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April 7, 2017     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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April 7, 2017

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, APRIL 7, 2017 PAGE 7.A ion sp Board Members of Jewish Chamber of Commerce, (l-r), Patty Fisher, Jennifer Steinlauf, with Jesse Cutler (Grammy winning entertainer, and keynote speaker), along with Board members Andres Beregovich, and Steven Fisher. On Thursday, March 23, the Orlando Jewish Chamber of Commerce (OJC) kicked off its flagship event at the DoveCote Brasserie in the Bank of America building in downtown Orlando. Despite gusty winds, the presence of Grammy Award winning entertainer, Jesse Cutler (of both Winter Park and Los Angeles), and the OJC Board members, helped provide guests with a warm welcome. The crowd of about 40 chatted and networked with another, undaunted by the winds of Mother Nature. OJC Board member and planner of the evening's event, Andres Beregovich, commented, "We were thrilled by the strong show- ing of support for the OJC's inaugural event. As a non- denominational organiza- tion that stands behind its motto as "Business Minded, Culturally Connected," we were thrilled to welcome guests and members of all backgrounds, who came to connect with and to get to know professionals within the Jewish community. Entertainer Jesse Cutler is a personal friend, and we were honored that he chose the OJC as a venue to share his music and tips for success." In addition to Cutler, sev- eral local dignitaries were present including Jo Ann Lucarelli, cty commissioner of Lake Mary, and Luis Mar- tinez, director of Cultural Af- fairs, Office the Mayor of the City of Orlando. After being introduced by Board member Bobby Davidowitz, Martinez remarked, "The Office of MulticulturalAffairs was cre- ated by Mayor Dyer in 2012 to create strong cohesive bonds with the multi-cultural com- munity including, of course, the Jewish-American com- munity." Martinez enthusiastically addressed the crowd on behalf of the Mayor's Office, congratulating the OJC's Board on the success of their opening event, and congratu- lating Bobby Davidowitz on his new role as president of the organization. Pam Ruben, marketing di- rector of the Jewish Pavilion, was the evening's nonprofit representative, and encour- aged the crowd to reach out to older adults residing in senior care, with plenty of volunteer opportunities with the coming of Passover. After sharing individual stories about seniors engaged and visited from the "greatest generation," many volunteer offers appeared, including the entire OJC board, who offered their time at one of the more than 70 Passover programs the Pavilion will offer at assistive living and skilled nursing homes throughout Orlando. Jesse Cutler rounded out the evening with music and inspirational notes. Cutler mused, "when Andres asked me to me speak here today, I was honored to be part of the Jewish Chamber of Commerce. I thought about what I would say to all of you, and I thought of the word "bashert"... It's Yiddish for 'I'm supposed to be here,' and we are all supposed to be together, and that's what life is about." Cutler went on to share after countless albums, con- certs, downloads, "I have been very blessed." The Grammy Award win- ner shared an anecdote of a time as a young adolescent when he rescued an even smaller boy from a group Of bullies. Ayear later, 12-year- old Jesse invited his new friend, Rick Shutter, to be a drummer in his boy band, "The Young Executives." The band took off in the mid-1960s, traveling with major acts and appearing on talk shows of the day like Mike Douglas and Merv Griffin. Years later, when Cutler was in college, Shut- ter introduced him to Ste- phen Schwartz, lyricist and composer of Godspell, where Jesse signed on as an original band member and arranger of the original production (once again, bashert). Members and guests devel- oped a second wind following the evening's entertainment, and were treated to additional sounds of Cutler's recent works, "The Music of Winter Park: Heart." To join the Orlando Jew- ish Chamber of Commerce or find out about their next meeting, visit http://jewish- To volunteer for a Pass- over Program, or to spend time with seniors, contact the Jewish Pavilion at www. Happy Passover Maitland Tire Company Robert A. Lesperance 233 North Orlando Avenue Maitland, Florida 32751 4o7-539-0800 Fax 4o7-539-0608 How did Enes Kanter, cen- ter for the NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder, end up shooting hoops with Jewish Academy of Orlando students last month? The story began when the Maitland Jewish Com- munity Campus, along with Jewish communal institu- tions throughout the country, began receiving bomb threats in January. The Atlantic Insti- tute of Central Florida reached out to the Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando's Jewish Community Relations Coun- cil (JCRC) in sympathy and solidarity. Federation Executive Di- rector Olga Yorish and Com- munity Relations Director Marli Porth had a productive meeting with Huseyin Peker, executive director of the Atlantic Institute, learning about each other's missions and goals. The Institute, whose mission is to facilitate dialogue and bridge cultures from multiple regions of the world, had recently honored Barbara Weinreich, a Fed- eration board member and longtime Jewish community leader and volunteer, with its 2016 Peace and Dialog Award for actively promoting diversity and intercultural ex- change in the Central Florida community. "It was good to get to know Huseyin personally and to establish a friendly relationship between our organizations," Porth said. So where does Enes Kanter enter the picture? The Oklahoma City Thun- der was scheduled to play the OrIando Magic at the Amway Center on March 29. Theweek Enes Kanter, center for the NBA 's Oklahoma City Thunder, Hi-fives a JAO student during a surprise visit to the school before the game, Peker con- tacted Porth to ask whether JAO students would enjoy a visit from Kanter, a Turkish Muslimwhowas selected third overall in the 2011 NBA draft. With some quick sched- uling between the Atlantic Institute, JCRC and the Jewish Academy, the stage was set for Kanter's visit, and the 6-foot- 11 pro made his surprise appearance--to the delight of JAO students--on March 29. While on the Maitland campus, he spoke with the students and answered ques- tions about life in the NBA and growing up in Turkey--and what it's like to be so tall. Stu- dents in the fifth grade even got to play basketball with Kanter, and all of the students had an opportunity to take a class picture with him. "Enes is a wonderful global ambassador for basketball," said Alan Rusonik, head of the JAO. "We were so happy to welcome him to our school." To see a video of the JAO stu- dents' "game" with Kanter, search @Jewish_Academy on Twitter. mmunity Call on Central Florida's Exclusively Jewish Funeral Home for Details Regarding: Traditional Jewish Funerals Non-Traditional Services Interstate Shipping Pre-Arranged Funerals (Shalom Assurance Plan) Headstone, Grave Markers (Cardinal Memorials) 640 Lee Rd. Orlando, Florida W.E. "Manny" Adams, LFD Samuel P. (Sammy) Goldstein, Executive Director