Friday, February 19, 2010

Weekly Report 2.19.10

Dear Friends,

After a week of terrible storms, it was great to get back to work without major interruptions this week. Planning and preparation for our 50th Anniversary programs continues apace. This week, we began installation of The Synagogue Speaks exhibition in the lower level of Lloyd Street Synagogue, and we are moving ahead with the preview and opening programs at the restored landmark.

I am saddened to announce the imminent departure of our distinguished program and education coordinator, Lauren Silberman, who has accepted a position as coordinator for the Museum Assessment Program at the American Association of Museums in Washington, DC. During her nearly seven years with the JMM, Lauren has made numerous contributions, which will stand us in good stead for years to come. We wish her every success and satisfaction in her new position, but we will miss her and her many gifts. Here are other highlights:

LEADERSHIP: We were delighted to host Jewish Times publisher Andrew Buerger, community leader Miriam Winder Kelly, and community historian Wayne Schaumburg at our monthly Leadership Luncheon. Trustee Ira Askin hosted the luncheon. As usual, this was a lively and engaged conversation. Our thanks to our distinguished guests.

The JMM Program Committee, chaired by Carol Glusman, met on Tuesday evening to discuss possibilities for core programs on Maryland Jewish history, and the JMM Development Committee, co-chaired by Robert Keehn and Richard Shatzkin, met on Wednesday evening to plan for FY11 fundraising. Our thanks to our trustees for their commitment and leadership.

OTHER GUESTS: On Sunday 14 February, members of the Downtown Jewish Family Network participated in their monthly family program at the JMM. The downtown families learned about the life of Ida Rehr, a Ukrainian immigrant who came to Baltimore, through the Leo V. Berger's Immigrant Trunk presentation. Families had the opportunity to look through the Voices of Lombard Street exhibit, sings songs and participate in hands-on activities. Also this past Sunday, Michael Lisicky spoke at the JMM about his recent publication, Hutzlers: Where Baltimore Shops. Trustee Duke Zimmerman offered greetings to the audience of 65 people and spoke about our upcoming re-dedication of the Lloyd Street Synagogue, the opening of The Synagogue Speaks exhibition, and the JMM's Anniversary. On Monday the 15th, 45 people attended a brunch birthday party rental in the Museum lobby.

UPCOMING PROGRAM: This Sunday 21 February, Harvard professor Elisa New speaks about her new book, Jacob’s Cane, which traces the journeys of two family patriarchs, great-grandfather Jacob Levy and great-great-uncle Bernhard Baron who emigrated from the Baltic states, met in Baltimore, and became friends before later turning into bitter rivals. This engrossing memoir/family history vivifies the successes and tragedies of a memorable clan. Co-Sponsored with Baltimore Museum of Industry.
BMI and JMM Members: Free! Non-Members: $8 (includes JMM admission).
For reservations contact Ilene Dackman-Alon, Program Director, at 410.732.6400 x214 or

MILESTONE: Our Once Upon a Time feature in the Jewish Times, managed by Jobi Zink, turned three this week! Thanks to all of our wonderful members and Jewish Times subscribers for calling in week after week with the identifications of the people in the photographs. And to answer the question most frequently asked, YES! People do call in every week to identify the photos. In fact two-thirds of all of the photos have been at least partially identified through this JMM/JT collaboration. The "answers" to the identifications are posted on the JMM blog and website. The information is also added to our database to assist researchers in the future. Interested in seeing more? Enter your search term (name, shul, club) into our on-line database and see what comes up. Or, make an appointment to come to the Museum and view the photographs in person. Want to help identify photos on a regular basis? We need volunteers to help describe the photos in our collection. Contact Ilene Cohen, JMM Volunteer Coordinator, or 410-732-6400 ext. 217.

OUTREACH: On Sunday 14 February, Jeanette Parmigiani and Deborah Cardin brought a group of students and their parents to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum to tour the permanent exhibition. The group included participants in Lessons of the Shoah, our high school interfaith program that brings together Catholic and Jewish students in an effort to promote dialogue and understanding.

Curator Karen Falk and Senior Collections Manager Jobi Zink shipped our exhibition, Drawing on Tradition: The Book of Esther, to the Yeshiva University Museum in New York, where it will be on view this spring at the YUM galleries in the Center for Jewish History. As part of our Attman’s Deli Speakers Bureau, Curator Karen Falk gave a powerpoint presentation on Queen Esther to residents at Weinberg Woods.

STAFF ACTIVITIES: Program Director Ilene Dackman-Alon attended "Knit One Learn Two" at Chizuk Amuno Congregation led by Melton educator Judy Meltzer. On Thursday 18 February, Education Director Deborah Cardin testified before a House of Delegates Appropriations subcommittee on behalf of educational funding that the JMM receives annually through the Maryland State Department of Education. The JMM uses the funding that we receive from the State to subsidize educational programs and resources for Maryland public school students.

Curator Karen Falk spent time this week on our next exhibition, featuring the work of artist Nancy Patz. Karen also spent time on our Chosen Food exhibition project, submitting a formal loan request to Goucher College, planning the framing of unframed Patz artworks, overseeing the production of design renderings for Chosen Food, and working with website developers on getting the Chosen Food website up and running. I was invited to serve on the Faculty Advisory Committee for the Johns Hopkins Program in Museums and Society for 2010-12.

Best wishes to everyone for a peaceful Sabbath and restful winter weekend.


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