The OU’s Rabbi Kalinsky’s Secret Mission to Denver

November 1, 2013

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Photo by Arlen Flax

He left Los Angeles in the morning and flew in great secrecy over the Rockies, landing in Denver in the afternoon. He made his way by rental car to the Wellshire Inn on South Colorado Boulevard, where the East Denver Orthodox Synagogue (EDOS) was celebrating the synagogue’s Annual Event for 2013, “A Night in Sefarad: Featuring Delicious Food and Drink of Spain.” At the banquet, Shlomo Fried, 28, was a co-honoree for the synagogue’s Young Leadership Award.

His cover revealed upon entry, Rabbi Alan Kalinsky, Director of the OU’s West Coast Region, which includes Denver, spoke at the gala and congratulated the young Mr. Fried on his honor. (He also congratulated the co-honoree, Avi Mehler.)

Shlomo Fried, a son of a founding family of the synagogue going back to 1962, has become deeply involved as gabbai in all aspects of EDOS. Among his leadership activities, he has participated in meetings with Rabbi Kalinsky and Rabbi Judah Isaacs, the New York-based Director of Community Engagement for the Orthodox Union, on strengthening the shul and Denver’s Orthodox Community. The young man also made arrangements to invite Rabbi Kalinsky and his deputy, Rabbi Adir Posy, as Shabbat scholars-in-residence.

Recognizing that Mr. Fried’s talents could be utilized on a wider scale than his synagogue, Rabbi Kalinsky arranged for him to become the youngest member of the West Coast Region’s Board of Directors, effective January 1.

“He’s an amazing young man,” Rabbi Kalinsky said about Mr. Fried. “His parents, Yossi and Agi Fried, are his role models. He in turn will be a role model for other young people to follow, both in his shul and in the West Coast Region.”

Rabbi Kalinsky revealed that he is adding other young leaders to the West Coast Board, to pave the way for future growth of the Region and its communities.

Then, the festivities done, the no longer secret traveler flew back over the Rockies to Los Angeles, his mission of Mazel Tov complete.

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