Kalmans Accept the NCJW Faith and Humanity Award

Date November 13, 2017 | Tags:

Note: Over the next week, we will be posting the wrap up from our wonderful Reconnect and Reboot event. Stay tuned for more speeches and videos!


Elyse: First, we offer many thanks to NCJW for recognizing our family with the Faith and Humanity Award.  We especially want to thank Kristina, Aliza, Rachel and Rebecca for making tonight so special. For generations, our family has tried to make a difference in the communities where we live and work.

My grandparents, Elaine and Joseph Spector gave back to the Syracuse community with their time, treasure, and talent.  My father continues to give back to that community today through his leadership at Syracuse University and its Hillel.  My grandmother, Naomi Warren, was tirelessly devoted to giving back to this community.  When she was building her business, she gave money.  As she stepped away from business leadership, she dedicated much of her time to making our Jewish community better through various organizations including to Holocaust Museum Houston and the Jewish Federation.  My mother, for decades has contributed time and resources to the ADL, Seven Acres, and many other organizations.  Giving back is truly in my DNA. I am proud to continue this wonderful legacy.

Lewis: My grandparents, Ruth and Aaron Kalmans were committed to supporting the JCC and the Federation.  Irene and Walter Dorr, my mom’s parents, were active in The City of Hope and other organizations in South Florida.  My parents have given back both as leaders of various organizations from Seven Acres, Congregation Emanu El, the ERJCC, Federation, and many others.  I too am honored to follow in their footsteps to make our world a better place.

Elyse: What makes us so proud is that we have been able to watch our children step up and give back as well.  Whether it is through volunteer service at Kinkaid, J-Serve, BBYO, Evelyn’s Park, Teen Israel Ambassadors, or Texas Children’s Hospital, our girls have each led in meaningful ways.  They have seen the role models before them and have taken their place in the chain of Tikkun olam.  We could not be more proud of the amazing work they are doing in the community.  We look forward to watching their leadership continue.

Lewis: We are thankful to NCJW for this honor.  We feel especially privileged to share this evening with Diane whom I have enjoyed volunteering beside and working with at the ERJCC. We appreciate and support the mission of this great organization.  And, we look forward to continuing to serve this wonderful community as we rebuild and reboot following the challenges our community faces today.