Why is the Jewish community of Greater Hartford so special to you?
Blythe and I came to the area for dental and medical training, respectively, and we knew almost immediately that this was where we wanted to raise our family. Though we are an interfaith couple, both our religions are deeply important to us. As Blythe had already been very active in her church during dental school, I knew I wanted to give my children a Jewish upbringing as well. Since the Hartford area has such a diversity and density of Jewish influence, we knew we would not want to relocate anywhere else.
What are your fondest memories growing up in a Jewish community?
My Jewish upbringing was outside Philadelphia, and the best parts of that experience were my identity as a spiritual person and the close community of friends our family enjoyed. Blythe and I quickly found the same experiences, only magnified, here in West Hartford.
What values are you trying to pass on to your children?
Our youngest child had his Bar Mitzvah at Congregation Beth Israel (CBI) two years ago, and has been a regular for Shabbat services, Torah study, and religious school. Our older two have been raised Catholic, but have enjoyed holidays and celebrations at CBI as well. The values of community, caring, spirituality, and love of knowledge have all been nurtured for our children here.
What inspired you to promise an after-lifetime gift to benefit Congregation Beth Israel and to ensure the future of the synagogue and our Jewish community?
CBI has given us so much, and has given our family so much of its identity. For all the time we spend enjoying CBI, our contribution seemed like a bargain. Blythe and I hope to help extend that experience for generations to come.