Sara Love Hoffman, 39, realizes that living in Baltimore since she was 11 still makes her a newcomer by Baltimore standards. Still, she did get here in time to attend Franklin Middle School and Franklin High. After she headed to college in Florida, Love Hoffman didn’t expect to find herself back in town. Yet, Baltimore’s unique Jewish community lured her back. A special educator who owns her own home-based tutoring company, Love Hoffman is married to Geoffrey Hoffman, also a special educator, and the couple has two children, Hayden Skye, 8 and Maya Raine, 5. They live in Reisterstown.
iNSIDER:Your family moved to Baltimore from York, Pa., in 1986. What was the reason for the move?
Love Hoffman:We moved here because there were almost no Jews in York and my parents wanted me to grow up with a Jewish community. After joining Chizuk Amuno Congregation, where we still go, the first place I went was to the JCC.
What was it like for you to be suddenly in a Jewish community?
It was great. I got really involved. My parents have always showed us the importance of being involved in the community. My mother is very active in the synagogue and Hadassah. On my 18th birthday, I became a life member of Hadassah. I also went to Camp Louise from the time I was 8.
Has being involved in the community affected the way you are raising your children?
Yes. Both of my kids are graduates of the Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC Early Childhood Center. Now my son goes to religious school at Chizuk Amuno and he really enjoys it. We do Shabbat. It’s very important to us that they grow up like I did. They look forward to celebrating holidays and they know that’s when family comes. This week my son went to Camp Airy with his father for the first time. He’ll get a different sense of Jewish culture there. He’s supposed to come home on Sunday, but I don’t know if he will. He seems to be having the time of his life!
What might surprise your high school friends?
Well, I don’t know if they would be too surprised. I’ve always been involved in every extracurricular possible. I volunteer with my kid’s schools and I just completed The Associated’s D’or Tikvah program.
What was your favorite part of D’or Tikvah?
It was really interesting to get behind the scenes of the agencies. I knew CHANA and I knew CHAI, but I didn’t know how they worked. They showed us how the agencies run, where the money goes, how The Associated makes decisions on how to allocate it. Then I get the opportunity to use that knowledge to pick anywhere in the system where I can use it. I will be serving on the Center for Jewish Camping committee. I heard about that and thought it would be interesting.