Danielle V. Minson — Raising the Bar
Jewish Federation’s Award Winners in Their Own Words
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At the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati’s 126th Annual meeting on May 18, Debbie Brant, Chair of the Board, and Danielle V. Minson, CEO, handed out three awards to distinguished community members who have contributed to Cincinnati’s Jewish community this past year. Here are the award winners’ comments as they accepted their awards.
Patti Heldman: “Our community belongs to all of us.”
Patti Heldman, who among other accomplishments is Chair of the Board for Jewish Home of Cincinnati, won the Federation’s highest volunteer award, the Nancy and Robert V. Goldstein Award for Volunteer of the Year.
Heldman said: “I’m humbled to receive an award that extraordinary leaders in our community have previously been given. Over the past thirty years, I’ve developed a fondness and passion for helping others through my involvement in organizations. I feel blessed to live in a strong and close-knit Jewish community that began 200 years ago. We follow in the footsteps of a legacy of leaders who developed a beautiful community for us. I have great admiration for those with whom I volunteer. We are passionate about making this community a better place in which to live. Our community belongs to all of us. We have a collective responsibility to be good stewards of the resources that belong to our community—something bigger than ourselves. I envision our future as thriving, prosperous, and sustainable—to be realized by our children, grandchildren, and future generations. We’re standing for a future we believe in.”
Jackie Congedo: “The work of fighting antisemitism is work that no one person can do alone.
Jackie Congedo won the Federation’s Harris and Alice Weston Junior “Avodah” Award, which honors a talented professional leader with five years or less of experience working in the Jewish community. She won for her service as the Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council, a part of the Jewish Federation.
Congedo said: “I’m really humbled to be receiving this award and to be in such incredible company with past awardees who have done so much for our community. The way I see it, this is recognition that goes well beyond me, because the work of fighting antisemitism, and developing strong alliances and relationships across our community, is work that no one person can do alone. So I’m honored to accept this award on behalf of so many incredible partners in this work—the staff team at JCRC, the devoted JCRC board, and in particular the JCRC board leadership, with whom it has been the privilege of my career to learn from and to work with. I am inspired every day by their commitment to our mission and by their limitless devotion to the work of building bridges of understanding and advocating for our Jewish community during such a critical time. There’s so much work to do, and I look forward to partnering and innovating to meet the challenges that lie ahead. Thank you.”
Wendy Walsh: “I believe God smiled down on me when he sent me to Valley Temple forty years ago.”
Wendy Walsh won the Federation’s Harris and Alice Weston Senior “Avodah” Award, which honors a talented professional leader with ten or more years of experience working in the Jewish community. Walsh has served as the Administrator of the Valley Temple for 40 years.
Walsh said: “I am honored to be recognized for doing a job that I love. I believe God smiled down on me when he sent me to Valley Temple forty years ago. Together with Rabbis Greenberg, Kopnick, and Zoot, our amazing board presidents, the Board of Trustees, committee chairs, congregants, and coworkers, we make an incredible team to facilitate the mission of the Valley Temple. Thank you very much.”
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