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February 27, 2009

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41 9951 3801 428 . UdhlUlddhhUhhUlhllhddhh11111Ulddhlhhdhlhhll F SH NEWS Lifestyles Section B HDS hires new Brian Hendler A policeman votes in Israel's national elections on Feb. 10, 2009, in the settlement of Nokdlm. Wanted in Israel: electoral reform By Dina Kraft TEL AVIV (JTA)--David Ben- Gurion was the first Israeli prime minister to seek electoral reform, when the first Knesset convened in 1949. Sixty years later, Israelis are hop- ing the deadlock prompted by Israel's most recent election--in which Tzipi Livni of Kadima and Benjamin Ne- tanyahu of Likud are competing to form governing coalitions--might finally spark change. "It's a window of opportunity," Gidi Rahat, a political scientist at Jerusalem's Hebrew University and expert on electoral reform, told JTA. "It's possible that the only thing that would get the coalition Netanyahu wants with the centrist parties would "This has all the bad features: They are tied and they are small," Asher Arian, a senior fellow at the Israel development director The Hebrew Day School, under the leadership of head of school, Lynne Shefsky, and board president Karen Moreno, announces that Jen Warren Robinson has joined its staff as director of development. Robinson will officially begin work at HDS on March 2, as HDS launches new fundraising efforts for its campaign. "On behalf of the HDS board," says Moreno, "I am delighted to have Jen join our team and look forward to sharing her many successes with the entire HDS community." Robinson comes to HDS with more than 15 years of career expe- rience, most recently as director of development and membership at Congregation of Reform Judaism. She received her degree from the University of Central Florida in 1994 with a focus on special education. As HDS' director of develop- ment, Robinson will pursue corpo- rate sponsorships and major gifts through the HDS capital campaign, which benefits scholarship, endow- ment and other fundraising efforts at the school. Launched in 2008, the campaign is a five-year, $5 million capacity-building initiative designed to address significant funding needs of the school, including completion be the excuse that they are entering Democracy InstitutCe.t'&  the sclooJ's secoBd floor and sta- the government in order to make leading political parties. "There is bilize its financial position for future nothing worse." Israel's system of government always has been particularly unruly. Parties in Israel win seats according to how much of the popular vote they win. While this may be one of the few systems in the world based purely on proportional representa- tion, it leads to the headache of small, special-interest parties that can--and do--bring down govern- generations. To date the campaign has successfully raised $1.3 mil- lion, which provides an increase in scholarships dollars to $400,000 for the 2009-2010 School year. "In the current economic cli- mate," Shefsky says, "we will con- tinue to do what HDS does best: Wanted on page 15A reform." The possibility that Netanyahu will lead the next government, even though his Likud Party finished behind Kadima, is part of the conun- drum posed by the confusing results of the election. Kadima scored 28 seats to Likud's 27, but Likud is part of a right-wing bloc that has an absolute majority in the 120-seat Knesset, making Netanyahu at least as likely a candidate for Israel's top job as Livni. Jen Warren Robinson provide excellence in academics to all Jewish children in Central Florida that choose an education at HDS. Jen's skills in fundraising and her commitment to our mission make her awelcome addition to our administrative team." Robinson and husband Ian are current HDS parents, with the older oftw0 sons, Jaob,n the:ansjl Kindergarten class. "Jacob has btos' somed since he started in TK. As parents, we are thrilled to see our son thriving at HDS," says Robinson. For information on the upcom- ing HDS 2009-2010 school year, contact the Admissions Office at 407-647-0713 or admissions@hds- B BYO alum honored 300 rabbis go to Israel and donate blood courtesy of Magen David Adorn Rabbi Aaron Rubinger of Congregation Ohev Shalom and his wife Donna donate blood while in Israel earlier this month for the convention of the Conservative movement's Rabbinical. When 300 Conservative rabbis come together in Jerusalem, big things are bound to happen. So was the case of the convention of the Conservative movement's Rab- binical Assembly during the second week of February. In addition to a full schedule of seminars, lectures, learning and tiyulim, the RA mem- bers also rolled up their sleeves and got involved in a chesed, a deed of lovingkindness, that will truly save lives. In conjunction with the RA, American Friends of Magen David Adorn (AFMDA) hosted a blood drive on site at the Inbal hotel, where the pouring" was as impressive as it was sincere. For weeks prior, rabbis from all over the U.S. e-mailed to make appointments, and they came out in full force. In addition to donating blood, many of the participants expressed gratitude for the opportunity. While most have donated blood in the past, few have ever donated blood in Israel before. One after another understood, and articulated, what a meaningful experience it was. Many expressed interest to bring their congregations to do so as well. The rabbis' participation helped push AFMDA successful blood col- lection program for Americans in Israel to pass the 200-unit threshold for the year. In the first six weeks of 2009, AFMDA has collected 15 percent of the total collected for all of 2008, at a pace double that of last year. AFMDA has more blood drives scheduled and is on pace to double last year's total. For more information about op- portunities for Americans to donate blood in Israel through AFMDA, groups and individuals, contact Jonathan Feldstein at jfeldstein@ or 972-57-761-4220. To North Florida BBYO leaders at International Convention: Roy Scheinder (1), Sarasota; Marshall Finkelstein, Sarasota; Tatum Drazen (Regional N'siah), Orlando; Rachel Gebadie, Orlando; Charlie Shader (Regional S'gan), Orlando; Morgan Finkelstein (Regional Madricha & Interna- tional Board Member), Sarasota; Lauren Shenfeld (BBYO International President), Los Angeles; and Casey Stekloff (Regional S "ganit), Sarasota. Rachel Gebaide from Orlando was honored at the annual B'nai B'rith Youth Organization's annual inter- national convention in Long Branch, N.J., over Presidents' Day weekend. More than 750 Jewish teens from across the United States and abroad gathered to engage in Jewish learn- ing, Shabbat observance, commu- nity service, and friendly athletic and spirit competitions before electing the next international boards of the Aleph Zadik Aleph (AZA) and B'nai B'rith Girls (BBG). BBYO alum Gebaide was invited convention was base d. The "out- ........ 300 on page. 15 A ........ to t.he.gonvent!on to receive BBYO's highest alumna honor, the Anita Perlman Distinguished BBGAlumna Award. Gebaide, an employment attorney with Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed P.A. in Or- lando, is a past BBG International N'siah (president), former Orlando BBG advisor and current member of BBYO's Board of Directors. "BBYO's impact extends beyond high school," stated Gary Levin, BBYO Southeast Area Executive Director. "This award signifies the integral role BBYO plays in provid- . . BBYO on page 15A