Parents, friends and supporters of Yeshiva Toras Chaim Toras Emes joined together with its administration and staff on Sunday, January 12, to celebrate 36 years of Torah education in South Florida at its Building Generations Gala. The close to 600 attendees enjoyed an elaborate buffet dinner at the beautifully decorated Bloom Ballroom of Jungle Island as they paid tribute to all the well-deserving honorees. Included in the attendance where many local Rabbanim, Roshei Kollel, as well as public officials who all came to show their support for the Yeshiva and its impact on the community.
The event’s master of ceremonies was YTCTE alumnus and proud parent, Rabbi Eli Riesel who fondly remembered his days, over twenty years ago, in YTCTE. The night began with the recitation of Tehillim and an uplifting D’var Torah by the Rosh HaYeshiva, Rabbi Mordechai Palgon. It was followed by a Legacy Tribute dedication in memory of the Yeshiva’s Honorary Board Member and longtime supporter, Mrs. Sisel Klurman a”h which was presented by YTCTE founding Rosh HaYeshiva, Rabbi Bentzion Chait. The Klurman family, and in fact all the guests, were moved by the beautiful original song about Sam and Sisel’s life created for the occasion and sung by alumnus, Dovid Pruzansky, as well as the inspiring video about her remarkable personality and accomplishments. YTCTE is proud to be eternally linked to the Klurman family who appreciate and value the importance of Jewish education and continuity.
The next presentation was to the Yeshiva’s much loved, and highly respected fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Dorie Ehrenreich, whose creativity and passion for teaching is evident in her classroom and in her unique way of making each lesson come alive. On behalf of the entire YTCTE family, Rabbi Kalman Baumann, principal of our Klurman Elementary School (Yeshiva Elementary School), expressed our collective hakaras hatov and admiration for Mrs. Ehrenreich with the coveted Teacher Appreciation Award for her fifteen years of dedicated excellence to our Yeshiva and our students.
Rabbi Moshe Bernstein, Chief Financial Officer of YTCTE, made the exciting announcement of the dedication of a South Campus Wing by Ms. Rachel Sapoznik and family in memory of their beloved father, grandfather and great-grandfather Isaac Malca Franco ob”m. Mr. Franco raised his children to be proud of their Jewish heritage and encouraged them to always strive for greatness. This dedication will eternalize his legacy and pave the way for our students to reach their potential and become the Jewish leaders of our future.
Rabbi Bernstein then announced the start of an exciting Bais Medrash Renovation Campaign, thanks to a generous matching grant, with plans to commence construction this summer BE”H to renovate, repair and enhance the largest Bais Medrash in Florida, and the Southeastern United States. He encouraged everyone to join this exciting campaign and secure a portion of this citadel of Torah.
Mr. and Mrs. Richard and Karen Saka true pillars of the South Florida Jewish community were recognized as the Gala’s Guests of Honor. Always involved in community projects, the Saka name has become synonymous with chesed and tzedakah and their home is open to all. Their generosity, sincerity and commitment have made them popular and integral members of our Yeshiva family, Bay Harbour and the entire South Florida community.
Following all the moving honoree tributes, the guests were treated to an exciting YTCTE music video featuring our talented students with custom lyrics by Mrs. Rochie Torgow. The music video excited the entire crowd as they clapped and sang along with the children sharing the school spirit that permeated the entire room. By the end of the night, everyone was walking away singing, “YTCTE, Yeshiva is the place where it starts and it lasts for eternity,” and by the next day, the video went viral as parents, teachers and friends eagerly shared the engaging video with students, family and friends.
Following the resounding applause from the music video, Rabbi Niman, Rosh HaYeshiva, recognized the generosity of Mr. and Mrs. Dan and Ewa Abraham with the Legacy Founders and Capital Guardians award. Their dedication and determination to support the growth of Jewish education, a value passed down from their illustrious parents, will have a lasting impact for generations to come and is truly appreciated. Rabbi Niman than spoke about the dramatic growth of the Yeshiva and the tremendous financial challenges that come along with this growth. He updated everyone on the Yeshiva’s exciting capital campaign to expand its South Campus. Currently, the Yeshiva has already raised 70% of its phase one goal of $20 million and hopes to have completed architectural plans by later this year.
The night drew to a close with a tasteful dessert featuring a lavish Viennese table as well as an impressive donut wall. Attendees left inspired, uplifted and proud to be part of a Yeshiva that is truly Building Generations. YTCTE in turn is grateful for the support of its many parents and friends that are securing the future of the Yeshiva and the South Florida community by enabling YTCTE to continue to provide an excellent Torah and secular education to our over 1,000 students.