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2020 - 2021 Board of Trustees

Board of Trustees
 
Bob Glast* - President
Sanford Friedman* - 1st Vice President
Michael Sonduck* - 2nd Vice President
Rosanne Ezer* - Treasurer
Ann Loeb* - Corporate Secretary
Jack Olshansky* - Past President
Ann Miller - Membership
Terrie Turner - Chavurot
Micki Greenspan - Ambassadors
Gary Levin - Education Chair
Joe Weiss -House & Grounds
Nancy Pierce - Social Justice
Fred Fabricant - Ritual and Service
Whitney Rosam - PTO
Nancy Singer - Women of Sinai
Gary Kreger - Brotherhood
 

* Executive Committee member

Past Presidents
 
Bea Eslamboly
Jack Olshansky
Judi Gottesman
Fred Fabricant
Jack Olshansky
David Holland
Jeffrey Engler
Burt Kaplan
Sabby Jonathan
Larry Borses
Steven Gralla
Marilyn Rotenberg
Bill Wasserman
William Wolfe
Elias Gold
Joseph Kraus
Anne Frank
Dr. George Doroshow
Dr. Ralph Goldman
Hidegarde Pagell
Harry Werksman
Isadore Gross

Biographies

Bob Glast - President

Robert J. (Bob) Glast born in Ft. Worth, Texas. Grew up in Odessa, Texas. Graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a BBA in Finance and Insurance.

Mr. Glast retired in 2009 from City Pipe & Supply Corp. as Chairman of the Board after serving as President and CEO for many years. In 2005 the company was sold to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) and the company is celebrating its 77th anniversary this year.

Mr. Glast has served on over 30 boards including public companies, private companies and nonprofits.

At Temple Beth El, Odessa, Texas Mr. Glast served as Treasurer, Vice President and President as well as director of the religious school.

Mr. Glast has been a Temple Sinai member for 10 years. The last five (5) years he has been on the Board of Trustees, three as membership chair and the past 2 years as President.

Favorite Jewish Saying:

Those who give should never remember.

Those who receive should never forget.

 

Sanford Friedman 1st Vice President

Sanford’s husband, Jerry and he moved to the desert in July 2016. They joined Temple Sinai that September and he was elected to its Board of Trustees in 2017. Prior to living in Palm Springs, he lived in San Francisco for 34 years. His professional career spans government, non-profits, small and large businesses, and self-employment. His life has taken him from New Jersey to Vermont, Indiana, Washington DC, Oregon, and finally California. 

He considers himself semi-retired. In addition to the work he does at Temple Sinai, he is a member on the University of Vermont’s Alumni Association serving on its Diversity and Equity Committee. He also serves on the University of Vermont’s Prism Center’s Board of Advisors. Locally, he is a member of the Palm Springs Unified School District Foundation’s Board of Directors. This past year he was a mentor at Desert Hot Springs High School as part of the Foundation’s SMART Project. SMART provides mentoring on the college application process to students who are eligible and are at risk of not applying to college.

He is a semi-professional photographer and has a website where his photographs are displayed and can be purchased. His other hobbies include cars—particularly vintage, and he writes fiction. Jerry and he love to travel, cook and entertain.

 

Michael M. Sonduck-2nd Vice President

Michael was born in Wausau, Wisconsin and grew up in the Chicago suburb of Park Forest, Illinois.  His parents helped found Temple Beth Shalom, the Reform synagogue at which he became a bar mitzvah and confirmand.  His father was Temple president and his mother helped establish, through the National Council of Jewish Women, the first “well baby” programs and juvenile justice programs in metropolitan Chicago.

After college he worked in the human services and industrial sectors. In 1981 Michael established a management and organizational consulting practice which continued until he joined the Jewish Federation of San Diego County in 2006.  In 2018 Michael retired as CEO of Federation and established a private philanthropic advisory service for individuals and families seeking to have more impact with their charitable giving.

Michael and his husband, David Zeligson, moved from the Boston area to Palm Springs in 2002 when they joined Temple Sinai, which has been their Jewish home in the Desert since they first arrived.  Through Temple Sinai they have made many friends because the congregation has been one of the most welcoming synagogues of which they have ever been a part.  They returned to the Desert full time in March 2020. 

 

Jack Olshansky – Past President

Jack was born in the Bronx NYC hospital system on Erev Pesach April 25 1929. Educated at the Bronx H.S. of science and graduated from Brooklyn college in 3 1/2yrs with a teacher's license and taught school for one term, Sept 1950. He married in Dec 1950 and was drafted into the U.S. army on Feb 10,1951. He served as a lab tech in Denver and Toledo and was discharged as a corporal in 1953. He lived in Fairlawn N.J working for Gerber baby food; resigned in Dec. and was hired by Baxter Laboratories as a sales rep. moving to Albany NY.  He was promoted one year later and moved to Paterson N.J. His 2 daughters were born during his 5th year with Baxter when issues of antisemitism arose and triggered his resignation and a move to southern N.J, to work for American Hospital Supply selling intravenous solutions and accessories. He was promoted in 1964, and moved to a suburb of Chicago, he moved again in 1968, this time to California and in 1973 was named President of the McGaw division of American, (The only Jewish officer in the 12 man management group.) Resigned in 1979 after 20 years and became an independent consult for a year.  In 1980 he was hired by Bayer as Vice President and General Manager of Cutter laboratories. He moved to Oakland CA in 1983 where he was offered a position as co-manager of the health group of Montgomery Securities an investment trading firm in San Francisco.

In 1984, as co-managing General Partner of a venture capital group under the Montgomery auspices raising $50 million dollars, investing in early stage health care companies, followed by a second round of fund raising $87million dollars and continuing a history of successful early stage health care company investments culminating with closure of the final investments in 2001. He acted as board chairman for 3

startup companies exiting in 2014 with an infection control company.

He was raised in an orthodox household; maintained some semblance of the kosher food part of orthodoxy as he moved. He joined conservative temples until he connected with Temple Sinai in Oakland. A reform congregation where he served two terms as president. He moved to Palm Desert in 2000 and joined Temple Sinai Palm Desert.  He was named to the board in 2001 and served 3 terms as President and perhaps 6 to 8 years as finance committee member.

The best part of membership at Temple Sinai is meeting people, making friends and educating the children. The non-rigidity of the pulpit permitted his practice of Judaism to be without feeling guilty and getting some important things done. In his younger years he played at golf, traveled, read, joined two chavurahs, a movie group, and visited with family. He has always hoped to make the Sinai model of enough interest in the non-participating Jewish community of the Coachella valley so that we would be the place to go for Jews to learn what Judaism is all about and ensuring young Jewish children understand and be proud of their heritage. IT IS STILL MY HOPE THAT WE CAN MAKE THAT HAPPEN.

 

Ann Miller – Membership Chair

 

Ann was born in Santa Monica and then moved to the San Gabriel Valley. She was active in BBG in leadership positions and her best friend from BBG is still my BFF today.

She has lived in Phoenix, Tucson, Columbus, Ohio, Anaheim Hills and now here in the Desert. She loves Pilates, biking, pickle ball, walking and I love the sun and spend a lot of time in the pool and anything outdoorsy.

She is from Orange County and has been on the Women’s Philanthropy Board for the past 20 years. She has held every position from Voices chair to WPB President.
She is a Lion of Judah and was Women’s Philanthropy woman of the year 2018. She belonged to Temple Beth Sholom of Orange County for 20 years. She served on many committees and as membership VP for 6 years.

 

They sold their home in Anaheim Hills 2 years ago and moved into the house we owned in Indian Wells.  Jack Olshansky is the person who invited her to be on this board. She was also congregant of the year for Temple Beth Sholom of Orange County She has served on The Jewish Family Services board and the Jewish National Fund board.


She has been married 43 years and has one 30-year-old son and 11-month-old granddaughter
 

 

Nancy Singer – President of Women of Sinai

I am a native of Los Angeles.  While growing up, my family belonged to and were active at Temple Beth Sholom in Santa Monica, from which I was confirmed and taught Sunday school.  I graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a major in Business Administration, specializing in Accounting.  I worked for the County of Los Angeles Department of Auditor-Controller for 32 years, retiring as a Senior Administrator, having served as an internal auditor, systems analyst, budget officer, personnel manager, contracts manager, legislative advocate, and chair of a County board that reviewed lawsuits filed against the County.  I was involved with fundraising for the City of Hope and the Orange County Regional Center, which provides services to those with developmental disabilities.

My husband Ed and I moved to Rancho Mirage the day I retired in 1998.  Since then, I have been a volunteer at the Children's Discovery Museum, a City of Hope support group, a small local charity providing services to school children, Hadassah, Desert Arc, JNF, and Temple Sinai.  For Hadassah, I have served as Co-President and Treasurer, and as Finance Chair am actively involved in all activities.  For Desert Arc, which serves 760 developmentally disabled adults, I have held every officer position including Chair of the Board and am currently Secretary and Fundraising Chair.  Since joining Temple Sinai in about 2000, I have served on the Membership Committee, chaired the House and Grounds Committee, been a Board of Trustees member and Treasurer, coordinated Shabbat dinners and fundraising events, been an officer of Sisterhood, and am currently President of Women of Sinai.  (I am also a volunteer in the Temple office each week when the Temple is open).

Following my husband's passing in 2016, I moved to Sun City Palm Desert, where I play canasta and bridge with friends and participate occasionally with Chabad.

 

Fred Fabricant – Ritual Chair

Fred was born in Chicago.  He grew up on the south side and a southern suburb.

He matriculated at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana.  It took 6 years, but he finally graduated with a degree in Metallurgical Engineering.  Why 6 years?  He had a good time while there.

His first (and only) job was working for Weirton Steel Company in Weirton, West Virginia as a Metallurgist in the Quality Control Dept.  He worked in all areas of the steel mill and eventually into Technical Service.

He “retired” in 2002 but has continued to work as a Contractor for the steel mill and the three companies that eventually acquired it so he has been getting a paycheck from them for 56 years.

While in Pittsburgh he was involved with Temple Emanuel of South Hills and sat on the Board as Ritual Chair.  He was also the self-appointed “greeter”.

In 1998 his wife, Kathy, was diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome and was given a couple of years to live.  She fooled them and lived until 2016.

Due to family health issues he and his wife moved to Palm Springs to be caregivers for her uncle and he retired 10 years before he planned on doing so but, fortunately, was able to continue to work.

They joined Temple Sinai in 2001 or 2002 and he have been active ever since and, again, is the self-appointed “greeter.”

 

Rosanne Ezer - Treasurer

 After earning my Bachelor of Science in Education from Lesley College in the Boston area, I taught for several years before my husband Steve and I welcomed our first of two daughters in Connecticut. I stayed home while the girls were young, returning to work outside the home when they were in elementary school. I found that I had an affinity for numbers and pursued work in accounting related positions. My longest-tenured and most rewarding position was as a Director with the catalog division of Bloomingdale’s where I was responsible for Financial Inventory Control of the company, as well as the Payables Departments, which included paying merchandise vendors and all business related expenses. Locally, I worked part time with my husband at Premier Residential Services for about ten years.

I have also volunteered my time for many years. I was the Financial Secretary at our prior temple for eight years and chaired many events. I also kept the books for our local summer pool and tennis club. More recently, I served on the Board of Directors at our HOA in Rancho Mirage, two years as vice president and six years as president.

Steve and I moved to the desert in 2001 and joined Temple Sinai in 2003. In addition to our daughters, we have a wonderful son-in-law and two delightful grandsons.

 

Micki Greenspan - Ambassador

Micki was born and raised in Chicago.  She lived there for many years before moving to Palm Desert about 25 years ago.  She was married and had 2 children.  She was widowed at a young age and remarried.  She has two grandchildren that both live in Chicago.

She has always volunteered, therefore explaining her other name “volunteer queen”.  She is always working to help others.  She has volunteered at Children’s Memorial Hospital and Eisenhower Medical Center.  Additionally, she gives her time to Desert Cancer Foundation and Temple Sinai.  She was taught by her mother, if you cannot give financially, always give of yourself.  That is truly how she has lived her life.

Her love for Temple Sinai sprang from her association with her dear friends Art and Cory Teichner.  For years they tried to get her to come to temple.  Now that she has joined the community, she understands why they were so persistent.  She knows that they are watching and “kvelling” at how involved she has become in Judaism and Temple Sinai.

 

ANN F. LOEB – Corporate Secretary

I grew up in New Rochelle, NY and my first rabbi was a Rabbi Novak, Rabbi Abraham Novak.  It is a long way and a long time from then to now.

Jim and I have lived in the Hudson Valley in New York since we were married almost 62 years ago.  We lived in Cornwall for 43 years where we raised our two sons and we downsized and now live in Somers.  Getting involved in our community and taking leadership roles is what we have always done wherever we have lived.

For twenty-three years I was an elected member of the Cornwall Board of Education and served as its president for ten years.  I held leadership roles in public education on the local, county and state levels.  I was employed for 20 years as the director of Volunteer Services at a community hospital and led our multi-county professional association for many years.  Since my retirement I have been a docent leading tours at both the Katonah Museum of Art in Katonah, NY and at the Palm Springs Art Museum here in the desert.

Jim and I came to Temple Sinai in 1999 when we bought our first home in the desert.  We are “snow-birds”.  Over the years I have served on the Temple’s Ways and Means Committee and on the Membership Committee and most recently on the Search Committee for our new rabbi.

I am so pleased that I had the opportunity to be a part of our planning for our Temple’s future.  Our Temple is and has been important to us.  When our Temple had retreats in the early 2000s in Simi Valley, we would fly here from New York so that we could be a part of our Temple’s community.  The friends we made then and those we have continued to make at our Temple are important to us.  They tie us to our Temple community.

I have come from my first Rabbi Novak to our new Rabbi David Novak and I look forward to working with him and with our Temple family as a new board member.

 

Gary Levin – Education Chair

Gary grew up in the Bronx, NY then attended Long Island University in Brooklyn, majoring in Speech Pathology.

On his 21st birthday he moved to Fullerton, CA to get his master’s in special education and teaching credentials in Special Education, Speech Therapy and Administrative Services.

He liked CA so much that he decided to stay and began my teaching career. After a brief time at a private school, he worked as a special education teacher and speech therapist for the Los Angeles County Office of Education for 25 years. He obtained his Doctorate at Pepperdine University in 1989 and then delved into Administration where he served in a variety of positions at the District Level until his retirement over 12 years later in 2011!

He always liked visiting the Desert and eventually bought a vacation condo here which he was able to visit a couple of times a month. When he retired, he moved here permanently.

He loves traveling, especially cruising, and his favorite time is when he is on a cruise ship traveling the world. He loves all forms of needlecrafts and when he volunteered at NICU he made hats for the babies for every holiday.

His path from and back to Judaism took a long time but circumstances and perhaps some Divine kick in the butt, led him back. He decided to “try” Temple Sinai and because of the warm reception he received (thanks Terrie and Micki) the music, the congregation, and the feeling of community he was missing, he decided to return. He is now going to be called to the Torah on September 12th (thanks Arava).

In his “spare time”, he tutors six wonderful students from the Religious School, is a Temple Sinai Board Member for Education and have started studies for the Darshan Program.

He is at a place in his life now that he never thought he would be, and the feeling is wonderful!

Terrie Turner – Chavurot Chair

My most recent position before retiring was a 30-year position as the Office Manager for a privately owned Real Estate Development and Investment company.

Certification:  I Hold and maintain a California Real Estate Salesperson License.

Affiliations and Volunteer activities: 

Served on the Board of Directors, and subsequently, as the part-time Executive Director of a congregation in Los Angeles for 10 years.

Member of the President’s Advisory Council of the City of Hope; a group formed to help the City of Hope attract a younger generation.

Formed and served as president of a City of Hope auxiliary.

Certified Para-Chaplain by the Board of Rabbis of Southern California; assigned to a hospital in Encino where I visited Jewish patients offering prayer and/or conversation.

Most recently: Donate my time in maintaining the library in my community’s clubhouse one day per week. Volunteer at Temple Sinai one day per week.

Serves as a Board Member at Temple Sinai.

Joe Weiss – House and Grounds Chair

I am originally from Beverly Hills, California. My grandparents moved there in the late 20's and opened a restaurant in the living room of their home which was on Rodeo Drive. It was a quite different time. I went to Beverly Hills High, the same school my father attended in the 30's. After graduating from college with an education credential I spent several years teaching at elementary schools in underserved communities. In the early 70's, a very enterprising friend of mine offered me a great opportunity, an invitation to join him in Hong Kong to work in his advertising agency. That was an exciting, eye opening experience. When I returned to California, as luck would have it, my roommate started a film production company and I embarked on a thirty-five-year career in the entertainment industry. In the late seventies I had the good fortune to marry a wonderful woman, the mother of our two daughters. Our family made several trips to Japan to visit my wife's parents. One of the many benefits of those trips is that both daughters are fluent Japanese speakers. But nothing lasts forever and after twenty years of marriage we parted as good friends.

I was raised in a mixed faith family. My mother was a non-practicing Catholic and my father a non-observant Jew. My Jewish faith was instilled in me by my father's mother who lived around the block from us. She was a deeply religious woman and an inspiring teacher. It was with her urging that I attend religious school but when it came time to study for my Bar Mitzvah I bailed, and many years passed before I answered the pull to the bema. The spark was lit at my nephew's Bar Mitzvah. I joined my sister's temple, Temple Israel of Hollywood, and after fifteen years there at age sixty-nine I became a Bar Mitzvah, one of the happiest events in my life.

In 2019 after a rewarding career editing television shows, documentaries and motion picture trailers I retired and moved to the one place I've loved since I was a child vacationing with my folks and sisters. I landed in a beautiful community a short walk from Temple Sinai.

My neighbors introduced me to our temple shortly after I closed escrow. I joined and in a truly short time became a part of the Mitzvah Project and the Brotherhood. Most importantly because of so many warm and friendly congregants I have made Temple Sinai my home.

Gary Kreger – President of Brotherhood

Whitney Rosam – President of PTO

Nancy Pierce – Social Action Chair

Tue, October 20 2020 2 Cheshvan 5781