Posts tagged with "Jewish"

Los Angeles Jewish Home Brandman Centers for Senior Care PACE Program for 360 Magazine

JEWISH COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF LA COVID GRANTS

JEWISH COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF LOS ANGELES AWARDS $1.3 MILLION IN GRANTS FOR LOCAL COVID-19 RELIEF

Newest Distributions Address Urgent Physical and Mental Healthcare Needs, Part of Institution’s Comprehensive $8 Million-Plus Pandemic Giving Effort

The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles (The Foundation) today announced that it has awarded $1.3 million in grants to five local organizations principally to address urgent physical and mental healthcare needs in the community resulting from COVID-19. The grants also include support to sustain small-business owners financially impacted by the pandemic.

These latest distributions are part of the previously announced COVID-19 Response Grants, the multi-stage initiative through which The Foundation has committed more than $8 million in giving, the largest amount ever earmarked by the institution to a single cause.

The five new recipients are Jewish Family Service LA (JFS), Jewish Free Loan Association (JFLA), Los Angeles Jewish Home (LAJH), Martin Luther King Community Hospital (MLKCH) and Venice Family Clinic (VFC).  The total number of awards including these latest grants is 46. Prior COVID-19 relief grants were directed to address immediate, vital needs across the local community and in Israel, as well as to sustain local, mission-critical Jewish nonprofits which have been impacted by the pandemic.

Through its ongoing outreach with local nonprofits and other funders, The Foundation identified unmet needs, including many more people requiring hospitalization due to COVID-19, according to President and Chief Executive Officer Marvin I. Schotland.  He said the ongoing pandemic also has resulted in greater isolation of many seniors who lack the technology or knowledge to access essential care. It also continues to have a devastating financial impact on small business owners from the protracted crisis, Schotland said.

Schotland stated: “This a global health crisis of a magnitude never experienced in our lifetimes. Vast needs continue to emerge that require support. Because The Foundation is in regular contact with nonprofits, we are able to respond quickly as critical needs are identified, including funding for urgent physical and mental healthcare disparities and businesses that are struggling. With these significant grants to five organizations, our dollars will favorably impact thousands of individuals in need in the Jewish and larger community.”

The five grants are being directed to:

  • Jewish Family Service LA(JFS) for Video Services for Older Adults: The grant will expand a successful pilot program with frail older adults connecting them to vital services and a support lifeline through technology. Funding will support staffing and provide Chromebooks and internet so elderly clients can access services.
  • Jewish Free Loan Association(JFLA) for the Small Business Loan Fund: Due to the pandemic, JFLA has been receiving a significantly higher number of applications for interest-free loans, which average $20,000, for struggling businesses and for launching new enterprises. This grant will help grow the loan fund and allow JFLA to continue making loans without reducing the amounts or turning applicants away.
  • Los Angeles Jewish Home(LAJH) for
    • The Brandman Centers for Senior Care—Program for All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE): PACE provides a complete range of health, social and nutritional services for nursing home-eligible seniors who wish to live safely in their own homes or with family members. Over 250 frail elderly seniors are enrolled in PACE. This grant will enable staff to take resources to these seniors who, due to COVID, are unable to come into the facility for services.
    • The Factor Building Skilled Nursing Facility: This grant will help support staffing needs in the Factor Building, which now houses all residents who have tested positive for COVID-19. The facility requires a separate staff to provide the usual high-quality, long-term medical and rehabilitative therapies to these residents, as well as treating them for COVID.
  • Martin Luther King Community Hospital(MLKCH) for:
    • Space Conversion: Hitting the Black and Latino communities served by MLKCH hardest, the hospital is addressing new critical needs to ensure its COVID patients – whose positivity rate runs double L.A. County’s average – receive proper care. With capacity stretched, MLKCH converted an entire floor into an intensive care unit to meet the unanticipated level of critical care needed for COVID patients. As well, it is using every other space possible to house patients.
    • Post-Discharge COVID ICU Clinic: The facility supports patients who continue to experience symptoms or require additional care. Given the increased level of critical care needed, the post-COVID clinic has also seen a surge. MLKCH converted an existing space into a clinic where patients receive comprehensive services including pulmonary appointments, respiratory therapy services, mental health services, and continuing support from their ICU medical team.
  • Venice Family Clinic(VFC) for:
    • Telehealth/Information Technology Infrastructure: To keep older adults engaged and prevent social isolation, the grant will strengthen information-technology infrastructure to provide high-quality virtual services. VFC will purchase an integrated telehealth video tool enabling patients to complete pre-visit paperwork, have fully encrypted visits, and receive post-visit details via video.
    • COVID Care Outreach Initiative: The program will help create a strong social support system for an estimated 2,000 elderly patients and 5,000 seniors in VFC’s extensive network of volunteers, as well as retired staff members and community partners. Staff and volunteers are mobilizing to identify older adults at high risk of social isolation, conduct wellness calls and video chats, arrange for grocery deliveries, and host virtual small group activities.

About The Jewish Community Foundation

Established in 1954, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles manages charitable assets of more than $1.4 billion (unaudited; Dec. 31, 2020) entrusted to it by over 1,300 families and ranks among the 10 largest Los Angeles foundations. It partners with donors to shape meaningful philanthropic strategies, magnify the impact of their giving, and build enduring charitable legacies. In 2020, The Foundation and its donors distributed $127 million to 2,700 nonprofits with programs that span the range of philanthropic giving. Over the past 12 years, it has distributed more than $1 billion to thousands of nonprofits across a diverse spectrum. To learn more, visit their website.

“Access to quality health care is one of the ultimate acts of social justice. Through its generous support, the Jewish Community Foundation has lifted our community in the full continuum of caring and healing.  The Foundation’s supportive partnership of our work throughout the pandemic has enabled MLKCH to expand our care to accommodate all the critically ill COVID patients who need us in South Los Angeles — and we’ve supported our innovative post-discharge COVID clinic, making sure our patients continue to see the nurses and doctors who cared for them as they continue their recovery at home.”

— Dyan Sublett, president, Martin Luther King Jr. Community Health Foundation

“Through the decades, we have always been thankful for the outstanding support from the Jewish Community Foundation. Never has The Foundation’s generosity been more valued than during the current unprecedented pandemic. On behalf of our residents, and the dedicated staff who care for them, I would like to express deep appreciation for this generous grant. This award ensures we will be able to continue providing the highest quality of medical care – including essential safety materials – to meet the challenges of COVID-19, while also purchasing communications devices such as iPads for the residents, to help maintain a sense of normalcy during these extraordinary times.”

— Dale Surowitz, CEO and president, Los Angeles Jewish Home

 

filmfest illustration by Gabrielle Marchan for 360 Magazine

Acting Success Through the Pandemic

Yuval David hasn’t let COVID-19 holt his career at all. The actor, producer and filmmaker, whose mission is to entertain, uplift and inspire has remained very busy and successful during the pandemic, and he wants to share his secrets for success with fellow actors.

Yuval currently has a number of projects in the works. He’s completed a highly anticipated documentary film, filmed and completed an episode of his award-winning man-on-the-street series, “One Actor Short,” and now he is virtually acting in a horror film. In addition, in his ‘free time’ he’s been the keynote speaker for very worthy advocacy causes supporting the LGBTQ and Jewish communities.

As an actor, Yuval has played major roles in studio and independent films, television, theatre, web, digital media, and voice overs. These include, “What Would You Do” (ABC), “Madam Secretary” (CBS), “The Michael J Fox Show” (NBC), “Beauty and the Beast” (Disney), in addition to productions with HBO, Comedy Central, DreamWorks, AFI, and theatres across the globe.

Even despite his personal COVID-19 illness last spring, Yuval continued to keep his career moving ahead by staying true to his creative process.

Here are Yuval’s tips for how to maintain success during the pandemic:

  1. Be tenacious. Don’t wait for your agents and managers to get work for you. While they are there to support your career with more work, you must be ambitious and seek opportunities for yourself every day.
  2. Respect, and be respected. Never let anyone disrespect you as an actor. The best directors, producers, and casting directors treat actors with respectfully. Don’t sacrifice your personal standards here, ever.
  3. Practice ‘identity politics’. You, as a person, are your own brand. Represent your identity authentically by creating and owning your own narrative and seeking out roles that complement who you are personally, as well as your acting skills. Pro Tip: Ask yourself questions such as “what triggers and activates you,” in order to develop your narrative.
  4. Take Yourself Seriously. Treat your creative career as a business and invest wisely along the way.
  5. Define your process. That is your brand at the end of the day.

Yuval’s exceptional work as a filmmaker has been screened at more than 60 film festivals and taken home nearly 50 awards from international film festivals, including The Big Apple Film Festival, New York International Film Festival, NewFilmmakers Film Festival, NYC Independent Film Festival, Hollywood Just4Shorts Film Festival, Top Shorts Film Festival, Vegas CineFest International Film Festival, IndieFest, Accolade Global, American Picture, Atlanta Film Festival, and Global Webisode Festival, just to name a few.

Film festival illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 Magazine

Planet Classroom Reflects on The Holocaust

In the new Planet Classroom podcast, young filmmakers reflect on the Holocaust and lessons to be learned about anti-semitism, racism and dehumanizing people of different races, religions and sexual identities.

The Holocaust survivors somehow got through one of the darkest periods in human history. Six million Jewish people were killed. GenZ are the last generation with the privilege to meet survivors. Young filmmakers Eva Suissa, Hank Schoen and Ian Kim joined Planet Classroom’s virtual host, Orb, to speak about lessons learned while making their film, “Hold the Sun in Your Hands: The Erika Jacoby Story”. The film, which won the Best Student Documentary at The American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the Cannes Film Festival, is now screening on the Planet Classroom Network YouTube Channel.

Filmmaker Eva Suissa struggles with how anyone could have let the Holocaust actually happen, and believes that only art has “the unique capability” to express this “traumatic and horrible” chapter in human history. Her Co-Director, Hank Schoen, says the rise of white supremacists and politicians who support them scares him because people “still haven’t learned the lessons about anti-semitism and racism, about scapegoating and dehumanizing people of different races, religions or sexual identities.” Schoen believes however that their film offers “hope” and “a belief in people’s ability to change and redeem themselves.”

About The Planet Classroom Network

The Planet Classroom Network, organized by CMRubinWorld, brings together musicians, dancers, video game creators, filmmakers, learning innovators and emerging technologists from all over the world to entertain, educate and engage youth, and to provide a rich cultural experience at a time when art and learning institutions everywhere are not accessible. Curators and content contributors include Global Nomads, Global Oneness, the Martha Graham Dance Company, Commffest, KIDS FIRST!, Dream a Dream Foundation, OddWorld Inhabitants, Psyon Games, Challenge 59, LXL Ideas, Alliance for Young Artists & Writers/Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, Creative Visions Foundation, Battery Dance, SIMA Classroom, Young Voices for the Planet, Bard Conservatory, Taking It Global, Materials for the Arts, Book Creator, XTalks, NFFTY, Young People’s Chorus of New York City, The International Forum for the Literature and Culture of Peace, Ryan Wong Classroom, The Global Search for Education, Voice America, Rocketium and Brandartica. Young people from around the world played a significant role in conceptualizing, creating, and producing the network’s vision and programming.

Visit the Planet Classroom Network YouTube channel

First Jewish American Heritage National Park Made Law

Yesterday marks a significant win in the decades-long effort to recognize and celebrate the philanthropic legacy of Julius Rosenwald and his impact on American democratic equality.  With the president’s signing of the Julius Rosenwald and Rosenwald Schools Act of 2020, a process begins that would lead to the establishment of the first National Park Service site to honor a Jewish American and celebrate the contribution of a Jewish American to our society, while preserving a selection of iconic Rosenwald Schools.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation first highlighted the threatened natureof the Rosenwald legacy by placing Rosenwald Schools on its 11 Most Endangered Historic Places List in 2002. The National Trust supported the preservation of Rosenwald Schools for many years, providing workshops, conferences, and technical assistance – including a publication: the Grassroots Guide to Preserving Rosenwald Schools.

The heightened awareness created by the endangered list designation and Rosenwald Schools initiative  ultimately led to a partnership between the National Trust, the Campaign to Create the Julius Rosenwald and Rosenwald Schools National Historical Park, and the National Parks Conservation Association, which together collaborated to achieve the successful enactment of the Julius Rosenwald and the Rosenwald Schools Act of 2020 (H.R.3250).  Within this effort the Trust’s African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund established a grant fund that has provided over $2.5 million in matching grants to advance Rosenwald School preservation, including planning, engineering studies, architectural plans, archaeology, research, and rehabilitation.

“Rosenwald Schools unearth a fascinating and true history of African American activism, achievement, and resilience in the United States,” said Brent Leggs, executive director of the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund.  “Their permanent preservation and interpretation broadens our understanding of the civil rights fight for equality in twentieth century America and the enduring power of interracial cooperation.”

BACKGROUND
Born in 1862 in Springfield, Illinois not far from the residence of then President Abraham Lincoln, Julius Rosenwald made his fortune as co-owner of Sears, Roebuck and Company. His own parents, however, had fled persecution in Germany in the late 1900s, and he began to channel his experience of hatred and bigotry into the creation of the Rosenwald School Fund, which had a lasting impact on education in America.  A prominent philanthropist, Rosenwald joined the board of esteemed black educator Booker T. Washington’s Tuskegee Institute in 1912.  Together, these two champions of social justice, one a former slave and the other a first-generation American refugee from persecution, used architecture and innovation to address the crisis in education facing Black families across the South.

Between 1917 and 1932, the Rosenwald School Fund, working in partnership with local Black communities, helped to finance the construction of more than 5300 state-of-the-art school buildings for community and academic use.  The schools served as a lifeline for students and educators whose progress was held back by the separate and unequal school system that ruled the Jim Crow South.  By 1928, one-third of the South’s rural African American school children and teachers were educated in Rosenwald Schools.  Notable former students include poet and activist Maya Angelou and the late Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), among many notable others.

“History shows us,” Leggs continued, “that countless ordinary citizens were the vanguards of collective action and human innovation.  These stories and landmarks serve as a testament to our progress, and they remind us that our work is not complete.”

Passage of the bill was a multi-year effort, but yesterday it was signed into law.  The legislation,  sponsored by Representative Danny Davis (D-IL) and Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL), directs the Department of the Interior to conduct a special resources study of sites associated with the life and legacy of Julius Rosenwald, with a special focus on Rosenwald Schools and determine how they might be designated as a new unit within the National Park System.  Once established, the Rosenwald park unit would become the first of over 420 National Park Service sites to honor the life and contributions of a Jewish American.

About the National Trust for Historic Preservation
The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places.  http://savingplaces.org | @savingplaces

About the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund
The African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund is a multi-year initiative of the National Trust for Historic Preservation in partnership with the Ford Foundation, the JPB Foundation, the Open Society Foundations and other partners, working to make an important and lasting contribution to our cultural landscape by elevating the stories and places of African American achievement and activism. Visit http://www.savingplaces.org/actionfund

Jewish Community Foundation of LA COVID-19 Relief

By Cassandra Yany

The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles reported Thursday that its donors have recommended grants of $5.4 million to COVID-19 response and relief programs. These grants come from donor advised funds and family support organizations that are administered by The Foundation.

The Foundation is the largest manager of charitable assets for Los Angeles Jewish philanthropists. According to the institution, Foundation donors have directed a total of 412 grants to 121 nonprofits to date for COVID-19 relief. 

Among the Los Angeles organizations to receive the largest grants from donors are the Mayor’s Fund, The Jewish Federation, Jewish Family Service and Food Forward. The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee was a significant national beneficiary, as well.

After the World Health Organization declared a pandemic in March, The Foundation created an online COVID-19 Response Hub, where donors could find vetted nonprofit organizations. These included “safety-net” programs that address food, housing and financial insecurity, as well as access to healthcare locally and in Israel. 

“In response to the sudden and most profound crisis of this generation, our family of donors has demonstrated its remarkable capacity for generosity and compassion,” said Foundation President and CEO Martin I. Schotland. “Our donors are selflessly drawing on their charitable funds established with The Foundation at a time it’s needed most – as demand for services surges and nonprofits experience sharp declines in giving.”

The Foundation previously announced that it was redirecting its own institutional grantmaking this year to support COVID-19 programs, approximating $8.5 million— the largest amount ever directed to a single cause. This brings the total amount of grants awarded in response to the pandemic by the institution and its donors to nearly $14 million. These institutional grants include $2.5 million that was directed during the summer to 22 nonprofits that serve Los Angeles, with the remaining $6 million dollars to be awarded later this fall.

About The Jewish Community Foundation

Established in 1954, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles manages charitable assets of more than $1 billion entrusted to it by over 1,300 families and ranks among the 10 largest Los Angeles foundations. It partners with donors to shape meaningful philanthropic strategies, magnify the impact of their giving, and build enduring charitable legacies. In 2019, The Foundation and its donors distributed more than $129 million in grants to 2,700 nonprofits with programs that span the range of philanthropic giving. Over the past 10 years, it has distributed nearly $1 billion to thousands of nonprofits across a diverse spectrum.

*Food Forward Photo Courtesy of Andrea Sipos

Ruth Bader Ginsburg illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

By Cassandra Yany

Ruth Bader Ginsburg died Friday after her long battle with cancer. The 87-year-old Supreme Court justice was a trailblazer who continuously worked to end gender discrimination and preserve our civil liberties. 

The Supreme Court announced Friday that Ginsburg passed away at her Washington D.C. home due to complications from metastatic pancreatic cancer. She had previously overcome lung, liver and colon cancer. In July, she revealed that the cancer had returned, but that she would continue to serve on the Supreme Court.

Ginsburg’s revolutionary career started when she graduated at the top of her class from Cornell University, earning a Bachelor’s degree in government. Two years later, she attended Harvard Law School with her husband, Martin Ginsburg. There, she was one of only nine women in her class of over 500 students, according to NPR.

During their time at Harvard, Martin was diagnosed with testicular cancer, so Ruth would take notes for the two of them and help him with his work, all while trying to juggle being a new mom. When Martin landed a job at a firm in New York, the family packed up and Ruth finished her education at Columbia University. 

Once Ginsburg finished school, she began to experience the discrimination that came with being a female lawyer. According to TIME, she was unable to secure a position at a premier law firm or one of the Supreme Court clerkships, regardless of the fact that she had been the first students to serve on both the Harvard and Columbia Law reviews, and graduated at the top of her class. These jobs were instead easily given to males who had ranked lower than her in school. This led her to work a lower court clerkship and teach at the Rutgers Law Newark campus.

At Rutgers, she co-founded the Women’s Rights Law Reporter. While she was there, she learned that she wasn’t earning the same wage as one of her male counterparts. The dean attributed this pay disparity to the fact that the male professor had a family to support, while Ginsburg’s husband already had a good-paying job. This type of discrimination caused her to hide her second pregnancy.

After her son was born, Ginsburg began teaching at Columbia, becoming the university’s first tenured female professor. There, she also co-authored the first case book on discrimination law. She later went on to co-found the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union in 1972.

During her work as a lawyer, Ginsburg established that equal protection under the law, as stated in the 14th Amendment, should extend to gender. She won five out of the six cases that she argued before the Supreme Court on gender discrimination. She often chose to find this prejudice in cases where males were the plaintiffs being discriminated against, as seen in the 2018 film On the Basis of Sex. 

In 1980, Jimmy Carter appointed Ginsburg as a judge in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. She became the second woman on the Supreme Court, and the first Jewish justice since 1969 when she was appointed by Bill Clinton in 1993. During her time, she eliminated almost 200 laws that discriminated against women. 

Ginsburg also fought for the rights of immigrants, the mentally ill, and members of the LGBTQ+ community. She approved gay marriage in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, stating that if you can’t deny a 70-year-old couple the right to marriage due to their inability to procreate, you can’t deny a gay couple of that right either.

Ginsburg supported women’s reproductive rights, fighting for the coverage of contraceptives despite anyone’s religious beliefs. At the time of Roe v. Wade, she litigated a case where a pregnant Air Force captain was told she would have to have an abortion in order to return to her job. She noted the hypocrisy present in this case— that the U.S. government was encouraging abortion – and found that it served as a clear example of why women should have the right to make their own life decisions.

Ginsburg’s passing gives Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Trump the ability to appoint a new justice, despite her dying wish to not be replaced until after a new president is elected. This opportunity could make the Supreme Court more right-leaning and jeopardize cases like Roe v. Wade that are at the forefront of equal rights movements. 

This comes four years after McConnell’s 11-month Republican blockade of President Obama’s nominee for the court, where he argued “that a president shouldn’t be able to seat a new justice in the final year of their term.” Obama noted this in a statement released early Saturday, where he said “A basic principle of law— and of everyday fairness— is that we apply rules with consistency, and not based on what’s convenient or advantageous in the moment.”

After the news broke Friday night of Ginsburg’s death, hundreds of people gathered outside the Supreme Court to pay tribute and create a memorial on the building’s steps. Many signs have since been left outside of the court honoring her legacy.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday morning that there will be a statue built in Ginsburg’s hometown of Brooklyn to “serve as a physical reminder of her many contributions to the America we know today…”

Trump issued a proclamation Saturday ordering flags to be flown at half-staff until sunset on the day of interment “As a mark of respect for Ruth Bader Ginsburg…”

RBG will be dearly missed by Americans on both sides of the aisle. We have lost a longtime champion of equal rights, but her legacy will never be forgotten.

Challenger: The Final Flight

By Cassandra Yany

On Wednesday, Netflix released “Challenger: The Final Flight,” a four-episode docuseries about the tragic explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger.

The doc was directed by Daniel Junge and Steven Leckart, and executive produced by JJ Abrams and Glenn Zipper. It provides a complete look at the events leading up to the takeoff and includes interviews with family members of the seven astronauts who died in the explosion.

According to CNN, the series uses archival footage and home videos, along with interviews from officials and crew members to shed light on the poor decision-making and systemic failures that led up to the disaster, as well as the aftermath that followed.

Challenger took off from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral on January 28, 1986. Just 73 seconds after it launched, the shuttle began breaking apart, due to malfunctioning O-rings in the rocket boosters, which hardened as the temperature decreased. NASA had reportedly known about this damaged hardware for months prior, according to Vanity Fair.

The purpose of mission STS-51-L was to deploy a satellite to study the approaching Halley’s Comet, but it had been delayed multiple times because of technical difficulties.

The crew was one of NASA’s most diverse to date, as reported by the New York Post. One of the astronauts was a teacher, so school children across the country watched in class as the shuttle went down, engulfed by a huge, ominous cloud of smoke. The explosion devastated the nation, especially all of the young children who had watched it live.

Nearly thirty-five years later, we remember the passengers who lost their lives on that dreadful day:

Christa McAuliffe

Christa McAuliffe was a teacher at Concord High School in New Hampshire who learned of the Teacher in Space Project— NASA’s plan to fly an educator into space. NASA had hoped that this would help increase public interest in the space shuttle program. 

Along with 11,000 others, McAuliffe applied in 1984 to be the first teacher to communicate with students from space. She was chosen as one of two finalists from New Hampshire, then was selected to be part of the STS-51-L crew by a Review Panel in Washington, D.C.

McAuliffe took a year off from teaching to train for the space shuttle mission. While in orbit, she was planning to conduct experiments in chromatography, hydroponics, magnetism and Newton’s laws. She also would have taught two 15-minute classes— one providing a tour of the spacecraft, the other about the benefits of space travel— which would have been broadcasted to students on closed-circuit TV. 

The nationwide excitement of having McAuliffe in space was a significant reason why the explosion had such a lasting impact on the country, and was especially upsetting for young students who watched the takeoff or extensive coverage in class. 

Gregory Jarvis

Gregory Jarvis was an engineer for Hughes Aircraft who served as Payload Specialist 2 on Challenger. In 1984, he was one of two employees from the company that were selected for the Space Shuttle program. 

Jarvis was originally supposed to make his shuttle flight in April 1985, but was rescheduled to early January 1986, then rescheduled again, landing him a spot on the STS-51-L crew. From space, he planned to conduct experiments on the effects of weightlessness on fluids. 

Dick Scobee

Dick Scobee earned his pilot wings in 1966 and served as a combat aviator in the Vietnam War, for which he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal.

After the war, Scobee graduated from the USAF Aerospace Research Pilot School and became an Air Force test pilot. He was the commander on Challenger and died a lieutenant colonel.

Judith Resnik

After graduating from Carnegie Mellon, Judith Resnik worked as a design engineer in missile and radar projects at RCA (Radio Corporation of America). There, she performed circuit design for the missile and surface radar division. She later developed electronics and software for NASA’s sounding rocket and telemetry systems programs. 

Resnik qualified as a professional aircraft pilot in 1977 and was recruited into the NASA Astronaut Corps in 1978. She was one of six women selected for the program out of 8,000 applicants. At NASA, and piloted the Northrop T-38 Talon, trained intensely, conducted research, and developed different systems and software. 

Resnik served as a mission specialist on the maiden voyage of Discovery in 1984 for her first space flight from August to September. During this flight, she operated a shuttle’s robotic arm (which she created), and deployed and conducted experiments on a solar array wing to determine if there was a way to generate additional electric power during missions. She was the second American woman in space and the first Jewish woman in space. 

Resnik was a mission specialist on Challenger. After the explosion, further examination of the cockpit shows that her Personal Egress Air Pack was activated, indicating that she may have been alive after the cockpit separated from the vehicle to activate it. Her body was the first to be recovered from the crash by Navy divers. 

Ellison Onizuka

Ellison Onizuka served as a flight test engineer and test pilot for the U.S. Air Force in the early 1970s. After attending the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School from 1974 to 1975, he became a squadron flight test engineer there and worked as a manager for engineering support in the training resources division. 

In 1978, Onizuka was selected for the astronaut program and later worked in the experimentation team, orbiter test team, and launch support screw for the STS-1 and STS-2. At NASA he also worked on the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory test and revision software team. 

Onizzuka’s first space mission was one year before the Challenger explosion, on the mission STS-51-C on the shuttle Discovery. This was the first space shuttle mission for the Department of Defense, and he became the first Asian American to reach space. 

Onizuka was a mission specialist aboard Challenger. Similar to Resnik, it is speculated that he could have been alive when the cockpit separated from the vehicle because his Personal Egress Air Pack was also activated. When he died, he held the position of lieutenant colonel, but was later promoted to the rank of colonel. 

Ronald McNair

Ronald McNair received his Ph.D. in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1976 and became nationally recognized for his work in laser physics. After graduation, he worked as a staff physicist at the Hugh Research Lab in Malibu, CA. 

McNair was one of the ten thousand applicants to be selected in 1978 for the NASA astronaut program. He became the second African American astronaut in 1984 when he flew as a mission specialist for STS-41-B on Challenger from Feb. 3-11. 

McNair later served as a mission specialist for STS-51-L. During this flight, he had planned to record the saxophone solo for a song he had worked on with composer Jean-Michel Jarre for his upcoming album Rendez-Vous. This would have been the first original piece of music to be recorded in space. 

McNair was also supposed to participate in Jarre’s Rendez-Vous Houston concert through a live feed from Challenger. To honor McNair, Jarre dedicated the last song on the album to him and subtitled it “Ron’s Piece.”

Michael J. Smith

Michael J. Smith served in the Vietnam War, then attended U.S. naval Test Pilot School. After graduation, he was assigned to the Strike Aircraft Test Directorate at NAS Patuxent River in Maryland, where he worked on the A-6E TRAM and Cruise missile guidance systems. In 1976, later returned to NTPS for 18 months as an instructor. 

Smith was selected for the astronaut program in May 1980, in which he served as a commander in the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory, the Deputy Chief of Aircraft Operations, the Technical Assistant to the Director, and the Flights Operations Directorate. 

Smith was the pilot for Challenger, and was set to pilot another mission the following fall. His voice was the last heard on the flight deck tape recorder with his final words being “Uh oh.”

All seven passengers were awarded with the Congressional Space Medal of Honor in 2004.

Israel – A Nation

An Army Like No Other How the Israel Defense Force Made a Nation

By Haim Bresheeth-Zabner

“It is said that Israel is an army with a state. This book validates fully this assumption. With a clear and accessible style and with illuminating of many hidden chapters in Israel’s history, Bresheeth exposes fully the militarization of the Jewish State. The book unpacks successfully the military grip of the IDF on every aspect of life in Israel and Palestine, from crucial decisions of going to war to the formulation of the policies towards the Palestinians. Even if you are a knowledgeable reader on the topic, this book will be an essential contribution to your library.”

Ilan Pappe, author of 10 Myths About Israel

“An original and a remarkable interpretation of the wide-ranging impact of the military on Israeli society and one of the most insightful and challenging works on Israeli society from 1948 to our days. His book traces the ways in which military power acquired legitimacy in civilian society and how the use of organized violence became an acceptable solution to all conflicts in Arab-Israeli history. Anyone interested in understanding the Middle East should read this book.”

Shlomo Sand, author of The Invention of the Jewish People

“Bresheeth—one of the most important anti-colonial intellectuals of our era—takes the Israeli army as an entry point to undertake a deep analysis of Jewish-Israeli society. The original contribution of the book lies in its ambitions and scope: Bresheeth brilliantly describes the way an army whose ethos is rooted in Jewish historical trauma, has grown to become the occupation arm of Zionism, the motor of its settler-colonial domination and the basis of its politics of separation.”

Eyal Weizman, author of Hollow Land

Hardback / $29.95 / August 25, 2020 / 9781788737845

A history of the IDF that argues that Israel is a nation formed by its army.

The Israeli army, officially named the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), was established in 1948 by David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, who believed that “the whole nation is the army.” In his mind, the IDF was to be an army like no other. It was the instrument that might transform a diverse population into a new people. Since the foundation of Israel, therefore, the IDF has been the largest, richest and most influential institution in Israel’s Jewish society and is the nursery of its social, economic and political ruling class.

In this fascinating history, Bresheeth-Zabner charts the evolution of the IDF from the Nakba to wars in Egypt, Lebanon, Iraq and the continued assaults upon Gaza, and shows that the state of Israel has been formed out of its wars. He also gives an account of his own experiences as a young conscript during the 1967 war.

He argues that the army is embedded in all aspects of daily life and identity and that we should not merely see it as a fighting force enjoying an international reputation, but as the central ideological, political and financial institution of Israeli society. As a consequence, we have to reconsider our assumptions on what any kind of peace might look like

Professor Haim Bresheeth-Zabner is a Filmmaker, Photographer and a Film Studies Scholar, and 2nd Researcher at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). He is the editor of The Gulf War and the New World Order (with Nira Yuval-Davis), and the author of The Holocaust for Beginners (with Stuart Hood). His films include the widely shown State of Danger (1989, BBC2)—a documentary on the first Palestinian Intifada—and London is Burning, after the 2011 riots. He has also written in the Israeli Ha’aretz and the Cairo-based Al-Ahram Weekly.

Claude Lévi-Strauss, Emmanuelle Loyer, 360 MAGAZINE

Claude Lévi-Strauss

Academic, writer, figure of melancholy, aesthete – Claude Lévi-Strauss (1908-2009) not only transformed his academic discipline, he also profoundly changed the way that we view ourselves and the world around us.

In this award-winning biography, historian Emmanuelle Loyer recounts Lévi-Strauss’s childhood in an assimilated Jewish household, his promising student years as well as his first forays into political and intellectual movements. As a young professor in 1935 Lévi-Strauss left Paris for São Paulo to teach sociology. His rugged expeditions into the Brazilian hinterland, where he discovered the Amerindian Other, made him into ananthropologist. The racial laws of the Vichy regime would force him to leave France yetagain — this time for the US in 1941, where he became Professor Claude L. Strauss, toavoid confusion with the jeans manufacturer.

His return to France, after the war, ushered in the period during which he produced his greatest works: several decades of intense labour in which Lévi-Strauss reinvented anthropology, establishing it as a discipline that offered a new view on the world. In 1955, Tristes Tropiques offered indisputable proof of this the world over. During those years, Lévi-Strauss became something of a national monument, a celebrity intellectual in France. But he always claimed his perspective was a “view from afar,” enabling him to deliver incisive and subversive diagnoses of our waning modernity.

Loyer’s outstanding biography tells the story of a true intellectual adventurer whose unforgettable voice invites us to rethink questions of the human and the meaning of progress. Lévi-Strauss was less of a modern than he was our own great and disquieted contemporary.



The Author: 

Emmanuelle Loyer
 is Professor of Contemporary History at Sciences-Po, Paris. Her biography of Lévi-Strauss was awarded the Prix Femina essai in 2015.

Zachary Balber: Tamim

Miami Revs Up for Art Basel!

Nov. 20th through March of 2020

The Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU, in South Beach, at 301 Washington Avenue. 

Zachary Balber uses portrait photography to uncover the camouflaged identity of some of Judaism’s most unconventional Jews, in his series Tamim.

The photographer, a rising star in Miami’s art scene who is fast gaining national acclaim, is Jewish himself and connected strongly with the men he photographed. Through this series, he re-connected with his own heritage.

This is the first time these photographs have been exhibited in full color, some are new and have never been shown.

Some of the monumental images were printed as large as possible, to show the subjects at two or three times their human scale.

Since many of these men have serious tattoos, this creates the effect of transforming a portrait into a landscape experience for the viewer ‒ the markings across their flesh forge an explicit landscape. 

MORE ABOUT THE ARTIST ZACHARY BALBER:

Zachary Balber was born in Pittsburgh in 1983 and moved to Miami at the age of thirteen, where he received his first camera. Years later, while attending New World School of the Arts, he was hired to assist the fashion photographer Bruce Webber, assisting Webber in his campaigns for Abercrombie and Fitch, Vera Wang, and Vanity Fair Magazine.

He attended New World School of the Arts, graduating Summa Cum Laude, majoring in creative photography. His work has been exhibited at: Art Basel, The Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art; The American Jewish University (LA); The Frost Art Museum FIU; MOCA NOMI; FAU Museum OCCA; (CIFO) Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation; Locust Projects; Spinello Gallery; Fredric Snitzer Gallery; The Armory; Art Hong Kong; Primary Projects, and Center for Fine Art Photography (CO); Hinge Gallery (Chicago); among many others. www.gingerphotoinc.com.