From the Desk of the Federation Executive Director

By: Shelley Hubal

It has been a busy few months for everyone here at the Federation. We are doing lots of planning for the New Year, including work on the film fest, a new user-friendly website, a Lag B’Omer celebration and much more. We also continue to attend to the details of the annual Campaign. I give a heartfelt thank you to all who have supported the Federation in 2019 and continue to do so. I am grateful for the warmth and generosity of this community.
Thanksgiving brought my family a wonderful day of celebration with more than 20 family members in town. We enjoyed our time together talking, eating, playing cards and singing along as my son, Josh, played guitar. I feel much gratitude for the loving family we have and I am especially appreciative for my mother-in law Susan’s cooking skills and commitment to making the holiday special for us all. 
In preparation for Hanukkah, I helped for the first time with the latke fry-in. This was a fun day spent in the Jewish Community Center kitchen cooking with the men of this community. We chopped and fried and laughed. A special thank you to Mark Walker for chairing this event, and to Sheryl Brumer for making the fry-in and the JCC community Hanukkah celebration very special. Seeing the JCC packed with happy families enjoying our Jewish heritage is an example of this community’s warmth and a reminder of the importance of the Federation’s work supporting our local Jewish institutions. 
One aspect of Hanukkah is that we bring forth light – the light of God, the spark that lives in each of us, our innate goodness. Where there is light, darkness cannot exist. As we look toward 2020 and what will surely be a year of continued divisiveness in this country, I intend to hold tight to the light and gratitude of this season. It is essential to focus on our innate goodness and not only share it, but strive to see it in others. Let us remember that we are each created in the image of God. We are each a unique and treasured gift to this world. I hope to see you in the New Year and wish you all a shanah tovah.