For Love Of Torah
Yeshiva Beth Yehudah attracts a record crowd to its 88th anniversary dinner.
Partners in Torah program, in which participants
of all ages pair up to explore the ideas and values
expressed iri the Torah.
"Those who have not walked in the classrooms
and corridors of Yeshiva Beth Yehudah cannot
Copy Editor/Education Writer
realize the kind of enthusiasm and sense of dedi-
cation this institution provides for all of us," he
etroit's Jewish community is fragment-
ed into a multitude of religious and
Dr. Conrad Giles, whose Partners in Torah
cultural beliefs, but the atmosphere at
study partner is Yeshiva
Beth Yehudah President
Yehudah's 88th anniversary
was among several
dinner proved once again that
students interviewed in a
these fragments form an effec-
video about the program.
tive and cohesive whole.
In addition to Dr. Giles,
The Oct. 27 dinner brought
the video features firefight-
2,200 people to the Detroit
er Jerry Eizen of Oak Park;
Marriott Renaissance Center
Oakland County Circuit
— the largest ever for the 800-
Court Judge Alice Gilbert;
student school. More than 200
orthopedist Dr. Richard
tables were filled with a cross-
Krugel and his wife, Sally,
section of the Jewish commu-
of Bloomfield Hills; and
nity, supplemented by numer-
college-aged ice speed-
ous political and judicial lead-
skater Elyse Sklar of
ers and candidates.
Among those on the podi-
Each spoke of the pro-
um were Mayor Kwame
gram's welcoming atmos-
Kilpatrick of Detroit, U.S.
phere and the opportunity
Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-
to meet with people from
Lansing, and gubernatorial
different streams of
candidates Lt. Gov. Richard
Judaism, as well as the
Posthumus and Attorney
General Jennifer Granholm.
"Each year, over the last 10
"Throughout the ages,"
years, the annual dinner has
Gary Torgow, Yeshiva Beth Yehudah president, presents the school's Golden Torah award to Drs. Lynda
said Yeshiva Rabbi
grown," said Gary Torgow,
and Conrad Giles.
Avraham Cohen, "it is
Yeshiva Beth Yehudah presi-
only through being com-
dent. "I believe that the din-
pletely dedicated to the study of the Torah that
ner has become the most prominent communal
the Jewish people have survived the turbulent
affair in Jewish Detroit because of the institution's
waters that threaten to drown us. The Torah is the
[the yeshiva] critical significance, the great unity
Dr. Conrad Giles, former president and current
secret of the existence of the Jewish nation to this
our community enjoys and the wonderful event
board member of the Jewish Federation of
Metropolitan Detroit, is also past chair of the
the dinner has become."
In supporting Yeshiva Beth Yehudah, a school
Like many of those in the audience, the two cou-
Allied Jewish Campaign and president of the
that "stands tall and strong today holding on to
ples honored this year with the Yeshiva Beth
Council of Jewish Federations.
Dr. Lynda Giles, immediate past president of the the principles and the teachings of the Holy
Yehudah Torah Guardian and Golden Torah awards
Torah," Detroit's Jewish community is essentially
are not members of the Orthodox community.
Alliance for Jewish Education, is currently a
"sustaining our entire nation," Rabbi Cohen said.
Receiving the 2002 Torah Guardian Award were
Federation vice president. She also serves on the
"I'm certain the future of Judaism rests with our
Gloria and Edward Meer of West Bloomfield.
boards of JESNA (Jewish Education Service of
learning institutions," Dr. Conrad Giles said.
"The Meer family's extraordinary generosity con-
North America) and its Continental Council for
Jewish Day School Education. In addition, she is a "And nowhere is that better represented than here
tinues to help shape the future of the Detroit
at Yeshiva Beth Yehudah."
board member of United Jewish Communities,
Jewish community," Torgow said.
Said Dr. Lynda Giles: "Jewish day schools,
Most recently, the couple provided a new gym
which represents 156 Jewish federations and 400
besides being important institutions of academic
for Yeshiva Beth Yehudah's Beth Jacob School for
independent communities across North America.
learning, have the ability to be transformative -- to
Despite his many years of service to the Jewish
Girls in Oak Park.
carry forward the work of making our Judaism rel-
This year's winners of the Yeshiva Beth Yehudah
community, Dr. Conrad Giles' relationship with
evant to every aspect of our lives by intertwining
Golden Torah Award, Drs. Lynda and Conrad
the yeshiva began relatively recently.
Jewish learning, the study of Torah, with living.
Giles of Bloomfield Hills,, have together spent
"Until two years ago, Yeshiva Beth Yehudah was
"I have seen this come to life in the corridors
just a line in the budget," he said.
and classrooms of the yeshiva," she said. ❑
Now, he studies every week with the school's
Related editorial: page 37
Editor's note: This story ran with inaccurately attributed
quotes last week so is being re-run in its entirety this week.
countless hours in service to the Jewish communi-
ty. "Both are extremely dedicated to the communi-
ty and very committed to the success of Jewish
education," Torgow said.
In the audience to see them receive their award
was Dr. Conrad Giles' mother, Victoria Giles, 92,
Fla. She is immediate past presi-
dent of the Florida region of Women's American