Presidential and Yasher Koach Awards

On rare occasions in the history of the FJMC, there have been men whose incredible and long lasting contributions to the organization or a particular program of the organization, that special recognition has been warranted. For the Toronto Convention 2019, we have the unusual and high privilege to honor two men, one in each category.  (Note: Both of these past honorees have left us, but we honor their memory and legacy in the FJMC.)

Presidential Award….. presented to Dr. Stephen Davidoff 

  Steve Davidoff z"lSteve is a past International President of the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs and has a long record of service to the FJMC, its Middle Atlantic Region and to AJ. He has chaired numerous congregational committees and is a past Secretary and Vice-President of Congregation Adath Jeshurun. He was designated Hatan Torah, Bridegroom of the Torah, for his extensive service to the congregation. During his presidency and honorary presidency of the Adath Jeshurun Men’s Association, his club was the recipient of nine national Torch Awards including the most coveted award — First Place — Best Overall Activities. He continues to serve AJ as an Honorary Director and as a member of various committees. 

Steve was President of the Middle Atlantic Region FJMC from 1984 to1986. His term of office was characterized by creating the MAR Guide to Organization, Program and Services, establishing regional participation in the citywide services for the Jewish blind, fostering implementation of congregational-level Tay-Sach awareness screening programs, making provision for Purim entertainment at homes for the Jewish elderly, breaking ground for the Lee Linder MAR Ramah Poconos Recreation Center, and endowing a classroom at the Mandel Education Center. He is a recipient of the Samuel Horowitz Award for distinguished service to MAR.

Steve served as International President from 1997 to 1999. During this time, FJMC developed and published the Hearing Men’s VoicesSeries and produced  Ties That Bind, a world-acclaimed educational videotape dealing with tefillin. The latter was produced in two versions — traditional and egalitarian — a first for meeting the diverse needs of the Conservative Movement and its synagogues. The tradition of the “President’s Torah Mantel,” a needlepoint Torah cover (crafted by Steve’s wife, Chellie) which resides in the synagogue of the FJMC President, was established and implemented during his term of office. Since 1999, this FJMC iconic symbol has graced the synagogues of succeeding Federation presidents and has been touched and admired by thousands of individuals across North America. During his presidency, Steve served on the Leadership Council of the Conservative Movement, was Vice President of Mercaz, Vice President of the World Council of Synagogues and on the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Theological Seminary. To date, Steve is the only FJMC President to participate in the commencement exercises of the Jewish Theological Seminary. He continues to serve FJMC as the Secretary of the FJMC Foundation for Jewish Life and co-chairs the recently created Long-Range Financial Planning Committee charged with creating a blueprint for the financial well-being of FJMC. 

Yasher Koach Award….. presented to Bob Weinstein

Bob WeinsteinIf there is a passion for Bob Weinstein, affectionately called ‘Colonel Candle,’ that passion is the FJMC and its Yellow Yom HaShoah Candle Program.  For more than twenty years, Bob has been a tireless coordinator for both ordering and distributing the candles and the ‘delivery items’ whether they be plastic bags or individual mail boxes, throughout the United States and North America.

Bob has been involved with Men’s Clubs for 55 years.  He has been Men’s Club President, Congregation President and involved with Yom HaShoah Yellow Candle Program since 1992.  Bob has been married to Phyllis for 63 years and they have three daughters, two sons (husbands of daughters), eleven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.  Phyllis has been active in Sisterhood for many years.  She has been a Sisterhood President, Gift Shop Manager and Torah Fund Chairperson.

Both have made their involvement in synagogue life a priority of theirs. For the past 17 years they have both been administrating the Yellow Candle Program and do the purchasing of candles, boxes and bags.  They distribute them to the warehouses for shipment.  They process all orders and maintain records of sales.

Bob and Phyllis will continue working with the Yom HaShoah Yellow Candle Program on a club and regional basis.