JNF to honor 16 at banquet | Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle

JNF to honor 16 at banquet

          Sixteen community leaders will be honored on Wednesday, Sept. 2, at the Jewish National Fund (JNF) Annual Tribute Banquet.

          Ellyn and Ellis Bromberg, Debbie and Howard Callif, Julie Feldman, Amanda and Hazzan Jeremy Stein, and Dee and Ken Stein will be recognized for their commitment to Jewish causes and support of JNF’s work in developing the land of Israel.

          Gwen Rivkin, of blessed memory, and her husband, JNF Wisconsin Director Sidney Rivkin, will be given a special honor.

          Marquette University’s Jewish Student Union — represented by Michaela Bear, Anna Goldstein, Jnana Konjit, Seth Haines and Isaac Vineburg — will be recognized with the JNF Next Generation Leadership Award. (See the June 2015 Chronicle for more information about the Marquette JSU.)


Ellyn and Ellis Bromberg

          Ellyn “Mel” Bromberg owns WaterSHED International. She also serves on the United Nations’ Commission for Sustainable Development’s Education Caucus and is the educational team and sustainability leader for Rotary International’s Water and Sanitation Action Group.

          She sits on the executive committee and is international chair of the annual United States Sustainability Summit. She has served as a delegate and planner for national and international water conferences.

          In 2009, Ellyn worked in Aba, Nigeria, to provide water and sanitation curricula for 12 schools. She has engaged learners from kindergarten to age 90 on water issues through writing monographs, grants and proposals; contributing to books; and teaching at universities.

          Ellis Bromberg was general manager of Milwaukee Public Television (MPTV) from 2000-2015. He served as dean of media and creative arts at Milwaukee Area Technical College from 2008-2010.

          He served two terms on the national board of the Association of Public Television Stations from 2009-2015, and chaired its regulatory committee. He was a member of the Educational Communications Board, Wisconsin Broadcasters Association board, and the executive committees of public television’s University Licensee Association and Digital Convergence Alliance.

          He has served on the executive committee of the Milwaukee Education Partnership, as vice-chair of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation and chair of its Jewish Community Relations Council, and as past president of Hillel Milwaukee. In 2007, he received the Saul Sorrin Leadership Award.


Debbie and Howard Callif

          Debbie is an occupational therapist specializing in pelvic floor therapy. She is the co-owner of the Continence and Pelvic Wellness Clinic in Mequon.

          She is the treasurer of the Biofeedback Certification International Alliance. Debbie is also chair of their pelvic muscle dysfunction task force, and the chair of the fundraising committee for the International Pelvic Pain Society.

          Howard is an actuary. He has developed software to help underwriters classify risks. He mentors several actuarial students, and is active with the Society of Actuaries Technology Section. 

          Together, they are affiliated with several synagogues throughout Milwaukee. They are frequent visitors at the Milwaukee Jewish Home and Care Center.


Julie Feldman

          Feldman owns Feldman Media LLC, an award-winning video production company in Milwaukee.

          Before becoming an entrepreneur, she was a national correspondent for “Health Corner,” a weekly series on Lifetime Television. She was an anchor and reporter at WITI-TV for two decades. She helped create and host television campaigns to promote breast cancer awareness and advocate for the adoption of special needs children.

          She is a member of the marketing committee for the Jewish Home and Care Center Foundation, sits on the board of visitors at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication and is a former board member and current member of the promotions committee of Women for MACC.


Amanda Ruppenthal Stein and Hazzan Jeremy Stein

          Ruppenthal Stein is currently a third year Ph.D. student in musicology at Northwestern University, focusing on Jewish identity in Western art music. She received a 2015 Graduate Research Grant from Northwestern and will travel to Jerusalem to conduct research at the National Library of Israel.

          She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she earned degrees in clarinet performance and music history. She recently gave a paper on Reform Jewish synagogue music at the Midwest Graduate Music Consortium.

          She has been a member of Congregation Beth Israel Ner Tamid since 2008 and has served on planning committees for cantorial concerts and Shabbat programs. Since 2009, she has served as the Day School Grant Allocation Coordinator for the Coalition for Jewish Learning, the education program of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation, where she oversees the Bader Philanthropies Day School Grant.

          Hazzan Jeremy Stein became cantor of CBINT in 2009. A native of Pawtucket, R.I., Stein studied flute and arranging at Berklee College of Music in Boston.

          In 2009, Stein graduated from the H. L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish Music at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He was awarded the Max and Sol Feld Prize in composition two consecutive years.

          His performances have taken him to such stages as Carnegie Hall and the Original House of Blues in Boston. He produces an annual concert series at CBINT.

          He recently completed a Masters of Jewish Education degree through the Davidson School at the Jewish Theological Seminary.

          He currently serves on the executive council of the Cantors Assembly. He is a regular volunteer at the Milwaukee Jewish Home and Care Center.


Dee and Ken Stein

          Dee was a leader in the Beth El Ner Tamid Synagogue Sisterhood and later a member of the Sisterhoods at Congregation Shalom and Temple Menorah, as well as a volunteer for the Milwaukee Jewish Federation.

          She has volunteered for the Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center’s Koach program and for the Jewish Home and Care Center, and became a docent for the Jewish Museum Milwaukee. She also volunteers at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, the Skylight Theater and the United Performing Arts Center.

          Ken’s Jewish community service began with BBYO. He became Aleph Godol of Solomon AZA, after which he was the Wisconsin Region AZA Community Service chairman and co-chair of a Wisconsin Region BBYO Winter Convention.

          He served in the U.S. Army and graduated from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He worked at and eventually became owner of Stein’s Inc., a well-known pawn shop and jewelry store.

          After retiring in 2009, he increased his volunteer activities, focusing on the JCC — where he is a board vice president and volunteer coordinator of the Senior Men’s Club — the JHCC, and the Milwaukee Jewish Federation’s Jewish Museum Milwaukee and JCRC.

          He is a member and leader in B’nai B’rith, CBINT, Congregation Shalom and Temple Menorah; and was Master of the Harmony/Milwaukee Masonic Lodge.

          He is a past recipient of the Pasch Award for Meritorious Service from Congregation Shalom, the Joe E. Smith Distinguished Volunteer Award from the JCC and a volunteer award from the JHCC.

          The banquet will take place at the Wisconsin Club (formerly Brynwood Country Club), 6200 W. Good Hope Rd. Cocktails will be at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m. The event is chaired by Susan Carneol, a 2013 honoree.

          Tickets are $90 per person and contribution opportunities are available. Register at jnf.org/wibanquet or call 414-963-8733. For more information, contact Sidney Rivkin at srivkin@jnf.org.