Any amount over $37 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.
Presidents' Message
Dear Chapter Members,
As the saying goes, “all good things come to an end”– it has been our pleasure to be your Presidents for the last two years. We have accomplished a lot as a Chapter, in the midst of the pandemic. We want to share some of what we have all done. You should be very proud of our Chapter and all of your efforts and hard work. 
As of April 2020, we transferred everything to Zoom. Over the last two years, all meetings and fundraising activities - including a gift showcase, installation, a “Sherlock in your Home” Scavenger Hunt and our Annual Meeting - have been online. We had 90 Summer Camp activities during the 2020 and 2021 summer months. All of our Study Groups were online and we increased them from 60 to 90+ over the two years. Even during the pandemic, we have increased our membership. Three new member online socials were held. We had a personal goal of increasing men’s involvement and we’re happy to report that our membership is now made up of 25% men. We had a fabulous online Book & Author 2021 event – Cooks and Books – highlighting three of the top chefs in the world. Our fabulous monthly Bulletin was redesigned and brought in-house, saving significant funds. Two speaker events were hosted by the Phoenix Chapter and offered Nationally online. The Chapter Handbook was completely rewritten, updating all roles and responsibilities. We made every effort to reach out to our Chapter members to offer assistance and communication over the last two years. 
We have finally been able to offer in-person events over the last few months and are thrilled that the world is opening up and we are once again able to get together in person. That is our only regret over the last two years – we are both people persons and missed getting together with everyone in person.
Thank you to everyone involved with making Book & Author 2022 the amazing event it was. The cocktail party, dinner with the authors, the luncheon and boutiques were all fabulous. The authors were a wonderful variety and entertained us all. We had lots of fun shopping at the boutiques, and the hotel and food were terrific. Thank you so much to Iris Wigal and Nancy Sacks for chairing our special event. Thank you to all of the Book & Author Chairs and their committees, who gave their time and effort – it really does take a village!

We had a fun and wonderful Game Day and thank everyone involved in making it happen.

We are all looking forward to Summer Camp and hope you will sign up to lead an activity, or two or three. We will be having activities in person and also online.

We are very happy to say that with the waning numbers of Covid, the world is opening up and we, following the University’s advice, are able to be together again, with masks optional, beginning April 7th. Proof of vaccination will continue to be required in advance.

We are looking forward to April 6th, our “April in Paris” Installation brunch, where we welcome Leith Baletin and Ellen Widoff as our incoming Co-Presidents. We wish them well over the next couple of years and are here to support them in any way.

Thank you again to this wonderful Brandeis Chapter – as we move on to our next chapter, we look forward to seeing you all in person soon!

Best regards,
Linda & Jan
BNC Phoenix Chapter's Revised COVID-19 Vaccination Protocols apply to all study groups
and events - attendees must submit proof of vaccination in advance to
Masks are required indoors through April 6. Effective April 7, masking is not required,
but is an option for anyone wishing to do so.
Book & Author
Program eBook
This year, the traditional paper Program Book was replaced by an electronic version, accessible through a QR code.
Pages include: the Program of the Day, Author Bios, our Boutique Vendors, Committee Chairs, Bookmark Donors, Table Captains and Volunteers.
Additional information: Past Authors, Past Event Chairs and Past Chapter Presidents. There are also pages about Brandeis University, Making a Donation, Chapter membership - and more!
From the Authors and Publicists
Jerad Alexander
I just wanted to send a quick note to say thanks for inviting me to the Brandeis event. I absolutely had a blast. It was a real treat
to meet you all and the other writers. You and your team played fantastic hosts. Should you need anything from me, please ask.
Thanks again.

Jerad W. Alexander
Lan Samantha Chang
I had a really lovely time in Phoenix!! Thank you
so much for your patience with my logistics. I appreciate your accommodating Rob--he had a really nice time talking to our table. It was thrilling to know that people will be discussing my novel at their book groups.
Every best wish for a great (and not too hot)
spring in Phoenix,
Thomas Perry
I had a very pleasant time at the Brandeis Book & Author event, met many fascinating people, and had the chance to talk with a surprising number of them (including you). Thanks for inviting me, and thanks for arranging such a wonderful event.
Best, Tom
Peng Shepherd
From Peng’s Publicist:
Fantastic! She had such great things to say about your event as well. I’m so glad this worked out.
Jerad Alexander
Mesha Maren
Thrity Umrigar
From the Publicist for Jerad, Mesha and Thrity:

I’m so glad to hear that it all went well!
Many thanks for having THREE of our authors participate – it’s much appreciated, even if two were virtual.
Let me know when you’re ready to start talking about next year – LOL!
Event Photos
Here are some photos from the Cocktail Reception and the Luncheon.
MORE PHOTOS are available by clicking the links below.
Bookmark Donors Cocktail Reception
Luncheon - Registration and Boutiques
More Photos!
Click the links, then tap to see the next slide:
Cocktail Reception (9 slides)
Luncheon (7 slides)
Summer Camp
The Summer Camp 2022 calendar is filling up!
Many chapter members have volunteered to lead activities in the following areas:
MOVIE discussion groups
CURRENT EVENTS or other discussion groups
We are still seeking more activities and activity leaders. Groups can meet in person or on Zoom.
Do you know of an interesting speaker for one or two sessions? Do YOU have a passion for an activity that you would like to share with others? Do you have a friend who will co-lead an activity with you?
The time commitment is small but the appreciation you will receive from your fellow members cannot be measured.
So, put on your creative thinking caps and contact the Summer Camp Chairs at the email address below, as soon as possible. Let us know your group name, descriptive details (including month, day and time you wish to meet) and your contact information. Zoom training will be provided, if needed.
Reminder: Summer Camp is provided for the benefit of chapter members, so please remember to join our chapter or renew your membership for the 2022-2023 year.
Join or renew your membership online before you enroll in Summer Camp.
Summer Camp Chairs Harriet Schwartz and Ronee Siegel
Note: All attendees at in-person Summer Camp activities must show proof of vaccination in advance
and our Chapter's Revised COVID-19 Vaccination Protocols will be strictly observed.
Study Group News
Study Groups Need Facilitators!
We have had the most successful Study Group season in our Chapter’s history with 94 study groups. The chapter continues to attract new members and a major part of that attraction is the availability of many and varied study groups in which people can participate.

To continue this success, we need your help. As we begin to think of next season (yes, your Study Group Team is already looking ahead to next year) we are looking for facilitators with ideas for new groups.

Ask yourself the following questions:
  •  Is there anything you are specifically interested in seeing offered as a study group? (Note: we especially welcome input from the men in our Chapter.)
  • Are you interested in starting a group (hiking? film? lunch?) that meets on weekends?
  • Would you enjoy participating in or leading a limited group discussion (4 sessions) on a favorite topic or activity?
  • Do you have a special interest, talent or skill that you want to share with others?
  • Are you a winter resident who wants to create a group (i.e. weekly Mah Jongg or Canasta) which starts later in the year?
  • Do you want to meet interesting people and make new friends?

If you answered “yes” to any of these, please email the Study Group VPs at
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 for group details, which include contact information for the facilitators. A $5 guest fee will apply.
2021-2022 Facilitators: SAVE THE DATE!
We hope you can join us for a Facilitator Thank You get-together on
Wednesday, May 4 at 1:30 pm.
Watch your inbox for an invitation and more information coming soon!
Wednesday, April 13
1:00 pm
12701 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale

On April 13, the Men for Brandeis Activities will hold the final event for the season at the JCC at 1:00 pm, preceded by the usual get-together for a nosh at Milk and Honey at noon.
The guest speaker will be Leonard Marcisz. He will be giving a talk on a piece of Arizona history, the burning of the Patrick and Annie White Homestead by the US Army in 1880. Leonard is an avid historian of Arizona history.
Leonard Marcisz served on the Board of Directors of the Arizona Historical Society, a State of Arizona trustee agency, that oversees several museums and historic properties across the state, from 2011 through 2015, and again from 2018 through 2019, which included service as the board chairman and president.
Marcisz has also served as Vice Chairman of the City of Scottsdale’s Historic Preservation Commission. He served on the Board of Directors of the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy from 2005 through 2011, and is a former Chairman of the Board.

For additional information, contact the facilitator:
Leith Baletin 480-874-9434
Note: All attendees must show proof of vaccination in advance and our
Chapter's Revised COVID-19 Vaccination Protocols will be strictly observed.
The Leisure Hiking group at Marcus Landslide
Photo: Simon Burrow
The Neighborhood Walks group enjoyed the
Encanto-Palmcroft Historic Neighborhood
Photo: Sara Leopold
The Nonfiction Book Group visited Scottsdale's Museum of the West
Photo: Sylvia Smolensky
2021-2022 Study Group Vice Presidents
Stephanie Klopper, Joyce Steinberg and Barbara Stern
Save the Date
Social for New and Prospective Members!
Monday, April 4
10 am - 12 pm

April in Paris
Spring Event and Installation of the 2022-2023 Board
Wednesday, April 6
Congregation Beth Israel

Facilitator Thank You Get-Together
Wednesday, May 4 • 1:30 pm

Summer Camp Enrollment
Begins in early May

Summer Camp Begins
June 1- August 31
Virtual and In-Person Activities
Membership News
Membership Milestones
  • Our sincere condolences to Barbara Abrams on the passing of her husband, Chuck.
  • Our sincere condolences to the family of Candy Arthur.
  • Our sincere condolences to the family of Past President Ruth Cohen.
  • Our sincere condolences to Marilyn Jacks on the passing of her husband, Howard.
We Welcome Our New Members
Randey Grossman and Rhonda Jacobs
Social for New and Prospective Members!
Monday, April 4 • 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
To RSVP and for more information:
To report life-cycle events, please contact:
Marilyn Reinfeld • mkr1227@cox.net480-620-5601

To report a change in email address, phone number (cell or landline) or mailing address, please contact:
Carol Kadet • 
She will update our membership roster and ensure that you receive Chapter mailings and information.

Now is the time to Renew your Membership!
Online Membership Registration and Renewal is open for the 2022-2023 year - and what a fabulous year we have planned! If you renew or join our chapter now, your membership will be in good standing through June 30, 2023.

In order to take part in any Summer Camp activities, your Membership must be current.
The best part of renewing now is that you will be able to participate in all of our Summer Camp activities and be ready to join our Study Groups this Fall.
The Membership page of our website has a link to step-by-step instructions for online renewal. If you need assistance in any way, please contact us at and we will assist you.

New members: We look forward to having you join our Chapter, meeting and welcoming you at one of our fabulous functions and making your BNC experience extra special!
Membership Vice Presidents
Gale Gradus and Laurie Burns
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.
Honoring Our History
Brandeis National Committee's Honoring Our History
campaign, continuing through June 2022, supports the digitization of select archives and special collections in the Brandeis Library that highlight social justice.
For more information about the campaign, or to make a donation, see the BNC website.
Community Outreach
Charitable Organizations Need Our Help!
We are 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 are also collecting costume jewelry for children to give for Mother’s Day. We were very successful the last time we did this! You can give the items to Ellen or Wendy or to anyone who can get them to us.

We hope to share our good fortune with others.

Stay safe and HEALTHY!

Wendy and Ellen

*You can contact either of us for our home address:
Wendy Cohen
Ellen Kirschenbaum
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 917-273-0393

Joan Davis 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
Ellen Kirschenbaum

Ileen Herberg
Nan Waldman
For more information, contact the Community Outreach Chairs:
Wendy Cohen ~ Ellen Kirschenbaum
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
Brandeis Happenings
Pauli Murray on the Brandeis campus.

Photo Credit: Robert D. Farber University Archives & Special Collections

April 4, 2022

6:30-7:30 PM ET/3:30-4:30 PM AZ
Live Stream Event
‘Walking History’: Pauli Murray's Legacy at Brandeis

A new documentary looks at the extraordinary life and hidden contributions of former Brandeis faculty member Pauli Murray.

Seventeen years before the Woolworth lunch counter sit-ins, Pauli Murray helped organize a sit-in that desegregated a restaurant in Washington, DC.

Fifteen years before Rosa Parks refused to give up her bus seat, Pauli Murray was arrested when she wouldn’t move to the back of a Durham, North Carolina, bus.

Ten years before Brown vs. the Board of Education, Pauli Murray advocated a legal argument that “separate but equal” is unconstitutional.

A new documentary streaming on Amazon Prime opines that you can’t teach American history without teaching about Pauli Murray — the Black feminist professor who taught at Brandeis for five years, nonbinary poet, civil rights activist and lawyer-turned-Episcopal priest, whose once-radical ideas provided the foundation for landmark civil rights legislation. Still, her name is relatively unknown. “My Name Is Pauli Murray” is trying to change that.
by Alexandra Stephens
and Abby Klingbiel
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, April 20 from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm.

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

Outgoing Chapter Presidents: Jan Lebovitz and Linda Ullman
Incoming Chapter Presidents: Leith Baletin and Ellen Widoff
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