Jewish Women International feted their favorite females of 2007 at the annual Women to Watch gala in Washington D.C. on Dec. 3. This year's formidable femmes included: Jamie McCourt, president of the Los Angeles Dodgers and consequently the highest ranking female executive in the sports arena; Miri Ben-Ari, the Israeli-born, Grammy-winning "hip-hop violinist"; and Monica Levinson, Hollywood producer of "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan," "Zoolander" and "Dodgeball."
Miri Ben-Ari performs at Women to Watch gala
Sinai Temple's ATID swept 60 people out to sea on Royal Caribbean's Monarch of the Seas for a "Chanukah Cruise" Dec. 7-10. En route to Baja, the group celebrated both Chanukah and Shabbat (with fresh challah and hot latkes), uttered countless references to "The Love Boat" and "Titanic" and endured the undulating waves that brought new meaning to the Amidah (standing prayer).
Stephen S. Wise Temple's "W Group" for young professionals took over Guy's in West Hollywood for their fourth annual Chanukah Party and Fundraiser on Dec. 13. Coveted auction items helped inspire the 500-person crowd to raise $10,000 to benefit Jewish World Watch's "Backpack Project."
Remembering Soviet Jewry Campaign
Movers and shakers from Israel and Los Angeles attended a special reception sponsored by the National Council on Soviet Jewry (NCSJ), which commemorated the struggle to free Soviet Jews from oppression, at a private home on Dec. 11. NCSJ advocates on behalf of Jews in Russia, Ukraine, the Baltic States and Eurasia.
Yuli Edelstein, deputy speaker of the Israeli Knesset and former refusenik; with NCSJ President Ed Robin, right; Robin's wife, Peggy; and Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Los Angeles). Photo by Ron Sachs