBS Board of Trustees honoring and thanking Cantor Mark Levine for his 10 years of outstanding and meaningful service to CBS and the Community.
The future brings challenges:
An aging building.
An under-performing Social Hall and Kitchen.
Security issues will continue to be a concern.
Replacing Elliot Gershenson, former Financial Vice President, and all the incredible ways he has contributed to our current success.
The future remains bright:
* We have the very best and beloved Senior Professional Staff: Rabbi Teller; Cantor Mark Levine; Hazzan in Residence David Krohn; and, Melissa Magenhein, Synagogue Administrator (no longer "interim"!)
* We have the very best incoming Lay Leadership: President, Rhoda Goldberg, and all of her Officers and Board of Trustees members!
* We have the very best Religious School, including Assistant Education Director, Erin Lepselter, and an amazing Faculty!
* We have the very best Sisterhood, Men's Club, Hazak, B'Yachad, and Choir!
* And, we have YOU, through your many invaluable gifts of time, talent and financial support!
Feelings of gratitude:
I want to express my heartfelt appreciation and praise to everyone who served with me on the CBS Executive Committee during my two years as President: Ellen Fiesinger, Secretary; Vice Presidents - Dani Roisman, Karen Bernstein and Rhoda Goldberg (who wisely told me that it is the "small details" that really matter); and, Financial Vice Presidents - Jason Leder, Elliot Gershenson (who sagely advised that, whatever I do, do it "lovingly"), and Denise Mosk, together with the an outstanding Board of Trustees, all of whom generously gave countless hours of tireless service to CBS with abundant love and dedication. Thank you!
I am also deeply and forever indebted to Rabbi Ranon Teller, Cantor Mark Levine, and Hazan in Residence David Krohn for the many and invaluable gifts of their time, wisdom, and passionate support that I greatly benefited during my presidency! Thank you!
All of CBS ' accomplishments and success these past two years would not have been possible without the extraordinary "behind the scenes" efforts and support of two great Administrators: Executive Director, Larry Estes, who was followed by Synagogue Administrator, Melissa Magenheim, together with their devoted staff! Thank you!
Quoting from the lyrics of "For Good" from the musical Wicked, we have all "...been changed for the better"!
And, finally, all that is great in my life is because of a giant Oreo Cookie that I met over 34 years ago at a Halloween party. My wife and partner in love, Lori, has helped to give me this fantastic life, fully supporting me in the pursuit of my dreams. Thank you!
Sincerely, from your newest Immediate Past President of CBS,