As a community committed to Jewish living, Temple Beth-El benefits from scores of engaged donors, volunteers and service participants. Areas such as social action, ritual practice, fundraising, adult education, outreach and more rely directly on the immense efforts of lay leadership. Our synagogue thrives due to the immense philanthropy of our membership. Recognizing the diverse ways to give in our community is an important part of coming together in support of our mission. All those who have made the Temple a part of their mission deserve recognition. To recognize transformative contributions made to the Temple has true meaning and strengthens us. It acknowledges what everyone already knows—we cannot achieve our mission without the generosity of our members.

In 2018, we announced the inception of four volunteer awards: Young Leadership Award, Heavy Lifter Volunteer Award, Jewish Inspiration Award and Lifetime of Philanthropy Award. Each award isn’t given annually, but rather as appropriate. Below are the award definitions.

Lifetime of Philanthropy Award: This recognition would go to an individual, couple or family whose lifetime of giving has been transformative to Temple Beth-El. Eligible honorees are ages 55 or older. The honoree has displayed ongoing devotion and dedication to Temple Beth-El through heartfelt financial support. This year’s honorees are Suzanne & Howard Bearman.

Young Leadership Award: The recognition of young leaders who step forward to give time and energy to Temple Beth-El is vital to its continuity. This award would be given to an individual or couple whose commitment to the people or programs of our synagogue has a broad impact within our community. This honoree ensures our future is strong, actively contributing in areas such as fundraising, programs, outreach or social action. This year’s honorees are Maurine Halpern and Julia Goldberg.

Jewish Inspiration Award: Recognizing individuals whose commitment ensures the continuation of Jewish learning and practice, this award would be given to an individual or group who supports Jewish ritual practice, Jewish service to the community or Jewish education. This honoree exemplifies Tikkun Olam, playing a significant role in ritual services, Minyan, Shabbat, outreach or adult education. This year’s honorees are Rebecca Rothman and Joshua Richman.

Heavy Lifter Volunteer Award: Recognizing an outstanding volunteer whose commitment of time and energy helps get things done at our synagogue, this award would go to an individual who is ready to roll up his or her sleeves to do good at our Temple. He or she is willing to help, no matter the project, ensuring the day-to-day operations of the Temple flow smoothly. This year’s honoree is Bernard Axel.