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What is a Har Zion Hero?

We are pleased to offer a new feature in our weekly emails: a Har Zion hero!  This could be any congregant who has done something special for the community or another member, before or during the pandemic. Please email the office with your ideas so we can give that thoughtful person a "yasher koach."

Har Zion Hero, August 7, 2020


Ed has volunteered at every level of congregation, serving multiple positions on the Board of Directors (including president). He continues to play a critical role helping the Har Zion community, including serving as the Gabbai every Shabbat. In this very challenging time Ed has also made sensitive phone calls to alert folks of upcoming yahrzeits, proofed many of the increased communications that get sent each week, and served on the building reopening committee. Whenever and wherever a need comes up in our community, Ed will do whatever he can to help with care and kindness.

Ed, and his partner, Judy set an incredible example of generosity and engagement to family, friends and our community.

Note Ed and his grandson, Noah’s proud smiles in the photo, happier perhaps due to Ed’s tie being imprinted with Noah’s image as a baby. Ed coached grandsons, Noah and Joshua Harter for their bar mitzvahs.


Har Zion Hero, July 24, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion heroes are...  Zeevie Drizin and Ruth Zuraw

Zeevie Drizin and Ruth Zuraw were the valedictorians at OPRF High School this year.  They have been active members at Temple Har Zion, coming to Hebrew School for many years and contributing to class discussions at Hebrew High School.  During their time at THZ, they showed their dedication to Jewish values of learning, community, and social justice.
Zeevie was also a madricha with Mrs. Crooks’ class for the last four years.  As of May, Zeevie was planning on going to Indiana University next year, while Ruth was planning on spending part of the coming year in Israel. 

We are very proud of both of them! What naches! Yashar Koach Ruth and Zeevie!

Har Zion Hero, July 24, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is...  Leila Cleofe

Our Har Zion hero this week is Leila Cleofe. Leila has been an outstanding regular contributing artist for our Musical Kabbalat Shabbat services. Beyond that, Leila is a middle school teacher, and gives back to the whole community with a multitude of contributions.

This past year, she started a wrestling program within her school district, open for both boys and girls. Leila has been a regular at both our Tot Shabbat services and our JBaby Hebrew immersion class. You can often find her at these temple programs with her husband, Kevin and daughter, Mabel.

Please join us in saying Yasher Koach to Leila!


Har Zion Hero, July 17, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is... Carol Steinfeld

This week’s Har Zion hero is Carol Steinfeld. Many know Carol, as her family has been members of our community for many years. What you may not know is the hard work she puts in behind the scenes. She has taken a range of projects during her time as a member; for example, for years she initiated new members into our community with sweet welcome baskets. Carol goes out of her way to make folks feel warmly welcomed into the congregation.

Her current passion project is the Har Zion Honey Fundraiser, which is raising money for Housing Forward (and ORT). 

Please join us in saying Yasher Koach to Carol!


Har Zion Hero, July 10, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is... Shirley Leib

This week’s Har Zion hero is Shirley Lieb. Shirley and her husband David are both longtime members and supporters of Temple Har Zion. She serves on the Board of Directors, and started a mask making project within our community. This included her spending many hours sewing masks to distribute to neighboring communities of need. Community members like Shirley are an invaluable resource for the temple, helping in many ways both within our congregation and the surrounding community.

Join us in saying Yasher Koach to Shirley Lieb.

Har Zion Hero, July 3, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is... Fran Kravitz

Fran has given countless hours to the synagogue stocking, supporting and working in the Phyllis Baren Gift Shop. The shop would not be the same without her! Being in the Western Suburbs, it can be very difficult to obtain Judaica items, like Shabbat/Havdallah candles, a mezuzzah, tallit, etc. The shop provides an invaluable service to our community, and that service would not be possible without Fran's dedicated and professional work.

Join us in saying Yasher Koach to Fran.

Har Zion Hero, June 26, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is... Phyllis Rubin


Phyllis Rubin has been an active volunteer at Temple Har Zion for many years. Currently she is the chair of the Social Action Committee; her spirit for social change impassions her and our community daily. Phyllis is also the guiding force for the temple garden, which provides a source of fresh vegetables for the preschool and for donation to Beyond Hunger (formerly the Oak Park River Forest Food Pantry). She does everything for the garden, from buying supplies to—quite literally—getting her hands dirty.

This Shabbat, June 27, we will combine our National Refugee Shabbat and World Refugee Day. More of the work of Phyllis - putting together a special shabbat to honor all refugees and asylum seekers hoping for a better life!

Join us in saying Yasher Koach to Phyllis.

Har Zion Hero, June 12, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is... Jay Michaels


Jay has been tirelessly volunteering at the temple in a variety of ways, everything from making sure the building is holding together to making tasty tuna salad for our kiddushes. Recently, Jay has been working with Carol Flank and others on a project to clear out space in the basement, garage and stage of the temple.

Not all superheros wear capes, but it’s very convenient that when we do need to turn on the Jay signal, that his batcave is nearby!

Yasher Koach to Jay!



Har Zion Hero, June 5, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is... Peter Norlander

On Sunday, Peter did an excellent job moderating the virtual lecture with Professor David Harris. Over the past year, Pete has spearheaded some of our most successful and interesting events such as the pet shabbat, introducing our Gropper windows to the wider public through Chicago open house weekend, helping the Rabbi with the award winning Golden Kippah program, and the Hershel and the Hannukah Goblins children's play. 

Peter, with the assistance of his family, Monica and Alana, is a Har Zion hero. 

Har Zion Hero, May 29, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is...  Judy Grobe Sachs

Judy was nominated for her amazing devotion and years of professional "volunteer" work for the temple, spending countless hours drafting and publishing the Herald, as well as adding her artistry and helping hands (and head) to temple communications efforts from flyers to our website.

From all of us at Har Zion,
Todah Rabah Judy!

Har Zion Hero, May 22, 2020

This week's Temple Har Zion hero is...  Carol Flank

Carol Flank was nominated for her years of volunteer work for the temple, doing everything for everyone! 

Currently, Carol has been leading the effort to organize and clean the choir loft. She also made made a surprise drop off of B'nai Mitzvah gifts to those who celebrated recently.

From all of us at Har Zion,
Todah Rabah Carol!

Sun, August 9 2020 19 Av 5780