Alumni Newsletter » Alumni Newsletter 2016

Alumni Newsletter 2016



Hello from Schechter Queens!

On behalf of the Solomon Schechter School of Queens welcome to 2016!

Whether you are a recent graduate, or one from a few decades ago, we hope you will remain a prideful member of SSSQ’s alumni community. Our alumni involvement is critical to the school's continued success not only because you are positive representatives of the school, but also because of the wonderful support our alumni bring to SSSQ. We are extremely proud of you and all you are doing as you continue on your paths through life mindful and celebrating the education and grounding you received as our students.

SSSQ alumni link the past with the future, and we welcome your involvement with the school and continued connection. Here are some ways to ensure you remain part of our family:

- attend reunions and alumni events
- share what’s going on in your life for the monthly news e-mail
- e-mail your Class Note for the Newsletter (family pictures too!)
- share career highlights on our website's "Spotlight on Alumni"
- make a donation to our annual campaign
- update your personal information here

We encourage you to stay in touch with classmates! If you have suggestions for alumni events in your area or ideas for improving communication, please let us know by contacting the Office of Alumni Relations, or any member of the school administration. We do want to hear your thoughts and suggestions.

When alumni stay engaged it gives everyone reason to celebrate. Your connection to your alma mater ensures that Schechter will remain true to fulfilling its mission of providing education of value and excellence to future students. Hope you’ll stay in touch with us!

Together, we can increase our outreach and expand our alumni community and involvement connecting with SSSQ alumni living around the world. Let’s ensure that the alumni perspective is incorporated and heard as SSSQ moves into its 6th decade!

Please be sure to keep SSSQ updated on your whereabouts so we can keep you informed of the exciting events and programs organized for you. Hope to meet many of you at future alumni events, and wish you all the very best in your future endeavors.

Naomi R. Horowitz
Alumni Coordinator
Office of Alumni Relations
(718) 591-9800 ext. 323
Sukkot Alumni Event

This past October, SSSQ alumni got together for a wonderful evening at the Bnai Zion House in Manhattan to celebrate Sukkot. They enjoyed sushi, seeing each other, catching up with classmates and making new connections. This event started SSSQ’s 60th Anniversary year for the wider SSSQ family – including our esteemed alumni!
Spotlight on Alumni

Sara Kay '92

Director at White Cube

Follow Your Passion Feel Gratitude Every Day ...

Sara is an art dealer and independent curator in New York City. In addition, Sara is Founder/Chairman of The Professional Organization of Women in the Arts - POWArts a membership-based association founded in 2008, to help advance women in the business of art. POWArts promotes the professional and personal advancement of their members through educational programming, professional leveraging opportunities and community service initiatives.

Sara's mission in life is to present beautiful things, have a positive outlook and be generous and gracious. "I can't say there was something that resonated early on career wise in a singular or straightforward sense that led me to where I am now. I had the passion, an intense work ethic and sought out the best experiences and people to learn from. I have been in the arts since childhood and my mother is an artist. That's where the passion comes from. I didn't want to be an artist, so I went the business route. When I was too young to work, I volunteered. When I was in college, I found internships during the school year and over summers - one in particular that led to my first full time paid job. I have had many important people in my life that have acted as mentors/supporters and championed me along the way. I never felt I was entitled to their support, I wanted to earn it. I often worked 2-3 jobs at once to learn as much as I possibly could. I worked my tail off and still do. I don't think career success (according to my definition which is pretty broad) necessarily comes from any single place, and less often from a single job. At its heart, I believe there needs to be clear vision, unwavering focus and a ton of hard work. And the wisdom to know what you don't know much about, and you should learn from the best of the best around you. And if you're lucky (and grateful) people will support you with both their time and smarts. I was willing to start at the bottom, do whatever I needed to do (all the nitty gritty included), learn from others, and build slowly and strategically. I say "thank you" often and include the people who supported me in the past, in my present and plans for future. Gratitude goes a long way. Individualism is outdated, especially among women. That's why POWArts is so important to me. It was started by a community of women, for a community of women and supported by both genders. Hard work, good choices, community, gratitude and generosity resonate with me today. I probably wasn't as conscious of those particulars nearly 20 years ago when I first entered the work force, but they are what guide me today."

Sara was recently awarded the Woman of Exception Honor by Parmigiani Fleurier, a tribute given to exceptional women honoring their accomplishments - for Sara, the art business. The title has nothing to do with celebrity or status rather it is a distinction that recognizes women who achieved something very exceptional in life and in the business world. The award is a celebration of authentic, creativity and selflessness, lauding those women who have been architects of their own success, a success they have shared with those less fortunate. They are women who are not out for themselves and are anything but egotistical, instead pursuing what they do for the sheer joy of it.

In her acceptance speech, Sara gave some background to exactly why she does what she does. "I'm lucky to be where I am, I have a career, a house, a bank account ... there are so many out there who have more skill than me, who are more intelligent, more driven, but most haven't been given the same opportunities. They're the people I want to help." When I founded POWArts it was never about me. It was never about us as individuals. So when I get an award like this it doesn't feel like it's just mine. For me, it's about the organization. Yes, it's about my achievements, which is lovely, but what's more interesting for me is that this organization is thriving and is being recognized - that's wonderful. I love the fact that Parmigiani celebrates very normal women; I'm not a supermodel, I'm not in film, I'm a kid from New York that worked really hard, had a clear vision and went for it. I want to keep doing that, so when I have support like this it certainly gives me an extra boost. Becoming well known is just a side-effect of standing out, not the reason for doing so."

Below are links to some ariticles that may be of interest

Class Notes

News From Our Alumni

Cynthia Schweitzer '02 received her BA in Psychology '10 from Binghamton University, and is currently teaching at Solomon Schecher School of Manhattan.

Jon Weisz '98 graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a degree in Biomedical Engineering. In May, Jon defended his PhD thesis in Brain-Computer Interfaces for Robotics at Columbia University which involved using brain waves to pick up objects using a wheel chair mountable robot arm. He is starting a post-doctoral research position this June at Columbia on cyber-security and robotic systems. Jon participated in the DARPA Robotic's challenge, a sort of robot rescue mission Olympics.
He lives in lower Manhattan and still keeps in touch with some of his old friends from SSSQ.

Dan Seltzer '88 received his BS in Finance and Management '96 from the University at Albany SUNY. Dan is currently Director, Project Finance at MUFG with over 15 years of professional experience in investment banking. He lives in Manhattan.

Eyal Eskenazi ’80 graduated from Brandeis High School in ’84 and Boston University in ’88 with a BS in Finance. Married with three kids living in Manhattan. Eyal is Co-founder of Brandgenuity, a trademark licensing agency.
Mitchell Shechtman, (pictured above) attended SSSQ through 5th grade '75. He is self employed as an Exercise Physiologist specializing in Sports Performance Training. In addition, he runs the fitness programming and rehab for several independent and assisted living communities in the Boston area. Mitchell also specializes in working with Parkinson's and memory care patients. He is married to his beautiful wife, Cindy for 23 years and they live in Newton, Massachusetts with their two sons, Jonah (20) who is entering his 2nd year at UVM and Noah (16) going into his Junior year of high school. The Shechtman family is very active, and enjoys skiing, camping, hiking and they all love food! Mitchell's hobby and passion is music and going to see live music. He plays several instruments and plays in two bands for fun!

David Natanov '97 graduated from Binghamton University with a degree in Finance '05. He met his wife, Meeka at Binghamton and they live in Great Neck with their three children, Ahuva (5), Eden (3) and Benjamin (7 months). David runs a New York City commercial real estate investment firm.


Dina Zipkin '00 and Kyle Scherder (pictured right) on their wedding October 18. Many SSSQ alumni friends attended the wedding: Dina sisters, Aviva Zipkin Cuperstein '94 and Shoshana Zipkin Iannello '96, as well as: Alexandra Ozeri '98, Shira Segev '00, Yael Notkin-Kadar '00, Mazi (Yasoboof) Hanono '01, Elaine Gueron '00, Malka (Lesnik) Belgrod '00, Jessica Schonfeld '00, Amanda (Mushibayev) Shimunov '00, Lauren Abramowitz '99, Miriam (Weinberg) Janov '95, Julia Weinberg '95, and Judith Tesler '95.
Adam Weiler and Nika Buklova (pictured left) on their marriage.

Lee Landor '99 and Justin Marr who were married September 1. The wedding took place in Nes Harim, right outside of Jerusalem.

Matthew Reiman and Simone Strauss on their engagement.

Amy Panzok '01 and Gilad Harel on their engagement.




Yoel Dusi '13 (pictured above) gave a presentation to SSSQ middle school students on DNA and genetics. Over the summer, Yoel interned at a lab in Harlem studying DNA.

Peggy Gad Dahan '87 (pictured above) of Siderow Organization was profiled in Real Estate Weekly , November 25, 2015.

Rachel Klager Goldberg '93 who completed her MBA studies at Baruch College.

We welcome your feedback about this newsletter. Please share your comments and suggestions with us by sending an e-mail to Naomi at

We regret any errors or omissions.


Eliza Stein Dach '96 and Benjamin Dach welcomed their new son, Henry Jay (Ephraim Shmuel), to their family. He lives with his parents and big sister Olivia in Forest Hills.

Mazi '01 and Daniel Hanono on the birth of their daughter, Janette Leora, born July 31, 2015.
Jonathan '97 and Erica Schwartz
on the birth of their son, Jack Miles, (pictured above) born June 30.
Jason '97 and Norma Klager on the birth of their son, Jackson Solomon, (pictured above) born January 22, 2016, weighing 7lbs. - 13 oz. Mom, baby and dad are doing well.
Rachel '00 and Ben Sales on the birth of their son, Dov Alexander, (pictured above) born December 31st in Israel.


- Supports and advances the school’s alumni efforts, helping keep alumni connected and engaged.

- Promotes a lasting relationship between current students, staff, families, alumni, alumni families, and the community

- Facilitates social programs, networking opportunities, and other occasions that connect alumni and Schechter.

- Participates in fundraising to meet the school’s goals.

Thank you for your input and ideas.

Thank you to our alumni and alumni parents for support and contributions to the Annual Campaign.
2014/2015 SSSQ Alumni Council members:

Ariel Boverman '76
Roni Grill Nadell '92
Rachel Klager '93
Yaara Bank Plotkin '96
Naomi Birbach ‘00
Elana Jacob '00
Scott Topal '02
David Beizer '04
Lara Pollack '05
Melissa Glassman '06
Mirielle Maor '06

Advisory Members:
Andy Bass '70
Barry Katzman '80
Rosalie Costa Soriano '87
Ziv Alcalay '86

Joining the Alumni Council is a way of reconnecting with your friends and making new contacts.

If you would like more information on how to get involved, please contact:

Naomi R. Horowitz
Alumni Coordinator
(718) 591-9800 ext. 323


Please support your alma mater to secure a bright future in Jewish Education for our students. For more information e-mail or call (718) 591-9800 ext. 323


As alumni, your input is invaluable, and we want to keep in touch with you! Take a few minutes to provide us with your updated contact information.

Would you like to be featured:

- in an upcoming Alumni Newsletter

- on our website/portal

- in SSSQ marketing materials

- share an essay or blog

- submit photos

- tell us what you've been doing since graduation

All submissions should be sent to and include:

- your name (include maiden name)

- e-mail address and phone number

- address (home/work)

- year you graduated

* By submitting content, you are granting SSSQ the right to use said content in all Alumni-related materials.


What's Happening In Your Life?

Marriage? Promotion? New job? Relocating? Honors? Awards? New degree? New addition to your family?

Send an e-mail to and share your news with fellow alumni!


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