Yachad ‘Gala Evening Of Tribute’ Honors Leaders Of Inclusion Within The Jewish Community

27 Oct 2011

Yachad / The National Jewish Council for Disabilities (NJCD), the Orthodox Union agency that is the premier national center for families with special needs, will host The Annual Yachad National Dinner and Awards Presentation beginning 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 9, at the Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street in New York.

The Gala Evening of Tribute will honor three exceptional individuals dedicated to Yachad’s goals of Inclusion. Yachad’s IVDU High School in Brooklyn will be renamed for its former principal Marilyn David, a”h, of Flatbush. Our Way, NJCD’s division for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, will honor Dr. Ronald Hoffman with the “Our Way Award.” Dr. Hoffman is Medical Director of the Ear Institute at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, and is Professor of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery at both the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and New York Medical College.

The “Yachad Professional Leadership Award” will be presented to Sarah Taub, Coordinator of Cleveland Yachad for the past 25 years.

Dr. Jeffrey Lichtman, National Director of NJCD, stated, “Because everyone belongs! That is the meaning of Inclusion, and it is what Yachad is all about. A large multi-faceted agency serving the broad Jewish community, Yachad facilitates the Inclusion of all people for the benefit of each individual and for the entire community. The Honorees we are recognizing this year reflect the very best combination of professional and personal commitment to Inclusion.”
According to Dr. Lichtman, “Marilyn David a”h was an educator who always took her work home with her, and who committed professional life to children; most recently as Yachad’s beloved IVDU High School Principal.”

“Dr. Ronald Hoffman has literally made possible the Inclusion of hundreds of Our Way and other deaf individuals through his groundbreaking medical work with cochlear implants. When not at work, he comes to Our Way Shabbatons to work with families.”

“Sarah Taub has been with Yachad as our Cleveland coordinator almost since Yachad began. She has created a thriving chapter and a culture of Inclusion within the Cleveland community,” Dr. Lichtman said.
He made special note that, “Each of these very special individuals are innovators, professional leaders and perhaps more importantly, compassionate, caring human beings, who have combined much love and dedication together with their professional expertise, in the service of others.”

The Gala Tribute marks the official dedication of IVDU High School as “The Marilyn David IVDU High School.” According to Dr. Lichtman, “IVDU, acronym for Individualized Vocational Development Unit, (and the Hebrew plural verb meaning ‘work,’) exemplifies the depth of commitment and perseverance to the highest ideals of NJCD. Jewish students with special needs are provided with a comprehensive and nurturing educational environment. Through academic instruction, social and life skills building classes, and vocational training, The Marilyn David IVDU High School emphasizes the tools needed to help its students with special needs to live more independent and happy lives through succeeding in the world of work.”

According to Batya Jacob, Our Way National Program Director, “Dr. Hoffman has been involved with Our Way for the past 15 years, volunteering his time and expertise for our conferences and educational programs. He often participates in Our Way workshops on professional staff development within the field of Special Education, and as a professional resource for parent support groups. Dr. Hoffman is an extraordinary professional who assists his clientele and their families, working to improve the bigger picture of their lives by caring about the details of their physical, social, and vocational needs involving hearing difficulties.”
For further information on attending the dinner, contact Elaine Grossman at 212-613-8350, or {encode=”grossmane@ou.org” title=”grossmane@ou.org”}.

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