Raising more than $560,000, this year’s event surpassed the fundraising for any previous event in the agency’s history.
“What a remarkable night!” “How fantastic it was to be together again, in person, for the first time in three years! And on a Sunday evening! Over dinner!” – Geoff Stahl, Event Co-Chair
Thank you to all who joined us on Sunday, February 5, for our 19th Annual No Excuse for Abuse Evening at the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts. Nearly 400 guests came together to celebrate the life-changing impact of Ferd & Gladys Alpert Jewish Family Service and Melvin J. & Claire Levine Jewish Residential & Family Service.
The theme of the evening was “Shining a Light.”
Our agency launched the No Excuse for Abuse event 19 years ago to Shine a Light on domestic abuse, an issue that was kept in the shadows for far too long. The event has grown to be one of the most highly anticipated occasions in our community. It has helped to reduce the stigmas surrounding domestic abuse and mental illness. And it has evolved to be a beacon of hope by Shining a Light on the agency’s life-changing programs and services.
We continue to Shine a Light on domestic abuse, and for very good reason. Domestic abuse happens as frequently in Jewish homes as in the general community. We know that there is never an excuse for abuse. Silence is dangerous and potentially life-threatening. We understand that silence too often surrounds other painful issues faced by families in our community – struggles with mental illness, the disease of addiction, the heartache of suicide. And sadly, there are times when many of these issues occur simultaneously in a single household.
Unfortunately, over the past three years, the isolation, loss, and stress added by the pandemic has caused each of these issues to grow exponentially. So many people are struggling – too often alone. As a result, we have expanded our signature event to Shine a Light on all of these areas.
The event’s lasting impact is a testament to the hard work and support of our committee members, co-chairs, sponsors, ambassadors and hosts, and all of you! We thank each of you for helping to make this year’s event possible.
A special thanks to Presenting Sponsor Zelda Mason (pictured below left, with Ellen Levine and Alpert JFS CEO Marc Hopin), for her never-ending friendship and support, and to Doris Rothman Browning (pictured below right, with Mariel Hemingway), whose support was instrumental in helping to secure this year’s featured speaker, Mariel Hemingway.
Thank you to our event co-chairs (pictured above with Alpert JFS CEO Marc Hopin, far left, and Board Chair and President Gary Hoffman, far right): Geoff and Wendy Stahl; Dr. Allan and Cindy Schlossberg; Joel Yudenfreund and Dr. Paula Newmark.
Mazel Tov and Congratulations to our Inaugural Luminary Award Recipients Jennifer and Gary Lesser for their years of service and dedication to our agency. (Above: Tami Lesser, right, presents Jennifer and Gary with their award).
A very special thank you to Academy Award-nominated actor, author, and mental health advocate Mariel Hemingway for sharing her incredible story of overcoming the legacy of mental illness, addiction, and suicide in her family.
The event Shined a Light on people who have transcended emotional and physical abuse, suicide, addiction, and mental illness, thanks to the support of the caring professionals at Alpert JFS. We are grateful to Alpert JFS client, Betsy Mark (below), for sharing the tragic story of the loss of her son, Andrew, to a drug overdose. She found extraordinary hope and healing through the Alpert JFS Jewish Family Addiction Support Group. We dedicated the evening to Andrew’s memory, and to all in attendance who lost loved ones to suicide, addiction, or mental illness.