Posted on June 12th, 2015 by Rachel
A Welcome and a Farewell
With more than 80 people in attendance at Sunday’s Annual Meeting, the JMM membership approved the FY 16 slate of officers and trustees. We are pleased to welcome the following new members to the JMM board:
–Jeffrey Blavatt is the executive director of the Eisenhower Institute of Gettysburg College. He is also a co-founder and managing partner of Legal Services Group. An active member of Chizuk Amuno Congregation, Jeff has served on the boards of the Associated, Child Care Links and Baltimore County Child Care Advisory Council.
–Erica Breslau, PH.D. serves as scientific researcher in the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health. Since 2002 she has provided scientific leadership for cancer control and prevention activities in the areas of breast and colorectal cancers with concentrated research in aging, patient-provider communication, genomics and genetics in primary care and healthcare system decisions surrounding personalized medicine. She has a strong interest in archaeology and Jewish history.
–Roberta Greenstein is a career coach, travel coordinator for Off the Beaten Path Art Tours and also co-chairs downtown Charm City Hadassah group. Roberta has worked at several Associated agencies including the Darrell Friedman Institute and Jewish Vocational Services (currently known as Jewish Communal Services) and served as Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Howard County.
–Patti Neumann has extensive experience in sales and marketing as well as social medial strategy development. She is the founder/CEO of CITYPEEK. She is also a food and wine and social media columnist and blogger for the Baltimore City Paper, Jewish Times, Business Journal and CITYPEEK
–Judy Pachino is a speech language pathologist and is an active member of Beth El Congregation where she has served as a board member and sisterhood president. Judy has also been a member of Baltimore City’s Women’s Giving Circle.
In addition to these five new outstanding members of our board of trustees, JMM members also approved a new slate of officers including:
–Duke Zimmerman, President… Duke has been chair of the Collections Committee for the last seven years and has served four years as Vice President of JMM
–Dr. Robert Keehn, Vice President… Robert has been a chair of the Development Committee for the last four years and was reelected to a second term as Vice President.
–Saralynn Glass, Vice President… Saralynn will also serve as co-chair of the Collections Committee
–Toby Gordon, Vice President… Toby facilitated last March’s Board Retreat and will join Saralynn as a co-chair of Collections
–Bruce Hoffberger, Treasurer… Bruce is currently chair of the Finance Committee
–Arnold Fruman, Secretary… Arnold has served on the Board for six years
As wonderful as it is to welcome on board new leadership and members, our annual meeting is also always a bittersweet occasion as we say goodbye to several board members whose terms have ended. We would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the many contributions of the following individuals:
–Dr. Ira Papel – During Ira’s two-year tenure as President, he oversaw many important initiatives including the launch of our community master planning process, a task force devoted to refining the JMM vision which resulted in the production of new fundraising materials and two successive years of break even budgets which were accomplished through the successful completion of ambitious fundraising campaigns. Fortunately, Ira will remain on our executive committee as our Immediate Past President and will also chair our nominating committee.
–Jeff Dreifuss – As a longtime member of the JMM board and most recently filling the post of Vice-President, Jeff’s insightful perspectives helped shape our visioning process. Jeff also helped broaden our outreach to Howard County where he resides.
–Sarah Manekin – In the role of Board Secretary as well as chair of both our visioning taskforce and board nominating and education committees, Sarah has been responsible for helping to guide the Museum’s future vision.
–Brian McLaughlin – Brian’s experience as a real estate developer and knowledge of the local community informed our community master planning process.
–Jonathan Mogol – As co-chair of our facilities committee, Jonathan has played an integral role in helping us develop a plan for future growth. Jonathan has also worked with our staff to expand our reach to young adults through programs such as Purim Pandemonium.
We wish all of our outgoing board members all the best with their future endeavors and hope that they will continue to stay involved.
Posted on June 5th, 2015 by Rachel
The A-Mazing Mendes Cohen exhibit has just one more week on this planet. If you’ve been reading about this project for the last year and saying to yourself, “I’d really like to see that” – act now.
Before Mendes Cohen’s flag goes back into our vaults we have one more chance to celebrate its miraculous survival on Flag Day (June 14). Join us in one last hurrah for this American patriot.
Speaking of hurrahs – why not make us a part of your Father’s Day festivities on June 21. I’ll be leading a special tour at the National Archives at 2pm. We’re going to visit the exhibit “Spirited Republic” about the government and alcohol (which features a still that belonged to the “father of our country”). We’ll also take a close look at America’s only copy of Magna Carta which marks its 800th birthday next week – and won’t that make all the fathers feel young by comparison! In both instances I hope to add something about Jewish connections that you won’t find in the National Archives’ text labels. We’re asking those interested to make reservations with Trillion – this program is free and we will be sure to get you out in time for our second option: A presentation on Jewish distillers and a whiskey tasting back at the JMM (this program will be $10). So you can make it a double header or a single malt day – the choice is up to you. But please bring your dad (or your son) and share some holiday cheer with us.
All programs take place at the Jewish Museum of Maryland unless otherwise noted. Please contact Trillion Attwood at firstname.lastname@example.org / 410-732-6400 x215 with any questions or for more information.
Sunday, June 7, 1 p.m.
Samuel Boltansky Memorial Keynote Speaker: Senator Ben Cardin
The JMM is very excited to welcome Senator Cardin as our keynote speaker for our 2015 Annual Meeting. Senator Cardin has enjoyed a long career in American politics. He was the youngest elected speaker in the Maryland House of Delegates from 1979 – 1986 and today serves as one of Maryland’s representatives to the United States Senate. Senator Cardin will draw upon his personal experiences to discuss what it means to be a Jewish politician today, the significance of his strong Jewish roots and how they have impacted his political career.
The program begins at 1:00pm with a presentation of the FY 15 slate of nominees to the JMM’s Board of Trustees for election by the Museum’s membership. The lecture will follow.
Refreshments will be served following the program.
Finding Your Unknown Ancestors – and the Living Relatives of Mendes Cohen
Wednesday, June 10th, 6:30 p.m.
Interested in learning more about your family history? Join us as we welcome Jewish Genealogy Society of Maryland (JGSM) to the JMM for this exciting program. Learn how to succeed in this fascinating process, where to start, helpful resources and some tricks form the experts! JGSM will demonstrate the process of tracing your family using a very familiar character as inspiration – Mendes Cohen.
Following the presentation JGSM will help several individuals commence their search.
Sunday, June 14
Included with Museum Admission
Help us bid a fond farewell to The A-Mazing Mendes Cohen. We honor one of the first “defenders” of the star-spangled banner, with activities and programs for every age and taste. Work as a family team to test your knowledge on our state flags, design your own flag and make your own star spangled banner to fly this Flag Day. At 1:00 p.m., Michelle Pagan and Joanna Church will be talking about on the conservation of the flag Mendes Cohen carried on his voyage up the Nile.
Thirteen Paper Stars: What it Takes to Display a Two Hundred Year Old Flag
Sunday, June 14th at 1:00 p.m.
Speakers: Michelle Pagan, conservator and Joanna Church, JMM Collections Manager
Included with Museum Admission
The American flag currently on display at the JMM is unique in several ways: made of Egyptian cotton, at a time when American flags were always made of wool, 13 paper stars, and only 11 stripes, but why?
Explore the story of how this mysterious flag came into the collection of the JMM, and what techniques have been used to exhibit it safely at the Museum. You will have a chance to pose questions to the Collections Manager, and to the Textile Conservator who made this flag to make it available for viewing today.
Michele Pagan is a Conservator in Private Practice, and a Professional Associate of the American Institute for Conservation. She has been conserving textiles since 1984, with clients such as the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the National Museum of American History, the Valentine Museum in Richmond VA, and the State of Vermont, where she conserved the Civil War Flag collection. She practices conservation in Washington DC and Brookfield Vermont.
Schnapps with Pops
Sunday, June 21st
2:00 p.m. National Archives Tour, 700 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC – FREE
6:00 p.m. Schnapps with Pops at the JMM – $10
Join us to celebrate Father’s Day with a two-part exploration of the history of alcohol in America. First, visit the National Archives’ latest exhibit Spirited Republic: Alcohol in American History with JMM executive Director Marvin Pinkert. Marvin has been prowling around his former haunts to look for Jewish angles on this national story. As a bonus he will also be taking you by the only Magna Carta in America as that charter marks its 800th anniversary. Find out why King Edward removed the clause relating to Jews from this version of Magna Carta – and much more.
Then come back to the JMM for a whiskey tasting and talk, “The Forgotten Jewish Heritage of American Whiskey.”
RSVPs required for the visit to the National Archives and preferred for the evening at the JMM. Transportation is not included. It is not necessary to attend both programs.
To rsvp please contact Trillion Attwood: call 410-732-6400 or email email@example.com.
Schnapps with Pops: The Forgotten Jewish Heritage of American Whiskey
Sunday, June 21st from 6 p.m., lecture at 6:30 p.m.
Speaker: Ried Mitenbuler, author of Bourbon Empire: The Past and Future of America’s Whiskey
Admission $10, includes whiskey tasting
The frontier iconography of countless American whiskey brands, particularly bourbon labels, captures many popular myths about the rise of this nation. Of course, the reality behind these labels is more complicated, and more interesting. Many were started by Jewish entrepreneurs who formed a prominent part of this quintessentially American industry well after the frontier was settled. Their involvement–and occasional efforts to downplay that role for political and economic reasons–is a story that illuminates the American experience as much as any of the marketing myths.
Taste your way through this history, samples of a number of the whiskeys explored are included in the program admission.
Reid Mitenbuler is the author of Bourbon Empire: The Past and Future of America’s Whiskey (Viking). His writing has also appeared in The Atlantic, Slate, Salon, and Whisky Advocate, among other publications.
Cinema Judaica: Members opening reception
Thursday, July 2, 6:00 p.m.
Free for Museum members
We invite Museum members to join us for the opening reception of Cinema Judaica. Take the opportunity to explore the exhibit in the company of Ken Sutak, author of Cinema Judaica: The War Years, 1939-1949 prior to his presentation The Great Debate, 1939—1941: How Harry Warner, Ernst Toller, and Alvin York Helped Win “The Great Debate” for American Interventionists.
Cocktails and light kosher refreshments will be served.
The Great Debate, 1939—1941: How Harry Warner, Ernst Toller, and Alvin York Helped Win “The Great Debate” for American Interventionists
Thursday, July 2nd, 7:00 p.m.
Speaker: Ken Sutak, author and curator
Included with Museum Admission
Ken Sutak, author of Cinema Judaica: The War Years, will explore how three unexpected men influenced the outcome World War II. Harry Warner, president of Warner Bros, Ernst Toller émigré Prussian-Jewish playwright and Alvin York, the immortal Sergeant York of WW I fame, who later became the most important interventionist spokesperson during “The Great Debate.” These three men were in the forefront of those who managed to change popular American opinion regarding World War II and help prepare the country for war.
Sunday, July 12, 1:00 p.m.
Speaker: Amy Davis
Included with Museum Admission
Celebrate the golden age of movie-going with Baltimore photographer and author Amy Davis as she presents photographs from her upcoming book, Flickering Treasures: Rediscovering Baltimore’s Forgotten Movie Theaters. Her talk will explore the integral role of Jews in Baltimore cinema, as theater owners, operators and moviegoers. The collection of vintage and new photographs in Flickering Treasures tells a fresh story of Baltimore through the cultural prism of film exhibition. Participants will be invited to travel back in time to share reminiscences of their own favorite movie houses.
Photojournalist Amy Davis has garnered many national awards since joining the staff of The Baltimore Sun in 1987. Her fine art training from The Cooper Union informs her documentary approach. Her photographic work has been exhibited at The Brooklyn Museum, and is in the collection of the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, New York.
Creative Alliance, a lively non-profit arts organization based in the Patterson Theatre in Highlandtown, is the fiscal sponsor for Flickering Treasures.
The JMM is pleased to share our campus with B’nai Israel Congregation. For additional information about B’nai Israel events and services for Shabbat, please visit bnaiisraelcongregation.org. For more of this month’s events from BIYA, please visit biyabaltimore.org or check out BIYA on facebook.
Jewish Genealogy Society of Maryland May Meeting
Sunday, June 28, 1:30pm, the Pikesville Library’s meeting room
Letters from a Judean
Speaker: David Brill
The program is free for paid members and $5 for non-members. Refreshments will be available. Go to www.jgsmd.org for more information.
Exhibits currently on display include The A-mazing Mendes Cohen (on display through June 14, 2015), Voices of Lombard Street: A Century of Change in East Baltimore, and The Synagogue Speaks!
Hours and Tour Times
The JMM is open Sunday-Thursday, 10am – 5pm.
Combination tours of the 1845 Lloyd Street Synagogue and the 1876 Synagogue Building now home to B’nai Israel are offered: Sunday through Thursday at 11:00am, 1:00pm and 2:00pm. We offer tours focused on the Lloyd Street Synagogue, Sunday through Thursday at 3:00pm and on Sunday at 4:00pm. Our new Lloyd Street “1845: Technology and the Temple” tour is available every Sunday and Monday at 3:00 until The A-Mazing Mendes Cohen closes in June 2015.
The JMM is looking for volunteers to help staff our front desk, work in the gift shop, and lead tours as docents. No prior knowledge or training is required. All that is needed is an interest in learning about the JMM, our historic sites, exhibits, and programs and a desire to share this knowledge with the public. All volunteers are provided with thorough training. If you are interested in learning more about our volunteer program, please contact Volunteer Coordinator Ilene Cohen at 410.732.6400 x217 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Revamped and revitalized, membership at the JMM is now better than ever – with new categories, benefits, and discounts to enrich every visit to the Museum for you and your friends and families.
All members receive our monthly e-newsletter, along with a 10% discount at the Museum store, free general admission to the Museum, free admission to all regular programs, attendance at exclusive member opening events and discounted weekday parking at the City-owned garage at 1001 E. Fayette Street.
Your membership provides much needed funding for the many programs that we offer and we hope we can count on you for your continued support. Memberships can be purchased online! For more information about our membership program, please contact Sue Foard at (410) 732-6400 x220 or email@example.com.
Posted on May 15th, 2015 by Rachel
JMM has always prided itself on its small, dedicated team of outstanding professionals. It’s amazing what a dozen people can do, when you have great talent supported by strong volunteers and lay leadership.
This month has brought two new members to the team to existing/future vacancies. I thought that we’d use this issue of JMM Insights to introduce Tracie Guy-Decker, our new Associate Director for Projects, Planning and Finance, and Graham Humphrey who will replace Abby Krolik as Visitor Services Manager. I am really excited to have Tracie and Graham on board and I know you will join me in welcoming them into our family. I have asked them both to tell a bit of their own stories.
My great great grandmother, Dora Bachrach Fink, was a member of Baltimore Hebrew Congregation when it was in the Lloyd Street Synagogue. Now that I am Associate Director at JMM, every day, I sit at a computer that is but yards from the place my ancestors worshipped more than a century ago. Working for JMM is also a homecoming for me professionally—a return to working with and for the Jewish community. (I served as the Marketing Director for the Jewish Federation and the JCC in Virginia Beach until my husband, a Chief Petty Officer in the US Navy, received orders that moved us to Maryland.)
Tracie and her husband Dave.
This is an exciting time for JMM, and I’m honored and humbled to be able to be a part of it. My colleagues are smart, funny, capable professionals, and under Marvin’s leadership the Museum is on a trajectory to become a center for Jewish and secular history and culture in Baltimore—not tomorrow, but soon. I’m excited to lend my skills, expertise, and experience to that trajectory (and to learn new skills along the way!). I’m also excited to be able to share this amazing resource with my daughter, Ruth (3 years old). The Museum family will watch Ruth and the Museum grow together over the next several years.
Ruth enjoying the rocket seats at Patterson Park
I’m also heartened by the welcome I’ve received from all of the friends of the Museum thus far—professionals, lay leaders, volunteers, members, and visitors have all been amazingly friendly and helpful as I learn my way around (literally and figuratively). I’d love the opportunity to reciprocate that welcome: if you’re in the Museum, please stop by. You can tell me your story of the Museum or the Lloyd Street Synagogue, we could play “Jewish Geography,” or just say ‘hi,’ I’m here Monday through Thursday, and will never turn down a cup of coffee.
Hello! My name is Graham Humphrey and I was recently hired to be the new Visitor Services Coordinator to replace Abby Krolik after she leaves the Museum at the end of the month to continue her studies. I received my MA in Museum Studies from Johns Hopkins University and my BA from Brandeis University in Art History. For the past seven years, I have been working at museums, aboard sailboats and at National Park sites in visitor services, education, development and collections management. I have gotten to lead experiential education programs while dressed up in period costume at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, teach basic seamanship to students aboard the schooner the Lady Maryland and work with goats at the Carl Sandburg Home in North Carolina. In my free time, I enjoy visiting other museums and historic sites, exploring the great outdoors, attending cultural events and staying involved within the Jewish community.
I am excited about continuing to make the Jewish Museum a welcoming environment and to ensure that visitors have a rewarding experience. I also hope to encourage public discourse about contemporary issues, explore how we can engage new audiences as well as serve as agents for social change in our community.
Marvin’s note: We don’t plan I having Graham work with goats… but a “Jewish pirates sail”, well who knows what is possible.