Sign In Forgot Password

CBE Heroes 5782

CBE is an incredible group of people who bring our community and broader world to life with kindness, love, generosity, a welcoming spirit, and a commitment to justice and lifelong learning - a reflection of all our central Jewish values.

Each week this fall, throughout this year’s High Holiday Appeal, we will recognize and celebrate the contributions of the many “CBE Heroes” in our community whose lives reflect Jewish values like Tikkun Olam (Repairing the World)  and Gemilut Hasidim (Acts of Loving Kindness), and who provide a beacon to us all.

Please click here to nominate one or more CBE members or staff as CBE Heroes and tell us about the difference they have made in the world. Whether their actions are “large” or “small”, please take a moment to recognize anyone who makes CBE and our broader community a better place.

As we celebrate and honor our heroes, we ask each of you to make a financial contribution in whatever amount you can so that CBE is able to grow and live up to our greatest values.  Last year, our High Holiday appeal raised $100,000 and we achieved over 60% participation. This year we hope to increase our participation rate to 100%. Achieving this target relies as much on the smallest gifts as it does on the largest gifts; on everyone’s participation, no matter the size of the gift. We all share in the responsibility to help ensure that CBE continues to be a vibrant center of Jewish life, and a community with a strong future. 


 

CBE Hero: Emily Blumberg, the "Vaccine Fairies", and the Chesed Committee

The very first CBE Hero we are recognizing this year is both an individual and a passionate group of volunteers that received an absolutely overwhelming number of nominations - Emily, the Chesed Committee, and the Vaccine Fairies! 

Emily and this team of generous volunteers have been essential in bringing CBE through this pandemic with boundless love, commitment, care, and warmth. They helped hundreds of people access vaccines this past spring by developing strategies for finding limited vaccine doses and then connecting with vulnerable members of the community, assisting with scheduling and transportation. 

The outpouring of testimonials we received from across the CBE community in honor of Emily, Chesed, and the Vaccine Fairies speaks for itself:

“Emily has gone out of her way to help those in need this year, from running the Chesed Committee and attending to the needs of congregants in all sorts of need from meals to mourning, to finding vaccines for those who needed them last spring. She assists everyone with warmth and respect. Emily is a true example of a mench and we should be proud to have her in the CBE community.”

“Emily and her committee of volunteers were truly angels in their service.”

“Emily is my vaccine hero. Not only did she schedule appointments for my parents’ caregivers, and hundreds of others, she taught me how to navigate and schedule vaccines, allowing me to help friends and strangers alike. She is the perfect example of how a person can lead by example.”

“Emily and the Chesed committee lovingly and tirelessly reaches out to congregants in need and finds ways ... to assist and comfort them.”

Thank you Emily, Chesed, and the Vaccine Fairies! You truly represent Jewish values in action - from Gemilut Chasadim (Acts of Loving Kindness) to B'tzelem Elohim (All Human Beings are Created in God’s Image). We celebrate, honor, and recognize the gifts you bring to our community and the world.

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual CBE High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of Emily and her dedicated team of volunteers who have made a difference to so many people this year. We are lucky to have such a warm and loving team caring for our community! 

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.


 

CBE Hero: Beth Goldstein, our Director of Education and Community Engagement, along with all the CBE teachers

Beth Goldstein, our Director of Education and Community Engagement, along with all the CBE teachers, received numerous CBE Hero nominations! 

Beth creates a welcoming and engaging environment in services and the classroom, which draws in everyone, young and old! With music, song, warmth, and laughter, she is central in strengthening Jewish education and building a tightly knit CBE family. Here is what some members of our community had to say about Beth:

“As one of the teachers in the CBE religious school, I was in awe of the way that Beth led us through a pandemic year of zoom teaching. Her support of teachers, students and families was exceptional. I felt valued by her as an educator and she inspired me with her knowledge and creativity. Beth was there.. with a smile and support for everyone.”

“Beth and the CBE religious school teachers have put in so many hours planning a variety of remote and safe in-person learning opportunities for our students. Beth has enabled our students to continue their Jewish education throughout the pandemic.”

It is unanimous - Beth’s work every week is a reflection of her commitment to the Jewish values Talmud Torah (Learning and Study) and Kol Yisrael Arevim Zeh baZeh (All Jews are Responsible for Each Other)! Thank you Beth & all the amazing CBE teachers - you are all CBE heroes!

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of Beth and in recognition and celebration of her outstanding work.

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.


 

CBE Hero: Cindi Silverman, the CBE Choir accompanist, who was nominated by the full choir!

This week's CBE Hero is Cindi Silverman, the CBE Choir accompanist, who was nominated by the full choir! They write:

The CBE Choir nominates Cindi Silverman, our long-time accompanist, as a CBE Hero. As she retires from this volunteer role, we want to express our gratitude for her masterful accompaniment of the choir – 17 years at High Holidays and over 25 years for our special Shabbat Shirah services. She has elevated our music-making with skill, passion, and artistry. Cindi poured her heart, soul and immense talents into the choir and set an example of excellence and dedication. We know she will bring those same talents to her continuing work in the community through Na’aseh and other social justice initiatives. She has embodied a variety of Jewish values by donating her time to the choir and other activities, enhancing the choir’s study of a wide variety of Jewish music, and pursuing fairness and justice for people in need. Thank you Cindi for making a difference to the CBE community and the wider world!

Cindi, the entire CBE community echoes our thanks for making the music that has accompanied us for 25 years! You are an example of the value of Gemilut Chasadim (Acts of Loving Kindness), Tikkun Olam (Repairing the World), and Talmud Torah (Learning and Study).

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of Cindi and the CBE Choir.

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.


 

CBE Heroes: Rabbi Mike and Cantor Sarra

Rabbi Mike and Cantor Sarra have always been stewards for this community, but especially during the pandemic they have helped us evolve, transform, and continue to thrive under challenging circumstances. They are CBE Heroes who constantly demonstrate caring, commitment, creativity, and leadership - showing what it means to live out the value Kol Yisrael Arevim Zeh baZeh (All Jews are Responsible for Each Other). With their warm laughter, renewing song, and wise words, they have lifted up and guided our community through the years.

In the CBE Community’s words:

Rabbi Mike and Cantor Sarra have gone above and beyond in finding ways to keep our community connected during the pandemic, while maintaining safety. One example is the way in which they travelled (with the Torah!) to various members' backyards to conduct b'nai mitzvah in person. Most synagogues held b'nai mitzvah completely virtually, with Rabbi and Cantor each at their own homes. It was so meaningful to create a safe way for these b'nai mitzvah and their families to be with our community leaders.

We are so grateful to Rabbi Mike for his wisdom, diligence, and creativity in guiding our dear community through the frightening days of the pandemic. He nurtured and protected our membership with the love and responsibility of a parent, always making sure that our health remained the top priority. Rabbi Mike’s devotion has helped CBE remain the involved, connected, and spirited congregation that it is….even in these unprecedented times!

I have struggled sometimes during the Covid era, but seeing and hearing Cantor Sarra always brightens my life. Her voice and her kindness radiate and help me reconnect to the joyful parts of the world.

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of Cantor Sarra and Rabbi Mike.

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.


 

CBE Heroes: The Solar Panel Team

It may be impossible to overstate the impact that the entire CBE Solar Panel team have had on our local community and the earth, helping us to live out our environmental values.

As one CBE Member described:

The Solar Panel project was a tangible act of Tikkun Olam (Repairing the World). While it is a small act in the grand scheme of climate crisis, it is nonetheless a step when gathered with other small steps that can move us in the right direction for addressing global warming as a result of fossil fuel consumption. It was also a point of pride that CBE was at least for a period of time, the largest laity solar panel installation in Massachusetts.

Check out our solar panel monitoring website, which indicates that our solar panel installation has saved over 112 thousand pounds of CO2 emissions so far, an equivalent to planting nearly 850 trees! 

The Solar Panel Team included people from across the community, including Matt Liebman, George Morton, Barry Nyer, Matt Kontoff, Bob Becker, Bob Ferrara, Peter Lovitz, Fred Goldstein, David Leers, Sarah Coletti, Rick Green and many others. It was a labor of love, from the proposal brought to the CBE board in 2018, until construction was completed in 2020.

The renewable energy that is now generated by these solar panels not only powers all of the CBE building’s needs, it also supports a dozen low income MA households at a discounted electricity rate. This enables CBE to contribute both to the environmental well being of our planet and the physical well being of our neighbors. More detail about the solar project is on the CBE website here.

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of the incredible team that saw the solar project through, a strong commitment to Tikkun Olam and helping CBE become more environmentally friendly.

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.


 

CBE Hero: Lori Lafayette

The nominations make clear that Lori Lafayette, CBE’s Clergy Assistant since 2018, is a true CBE Hero! Lori actively reflects the values of Kol Yisrael Arevim Zeh baZeh (All Jews are Responsible for Each Other) and Gemilut Chasadim (Acts of Loving Kindness).

Our CBE members say:

Lori is such an important unsung hero at CBE. She consistently goes above and beyond and pours her heart and soul into supporting Rabbi Mike and the rest of the CBE staff. During a transitional period, she stepped up and helped run the day to day operations in addition to her normal duties (all while working a second job and going to school to get her MBA!) She is always the first person to offer a helping hand and she is a wonderful model of someone who takes pride in developing personal relationships with everyone she interacts with. The volume and quality of work that Lori has done and continues to do to help the congregation run smoothly is incredibly deserving of praise and recognition.

Lori works tirelessly to do whatever it takes and whatever is needed in the CBE office. She picked up an enormous amount of slack in the time when we were without a Synagogue Administrator and did so without hesitation. Most importantly, she does an amazing job keeping Rabbi Mike and Cantor Sarra on track and organized. If all that was amazing enough, doing this during COVID with restrictions in the office and managing the surroundings in the office is nothing short of Herculean. She is unquestionably a CBE Hero.

Lori, thank you so much for your wonderful and generous work on behalf of the CBE congregation. We are very grateful that you are part of this community!

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of Lori Lafayette. To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.


 

CBE Heroes: CBE Board Presidents Past and Present - David Leers, Chuck Pollak, Jaymi Formaggio

This week's CBE Heroes are the Board Presidents Past & Present - David, Chuck, and Jaymi, who have devoted their hearts and time to support and strengthen the CBE community during their service. Their contributions impact every part of CBE, from High Holiday services to personal connections, especially during this COVID era!
 
As the CBE president during the first year of the pandemic, David led us through some challenging situations. David has done an amazing job balancing the health and safety of individual congregants with the health of the CBE community as a whole. His work as president will surely sustain this community for a long time to come.
 
David and other Board members called me in the early days of the pandemic to ask how our family was doing and offer his help. It made me feel warm and welcome, and part of a real community.
 
Chuck and Jaymi took the reins from David’s capable hands and have been outstanding leaders with both professionalism and passion. They worked throughout the summer to develop a hybrid approach to religious services and activities in the new reality, balancing safety and connection. I am excited to see what they achieve over the coming year!
 
Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of all of our CBE Board Presidents, past and present!

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.

CBE Hero (and Star): Bob Becker

Bob Becker has volunteered as the editor of CBE's "The Star" newsletter since 1996. In this role, he has worked closely with clergy, staff, and congregants to deliver a quality publication that brings our Jewish community the necessary information that they need to be up to date on CBE services, religious school, lifecycle, educational, sisterhood and brotherhood events.  Bob has announced that he will be leaving this position shortly.

Bob is a CBE Hero because in this capacity he has demonstrated Kol Yisrael Arevim Zeh baZeh - All Jews are Responsible for Each Other, by taking on this central communications role for such a long period of time.  The CBE Communications Committee recommends that Bob be recognized as a CBE Hero for 5782 given the many hours of time and talent that he has provided to the community over the past 25 years.

In addition to his work as editor, Bob has been a contributor to Adult Education Programs and a regular participant at CBE Services for all of these years, demonstrating the "Talmud Torah" - Learning and Study - value.  Bob also is very visible at CBE Building and Grounds events as well as Brotherhood events.  Some comments from congregants regarding Bob:

“Bob always steps in at the last minute to help.  He finds the roof material that we need every year for our Sukkah!”

“Bob has been one of CBE's most frequent participants at services, Torah study, and minyans.”

“He has always been a most reliable contributor at CBE cleanup and work days.  He has hosted town building inspections and responds at any hour to unexpected building alarms”.

“Flexible and accommodating, even when there is a Star deadline to meet.”

Dear CBE community - as you plan your gift to the annual High Holiday Appeal, please consider giving in honor of Bob Becker and his 25 years bringing us The Star.

To contribute, click here or send a check to 133 Prospect Street, Acton, MA 01720. Your gift to CBE is an investment in our community, our values, and most importantly, our people.

Wed, November 30 2022 6 Kislev 5783