Sybil Lieberman, who has served in numerous capacities at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh over a 29-year tenure, will retire at the end of August. Known for her generosity, warmth and diverse abilities, Lieberman helped the JCC usher in an era of expansion that saw the implementation of new and refurbished programs to wider audiences.
Lieberman has served as the director of AgeWell at the JCC for the past 10 years, a program that offers exercise classes, meals and other collaborative experiences to thousands of senior citizens throughout the county. Previously, she worked in the fitness center, the JCC’s early childhood programs and its theater program.
She was a mainstay at the JCC and in the wider Jewish community throughout that time, present for milestones such as the erection of the South Hills branch of the JCC in the late 1990s.
“I watched every brick of that building go up,” she said.
Colleagues praised Lieberman’s service to the community, specifically her ability to succeed in various roles.
“Sybil has worked in every aspect of the agency throughout her tenure,” Alexis Winsten Mancuso, assistant executive director of the JCC, said in a statement. “She has always done so with kindness, sincerity and a level of commitment that is unsurpassed.”
AgeWell at the JCC is a subsidiary of Agewell Pittsburgh, a program of the JCC, the Jewish Association on Aging and Jewish Family and Community Services. AgeWell Pittsburgh has won national recognition for the successful collaborative model it has built, receiving a $150,000 grant in 2017.
More than 20 percent of participants in AgeWell at the JCC fall below the national poverty line, according to the program’s 2016 annual report. Initiatives such as J Cafe — a daily eatery in Levinson Hall providing nutritious meals to more than 100 seniors for a nonmandatory suggested amount — have sought to relieve economic pressure while facilitating conversation between lunch-goers.
“I have a great staff,” Lieberman said. “I feel very lucky to be able to do a job where I feel like I am helping people every day.”
Lieberman plans to move to Florida with her husband, Don Levine, after she steps down from her position.
“I’m going to miss the JCC and the people I work with,” she said. “I feel proud of what I’ve accomplished.” PJC