Message from our Board of Trustees
A common question directed to us is, what makes Moriah special? This is a question we hear mainly from new parents, and more than any question we hear, it forces us to think deeply about the essential qualities that define Moriah. To us, nothing is more essential, nothing is more important than our people: the parents and teachers who contribute their time and devote their professional talents to our children.
פְּלִיגֵי בָּהּ רַבִּי יְהוּדָה נְשִׂיאָה וְרַבָּנָן, חַד אָמַר: דּוֹר לְפִי פַּרְנָס, וְחַד אָמַר: פַּרְנָס לְפִי דּוֹרוֹ
"Rabbi Judah and the Rabbis argued: a generation according its leader, or a leader according to its generation?"
As parents, educators and community members, we all play a vital role in educating the next generation, and Moriah's achievements are the result of the collective efforts of faculty and lay volunteers alike. The greater the effort that we expend on our children, the broader is their potential for achievement; so we are deeply fortunate to have produced great communal leaders and educators in our generation. The Annual Dinner is the moment when we thank exceptional community members and faculty for their efforts on behalf of our school.
We are thrilled to recognize Orit and Seth ‘89 Gribetz as Guests of Honor at this year's dinner. Orit and Seth have been pillars of Moriah and the Englewood Jewish community for nearly 2 decades, and they are unsurpassed supporters of Moriah. They have inspired many with their generosity and their outstanding commitment to Torat Yisrael, Am Yisrael and Medinat Yisrael. Orit, originally from Israel and then Boston, and Seth, a Moriah graduate from Teaneck, have lived in Englewood since 2004.
Seth is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Walnut Court Capital, a finance firm based in New Jersey. Orit and Seth have been involved in a variety of leadership roles at Moriah. Orit has served as a Class Liaison, Barnes & Noble Event Chair, “Names, Not Numbers” mentor, Chessed Committee Member, and most recently, as the inspiration behind our new Educational Garden. Seth has served as the Annual Dinner Chair, Finance Committee Chair, Capital Campaign Chair, Construction Committee Chair, Executive Committee Member, and Board President. He currently serves as the Co-Chairman of the Board of Overseers. Perhaps Seth’s most notable accomplishments are his successful initiatives and focus on staff and faculty morale.
Beyond Moriah, the Gribetzes are involved in East Hill Synagogue, where Orit is a former Co-President of the Sisterhood, the Englewood Mikvah where Orit was a former board member, as well as Englewood Hospital where Orit is involved with the Kosher Kitchen. In addition, Seth has served on the board of Project Ezrah.
Orit and Seth’s deep involvement in communal life, commitment to Zionism and lifelong dedication to Jewish causes are surely a sterling example for their children, Tali (‘18), Maya (‘19), Nicola (‘21) and Joseph (‘24).
We are excited to recognize Livia and Elias Marcovici with our Young Leadership Award. Livia and Elias have been proud members of the Moriah Family since 2012, and they have been active supporters of Jewish life in Bergen County since they first moved to Englewood in 2010. Together, they have held leadership positions with East Hill Synagogue, Yeshivat Ohr Simcha, Amit, and Shaare Zedek, and are involved with numerous other charitable causes as well. (And, if you are really lucky, you get to hear Elias lead High Holiday davening at East Hill Synagogue.)
Elias is a Managing Principal of Blake Partners, a real estate investment company based in NY. Livia currently serves as the Director of Admissions at Moriah, where for three years she has worked closely with the Moriah faculty, administration and board to help ensure Moriah’s continued growth and success. Since their early days at Moriah, Livia and Elias have served as co-chairpersons for the Moriah Summer Outing. Elias has been a member of the Fundraising Committee for both the Moriah Annual Dinner and Summer Outing, and Livia has volunteered in multiple other capacities including working on the Open House and on a number of admissions initiatives – all of which laid the groundwork for her career at The Moriah School.
Livia and Elias are proud parents of three children, all of whom are Moriah students: Ezra (’23), Sofia (’25) and Henry (’28). Together this extraordinary couple has made an indelible mark on our school, and their unwavering dedication to the advancement of Moriah has benefited us all.
We are lucky to count amongst the Moriah faculty a vast number of teachers who are deserving of recognition for their merit and longevity of service to our school. We are presenting this year's Rabbi J. Shelley Applbaum, Z"L Service Award to two long term members of the Moriah family: Mrs. Rachel Schwartz and Morah Yehudit Stavsky.
Both have served Moriah for decades, and have impacted literally hundreds of Moriah students and alumni. In addition to being a beloved Middle School English and History teacher, Mrs. Schwartz is renowned for her work on Names, Not Numbers, Moriah’s powerful and life-changing Holocaust curriculum for Eighth Graders, which, thanks to her efforts, has become a marquee event for Moriah. Morah Yehudit Stavsky has taught generations of Moriah Second Graders, showing them their Chumashim for the first time, and creating lifelong love of parshat hashavua for so many of them. Any Moriah parent who has kvelled at their child’s Chumash celebration, or has listened to their daughter or son recount the parshah with pride, owes a debt of gratitude to Morah Yehudit Stavsky.
The Annual Dinner will be held on Saturday night, March 2nd at the Meadowlands Hilton. Not only do we encourage you to attend and to contribute, we also encourage you to get involved in the planning of the event. You can do so by contacting our wonderful committee of volunteers, whom we thank in advance for making this the most successful dinner yet: our Dinner Co-Chairs, Rachel Heumann, Shira Forman, Nira Feldman, Lisa Schechter and Aliza Schwalbe, and our Campaign Co-Chairs, Alen Gollender and Alex Solomon. We look forward to celebrating with you as a united community.
Thank you for your continued support,
Aaron Yunis, President
Zvi Rudman, Chairman