June is an exciting time at JSDD. In addition to the great weather and the WAE garden taking bloom, June brings the Annual Meeting. It is a time to come together as a community to reflect on the many accomplishments of the past year and to look towards the coming year.
Upon arrival, the Board, residents, family members, staff and guests gathered in Heidi Gallery to view the Wizards of Age exhibit before heading downstairs to the WAE Center. While there is business to attend to at the Annual Meeting it is also a time for residents from JSDD’s 15 homes to gather with one another and catch up. Daniel, Todd, Rachel, and Yael shared their excitement of their upcoming trip to Israel as part of Federation’s Centennial mission.
JSDD Board President, Larry Rein began the meeting and welcomed the incoming President of Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ, Michael Goldberg. Michael was very happy to be a part of the meeting and spoke of his longtime commitment to JSDD. Past Board President Ellen Goldner shared her sense of joy at being back in the WAE Center and excitement at seeing so many of JSDD’s residents again in person. Ellen then presided over the induction of Officers and Trustees, including introducing the newest board member, Brian Saltzman. Brian is a Senior Vice President at Morgan Stanley, a Trustee and Past President of Jewish Community Housing Corporation of Metropolitan, NJ and a Trustee of Parents Who Rock.
This year, JSDD welcomed Anne Masters, Ph.D., FAAIDD, Director, Office for Pastoral Ministry with Persons with Disabilities, Archdiocese of Newark, to share her expertise. The topic of her presentation, Humanity – Where Technology and Faith Connect could not have been timelier. Having recently been awarded a grant with support from Congresswoman Mikie Sherrill, JSDD is launching JSDD: Life| Home | Tech which will bring assistive technology and greater independence to our members, residents, and community members. Anne’s presentation reminded everyone that while we have different religious beliefs, many core values are shared and the understanding that creating space where everyone belongs allows us all to flourish.
Executive Director, Linda Press closed out the evening thanking everyone for their ongoing support and shared passion for the work of JSDD. Reiterating her excitement for the upcoming JSDD: Home | Tech | Life project and all the change that this effort promises to deliver. Speaking directly to the upcoming Israel Trip, as a dream come true for JSDD residents. Finally, and so importantly, Linda Press, expressed her sincere thanks to the staff of JSDD who make all these places of growth, experience and quality of life possible for JSDD residents and WAE Center members.
Every day there is something new at JSDD, if you have not been for a tour of the building yet, or would like more information please contact Jessica Goldstein, Associate Manager of Programs, Outreach and Communications at JGoldstein@jsdd.org.