Jewish Educational Center 
Annual Dinner
Monday, May 15, 2017
Factory 220, Passaic, New Jersey
 
Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of
Jerusalem's Reunification
 
 
Honoring
 

Myra and Dr. Aryeh Pirak
Grandparents of the Year

 
The 2017 Grandparents of the Year, Myra and Dr. Aryeh Pirak, are more than simply grandparents of JEC students. Aryeh is an RTMA alumnus, Class of 1971, and all five of their children are JEC graduates. With six of their grandchildren currently enrolled, and a seventh coming in the fall, the third generation of Piraks continue to perpetuate the tradition.

Myra, a native of Brooklyn, and Aryeh, a native of israel, married in 1976, and spent the early days of married life in Mexico, where Aryeh attended medical school. They moved back to Aryeh’s hometown of Springfield after his graduation. Myra has been a partner in every step of Aryeh’s professional career since the very beginning, with emotional support throughout his internship, residency and fellowship and was the first “Billing Agent” in his practice.

Together, Myra and Aryeh have raised a close knit family with the highest of Torah values, and immersed themselves in community and Shul life in Springfield, all while Aryeh was establishing his distinguished career as an anesthesiologist, first in New York City, where he became the chief Resident in Anesthesia at Mount Sinai Medical Center, Chief of Trauma Anesthesia at St. Vincent Hospital and Medical Center, and now as Chairman of the Department of Anesthesiology , and as a Member of the Staff Executive Committee at Trinitas Regional Medical Center in Elizabeth. Aryeh also holds patents on certain equipment and methods in Anesthesia, was a a Clinical Assistant Professor at New York Medical College, and is currently Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at Seton Hall School of Health and Medical Sciences .

Both Myra and Aryeh have served Congregation Israel of Springfield in many capacities. He is a past shul president, and Myra has served as Sisterhood Trustee, Membership Vice President and shiva meal coordinator. Together, they were past chair of the Springfield NCSY.

When their oldest child, Sharon was ready to start school, the most natural thing for the Piraks to do, was to enroll her in the JEC. Michelle, Jonathan, Alissa and Erica followed their older sister into the JEC, and all are JEC alumni. Myra and Aryeh have never deviated in their support of the JEC. Aryeh served as a past JEC Trustee, and was a founding member of the Alumni Association.

The closeness of the Pirak family is apparent. Sharon, husband Eytan Konigberg moved to Springfield to be near her parents, followed by Michelle, husband Eytan Burstein .  Aryeh’s mother, Rachel Pirak, continues to reside with the Piraks, and was instrumental in the upbringing of her grandchildren.
 
Myra’s parents, Lester and Betty Drang, ע"ה, also moved to Springfield to be near their children and grandchildren.
Now that their grandchildren are students at the JEC, Myra and Aryeh take pride in watching their grandchildren participate in the various programs.

Myra and Aryeh Pirak are true role models for grandparents everywhere, and we are proud to name them JEC’s “grandparents of the Year.”
 
 

Sarah and David Goldstein                                  
Parents of the Year 
Sarah and David Goldstein have been Bruriah parents for the past 18 years. They have watched all five of their daughters flourish in the Bruriah environment and have been thrilled to be part of a school that has partnered with them to instill the importance of Torah values while providing a quality education with a focus on Eretz Yisrael, family and community for their children.

Sarah and David have been residents of Passaic, NJ for 31 years. Their children and grandchildren, Adeena & Dr. Josh Kra, with children Nava, Aaron and newborn Elisha, Rena & Rabbi Elliot Schrier, and son, Coby, Leah, Adeevah, Zvi and Racheli are paramount in their lives. Their 4 older daughters are Bruriah graduates, and the youngest, Racheli, is a Bruriah senior. Their son, Zvi, is in his second year at Kerem B’Yavneh. Their son-in-law, Josh, is a graduate of JEC and RTMA and son-in-law, Elliot, is a musmach of YU.

Sarah and David  make it a priority to volunteer in their community. They enjoy opening their home to guests, and have graciously hosted numerous parlor meetings in their home for an array of educational institutions, including ones for prospective Bruriah students.

Sarah grew up in Pelham Parkway in the Bronx. She attended Stern College for Women, and graduated with a degree in Computer Science, subsequently completing an MS in computer science from Courant Institute of Mathematics. Initially working as a computer programmer, she later moved into Systems Management and is currently managing servers and storage for Roche Pharmaceuticals. Sarah volunteers on the board of the Young Israel of Passaic-Clifton, managing the Young Israel website and the journal for the YIPC annual dinner. Sarah has attended over 20 Bruriah Mother Daughter performances over the past 18 years and has recently ended an era, watching her youngest, Racheli (12th grade), perform as a senior.

David grew up in Jackson Heights, Queens. He graduated with an M.B.A “with distinction” in Finance from New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business. David works as a Lead Director for IEEE, responsible for advancing the commercialization of new data, content, and tools utilized by engineers globally in academia, corporate and government. He is also an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University’s Stillman School of Business MBA/MA program focusing on Big Data and Analytics. David has held multiple volunteer positions in the Passaic community. He is currently a financial aid counselor for YBH-Hillel, where he has also served as a board member. He has served on the Chevra Kadisha of Passaic-Clifton, and as a past board member of Congregation Bais Torah U’Tifilah.

As much as Sarah and David are honored and grateful to have the opportunity to celebrate their Chai milestone tonight with Bruriah, we are thrilled to be able to honor them as Parents of the Year.
 
 
 
Debra & David Schiff
Family Legacy Award                         
 
What on earth are Red Sox fans like Debbie and David Schiff doing in Elizabeth, NJ??
 
Debbie - a Bruriah graduate, Class of '86 - and David - a third generation Boston native - raised their young family in Brookline, Massachusetts.  Active in community concerns, as modeled by their respective parents and grandparents, they were quite involved in their shul and school serving in a variety of both formal and informal capacities ranging from committee volunteers to Board participants.  
 
Then in 2009, job considerations dictated a transition to the tri-state area, so the Schiffs settled in Teaneck with an eye towards the schooling needs of their children.  While their son Yaakov entered 11th grade at TABC, their oldest daughter Ilana continued her mother's tradition and began ninth grade at Bruriah (Class of 2013).  Soon, she was joined by sister Talia (Class of 2015) and in due time Avigail (Class of 2019).  The Schiff girls imbibed so much of what Bruriah has to offer - the phenomenal education, the outstanding faculty, a multitude of chesed opportunities, 10 years of volleyball teams (peppered with an elusive victory here and there), extra-curricular committees and even a G.O. Presidency!! 
 
To be sure, their children follow a proud family connection with the JEC that has spanned four generations.  Debbie’s parents, Ellen and Charles Winetsky, were married in 1964 with Rav Pinchas Teitz zt'l serving as an officiant at their wedding.  Charles Winetsky’s parents, Blanche and Lewis Winetsky, were long time supporters of Rav Pinchas Teitz dating back many years.  Lewis Winetsky, an active member of the Jewish community, served on the Building Committee of the JEC in 1965.  Blanche and Lewis Winetsky were involved in many causes in the Jewish community and instilled its importance in their children. 
 
Some years later, when a 13 year old Debbie approached her parents and told them that she wanted to switch from the Scotch Plains public schools to Bruriah High School, Ellen and Charles Winetsky did what most parents would NOT do… they took her to visit Bruriah, they hired a Hebrew tutor, and they allowed her to matriculate in ninth grade – even though this was not a very convenient option.  With a lot of encouragement from Rabbi Steven Dworken z’l and Mrs. Susan Dworken-Koss, they managed the transition quite well, and when the time arrived for their daughter Amy to enter ninth grade, she wasn’t even given a choice – she was going to Bruriah!  In 1983, Ellen Winetsky was offered a job teaching Math at Bruriah.  Mrs. Winetsky went on to teach Mathematics at Bruriah for the  next 30 years, eventually chairing the department.   She made wonderful friends amongst the faculty and staff.  Moreover, she taught two of her daughters, two of her granddaughters, and countless Bruriah alumnae.  Her daughters often say that going places with Mrs. Winetsky is like traveling with a “Rock Star.”  She is constantly greeted by her past students - whether it be in a store, or an airport, or anyplace in Israel.  They always approach her to say hello -- and she can usually remember where each of them sat in the classroom.
 
Debbie (Winetsky) Schiff graduated in the Bruriah class of 1986.  Her sister, Amy (Winetsky) Schlakman graduated in the class of 1988 and is married to Dr. Bentzie Schlakman, RTMA class of 1987.  Even Debbie and David’s sister-in-law, Shari (Chesner) Schiff, is a Bruriah graduate – Class of 1982.  The connection of the Schiff-Winetsky family to the JEC is simply remarkable.  
 
Debbie and David are extremely appreciative of the faculty and administration at Bruriah for all of the time and energy that has been invested in their family.   They are most grateful for the efforts and sacrifices that have been made by their parents and grandparents, as well.  For Debbie and David, the JEC is truly a family celebration!
 
 
 
 
 
 
Recognizing the 50th Anniversary of our
1967 graduating classes
 
Featuring our Bruriah-RTMA Alumni Couples
 
Inauguration of the 
IDF Wall of Honor
saluting our alumni who serve
in the Israel Defense Forces
 
 
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