AJCC Stories and Interviews

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Member Spotlight: Marc Newman

Maccabi

For over 20 years, Marc Newman has been the face of JCC Maccabi here at the Alpert JCC. The JCC Maccabi Games are an Olympic-style sporting competition held each summer in North America. It is the second largest organized sports program for Jewish teenagers in the world. An active JCC member since 1977, Marc first came to the JCC after his divorce in 1977 because, he explains, “I needed a place to go to meet Jewish people. I joined the Jewish singles and I never looked back. I met a lot of people here and made a lot of friends. When I remarried, the kids were coming here for camp and swimming and I got involved with their activities.” Then, in 1994, Marc got the call that would change his life and his connection to the J.  “Marvin Nachlis called and invited me to coach Maccabi basketball, and I’ve been doing it ever since. Marvin and I coached basketball together for about 14 years...

 

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Saturday, July 1, 2017 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Thursday, June 1, 2017

Member Spotlight: Melissa Newman

Melissa Newman is one of the ubiquitous parents who gives so much of her time and energy to making the Alpert JCC such a special place. She currently chairs the ECE Committee, is on the AJCC Board of Directors, and recently Co-Chaired the successful AJCC fundraiser, “Adults at Play.”

 

When asked how she learned about the Alpert JCC, Melissa explained, “We learned about the JCC from Vicki Scherwin. Vicki and her husband have known my husband, Scott, for years, and our oldest kids are two days apart and have been the best of friends since birth. Vicki told me about From the Beginning, the free class for babies and their parents, and we attended several times together. It was the first time I had ever been to any JCC. I remember being so overwhelmed as a new mom and didn’t realize that nestled in the back of this wonderful building was the best preschool in Long Beach with the best teachers around!...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Thursday, June 1, 2017 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Member Spotlight: Inge Johnson

Inge Johnson, 87 years young, was born in Germany and left with her family in December 1938 at age 9. She grew up in Central California (Tulare) and lived for 40 years in the San Francisco bay area where she was a teacher and the mother of three children, two girls and boy. She made Aliyah (moved to Israel) in 1988 and lived in the beautiful seaside city of Netanya until 2002. Inge had a very interesting life in Israel (and she has written a book all about it!), including being a volunteer in the Israel Defense Forces three different times: once stationed near Lebanon, once near Haifa (where she was taken out on a nuclear submarine!) and once near Ashkelon.

 

In 2002, Inge decided to move back to California... 

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Member Spotlight: Linda Palitz

Linda Palitz, an active Silver and Fit member, first came to the JCC in 1999 because she needed a pool. They had turned off the heat in the pool in her condo, and she had been looking desperately for somewhere to swim. Once she discovered the J, she realized there was so much more than just the pool! As Linda tells it, “It all started with a 6:15 Spin class with Barbara Shoag; one day she invited me to lunch where she told me all about the wonderful things the J had to offer. She then invited me to sit on the Women’s Division Board of the Jewish Federation, which I was on for many years. I got a personal trainer here and eventually started working out with Mike Henderson until he left last year. After Mike, I started working out with Cindi Massengale, who is wonderful...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Wednesday, February 1, 2017 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Sunday, January 1, 2017

AJCC Member Spotlight: Marisa Kantor, ECE mom

Marisa Kantor is one of the enthusiastic and involved AJCC members who help make the J a wonderful community. Marisa and her husband, Madhava (Madhi), came here from Tucson in March of 2012 when he was accepted into the Kaiser Permanente School of Anesthesia.  The first thing they wanted to do was find a great preschool for children, Ari and Rona. They had come from a strong Jewish preschool in Tucson and were looking for something equivalent. What they found was even better! They knew when they toured the ECE here that is was above and beyond the best preschool in the area.” In addition to an excellent preschool, Marisa explains,...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Sunday, January 1, 2017 at 8:00:00 am Comments (1)



Tuesday, November 1, 2016

AJCC Member Spotlight: Nancy McLain

Nancy McClean first came to the AJCC three years ago and has become invaluable to just about every department. Her hard work and dedication earned her this year’s Stanley V. Goldin Senior of the Year award at the AJCC Annual meeting. Nancy grew up in Long Beach, went to CSULB for a degree in Physical Therapy, “and then I lived and worked in the San Fernando Valley for a good while. I lived and worked in the Central California Mountains for 20 years before moving to Northern Virginia in 1998. I came home to Long Beach to retire in November 2013. I discovered the JCC in March of 2014 while I was looking for a Tai Chi class and found not only the perfect class, but the place I wanted to spend my time. I don’t go anywhere else. The Alpert JCC is ‘my center for life.’ ...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Tuesday, November 1, 2016 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Saturday, October 1, 2016

AJCC Member Spotlight: Jax Cole

When Jax Cole was looking for a pool to train in for her swim across the Catalina Channel, she decided that the Alpert Jewish Community Center would be perfect for her needs.  She went to Pre-K and Kindergarten at the AJCC circa 1983-84, so she was already connected to the Center.

Jax says she loves being a member here...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Saturday, October 1, 2016 at 8:00:00 am Comments (0)



Sunday, February 1, 2015

Member Spotlight: Connie Bambadji

Connie Bambadji found out about the Alpert JCC from a family friend in the Valley. Connie and her husband, Sacha, were looking for a place to get involved, and when their friend raved about the AJCC, they decided to check it out. Here they are four and a half years later, and wow is she involved! Their first son, Zachary, started in the ECE program when he turned 2, and the middle one, Ayva, is currently enrolled here. Connie says she is very excited that her youngest, Hattie, will go through the program as well. They are already in “From the Beginning, ” the free family participation class for newborns through walking.

Connie said that although it took her a while to become an actively involved parent, she really jumped in when ECE Director Linda Keiles came on board to head the ECE program...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Sunday, February 1, 2015 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Thursday, January 1, 2015

Member Spotlight: Mina Roades

Mina Roades knew that the Alpert JCC Early Childhood Education program was perfect for her son the moment she saw the nurturing environment and wonderful playground. “When we were searching for a preschool, we saw tons, narrowed it down to three, and as soon as we took the ECE tour, we knew that nothing compares to the JCC.”

Although neither Mina or her husband are Jewish, she had friends who were at the Merage JCC, and so she Googled JCC in Long Beach. “When this is the first time you’re putting your kids in school, safety is huge, and the JCC facility is a standout...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Thursday, January 1, 2015 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)



Saturday, November 1, 2014

Member Spotlight: Barbra Snegg

When Barbra Snegg was named Senior of the Year at the Alpert JCC’s 2014 annual meeting, she was completely floored. She had no idea that all her hard work for the Senior programs would be acknowledged in such a wonderful way. Her friends knew, though, and they couldn’t have been more thrilled that this charming, gracious woman was being so publicly honored.

When Barbra first came to the Alpert JCC in the fall of 2012, it was at the invitation from a good friend of hers...

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Posted by: Erika Silver Hillinger on Saturday, November 1, 2014 at 12:00:00 am Comments (0)