Apr 15, 2008 — Over 500 Attend Celebration to Launch Kollel in Toronto
Yeshiva University (YU) made history earlier this month when The Toronto Partnership Gala Celebration Dinner was held at the beautiful Copper Creek Golf Club in Kleinburg, raising $3.2 million thus far. President Richard M. Joel, the keynote speaker, lauded the efforts of Renee Rubinstein, dinner chair, and her committee chairs for organizing the most successful public gathering ever in Toronto on behalf of YU. Proceeds will support the launch of a YU/Torah Mitzion Kollel in Toronto in 2009.
The April 7 dinner commemorated the life and legacy of Bill Rubinstein, a world-renowned community builder in Canada, Israel, and Europe. Robert Eli Rubinstein, the national president of Canadian Friends of Yeshiva University (CFYU), paid tribute to the memory of his father, crediting the elder Rubinstein’s lifelong commitment to the principles of Torah Umadda as the reason so many of his family members attended Yeshiva University in New York City.
Rabbi Dr. Herbert C. Dobrinsky, vice president for university affairs, presented Renee Rubinstein with a token expression of gratitude for her incredible efforts as dinner chair and praised the dynamic leadership of Mo Lidsky, national director of CFYU and a 2006 alumnus, as being a major reason YU is becoming a household name in Canada.
The highlight of the evening was the introduction of President Joel by Julia Koschitzky, whose family established the Golda Koschitzky Chair at YU’s Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education and Administration, among their other benefactions at YU.
President Joel thanked the community for sharing with YU their most precious possessions—their children—noting that “YU is different from any other Yeshiva in the world because we believe in Torah Umadda lechatchila not bidieved.” His message and dynamic style earned a standing ovation, after which he presented a magnificent, hand-calligraphied Proclamation of Tribute to Bill’s wife, Judith Rubinstein, and children, Robert Eli (and Renee) Rubinstein and Rochelle Rubinstein.
Currently, more than 200 Canadians are enrolled at YU, and Canadian alumni number more than 1,000. Well over 3,000 YU families have made aliyah to Israel, and YU’s distance-learning programs and its multi-million dollar Center for the Jewish Future are serving to make it a Jewish university without walls for the whole of North America.
President Joel said, “YU’s commitment to both the sacred and secular studies programs is not an afterthought, but is a primary approach in which we believe we can make our greatest contributions to God and mankind by requiring excellence in Jewish and secular education.”