Jerad W. Alexander, Memoir; Lan Samantha Chang, Literary Mystery; Thomas Perry, Mystery/Thriller
Peng Shepherd, Literary Thriller; Thrity Umrigar, Literary Fiction; Lin Sue Cooney, Moderator

BNC Phoenix Chapter Vaccination Protocol applies to all study groups and events - attendees must submit proof of vaccination in advance to vaxproof.bncphx@gmail.com. Masks are required indoors.
Presidents' Year-End Wrap Up
Each year offers exciting opportunities for new beginnings and additional growth. Our chapter is continually growing, learning and sharing new ideas together in order to provide stimulating and fun programming to our members. We thank all of you who participate in making our events, study groups and summer camp so successful!! Our volunteers strive for excellence in all that they do. And while having fun, we always remember our fundraising mission for Brandeis University!
The New Year also offers us a chance to look back on the past year and celebrate our many accomplishments. We have supported the Honoring Our History campaign and have met the national goal!! Thank you to Carol Kern and Judy Levine, our National and Chapter Campaign Chairs! 

People are moving to the Valley in leaps and bounds. Thanks to our Membership VPs, Carol Kadet and Gale Gradus and their fabulous Committee, in supporting new and current members.

We have grown our Study Groups and have the most prolific and diverse offering of groups in the country. A major goal of our Presidency, to grow men’s groups, has been a huge success. Our Study Group VPs, Stephanie Klopper, Joyce Steinberg and Barbara Stern, have exceeded every expectation and a huge thank you goes to them and their committee for their over-the-top efforts! Coming back together in person, while still offering groups on Zoom, provided a way to participate at our own individual comfort level. Thank you to all of the Facilitators who made that happen! Several new groups start this month, so take a look and register if you haven’t already done so.

Our Summer Camp was second to none with an almost daily selection of Zoom groups! What a fantastic job, done by our Summer Camp chairs Harriet Schwartz and Ronee Siegel! Thank you, as well, to each volunteer who led a summer camp session.

In spite of the pandemic challenges our Fundraising VPs, Terriann Kleiner, Carol Abrams and Patti Grossman, along with their incredible Committee, rose to the occasion and raised critically needed funds to support the BNC mission. This group continually presents exciting new ways to put the FUN in FUNDRAISING!

Our monthly Bulletin is a model for the nation! It has been streamlined and is efficient as well as beautiful. The work that Sara Leopold, Kathleen Witkin and Ronee Siegel put in each month is SO appreciated!

And let’s not forget our technology staff, who work behind the scenes to ensure that we provide an updated webpage, eblast communications, registration for activities and COVID database monitoring. Thank you Marcia Langer, Sara Leopold and Paula Eckstein! Paula has offered superior support to our chapter for many years and has truly made a difference! We all wish her well as she transitions out of her long-term volunteer role.
Thank you to our Book & Author VPs, Nancy Sacks and Iris Wigal, and their committee for their innovative and creative Cooks & Books Programming on Zoom. How special that was, learning from world- class chefs/authors! We SO look forward to being back in person again on March 18, 2022 at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge for a fabulous “Brilliant & Bold “ Book & Author event! We want to see you all there!!

Last but not least, we want to thank our Board members for all you did in 2021 and all you will continue to do in 2022 to support our chapter. We are a well-oiled machine that works as a team and in doing so, we stay at the top of our game. As a team, we continue to rise to new heights! 

There is incredible programming coming over the next few months! We hope to see you at Game Day on January 27, and at a very special Annual Meeting on February 16. March will bring our Book & Author cocktail party and Dinner with the Authors on March 17 and the luncheon and boutiques on March 18. In April, we will install a new Board at the Spring Luncheon. There are many activities to keep you all active and engaged!

We wish you good health and much happiness in the New Year. Stay warm, stay safe and stay active!
All the best,
Jan & Linda
Book & Author
March 18, 2022
JW Marriott Desert Ridge
Bookmark Donors
The Book & Author Luncheon has not only been the ultimate Brandeis experience for our members and the community, but it has been the highlight of the Phoenix Chapter’s winter season. Pre-COVID-19, almost 1000 people attended the luncheon.
As a Bookmark, you are invited to attend a lovely private cocktail party and mingle with the celebrity authors and your fellow Bookmarks (from $300). An even more intimate experience is to dine with the authors at a gourmet dinner (from $1200). The Levels of Giving appear below.
These experiences are unique and memorable. The Bookmark events take place on March 17, the afternoon and evening before the luncheon.
We urge you to participate in these two events this year. Once one has attended either or both of these Bookmark events, the day of the luncheon becomes more meaningful. Having met the authors personally and having gained insight into their personalities, literary careers and works, their presentations will be more enjoyable. It is like watching an old friend on the stage with a sense of pride in how they achieved that position.
The Brandeis Book & Author Event is the Chapter’s primary fundraising event. By being a Bookmark you not only have an opportunity to partake in very exciting activities, but you can thank the chapter for the many hours of pleasure you have received through the study groups and programs, as well as for the friends you have made.
Any amounts contributed in excess of the Fair Market Value (FMV) are much appreciated and will benefit BNC’s Honoring Our History Campaign; they are considered charitable contributions and tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.
Be a Table Captain!
You can be a Table Captain and invite your oldest and newest friends, relatives and neighbors to sit together at tables(s) of (8-10) at the upcoming 32nd Annual Book & Author Event on March 18, 2022. Table Captains are able to enter the ballroom early to distribute individual place cards at their table(s) and are acknowledged in the program for their support.

We will be hosting a Table Captains Brunch on January 7, 2022 in appreciation for your participation, where we will describe in detail the responsibilities of the Table Captains.

If you are interested, please contact:
Table Captain Committee co-chair Sue Lawler at suelawler9@gmail.com.
Boutique Vendors
Returning this year:
Calle Rose
Shelley’s Fashions
Classy Bag Lady
Treasured Accessory
Beth Solem Jewelry
Arizona Bed Sheets
NEW this year:
Barbara Rodolitz Jewelry
Chelain Design
Ten Thousand Scarves
Dangling Dragons
Moonlite Collection
See next month's Bulletin for more details!
Proof of Vaccination is required for all attendees to participate in all Book & Author events.
For details and to submit proof, please see our Chapter's Vaccination Protocol.
For more information or to volunteer, please contact the Event Chairs:
Iris Wigal • Nancy Sacks
bncphxba@gmail.com 480-442-9623
Fundraising Programs
Game On!
Calling all Mah Jongg and Canasta players
Thursday, January 27
10:30 am - 2:30 pm
Lunch will be provided by Arizona Bread Company
Congregation Beth Israel • 10460 N 56th Street • Paradise Valley
Please bring your Mah Jongg set with tablecloth and cards and spinner for Canasta.
Canasta rules & Splashes will be sent to all registered Canasta players prior to Game Day.
Tables and playing partners will be randomly chosen at the event.
Cost: $36 Spade - $54 Club - $72 Heart - $90 Diamond

We will also collect items in support of JFCS - Just 3 Things.

Register early as seating is limited to 80 people.
Reservations will be available through Sunday, January 23 or until the maximum seating is reached.
Have registration questions? Contact Laurie Burns, madison337@aol.com
Any amount over $23 is considered a charitable contribution and tax-deductible, to the extent allowed by law, to the Brandeis National Committee's Sustaining the Mind fund, which supports neurodegenerative research at Brandeis University.
Brandeis Covid-19 protocols will be observed:
  • Masks must be worn indoors, except when actively speaking, eating, or drinking.
  • All participants must provide proof of vaccination by Monday, January 24, 2022 (not accepted at the door).
  • To provide proof of vaccination:
  • Take a picture of your vaccination card with your phone and email it to: vaxproof.bncphx@gmail.com
  • Include your name and preferred phone number in your email.

NOTE: Congregation Beth Israel's 250-person Friedman Ballroom will allow us to keep sufficient spacing between game tables. We can also open the doors to the outside.
Event Chairs: Marcia Langer, Ruth Lerner, Lori Roth
The Face of Ballroom Dance: A Multimedia Presentation
Chapter Annual Meeting and Program
Mark your calendar for the Annual Meeting program on Wednesday, February 16, from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm. It will be held at The New Shul and will focus on the transformative aspects of ballroom dancing.

This event will be of interest to both men and women. There is no charge to attend; however, we will be collecting items for the Sojourner Center women's shelter, as part of our Decorations for a Cause committee efforts.

Stay tuned for more details and to RSVP

Event Chairs: Cheri Rolnick and Ellen Widoff.
Please Join Us to Plan Events!
Fundraising Programs is always welcoming new committee members to add new energy and ideas to our chapter. We meet on the 4th Wednesday of the month, at 10:00 am on Zoom. Our next meeting is on Wednesday, January 26. Contact us if you would like to join us.
Fundraising Programs Vice Presidents:
Patti Grossman 602-885-0158 (phone or text) and Terriann Kleiner 314-761-3132 (phone or text)
Study Group News
Study Group Registration Continues!
Study groups are in full swing. There are still many groups that continue into the Spring. If you are looking for new activities or want to meet new people, you can join one of these ongoing groups.

  • If you are a new 21-22 registrant, check out the Study Group Guide, then see the instructions and registration link, all linked below.

  • If you have registered this year, use the email confirmation you received when you originally registered for study groups and click on the “Edit my Registration” link to open the online registration application. Look for the new study group number and add the group. Once you complete the registration, contact the Study Group Facilitator(s) to let them know you registered for their group.
Even a group that has reached its maximum enrollment may have openings from time to time - if you are interested in a particular group, contact the facilitator(s) to see if space is available. Very often there is! Look in the calendar linked below for group details, which include contact information for the facilitators. A $5 guest fee will apply.

If you have an idea for a study group you wish to facilitate next year, please contact the Study Group VPs at 2021phxstudygroups@gmail.com. We will assist you in getting your group started.

*This Link is for your initial registration only. For additional registrations, use the link to "edit your registration information" from your previous confirmation email.
Monday, January 17
12:30 - 2:00 pm
12701 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale

The speaker for January 17, 2022 will be Sam Sterk.

Dr. Sam Sterk is a trained Psychoanalyst, a Sport Psychologist & a certified Hypnotherapist. He is the Director of Peak Performance Plus LLC, located in Scottsdale.

Sam served as President of the Arizona Society of Professional Hypnosis.

He is the author of 5 books:

Sammy's Journey is Sam’s memoir about his battles to conquer life-threatening asthma and spending two years away from his family at an asthma institution in Denver, Colorado

WIN! Get The Mental Edge Skills in Martial Arts

WIN 2! Train and Master Sport Hypnosis

WIN! Get The Mental Edge Skills in Golf

Hannah's Visions is a suspense thriller

Guests are welcome with a $5.00 fee at the door.
RSVPs are required so that we will have enough chairs:
Merrill Kalman mskbflo@aol.com
Wednesday, January 12
10:30 am
Phoenix Police Museum
17 South 2nd Avenue, Phoenix

On Jan 12, the Men for Brandeis Activities will tour the Phoenix Police Museum in downtown Phoenix. The docent-led tour will begin at 10:30 am. The museum is located at 17 South 2nd Ave (on Jefferson St.), at the rear of the historic Phoenix City Hall.

The museum’s mission is to educate the public, in both historic and modern contexts, in order to:

  • enhance the image of law enforcement,
  • interact with our community through a positive learning environment,
  • promote and preserve the history of the department, while building a closer relationship between our police department and our community.

The museum provides a public location for an educational museum, which is free to all.

Information regarding parking and lunch details will be emailed to the MBA members.

Note: Our Chapter's COVID-19 Protocols will be strictly observed during this outing.

For additional information, contact the facilitator:
Leith Baletin lbaletin@gmail.com 480-874-9434
The Just Desserts group went to Soda Jerk for ice cream.
The Red Wine Connoisseurs... connoisseur-ed red wine.
Photos by Gale Gradus
The Neighborhood Walks group walked in the Roosevelt Row neighborhood and viewed the art murals.
2021-2022 Study Group Vice Presidents
Stephanie Klopper, Joyce Steinberg and Barbara Stern
Save the Date
In-Person Events Planned for this Season:

New & Prospective Member Social
Friday, January 21, 2022
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Game Day
Thursday, January 27, 2022
10:30 am - 2:30 pm
Congregation Beth Israel

The Chapter Annual Meeting Program
The Face of Ballroom Dance: A Multimedia Presentation
Wednesday, February 16, 2022
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
The New Shul • 7825 E Paradise Lane • Scottsdale
32nd Annual Book & Author Event
JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa
Friday, March 18, 2022

Bookmark Donors Cocktail Party
Thursday, March 17, 2022

Dinner with the Authors
Following the Cocktail Reception
April in Paris
Spring Event and Installation of the 2022-2023 Board
April 6, 2022
Congregation Beth Israel

Virtual University on Wheels
Membership News
Membership Milestones
  • Congratulations to Patti and Irwin Grossman on the birth of their grandson, Ezra Mac Grossman. Proud parents are Allison Grossman and Ryder Cobean.
  • Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Judy Lohr-Safcik.
  • Our sincere condolences to Sheila Berkowitz on the passing of her brother, David Hollander.
  • Our sincere condolences to Dale Block on the passing of her husband, Marshall.
  • Our sincere condolences to Marilyn Blynder and family on the passing of her son-in-law.
  • Our sincere condolences to the family of Judith Fishman on her passing.
  • Our sincere condolences to Beth Messer and family on the passing of her mother, Avis Burger.
We Welcome Our New Members
Jordan Berger, Edward Gold, Francine Gold, Elaine Howard, Alan Kristall, Simon Misrac, Stephen Palmer
The next New & Prospective Member Social is Friday, January 21, 2022, from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm.
For more information and to RSVP, contact brandeismembershipphx@gmail.com.
To report life-cycle events, please contact:
The Membership VPs at brandeismembershipphx@gmail.com

To report a change in email address, phone number or mailing address, please contact:
Ms. Bruce Galin, bruce.phxbnc@gmail.com.
She is our Data Manager and will ensure you receive Chapter mailings and information.
The Membership Committee celebrated Hanukkah at a special committee meeting + Brunch
Photos by Gale Gradus
Name Tags
Would you prefer not to wear the stick-on name tags used at Chapter functions?
We are offering personalized, magnetic BNC name tags for $15.00, including shipping. You can get your name tag by filling out the order form and mailing it to the listed address.
Note: Replacement magnetic backs for existing name tags are available; contact the Chapter at 480-359-7262.
Membership Vice Presidents
Carol Kadet and Gale Gradus
Honoring Our History
The Honoring Our History Campaign goal has been met!
~ A letter from the National Campaign Chairs,
Phoenix Chapter members Carol Kern and Judy Levine:

Thanks to your generous contributions on Giving Tuesday and your continued support of the Honoring Our History campaign since 2020, we are thrilled to announce that we have surpassed our initial $500,000 goal for Honoring Our History!

Throughout Brandeis University’s nearly 75-year history, the Brandeis National Committee has always been a source of support for the university, with a particular focus on the library. From the library’s humble beginnings in a renovated stable, to the moment when BNC helped put the one millionth book on the shelf at the current building, our BNC community has been ever-present. As demand for digital materials increases among our global community of students and researchers, it is only fitting that we now lend our support to providing this important access.
Honoring Our History is more than just a means to provide global access to unique materials for students and researchers. The digitization of these collections is a living example of Brandeis’ commitment to our founding ethos of justice and tikkun olam — the use of one’s gifts to heal the world. Democratization of information through the digitization of these collections is in and of itself an act of social justice and will continue to be fundamental to Brandeis’ future.

With this in mind, we are excited to extend the Honoring Our History campaign through June 2022. We will continue to share information about digitization at Brandeis, organize programs or study groups on topics pertaining to the special collections in the Brandeis Library and encourage your support of this campaign.
But for now, please join us in celebrating this impressive accomplishment of raising more than $500,000 towards this incredibly important campaign and for doing your part to honor our history.
Merle Carrus, P’12     
BNC National President
Carol Kern and Judy Levine, Phoenix Chapter
National Co-Chairs, Honoring Our History Campaign

For more information about the campaign, or to make a donation, see the BNC website.
Community Outreach
Charitable Organizations Need Our Help!
After a difficult year for everyone, let’s start the New Year with a concerted effort to help others!

We will be collecting non-perishable food items to distribute to worthy organizations such as JFCS and Sojourner Center. If you would like to contribute, we will accept your donations at our homes.*

We hope to share our good fortune with others.

Have a wonderful and HEALTHY New Year!

Wendy and Ellen

*You can contact either of us for our home address:

Wendy Cohen wencohen@cox.net
Ellen Kirschenbaum ellenk102@gmail.com
Knit A Mitzvah

Do you Knit?
Do you Crochet?
Help us make Scarves,
Newborn Baby Caps and
Lap Blankets

We donate newborn baby caps and lap
blankets to Honor Health Medical
Center, scarves to Sojourner Center
and chemo caps to

For more information, please contact:

Ronee Siegel
ronees@aol.com 917-273-0393

Joan Davis
davis6j@gmail.com 602–499-8357
Mitzvah Mavens

Participants in this study group volunteer at a variety of Valley non-profit organizations. They meet at the specific locations of the organizations on various dates when possible. If there are activities that can be done at home, participants will be notified.
Mitzvah Mavens Facilitators:
Patti Grossman psgrossman717@gmail.com
Ellen Kirschenbaum ellenk102@gmail.com

Ileen Herberg iherberg@aol.com
Nan Waldman nanlarry46@gmail.com
For more information, contact the Community Outreach Chairs:
Wendy Cohen wencohen@cox.net ~ Ellen Kirschenbaum ellenk102@gmail.com
Volunteer Opportunities
A wonderful way to get involved with our local BNC Chapter is to share your expertise with us. It’s a win-win! You get to meet some of the other members, maintain your skills and learn new ones, and the Chapter benefits from your experience.
The current skill sets needed are:
Website, Marketing, Publicity, Technology, Study Group Facilitator

If you would like to volunteer in these or any other areas,
please contact our Volunteer Chair, Ruth Lerner ruth.bncphx@gmail.com
Brandeis Happenings
Toward a More Inclusive Orthodox Judaism
By Penny Schwartz, P'13
Growing up, Reena Zuckerman '23 loved to read from the Torah, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. She did it the first time at her bat mitzvah and continues still today. At Brandeis, Zuckerman joined Shira Chadasha (“new song” in Hebrew). The student-led community at Hillel is Orthodox, but unlike standard Orthodox congregations, it permits women to read from the Torah scroll during services and lead parts of religious services.
Did you miss one of Brandeis' virtual events and would like to access a recording of it?
Visit the on-demand Virtual Event Library.
General Chapter Information
Chapter Board Meetings
Board meetings are conducted virtually, via Zoom.
Chapter members are welcome to attend all meetings,
which are generally held on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 10:00 am.

Our next meeting will be held on Wednesday, January 19 from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm.

RSVP: Email Corresponding Secretary Joyce Grant
at jhgrant35@gmail.com in order to receive the Zoom link.

Chapter Presidents: Jan Lebovitz and Linda Ullman
Mission Statement
Brandeis National Committee is dedicated to providing philanthropic support to Brandeis University, a distinguished liberal arts and research university founded by the American Jewish community. Its membership is connected to the University through fundraising and through activities that reflect the values on which the University was founded: academic excellence, social justice, nonsectarianism and service to the community.

Presidents: Jan Lebovitz and Linda Ullman

Editors: Kathleen Witkin and Sara Leopold ~ Assistant Editor: Ronee Siegel