Yeshiva University News » Honors

Producer Nancy Spielberg to Screen Documentary About Makings of Israeli Air Force at Hillel Rogoff Lecture

Film producer Nancy Spielberg will introduce, screen and answer questions about her new documentary, “Above and Beyond,” at the Hillel Rogoff Annual Memorial Lecture at Yeshiva University. The event will be held on April 16 at 7 p.m. in the Israel Henry Beren Campus’ Koch Auditorium at 245 Lexington Avenue, New York City.

The documentary explores the story of a group of American World War II pilots who volunteered to fight for Israel in the 1948 War of Independence. As members of “Machal” – volunteers from abroad – this ragtag band of brothers not only prevented the possible annihilation of Israel at the very moment of its birth, but also laid the groundwork for the Israeli Air Force.

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Students, Faculty and Alumni Honored as Points of Light at Hanukkah Dinner

Students, faculty and alumni who embody the mission of Yeshiva University were recognized as “Points of Light” during the dinner portion of Yeshiva University’s 90th Annual Hanukkah Dinner and Convocation, held at New York City’s Waldorf-Astoria on December 14.

“The lesson of Hanukkah is that the Jewish people must cast the light of our values onto the world,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “Tonight, we publicize the lights that represent the past, present, and future of Yeshiva University.”

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Naomi Schwartz Selected as American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Undergraduate Honor Society Member


Naomi Schwartz

Naomi Schwartz, a senior studying molecular biology at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women and president of the Stern College Biology Club, has been named as one of only 37 American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) Undergraduate Honor Society members nationwide.

The Honor Society recognizes exceptional undergraduate juniors and seniors pursuing a degree in the molecular life sciences at a college or university that is a member of the ASBMB Undergraduate Affiliate Network (UAN). Stern College’s Biology Club started a UAN chapter this fall.

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Benjy Ritholtz, Rebecca Yoshor Earn Academic All America Honors

Yeshiva University basketball players Benjy Ritholtz and Rebecca Yoshor just raised the stakes. The men’s basketball and women’s basketball stars, who last month were named to the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Capital One Academic All District teams, were both named Academic All Americans by CoSIDA. Ritholtz was named a men’s basketball’s third team All-American, while Yoshor was named to women’s basketball’s second team.


Benjy Ritholtz was named a men’s basketball’s third team All-American.

Ritholtz, a history major, has a 3.98 grade point average (GPA), which was tied for the highest GPA among the men’s first, second and third team members. He is a West Hempstead, New York native and a 2010 graduate of the Hebrew Academy of Nassau County. Through 23 games this season, Ritholtz is averaging 14.8 points, 5.7 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game. He has connected on 41.7 percent of his field goal attempts (128-for-307), including 37.7 percent (46-for-122) from behind the three point arc. To date, Ritholtz has netted 743 points, leaving him 257 points away from becoming the 27th player in Yeshiva men’s basketball history to reach 1,000.

“I am truly honored to have received this award,” said Ritholtz. “Credit goes to my amazing professors at Yeshiva University for helping me so much academically, to my teammates and coaches, and especially to my parents for their support and guidance in everything I do.”

Yoshor earned a spot on the second team after last season becoming the first women’s basketball player in Yeshiva history to make the team. Read the rest of this entry…

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Sy Syms Students Gain Consulting Experience at Annual Seforim Sale

A select group of students at Yeshiva University’s Sy Syms School of Business are enjoying a real-life entrepreneurial experience this semester, thanks to a new course called “Growing a Managing Business.”

Sy Syms Professor Leonard Fuld (center) at the Seforim Sale with students in his "Managing a Growing Business" class

Sy Syms Assistant Professor Leonard Fuld (center) at the Seforim Sale with students in his “Managing a Growing Business” class

The class is open to students on both the Beren and Wilf campuses and aims to give them the unique opportunity to work as a consulting team together with a faculty member to advise and develop solutions for a business client on a chosen project. This year, that client is YU’s annual Seforim Sale, North America’s largest Jewish book sale, which is operated by YU students—from ordering merchandise to setting up the premises, marketing, accounting and all the technology the project entails.

“The students have now spent a number of months studying the Seforim Sale and trying to determine what are the critical issues that need to be addressed,” said Leonard Fuld, clinical assistant professor of accounting, who is teaching the class. “Similar to PricewaterhouseCoopers or any outside firm, the idea was for them to look at the Sale and determine what needed the most attention… to give them the hands-on experience you don’t get in the classroom.” Read the rest of this entry…

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Serial Entrepreneur Adam Moisa Finds Mentors and Associates at Sy Syms School of Business

Adam Moisa was impressed by his first phone conversation with Michael Strauss, associate dean and entrepreneur-in-residence at Yeshiva University’s Sy Syms School of Business.

Adam Moisa and Dean Strauss

Associate Dean Michael Strauss, left, with Adam Moisa

Strauss called Moisa while he was studying at Yeshivat HaKotel in Israel to ask if he had thought of any business ideas lately. As it happened, Moisa had. He wanted to create an aggregate cloud storage program that would allow people to access all their online content stored on various cloud storage services—whether on Google, Dropbox, Box or other sites—through one simple, easy-to-use platform. Moisa knew it was a great idea, but he wasn’t sure exactly where to go from there.

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Women’s Basketball Team Places in WBCA Academic Top 25, Twelve Yeshiva Student-Athletes Named to All-Academic Teams

Each year, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) puts together a list of teams with the best GPA’s amongst the three NCAA divisions. Yeshiva’s 3.457 team GPA ranked them 19th in the country among all Division 3 women’s basketball programs. The top team in the country, Case Western Reserve University, had a 3.609 team GPA. This is the sixth time since the 2000-01 season that Yeshiva has made the Top 25, and the 4th time in the past 6 seasons. The YU Lady Macs ranked as high as 2nd in 2001 and have been in the top 10 three times.

The Hudson Valley Men’s (HVMAC) and Women’s Athletic Conferences (HVWAC) have announced the All-Academic Teams for the winter and spring semesters. To make the team, a student-athlete must be a sophomore or higher with an overall GPA of at least 3.5 (cumulative for their careers). The team recognizes those student-athletes that met that criteria and were participants on the basketball, swimming and softball teams (women) or basketball, tennis and volleyball teams (men).

Four women’s basketball players made the All-Academic team: Mercedes Cohen, Ayelet Friedman, Lauren Kempin and Malka Lebovic. That is the only YU team that competes in the HVWAC during the winter/spring semester.

On the men’s side, eight volleyball players made the team: Moshe Cohen, Eitan Finkelstein, Raphael Herskovits, Kevin Katz, Elchanan Margolis, Jared Rechnitz, David Wagner and Jonah Wilkof. The volleyball team is the only team for Yeshiva that competes in the HVMAC during the winter/spring semester.

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Sep 13, 2010 Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), an affiliate of Yeshiva University, will honor dedicated leaders and educators of the Jewish community at its Annual Dinner of Tribute on Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at The Grand Hyatt in New York City. Honorees include Guests of Honor Joel and Judy Schreiber and Dr. Joel Wolowelsky, who will be awarded the Lifetime Achievement in Jewish Education. The dinner will also pay tribute to Alvin Blumenfeld z”l through the establishment of a scholarship fund in his name.

Joel Schreiber has served as a member of the RIETS board of trustees since 1996. He is a graduate of Yeshiva College, Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies and RIETS. His wife, Judy, is a graduate of YU’s Brooklyn Girls High School and received a master’s degree from YU’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work. The Schreiber family’s generosity has supported many YU initiatives including the Aaron and Blanche Schreiber Torah Tours Program that provides critical Jewish education and outreach around the world.

Dr. Wolowelsky is dean of the faculty at the Yeshiva of Flatbush in Brooklyn, NY, where he teaches math and Jewish philosophy. He is associate editor of Tradition, the journal of Orthodox Jewish thought published by the Rabbinical Council of America and the series MeOtzar HoRav: Selected Writings of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik.

Mr. Blumenfeld, a distinguished and widely admired trustee of RIETS and a former board member of the Yeshiva University High Schools, was a graduate of YU High School for Boys and Yeshiva College. Together with his wife, Lois, they established the Lois Blumenfeld Personal Endowed Scholarship Fund at YU’s Stern College for Women and the Lois and Avi Blumenfeld Kollel Fellowship in Israel and supported many other YU initiatives.

Founded in 1896, RIETS is the leading center for education and ordination of Orthodox Rabbis in North America. To learn more about the RIETS Annual Dinner of Tribute, make a reservation or to participate in the Scroll of Honor visit, call 212-960-0852 or email


Mar 1, 2010 — Yeshiva University will honor Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks as the inaugural recipient of the Norman Lamm Prize, March 16-21.

As the capstone of the Lamm Heritage—a tribute to Dr. Lamm—the Lamm Prize pays homage to Dr. Lamm’s lifetime of scholarly achievement. In addition to the Lamm Prize, the Lamm Heritage is comprised of the Yad Lamm—physical space dedicated to telling the story of Dr. Lamm’s 27 years as YU president through text and visual displays—and an endowment to the Rabbi Norman Lamm Kollel L’Hora’ah (Yadin Yadin). In addition, visitors to the site can access Dr. Lamm’s numerous scholarly works through the Lamm Archives, which include over 800 digitized sermons and audio and video of his lectures.

“Celebrating Dr. Norman Lamm is in many ways celebrating the best that is within us and the best that we want to be,” said President Richard M. Joel. “We have established the Lamm Heritage so that we keep growing from Dr. Lamm’s teaching and values. There can be no better way to inaugurate the Lamm Prize than to award it to Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks who as a teacher, preacher and philosopher echoes and harmonizes the values of Dr. Lamm through his commitment to Torah Umadda and his belief in the ability of young people to build a future based on sacred nuance and steadfast principles.”

Dr. Lamm has gained worldwide recognition for his writings and discourses on interpretation of Jewish philosophy and law, especially in the fields of science, technology and philosophy in the modern world. The author of ten books, including The Religious Thought of Hasidism: Text and Commentary, which won the coveted Jewish Book Award in Jewish Thought from the Jewish Book Council, he has solidified his place as a distinguished rabbi, philosopher and teacher.

Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks certainly measures up to the esteemed Lamm legacy, having served as Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British Commonwealth for more than 18 years. He was ordained at Jews’ College and Yeshiva Etz Chaim. He attended Gonville and Caius College in Cambridge, England where he obtained first-class honors in philosophy, before pursuing postgraduate studies at New College, Oxford, and King’s College London, earning his PhD in 1981.

Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks is a visiting professor of theology at King’s College London and holds honorary doctorates from several universities. In addition to penning several books, he received the Jerusalem Prize for his contribution to diaspora Jewish life in 1995 and was awarded a Knighthood by the Queen of England in June 2005.

In celebration of Dr. Lamm and Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks, the Lamm Prize will be bestowed upon Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks during a community assembly on March 16, followed by the delivery of his lecture to the greater community at Nathan Lamport Auditorium in Zysman Hall, Amsterdam Ave. at 186th St. in New York City at 7 PM.

Throughout the week, Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks will significantly enhance the academic life of the University by actively engaging with students and faculty. On March 17, he will address high school students and hold a question-and-answer session with them. Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks will also spend Shabbat on the Beren Campus with his wife, Lady Elaine Sacks, who along with Esther Joel, wife of President Joel, will discuss their roles in the Jewish community.

Visit for more details.


May 13, 2009 — Yeshiva University’s three undergraduate schools–Yeshiva College, Stern College for Women and Sy Syms School of Business–will hold their first combined Undergraduate Dinner on June 17 at Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers in New York City. The dinner will honor distinguished members of the schools’ Boards Benjamin S. Chouake, MD, Suzanne and Miles Berger and Philip Friedman, who are all New Jersey residents.

Chouake founded Emergi-Med, an eight-physician primary care practice in 1984, and holds certifications in internal medicine and emergency medicine. As president of NORPAC, the nations’ largest pro-Israel political action committee, he has become a nationally recognized advocate of U.S.-Israel relations. He sits on the National Council of AIPAC, among other boards, and received its Community Leader Award in 2008. A resident of Englewood, Chouake brings integrity and tenacity to his work as a Board member of Yeshiva College, a position he has held since 2003.

Chouake, who also serves on the Board of Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, and his wife, Dr. Esther Hershenbaum, established the Esther and Ben Chouake Scholarship at Yeshiva College.

“It is incumbent upon us—those who have the ability–to build the community,” he said. “And that’s why I am involved.”

Suzanne Berger joined Stern College’s Board four years ago, a move precipitated by her commitment to Judaism, understanding of its underlying importance and value in a secular-dominated education system and her daughter’s attendance at Stern.

“I have witnessed a unique group of Jewish women committed to making a mark in the world through active participation in societal issues as well as in the fields of science, medicine and literature,” Mrs. Berger said. “Simultaneously, by embracing their Jewish values, these young women truly epitomize what it means to be women of valor.”

She and her husband, Miles Berger, chairman of the Berger Organization, have been married for 30 years. “We are very proud to be honored by Yeshiva University,” the Livingston residents said. “We believe in Yeshiva and what it represents.”

Philip Friedman founded Computer Generated Solutions, which specializes in software, systems integration, help desk, consulting and training, with just five employees in 1984. Today, the company employs 3,000 professionals and maintains a global presence spanning North America, Europe and Asia. In 1996, Friedman was named Entrepreneur of the Year by the City of New York, Ernst & Young, Inc., Merrill Lynch and Inc. Magazine.

A Board member of Sy Syms School of Business since 2003, the Livingston resident takes an active role in its growth and future. “Sy Syms School will be one of the leading institutions in the field of business,” Friedman said. “And I will do what I can to get them there. The mere fact that we can educate thousands of Jewish kids to follow our traditions and give them a great education is deserving of my support.”

To make a reservation, place a message in the Dinner Scroll of Honor or for more information, visit, e-mail or call 212-960-5468.