Metro Briefs March 10

Metro Briefs March 10

Drew BarkleyPhoto provided by Temple Sinai
Drew BarkleyPhoto provided by Temple Sinai

Temple Sinai has hired Drew Barkley as its new executive director. He comes to Temple Sinai from the North Shore Congregation Israel, which has 1,400 families outside of Chicago.

Barkley earned his Fellow in Temple Administration through the National Association for Temple Administration, where he is a former national board member.

Barkley and his wife Jan Barkley look forward to exploring Pittsburgh together.

The Parkway Jewish Center of Monroeville and the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Pittsburgh are pleased to acknowledge the creation of the Susan R. Klein Fund for Israel Scholarships thanks to the pre-existing scholarship distributed by Larry Klein, a former member of the Parkway Jewish Center of Monroeville, to honor his late daughter Susan R. Klein. Each year, after an anonymous essay and resume evaluation, a teen from the congregation was awarded a $1,500 scholarship toward a trip to Israel.

Trip expenses increased over the years, resulting in the request of additional donations from the congregation. The president of the congregation, Ira Mazer, contacted the Jewish Community Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh to help aid and continue the scholarship, resulting in the creation of the Susan R. Klein Fund, which will support the Israel Scholarship program of the Federation. This scholarship program makes Israel experiences more affordable for local teens.

Combining non-need-based and need-based Israel scholarships with savings and matching dollars from the Passport to Israel program can leverage up to $7,150 per applicant toward an eligible Israel experience. The deadline to apply for these scholarships is April 7. Visit for more information about scholarships.

For more information about the Susan R. Klein Fund, contact the Jewish Community Foundation at 412-992-5216.

Beth Shalom Adult Education presents Helen Wilson for part three of its series about Squirrel Hill, “Squirrel Hill: A Neighborhood History,” on Thursday, March 16 at 7:30 p.m. As Beth Shalom celebrates its centennial year, it is revisiting the history of Squirrel Hill where Beth Shalom and the Jewish community grew.

Wilson is one of the two vice-presidents of the Squirrel Hill Historical Society. She has been researching and writing about Squirrel Hill history since she retired from teaching in the Pittsburgh Public Schools 11 years ago. Her articles have been published in Squirrel Hill Magazine, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Historic Gardens Review, a magazine published in London. She is co-author of two books, “Pittsburgh’s Bridges,” with her son Todd, which came out in 2015, and “Squirrel Hill — A Neighborhood History,” which will be released by The History Press in June.

The program is free and open to the community.

A Jewish Community Vigil in support of immigrants and refugees will be held at the Gary and Nancy Tuckfelt Keeping Tabs: A Holocaust Sculpture, on the grounds of Community Day School on Saturday, March 18 from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. at 6424 Forward Ave. This event, which will include a musical, communitywide Havdalah service, will raise awareness of the struggles of refugees and undocumented immigrants.

Congregation Dor Hadash and the University of Pittsburgh Jewish Studies Program invite the community to a lecture by Dennis B. Klein titled “Did Holocaust Survivors Forgive?” on Sunday, March 19 at 10 a.m. Klein is the director of Kean University’s Jewish Studies Program and the director of the Master of Arts in Holocaust and Genocide Studies Program. He is author or editor of four books, including “Hidden History of the Kovno Ghetto” and “The Genocidal Mind.” He is completing a study of survivors’ memoirs called “The Second Liberation: Moral Survival After Atrocity. Klein is also the founding editor-in-chief of “Dimensions: A Journal of Holocaust Studies” and founding director of the Anti-Defamation League’s Braun Center for Holocaust Studies. His current work on post-atrocity testimonies and forgiveness theory is anthologized in “Memory, Narrative, and Forgiveness,” the 10th anniversary Truth and Reconciliation Commission conference volume.

Dor Hadash is located at 5898 Wilkins Ave. at the corner of Shady Avenue.

RSVPs are required. Contact or leave a message at 412-422-5158.

Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater will present the premiere of “Findings,” a new play by Arlene Weiner, through March 19 at 937 Liberty Ave. Directed by Lisa Ann Goldsmith, “Findings” is the first of three new plays PPTCo is presenting this season. Weiner is a poet whose poems have appeared in journals and anthologies, including “Along These Rivers,” co-edited by Chronicle blogger, Judith Robinson. Visit for more information.

Congregation Emanu-El Israel’s next program in the Festival of the Jewish Arts series will be held on Sunday, March 19 at 2 p.m. The community is invited to a presentation on Jewish foods from around the world by cookbook author and food educator Tina Wasserman at 222 North Main St. in Greensburg. Wasserman is the author of “Entrée to Judaism” and “Entrée to Judaism for Families” and is a food editor/writer for In 1994, she was elected to Les Dames D’Escoffier, an international society that honors select women in the food and beverage industry.

The presentation consists of a lecture followed by a “nosh & nibble” of several different types of Jewish foods. The program is free and open to the public and is funded in part by the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh.

Reservations, which are required, can be made at 724-834-0506.

South Hills PJ Library Pittsburgh and Temple Emanuel of South Hills present “Give Back South Hills: A Monthly Mitzvah Program for Children in Grades 2-6” on Sunday, March 19 at noon.

Children will assemble breakfast bags for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Pittsburgh.

For questions and to sign up, contact

The Men’s Philanthropy Division of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh will present “Balancing Jewish Faith with Political Life” as the first event in its “Conversations that Count” engagement program, which is open to registered guests.

This panel discussion will explore how public officials’ Jewish faith and culture inform their decisions that have broader impact on the entire community.

Jewish Community Foundation Scholar Rabbi Danny Schiff will lead a panel discussion on Wednesday, March 29 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at The Tower at PNC Plaza, 300 Fifth Ave., 16th floor. The panel will also feature Rep. Dan Frankel, Councilman Dan Gilman and Councilman Corey O’Connor.

Contact Joel Schwarz at 412-992-5218 for more information.