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David Brooks to Keynote December 8 Convocation; Jack Belz, Dr. Susan Horwitz, Harvey Kaylie and William Zabel to be Honored

David Brooks, acclaimed journalist, author and New York Times columnist will be the keynote speaker and receive an honorary doctorate at Yeshiva University’s 89th Annual Hanukkah Convocation and Dinner on Sunday, December 8, at The Waldorf Astoria in New York City.

David Brooks

New York Times columnist David Brooks will keynote YU’s Hanukkah convocation.

In addition to Brooks, YU President Richard M. Joel will confer honorary degrees upon Jack A. Belz of Memphis, TN, chairman and CEO of Belz Enterprises and a Benefactor and Trustee of Yeshiva University; Harvey Kaylie of Great Neck, NY, founder, president and CEO of Mini-Circuits International and a YU Benefactor; and William Zabel of Manhattan, founding partner of Schulte, Roth & Zabel and head of the Individual Client Services Group. President Joel will also present the Presidential Medallion to Dr. Susan B. Horwitz of Larchmont, NY, Rose Falkenstein Professor of Cancer Research and co-chair of molecular pharmacology at Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Read the rest of this entry…

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White House Chief of Staff Keynotes Hanukkah Convocation; $1.4 Billion Capital Campaign Announced

White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew delivered the keynote address at Yeshiva University’s 88th Annual Hanukkah Convocation and Dinner on Sunday, December 16 at The Waldorf=Astoria in New York City. President Richard M. Joel bestowed an honorary doctorate upon Lew, calling him “perhaps one of the highest-ranking Orthodox Jewish advisers to a head of state since the Abarbanel” and an embodiment of the value-infused and driven lifestyle members of the YU community seek to lead.

“We are the world’s Torah-informed University, charged with the sacred undertaking of engaging the world around us with our wisdom and our values and yes, our actions,” said President Joel. Read the rest of this entry…

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White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew to Keynote December 16 Convocation; Stanley Raskas, Moise Safra and Diane Wassner to be Honored

White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew will be the keynote speaker at Yeshiva University’s 88th Annual Hanukkah Convocation and Dinner on Sunday, December 16, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. at The Waldorf Astoria in New York City. The University will bestow honorary doctorates upon Lew, as well as Stanley Raskas, chairman of Yeshiva College Board of Overseers, Moise Y. Safra, renowned communal leader, philanthropist and financier, and Diane Wassner, national vice president of the Yeshiva University Women’s Organization.

Jack Lew will keynote the annual Hanukkah Convocation and Dinner.

The annual Hanukkah Convocation and Dinner draws nearly one thousand of the country’s leading Jewish philanthropists and community leaders. Past speakers at the black tie gala have included Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (then Senator), Senator John McCain, New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Vice President Al Gore, Newark Mayor Cory Booker, and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.

Jack Lew is currently serving as President Barack Obama’s chief of staff. Prior to this role, he was the director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), a position he held from 1998 to 2001. Before joining the Obama Administration, Lew, who began his career in Washington in 1973 as a legislative aide, co-chaired the Advisory Board for City Year New York and was on the boards of the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the Brookings Institution Hamilton Project and the Tobin Project. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the National Academy of Social Insurance and the bar in Massachusetts and the District of Columbia. Read the rest of this entry…

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Ambassador Yehuda Avner Tells Graduates: “You Are the Vanguard of Our People”

“Can’t you feel the excitement and energy in here?” asked Miriam Goldstein, a newly minted graduate of Stern College for Women. “These have been the best four years of my life. I’m so glad to be here and part of this.”

“Here” was the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, NJ, where Yeshiva University hosted its 81st annual Commencement ceremony on May 24. More than 750 undergraduate students received their degrees and heard a memorable keynote address from former Israeli diplomat Ambassador Yehuda Avner. Read the rest of this entry…

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Ambassador Yehuda Avner to Speak at May 24 Commencement; Honorees Include Alan Willner, Eleazer Hirmes and Ethel Orlian

Former Israeli diplomat, Ambassador Yehuda Avner, will deliver the keynote address and receive an honorary doctorate at Yeshiva University’s 81st Commencement Ceremony on Thursday, May 24, at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, NJ.

Ambassador Yehuda Avner

Avner, an author of two books, served as speechwriter and secretary to Israeli Prime Ministers Levi Eshkol and Golda Meir, and as an adviser to Prime Ministers Yitzhak Rabin, Menachem Begin and Shimon Peres. Read the rest of this entry…

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Ambassador Yehuda Avner to Speak at May 24 Commencement; Honorees Include Alan Willner, Eleazer Hirmes and Ethel Orlian

Former Israeli diplomat, Ambassador Yehuda Avner, will deliver the keynote address and receive an honorary doctorate at Yeshiva University’s 81st Commencement Ceremony on Thursday, May 24, at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, NJ.

Ambassador Yehuda Avner

Avner, an author of two books, served as speechwriter and secretary to Israeli Prime Ministers Levi Eshkol and Golda Meir, and as an adviser to Prime Ministers Yitzhak Rabin, Menachem Begin and Shimon Peres.

Visit the commencement page for dates, locations, directions and information on ceremonies for all Yeshiva University schools and affiliates.

President Richard M. Joel will also confer an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters upon Dr. Alan Willner and Eleazer Hirmes. Willner, a 1982 graduate of Yeshiva College, is a highly decorated physicist, who has published more than 950 papers on his research in optical technologies. Currently a chaired professor of engineering at the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California, he holds 24 patents. His research has been supported by institutions such as Cisco, the Department of Defense, Google, Hewlett Packard, Intel, the National Science Foundation and the National Security Agency.

Dr. Alan Willner

Hirmes’ family relationship with Yeshiva University dates back to the early years of the 20th century, when his father, Rabbi Abraham P. Hirmes, left the Slobatka Yeshiva in Lithuania to pursue his rabbinical ordination at YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. Eleazer attended YU High School and graduated from Yeshiva College in 1944. He received an MBA from New York University and spent 60 years practicing as a CPA, becoming a noted philanthropist in the Five Towns of New York. Hirmes and his wife Greta have set up a scholarship fund in honor of his parents.

Eleazer Hirmes

Eleazer Hirmes

Ethel Orlian, the associate dean of Stern College for Women, will be awarded the Presidential Medallion. Orlian has spent more than 50 years as a student, teacher and administrator at Yeshiva University. A graduate of YU High School and Stern College, she began her YU career as a researcher, but left to live in Israel before returning to Stern in 1979 as the assistant to Karen Bacon, dean of Stern College for Women. Known to generations of Stern College women, she has remained at the college since—serving as assistant dean and academic counselor and teaching chemistry prior to her appointment as associate dean.

Ethel Orlian

“Each of our honorees embodies a different piece of the principles of Yeshiva University, their commitment to the Jewish people, the State of Israel, their hometowns and to the University itself,” said President Joel. “We hope they inspire our graduates to leave our school for success now, but know they always have a home at YU.”

In all, more than 1,400 undergraduate students from Yeshiva College, Stern College for Women and Syms School of Business, as well as graduate students in the fields of law, medicine, social work, education, Jewish studies and psychology, will be awarded degrees from YU during its commencement season.

Learn more about the honorees here.

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Yeshiva University Honors Jewish Communal Leaders at June 13 Ceremony in Beverly Hills

More than 425 guests were in attendance for Yeshiva University’s Inaugural Los Angeles Convocation and Dinner on June 13 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. President Richard M. Joel conferred honorary degrees upon Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center; Mitch Julis, co-chairman and co-CEO of Canyon Partners, LLC; Louis Kestenbaum, philanthropist and YU benefactor; and communal leaders Larry and Barbi Weinberg.

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“We honor five wonderful individuals who join Yeshiva University’s constellation of celebrated thinkers and doers, poets and scientists, leaders and inspirers,” said President Joel. “The highest award a university can bestow is an honorary degree.  We confer such honor on those who we believe are the best reflection of what we wish for our children. They are all now a part of an institution intent on ennobling and enabling the next generation steeped in Jewish History and committed to Jewish destiny to advance Western Civilization.”

Read more about the honorees here.

In addition to the conferring of degrees, the ceremony featured an invocation by Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean and founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, and a performance by the Maccabeats, YU’s popular a cappella group.

During the dinner portion President Joel paid tribute to Ouriel Hassan, Dr. Helen Nissim, Rivkah Rogawski and Daniel Rubin—four current students and graduates of Yeshiva University with Los Angeles roots. “Your firm commitment to Jewish values and passionate pursuit of excellence has enriched our student body as a whole,” said President Joel.

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