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Honors for four young leaders helping Jewish Chicago thrive

Two volunteers, two professionals will be recognized for their many contributions

Young Leadership Honorees 2019 image
Clockwise, from top left: Stacey Dembo, Joshua Liss, Rabbi Michelle Stern and Anna Hartman

Four outstanding young leaders will be recognized for their service to Chicago's Jewish community at the Jewish Federation's Annual Meeting Sept. 17.

During the 10 a.m. Community Forum, Anna Hartman and Rabbi Michelle Stern, BCC, will receive the 32nd annual Samuel A. Goldsmith Young Professional Award, honoring Jewish professionals whose exemplary performance at a Jewish agency in the Chicago area has benefited the entire Jewish community.

  • Hartman is Director of Early Childhood Excellence at the Jewish United Fund and also is Director of the Paradigm Project, a national network that nurtures emerging leaders in Jewish early childhood education. She received the Covenant Foundation's inaugural Pomegranate Prize, honoring rising leaders in Jewish education, and has participated in two study tours of the renowned municipal early childhood centers in Reggio Emilia, Italy.
  • Stern is the Rabbi and Chaplain for CJE SeniorLife, guiding religious life for clients and residents in CJE's skilled nursing, assisted living, and memory care centers. She accompanies residents and their families through the aging process, provides pastoral and spiritual care, teaches classes on Jewish topics, and leads worship.

Following that presentation, Stacey Dembo and Joshua R. Liss will receive the Davis, Gidwitz & Glasser Young Leadership Award, presented to volunteers 40 and under who have demonstrated exemplary dedication and have made significant contributions to Chicago's Jewish community.

  • Dembo, a lawyer, has represented children and adults with disabilities in Social Security-related claims and litigation for more than a decade. Years ago, she began volunteering at JUF's Community Legal Services Clinic, providing pro bono representation to immigrants, people with disabilities, and Holocaust survivors. For the past five years, she served as the clinic's Chair, and now is its Ex-Officio. She also is on the Encompass Advisory Council, supporting that program's work to build out Jewish community-based services for adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities, and the Ben Gurion Society Advisory Council.
  • Liss, who chairs the Metro Chicago Hillel Board, has been deeply engaged in Jewish life in Chicago and nationally since moving here from Detroit in 2004. He served on JUF's Young Leadership Division Board from 2007 to 2011 and held various leadership positions, including WYLD Annual Campaign Event Chair. Then he held a variety of leadership posts in the Jewish Federations of North America's National Young Leadership Cabinet, including Chair of the National Summer Mission to Israel and Cabinet Retreat Vice Chair. He also served on JUF's Missions and Health & Human Services committees.

For more information or to register, visit here .

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