Four years ago, Sherman Alexie's film, "Smoke Signals," became the first movie written, produced and acted by Native Americans. Today, Alexie's new film, "The Business of Fancydancing," might be the first to feature a character who is both Native American and Jewish.
The year was 1972. Sally Preisand became the first woman rabbi, the Lakers won their first national championship, and the most welcoming congregation for gay and lesbian Jews ... was a church.
Investment banker Adlai Wertman was fed up with Wall Street -- so he moved to Los Angeles, took an 85 percent pay cut and got a job on Skid Row. Two years later, he says he's never been happier.
There were no books about Jewish children when writer Lesléa Newman was growing up.
"I was hungry for a book with characters like [me] to make me feel valid and normal, and to make me think there wasn't something wrong with my family," because it lacked Christmas trees and Easter egg hunts.
Linda Gach Ray has been carrying the torch for years. This week, she made it official by running the Olympic flame down a stretch of Figueroa Street as the torch was relayed through Southern California on its way to the Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, which begin Feb. 8.
UCLA Hillel recently held one of its first gay-themed programs in years. But with the initiator of the program about to depart, the effort to reach out to gay students may lose steam.
When 20 artists with developmental disabilities began talking about the idea of home and community, they never expected to land their first major exhibition. But the Skirball Cultural Center is now featuring their work in an exhibit called "In Search of Home."
When the stock market entered bear territory last month, individual investors weren't the only ones taking note. The continued softening of the market can also have a major effect on nonprofit organizations, many of which have benefited greatly from an exceptional run during the past five years.
While it's still too early to tell how the recent changes will affect Jewish nonprofits in Los Angeles, fundraisers at some of the city's largest philanthropic organizations say they're not worried yet.
Take nearly 100 people training to be rabbis, priests, pastors, ministers, nuns and religious educators. Put them together for 24 hours at a Jewish summer camp. Add a torrent of rain, and stir in several inches of thick mud. What do you get? You never know.