20th Anniversary Shabbat
On Friday night, February 22, nearly 240 students, alumni, faculty, University administrators and community members gathered together for a joyous Shabbat dinner and reception to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the CJL. This program was an initiative of the CJL Board of Directors, in partnership with the CJL Student Board. Deborah Nord, Professor of English and CJL Board Secretary, chairs the 20th Anniversary Committee.
“My husband and I were delighted to be able to share in the warm and joyous atmosphere of the CJL 20th anniversary Shabbat dinner,” said Nord. “The staff and students of the CJL have accomplished extraordinary things in the past twenty years, and this occasion seemed the perfect way to mark and celebrate those achievements together. There was a palpable feeling of pride and simcha in the packed dining room and overflowing adjacent eating areas and at the Oneg Shabbat after dinner. Here's to the next twenty!”
This special occasion also gave many alumni the opportunity to share their memories of Jewish life at Princeton prior to the opening of the CJL with their children and current students. Michael Schechner ’84 of Short Hills, NJ was among the alumni who joined in the celebration on Feb. 22 with his wife June and son Eli, a high school junior. The Schechners also have two daughters, MayaBea and Ruby, who were not in attendance.
“It was great to be a part of such a wonderful evening. With the building overflowing with students, alumni, faculty, guests, neighbors, and others, it is clear the CJL has built itself a significant place on the campus and within the university and broader communities. Our table discussed everything from the parsha of the week to federal debt-reduction politics. It was wonderful.”
Following dinner, an elaborate Oneg Shabbat/dessert reception was held in Feinberg Auditorium which featured presentations and tributes by several University dignitaries and CJL leaders. Provost Christopher Eisgruber ‘83 shared the history of CJL and the impact that the CJL has had on campus life. Cynthia Cherrey, VP of Campus Life, offered a special toast to CJL and all of its supporters. CJL Student Board Immediate Past President Eric Silberman ‘13 spoke movingly about how his involvement with the CJL has positively influenced his Princeton experience. Rabbi Julie Roth concluded the evening program by eloquently connecting the CJL’s past and present achievements with its goals and dreams for the future and leading the group in singing “Siman Tov u’mazel Tov”.
Anna Rubin ‘15, current president of the CJL Student Board, summed up the evening this way:
“Going from packed room to packed room and seeing the wide range of people meeting, talking, laughing, and joining to celebrate this occasion was amazing! There was such a palpable excitement in the air, and I am so glad to have been part of this special event!”
The CJL’s 20th Anniversary Celebration continues during Reunions Weekend, May 30 – June 2. Visit our website at www.princeton.edu/hillel for details.