Volunteer Spotlight on Sydney Gross!

Posted on March 7th, 2016 by

Hard at work at the front desk!

Hard at work at the front desk!

Sydney Gross volunteers at the JMM at the Front Desk and in the Shop.  She is new to our volunteer corps but has always found a way to fit volunteering into her busy life.  From an early age, her parents instilled in her, the importance of giving back to one’s community. While growing up she made lasagna for bereaved families and for the nearby homeless shelter, she participated in outdoor cleanup efforts, she used her Spanish language skills to assist community members in filling out assistance forms which qualified them for free warehouse goods, and also as a 1st grade teacher in a local Sunday school in her native North Carolina.

Sydney works full time as the Volunteer Coordinator for Caring Carroll which strives to enable older, frail, isolated and disabled senior citizens in Carroll County to remain living independently.  In this AmeriCorps position she recruits, trains, and manages volunteers.  AmeriCorps members themselves are recruited, trained and positioned in communities to meet critical needs in education, public safety, health, and the environment. The organization places thousands of young adults into intensive service positions where they learn valuable work skills, earn money for education, and develop an appreciation for citizenship.  Sydney moved to Baltimore upon graduation with a Bachelor’s degree in Latin American Studies, from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, to be with her fiancé Ben, who teaches Mathematics at Stevenson University.

In her spare time, Sydney enjoys knitting, reading, and being outdoors – in particular camping and running. She runs half marathons and endeavors to race in each of the 50 states. So far she has completed nine races in seven different states. Her next race is later this month and takes place in Alabama.

Sydney is new to Baltimore. She found out about the Jewish Museum of Maryland through a complimentary annual membership offered through Shalom Baltimore, a program of the Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, which welcomes newcomers to the Baltimore Jewish community.  She and Ben are enjoying exploring Baltimore and the surrounding areas, especially the restaurants which, as a vegetarian, can sometimes present a challenge.   We are certainly glad that Sydney chose to explore the Jewish Museum of Maryland and that volunteering with us fit in to her new life in Baltimore. We welcome Sydney and other volunteers to be part of the JMM.  Please visit jewishmuseummd.org for more information on volunteering with us.

ilene cohenA blog post by Volunteer Coordinator Ilene Cohen. Every month she will be highlighting one of our fantastic JMM volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering with the JMM, drop her an email at icohen@jewishmuseummd.org or call 410-732-6402 x217! You can also get more information about volunteering at the Museum here.

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Once Upon a Time…05.29.2015

Posted on February 16th, 2016 by

The Baltimore Jewish Times publishes unidentified photographs from the collection of Jewish Museum of Maryland each week. If you can identify anyone in these photos and more information about them, contact Joanna Church at 410.732.6400 x236 or email jchurch@jewishmuseummd.org

 

2011029100Date run in Baltimore Jewish Times:  May 29th and June 12th, 2015

 

PastPerfect Accession #:  2011.029.100

 

Status:  Unidentified – do you recognize any of these 1972 Levindale junior volunteers? We think the young man in the center might be named Cory.

 

Special Thanks To: Barbara Scher

 

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Volunteer Spotlight on: Ira Askin

Posted on January 11th, 2016 by

Ira in a rare moment of relaxation.

Ira in a rare moment of relaxation.

Ira Askin has been a volunteer at the Jewish Museum of Maryland since 1992.  He works in the library and is also a member of the Board of Directors, having served as President from 1996 – 1999.  He actually began working in the basement of the Museum, before the Goodwin Library and Robert L. Weinberg Family History Center was completed inn 1996.  He remembers the space having no windows. He began working on a large accumulation of printed materials that had never been processed, found in boxes marked “UP” for un-processed. Previously, they had been housed next to the furnace, in what was then Baltimore Hebrew College. He started with miscellaneous papers, identified the contents, and put them into folders. Once this was completed, Finding Aides would be prepared and the marking on the outside of the box would be changed to “PB” for processed box. Shortly after he began, he joined the Board of Directors and then became the President.  The construction of the Library had begun prior to his term but he had the fortunate timing of presiding over the dedication.  He still sits on the Board and attends meetings and voices his opinions.  He says, “With age comes privilege” and enjoys remaining involved with many aspects of the JMM.  Ira’s current volunteer job is maintaining the Vertical Files. These files contain papers of material interest to Jews in Maryland that are not quite important enough to become accessioned into the Museum Collections. It includes mostly newspaper articles that are divided among Subject, Biographical, and Synagogue files.  He clips the materials from newspapers and individuals in the community send in items also.

Ira volunteers in the community because he feels like he is a lucky person, that his life was blessed by being born into a comfortable family.  He grew up a member of a strong family unit, his brother was 8 years his senior and his sister was 5 years his junior. He felt that his parents were able to do their best for each child since their ages were spread so far apart. Ira had an excellent education in Baltimore public schools and attended Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania.  After graduation, he was drafted and spent 3 years in the U.S. Army, 2 years stateside and 1 year overseas. He worked in the Finance Department during that time.  Upon his return to Baltimore he says he “fell into” his father’s wholesale business that sold hosiery and underwear.  The business closed in 1986.  Ira was married to his wife Myra for 68 years and one of their favorite activities was traveling, they especially loved cruises.

A very young Ira.

A very young Ira.

As a young adult, Ira participated in the Associated’s Young Leadership program and he has remained an active participant in the Jewish Community ever since.  He was an observer at the Board of Jewish Education, on the board of Jewish Family Services, a member of the Board of Directors and President at Beth El Congregation (his father-in-law was a founding member), and more.  He also volunteered as an unpaid staff member for the International Visitors Center in Baltimore for 2 years. It was an organization based out of Washington, DC.  He was responsible for arranging the international visitors agendas and accommodations while they visited Baltimore.

Ira likes to volunteer at the JMM because it keeps him busy and fulfills his need to give back to the community.  We appreciate all that he has contributed to the Museum for many, many years, to and what he will continue to accomplish in the future.

ilene cohenA blog post by Volunteer Coordinator Ilene Cohen. Every month she will be highlighting one of our fantastic JMM volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering with the JMM, drop her an email at icohen@jewishmuseummd.org or call 410-732-6402 x217! You can also get more information about volunteering at the Museum here.

Posted in jewish museum of maryland




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