Council Matters
August 31, 2012 
Legislative Spotlight
Get to Know
Community Relations
Government Relations
Holocaust Remembrance Commission
Israel/Global Relations

The 2012 Presidential Election: A Debate and Discussion

   Mock Debate


Former Governor Robert Ehrlich 


Attorney General

Doug F. Gansler 



October 23, 2012

7:30 PM


Chizuk Amuno Congregation

8100 Stevenson Rd.

Pikesville, MD  

Legislative Spotlight


Bill Henry  

Baltimore City Councilman

Bill Henry 


City Councilman Bill Henry, elected in 2007, represents the 4th District (Northeast) in Baltimore.  He has made it his priority to "figure out how to make Baltimore better, and then make it happen." He represents the Council on Baltimore City's Commission on Historic and Architectural Preservation and the 10-year Facilities Plan Advisory Group. His committee assignments include serving as Chair of the Housing & Community Development committee, as Vice-Chair of the Taxation, Finance & Economic Development and Education & Youth committees, and as a member of the Judiciary & Legislative Investigations and Land Use & Transportation committee. To read the Spotlight interview, please click here. 

Leadership Development  


The BJC's Leadership Development Program is a one-year commitment, with monthly, hands-on programs, typically held on weekday evenings. Jewish individuals of different backgrounds, ages and interests are encouraged to apply. Participants meet with government officials and community leaders who address local, national and international issues, in order to develop an understanding of all aspects of Jewish community relations and public affairs, along with key leadership skills. Click here for more information.


We are currently interviewing applicants for the class of 2013. For more information about how to become involved, please contact Toba Rainess or call the Baltimore Jewish Council at 410-542-4850.

Get To Know 

Rabbi Shulman   

  Rabbi Ronald Shulman 


Many of you know Rabbi Ron Shulman from his role as Senior Rabbi at Chizuk Amuno Congregation. Now Rabbi Shulman has taken on an added role: President of the Baltimore Jewish Council. "Get to Know" Rabbi Shulman in this exclusive new interview:

Why do I want to be involved with the BJC?

RS: My avocation is politics, a personal interest I try to separate from my rabbinic role. Involvement with the BJC allows me to participate in advocacy, education, and political organization around relevant Jewish values for social policy in our state and nation. Working with the BJC, I am able to blend my voice with others in support of Israel and the needs of our Jewish community as we speak to our elected representatives.


The importance of community...

RS: Our greatest asset as Jews is each other. In our variety we find commonality knowing that among the worlds' six billion plus human beings there aren't that many of us! As members of the Jewish community we each get an historic and enduring address and worldview for ourselves, a personal place from which to derive our values while living as one among millions and billions. We get a relationship with generations of Jews, some who we'll know and others whom we could never meet, whose experiences, memories and dreams can help us to be true to ourselves. As a Jewish community we represent the source of so much that lies at the core of society and western civilization.



RS: I've been part of our Baltimore Jewish community for 8+ years now. So many people here are passionate about Jewish life. I enjoy each conversation I have with someone as we imagine what more we can build for our community and our future on the foundations of such rich history, heritage, and personal roots.

A Message from the BJC... 


A Good New Year...

A Sweet New Year...

There is so much to look forward to as we head into the new programming year. One of our biggest events will be our program, The 2012 Presidential Election: A Debate and Discussion featuring Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler and former Maryland Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. It will take place on Tuesday, October 23, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. at Chizuk Amuno Congregation. RSVP's are preferred, so reserve your seat now.

On the legislative front, we are taking a fresh look at some of our most important policy positions, including the death penalty and education. We are also actively planning, along with the Maryland/Israel Development Center and the JCRC of Greater Washington, Governor Martin O'Malley's Trade Mission to Israel and Jordan. And the Baltimore Israel Coalition is already hard at work on plans for a community-wide celebration of Israel's 65th Birthday.

The new programming year apples and honeylooks to be busy... so we hope you will take time during the High Holy Days to rest, reflect, and renew. And may you and your loved ones have a healthy and happy New Year.

L'shana Tovah  


The BJC Staff


Government Relations


Our meetings with our Baltimore City Council and Baltimore County Council representatives continue.  We recently met with Baltimore County Council representatives David Marks and Cathy Bevins as well as Baltimore City Councilman Bill Henry.


Due to the power outages in relation to the derecho, our meeting was postponed with Senators Cardin and Mikulski regarding Senator Cardin's RUSH Act (Responding to the Urgent Needs of Survivors of the Holocaust Act).  We look forward to securing a date soon to have Holocaust survivors from our community discuss with the Senators how benefits have helped them and impact the survivor community.



We are excited to announce that the BJC will again be holding a presidential debate this fall on October 23rd, 7:30pm at Chizuk Amuno Congregation.  We have confirmed Governor Robert Ehrlich who will be representing Governor Mitt Romney and Attorney General Doug Gansler, who will be representing President Barack Obama.  The event is free and open to the public so please mark your calendars.




Making an Educated Vote: The Dream Act is taking place on September 5, 6:30pm at the ASSOCIATED. Please join the BJC in welcoming Dream Act Campaign Manager, Travis Tazelaar and Delegate Sandy Rosenberg in discussing why the Dream act is a "Jewish Issue." Please RSVP to Jasmine Estes today, and for more information contact Mandee Simmons Heinl.


Community Relations




On Sunday September 23rd at 1:00 pm, plan to join the Baltimore Jewish Council's Outreach Committee, as we reach out into our community and help give back to the residents at Levindale. Please bring your entire family and join in the fun as we help residents make and hang decorations for their Sukkah. Contact Mandee Simmons Heinl to RSVP or for more information.


Jewish Turkish Dialogue


Mark your calendars for Tuesday, October 16th, as the BJC's Jewish Turkish Dialogue welcomes Beyhan Trock, author of the cookbook The Ottoman Turk and the Pretty Jewish Girl. Beyhan will be traveling to Baltimore to prepare and share with us dishes from her cookbook. The program will take place in a Kosher home, with dietary laws observed. Food, culture and commonality are on the menu!


The Jewish Turkish Dialogue is just one of several interfaith and interethnic initiatives here at the BJC. We also have dialogues with the Greek, Hispanic, African American, and Muslim communities. The dialogues were formed to establish and maintain good relations between the Jewish community and other ethnic and faith groups in our area.  Through the programs, different communities learn about each other to build relationships, allowing the groups to support each other on issues that may develop.


To RSVP to the Jewish Turkish Dialogue with Beyhan Trock, or to learn more about the dialogues, please contact Mandee Simmons Heinl.   



Holocaust Remembrance 


The eighth annual Summer Teachers Institute, sponsored by the Baltimore Jewish Council, The Jewish Museum of Maryland (JMM), and the Maryland State Department of Education was held earlier this month. Over 60 educators (24 of whom have attended previous programs) from public, private, and religious schools attended the three-day workshop.   The theme, Rescue and Resistance: Confronting Evil During the Holocaust, was inspired by suggestions from last year's participants. Highlights of the workshop include: a powerful presentation by Stanlee Stahl, Executive Vice-President of The Jewish Foundation for the Righteous (JFR); a trip to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum; a three-hour session, Teaching with Defiance by the Jewish Partisans Education Foundation; and, our most treasured resource,  first-hand testimony by Holocaust survivors:  Dr. Werner Cohen (Kindertransport) and Esther and Howard Kaidanow (Partisans).



Additionally, the teachers were given valuable classroom resources: JFR posters, the Defiance DVD and a copy of the catalog for the USHMM's current exhibition, State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda. The first day's sessions were held at the JMM; Baltimore Hebrew Congregation hosted the third day's sessions.


During the past year, 159 teachers attended a total of 4 BJC/JMM Teacher Training workshops. A total of 7,052 people heard direct testimony from Survivors, 5,133 of whom were students. 

Israeli flags


The Baltimore Jewish Council, along with over 20 other Baltimore organizations, spent time this summer developing a mission statement and guidelines for the Baltimore Israel Coalition.  The Baltimore Israel Coalition is a consortium of organizations in the greater Baltimore area, working to support Israel through education, advocacy and community building.  Together, we hope to plan a celebration for Israel's 65th on June 2, 2013, as well as an Israel advocacy program this fall.  Please continue to look for exciting updates.


We would like to welcome Oren Marmorstein, Embassy of Israel Diplomat, Head of Regional Affairs, to Washington, D.C.  The Council works closely with the Embassy on many different issues and events.  We wish Counselor Galit Baram the best as she returns to Israel, and thank her for all she has done for our community.  We look forward to working with Oren.


The Baltimore Jewish Council, American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and American Jewish Committee will host a "Lunch & Learn," October 18, 12:00 pm, at THE ASSOCIATED.  Dr. Paula Kabalo, Founding Director, International Graduate School for Israel Studies at the Ben-Gurion Institute for the Study of Israel and Zionism will present, "Inside David Ben Gurion's Head."  Lunch will be served for $10.00 a person.  Dietary Laws Observed.  Please RSVP to Jasmine Estes.


Please click here for our latest issue of Israel Connections.


Elijah Youth Program in Israel 


The Elijah Cummings Youth Program in Israel (ECYP) is proud to have completed its 14th successful journey to Israel this summer.  For four weeks in July, the teen Fellows of ECYP's Class of 2013 explored the land, tested their comfort zones, and learned why it is so important for leaders to have a global perspective.  In fact, the Class of 2013 saw an in-depth side of Israel rarely experienced by most tour groups.  


ECYP-Ashkelon New highlights of this year's trip included a private tour of the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, a special visit to "Better Place"-the world's leading electric car R&D facility, and ECYP's first-ever weekend of home hospitality in Baltimore's Sister City of Ashkelon.  What makes all of these experiences truly life-changing is our youth are paired with and welcomed upon arrival by Israeli teens from Yemin Orde Youth Village, our partner in Israel.  ECYP Fellows have a chance to make lifelong friendships.   The ECYP Board of Directors welcomes home the young "ambassadors" from the Class of 2013 and extends continued gratitude to Yemin Orde for their profound efforts this summer.  


In the words of one of our 2013 Fellows:


"Without Israel, I would not have learned what it truly meant to step outside of my comfort zone and to recognize challenges in life as an opportunity for personal growth.  At 17 years-old, I can honestly say that ECYP altered my perspective on the purpose of life's many obstacles."

View more photos and journal entries from the Fellows' one month journey at!

For more information about ECYP, please contact the Baltimore Jewish Council at 410-542-4850.



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