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Hazak First Semester 2021-22

Hazak Mondays Program Guide

Hazak programming will be offered ONLINE (on Zoom) ONLY until further notice.

Monday, October 4, 2021

Engaging Topics

10:00am "L.A. 2.0: Rising to Our Challenges and Emerging A Stronger City"

Mike Feuer, Los Angeles City Attorney

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer has long been one of California's leading lawyers and lawmakers. As LA's chief lawyer and prosecutor since July, 2013, he has brought an innovative, problem-solving focus that combines fair and effective prosecution with initiatives to improve public safety and the quality of life throughout the city. Feuer’s office also has been at the forefront of key national issues ranging from gun violence prevention and consumer protection to justice system reform and successful challenges to Trump Administration policies that threaten fundamental rights, public safety, and the fair allocation of federal funding and political representation.

11:15am "Recovery of the Klimt Paintings from Austria"

E. Randol Schoenberg, JD, Burris, Schoenberg & Walden, LLP

Mr. Shoenberg represented Maria Altmann in “Republic of Austria v. Altmann”, resulting in the successful return of five Gustav Klimt paintings as depicted in the film Woman in Gold starring Helen Mirren. He will describe the history of the Bloch-Bauer family and their collection of paintings by the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt, the fate of the family during the Holocaust, and the belated recovery of the paintings after an eight-year legal battle that included a trip to the U.S. Supreme Court.  

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with Rabbi Ed Feinstein

Monday, October 18, 2021

Two Popular Hazak Speakers Return

10:00am "Reimagining Jewish LA"

Steve Windmueller, Emeritus Professor, Jewish Communal Studies at the Jack H. Skirball Campus of HUC-JIR

Dr. Windmueller will be examining the impact of the pandemic on Jewish life in Los Angeles. What the fallout from this moment may mean for our institutions and our community. Among the new challenges has been the striking increase in violence, homelessness and anti-Semitism. Also present has been the significant downsizing and mergers of institutions and the simultaneous growth of alternative expressions of Jewish life. What are we learning from the new Pew Study on American Jews and the forthcoming  LA Jewish population study?  What does all of this mean for the Jewish future here and elsewhere?

11:15am "President Biden's Commission on the Supreme Court:  Panacea or Placation of the Progressive Wing?"

Mark D. Levick, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Pierce College

In response to widespread anger among Democratic activists over former President Trump's appointment of three conservative justices to the Supreme Court, President Biden has formed a commission to study potential changes to the Supreme Court. Professor Levick discuss the topics studied by the Commission and whether we are likely to see any real changes to the Court after the Commission submits its report to the President.

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with Rabbi Ed Feinstein

Monday, November 1, 2021

10:00am "The Best of America, Right in Front of us: The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the Tomb Guards, in its Centennial Year"

Jeff Gottesfeld, Writer

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier turns 100 this Veteran's Day. It is the best of America right in front of us, and the closest thing we have in our country to both a national shrine and a Statue of Responsibility. Learn its remarkable history, and about the hardest job to qualify for in the United States Army -- to be a Tomb Guard.

11:15am "Strategic Trusts in Your Estate Plan"

Jennifer Van Duzer, California Attorney focusing in Estate Planning 

“From the stables to the stars and back again” is a phrase credited to the Italians which laments the frequent and predictable loss of inherited wealth built by the first generation and gone by the third generation. We will talk instead about ways to encourage a successful inheritance using trusts for the later generations. These issues can apply to you whether your wealth is modest or vast.  We will also review other tools in a typical estate plan and look at some changes in the past year to California law that impact over half the state’s population.

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with VBS Clergy

Monday, November 15, 2021

10:00am "Home Fitness: Is your home safe?"

Rachel Stone, Senior Program Specialist, AARP California

Most houses and apartments are designed for young, able-bodied adults and do not meet the needs of older residents or people with disabilities. Rachel will discuss HomeFit, a program that provides knowledge for assessing your current home and identifying what may need to be changed in order remain there safely and stay independent. Participants are guided through the process of thinking about each area of their current home in terms of whether it will meet their needs as they age.  She will share examples of strategies to make the home more accessible, products available to make these changes, and tips for identifying skilled contractors, if needed.

11:15am "Artificial Intelligence: Can Machines Think?"

Ted Carmely, retired engineer, Jet Propulsion Lab

If the last half of the 20th century is called the Computer Age, our current era should be described as the age of Artificial Intelligence (AI). We are surrounded by machines and gadgets that seem to have a magical ability to respond to human command, converse, and even drive cars. We will uncover the mysteries of AI and how inanimate machines can be made to display human-like reasoning and behavior. We will also briefly talk about the social implications of AI in our lives. The discussion will rely on simple logic without requiring a deep understanding of math or science.

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with VBS Clergy

Monday, November 29, 2021

10:00am "The World of Jewish Humor"

Hershel Fox, Cantor, Valley Beth Shalom

Cantor Fox will cover different categories of Jewish Humor, such as the East European Humor of Yiddish oriented cultural life, the Catskills comics' approach to Jewish humor, and off color Jewish Humor. He will also share his experiences with Jewish comedians, such as Myron Cohen, Molly Picon, and Ricky Lane, and others.

11:15am "Care Management: Creating a Circle of Support as We Age"

Mindy Goldberg, MSW, LCSW, CMC, Certified Aging Life Care Manager™/Geriatric Care Manager 

Brenda Shorkend, MA, CMC, Certified Aging Life Care Manager™/Geriatric Care Manager

Growing older like other life milestones has its rewards and challenges. Developing a strong support network early on helps to promote overall health and wellness. We will discuss how an Aging Life Care Manager (or Geriatric Care Manager) can provide individualized assessment and consultation to help people plan for their future, assist with crises, and provide support to their family and friends.

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with VBS Clergy

Monday, December 13, 2021

10:00am "Centering the voices of Black Jewish Women to Combat Antisemitism"

Kiyomi Kowalski, JD
Jewbian Princess, Co-Founder

Kiyomi Kowalski (KiyomiKowalski.com) is a mom, a Marine, an inclusion educator, and a social justice activist. In an effort to create more inclusive Jewish spaces for all Jews in the diaspora, she co-founded Jewbian Princess (JewbianPrincess.com) to bring corporate quality diversity, equity, and inclusion education programs tailored to the Jewish community.

11:15am "The Intricate Tapestry of Iranian Jewish Heritage: Reflections on the identity, historical, socio-cultural the Mizrachi Iranian Jews"

Nahid Pirnazar, Ph.D., Iranian Studies
University of California Los Angeles

Iranian civilization is enriched by a long history that reflects the participation of ethnicities and divergent cultural patterns. Jews, in spite of their official minority status in Iran, have contributed greatly to Iranian civilization throughout the ages. This lecture will give a brief review of the political, intellectual, cultural, and socioeconomic realms of Iranian Jewry.

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with VBS Clergy

Monday, January 10, 2022

10:00am "The Works of Marc Chagall"

Barbara Green, Artist

This talk will focus on the broad scope of Marc Chagall’s artistic creations. The talk will include examples from relatively unknown early line drawings done to illustrate his wife Bella’s book on their life in Russia, to his later works, many on Jewish themes, that brought him fame as one of the most prominent artists of the modern age.

11:15am "Beyond Cain and Abel: Resolving Adult Sibling Conflicts"

Bunni Dybnis, MA, LMFT, Aging Life Matters

Nearly everyone will be familiar with siblings who are totally estranged or enmeshed in legal battles  as a result of conflicts involving their aging parent.  Unresolved sibling rivalries, conflicts of interest and other toxic family dynamics are often swept under the carpet and avoided when parents are  there as a buffer. All this can change when adult children must share the task of caring for an aging parent or faced with practical realities or inheritance, entitlement and expectations. Bunni will explore the issues behind these conflicts and provide practical tips to avoid or resolve many of these  issues.

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with VBS Clergy

Monday, January 24, 2022

10:00am "Healthy Eating As We Age: A Jewish Perspective"

LeeAnn Weintraub, MPH, RD

The daily habits that make up our lifestyle have an enormous impact on health and wellness. Culture, religion and relationships are some of the factors that shape these habits. During this session, participants will learn the best foods to incorporate into their daily routine to promote healthy aging. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and learn how to make their own recipes more nutritious while maintaining flavor. 

11:15am "A woman playing in a man’s world: How a female lawyer gets professional athletes to play by her rules"

Kyra Buch, Lawyer

Kyra will discuss her experience defending workers compensation claims filed by former athletes for traumatic brain injuries.  This includes the legal and factual considerations impacting her defense, such as that a player last played decades ago and the athlete “assumed the risk.”   Kyra will address sexual harassment training for professional sports teams and their athletes.  She will talk about what it is like to be the (most often) only woman in a male-dominated world, but also the person providing the instructions and/or expertise. 

12:45pm Hazak Torah Study with VBS Clergy


WATCH FOR NEW HAZAK PROGRAMMING AS COVID RESTRICTIONS ARE RELAXED!

  1. Class series on Tuesdays or Thursdays, e.g., Art Appreciation by Barbara Green, Opera by Steve Kohn
  2. Hazak Shabbat Fridays
  3. Walk with the Rabbi (Feinstein) – TBD
  4. Joint sessions with Lunch and Learn
  5. Senior (Youth) Lounge
  6. Field Trips – TBD
  7. Volunteer activities, e.g., with ECC and VBS Schools
  8. Other programming, e.g., small group discussions

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QUESTIONS?

Email vbshazak@vbs.org

Sat, October 16 2021 10 Cheshvan 5782