Rabbi Marvin Hier on Inauguration, American Democracy

Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean and founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Museum of Tolerance, knows a thing or two about receiving criticism. On Friday, Jan. 20, Hier  became the first rabbi since Ronald Reagan’s presidential inauguration in 1985 to contribute prayer services at the swearing-in ceremonies. One of the six diverse spiritual leaders… Read More

Gone Viral? No Sweat, Just Sweaters

Sam Barsky is easily recognizable by his hand-knit sweaters that depict themes ranging from nature scenery to Jewish holidays to well-known landmarks and tourist destinations. Earlier this month, Barsky, 42, reached new levels of fame that put him in the international spotlight. A post on the website Imgur, self-described as “the best place to share… Read More

Suburban Orthodox Hires New Executive Director

Suburban Orthodox Congregation Toras Chaim recently announced the appointment of its new executive director, Juliya Sheynman, who will officially join the congregation on Jan. 25. Born in Minsk, Belarus, Sheynman earned her degree in mass media communications from the University of Washington. She recently completed the Brandeis Jewish Leadership Incubator program at Brandeis University, a… Read More

JCCs in Baltimore and Beyond Evacuated for Second Time in Two Weeks JCC was also evacuated Jan. 9; other facilities report threats across country

The Park Heights JCC, along with JCCs across the country, has now been the target of two bomb threats this month after the most recent threat Jan. 18, which follows a previous threat on Jan. 9. The second round of bomb threats affected 27 JCCs in 17 states. The Park Heights JCC received the phone… Read More

D’oh Nuts! Local doughnut pop-up opens Hampden brick-and-mortar store

Reisterstown native and resident Josh Kowitz, 34, calls out to one of his employees in the kitchen to use only a little bit of strawberry extract … “and a little bit of pink food coloring.” It’s Thursday, Jan. 12, the first day of business for Kowitz and his Hampden-based doughnut shop, Center Cut Doughnuts. “Add… Read More

Jewish and Muslim Groups Host MLK Interfaith Event

To Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, the Baltimore Jewish Council, Repair the World and the Muslim Community Cultural Center of Baltimore held an interfaith event discussing the civil rights movements and ways to continue that legacy. The group of about 40 participants gathered in stocking feet at the MCCCB, with those older… Read More

A House Divided The one place meant to unite the Jewish community is becoming one of its biggest rifts

This week, the country inaugurates its new president. Due partially to a lack of government experience to draw from and partially to Donald Trump’s propensity for holding competing positions on the same issue, it is hard to say how exactly the new president will govern. For the Baltimore Jewish community — and American Jewish population… Read More

Baltimore’s Rod Rosenstein Nominated to Trump Role

Rod Rosenstein, the U.S. attorney in Baltimore, has been nominated to join President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet as deputy attorney general, according to a report by The Washington Post citing a member of the Trump transition team. Rosenstein, 51, who was appointed to his current post by Republican President George W. Bush in 2005, is currently… Read More

Maryland Legislators Will Introduce Anti-BDS Bill

Maryland lawmakers and Jewish advocacy groups are in the process of putting the final touches on a bill that would ban companies that support the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel from doing business with the state. The bill, which is expected to be introduced in the next few weeks, would prevent the… Read More

Israel’s Economy Expected to Slow in 2017

Israel’s economy hummed along in 2016 with an impressive estimated economic growth rate of 3.5 percent. That’s the good news. Unfortunately, “this year has been an outlier,” said Avi Weiss, executive director of the Jerusalem-based Taub Center for Social Policy, a nonpartisan, socioeconomic think tank. Israel’s economy has been growing slowly in the 2010s, and… Read More