Recognizing Excellence in Character Among Orthodox Youth

Sharon Shapiroby: Sharon Shapiro

On Tuesday evening our foundation honored one student from the upper grades of each of the seven Boston Orthodox schools for giving back to their community. The Rose Ruderman Scholarship is awarded each year in memory of our grandmother, a woman who was always busy doing for others- her family, friends and community.

The seven award recipients were: Eta Rubin (Bais Yaakov of Boston), Tzvi Dubinsky (New England Hebrew Academy), Chaviva Liss (Striar Hebrew Academy of Sharon), Ilya Nemirovsky (Shaloh House Day School), Moshe Yakov Rosenbloom (Mesivta High School), Bayla Bukiet (Torah Academy) and Miriam Renz (Maimonides School).

The scholarship program is a joint initiative of our foundation and Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) in Boston. Barry Shrage, President of CJP, spoke eloquently at the ceremony. Amanda Rossi and Alan Oliff of CJP organized it for us.

The recipients were selected by their school principals. During the ceremony the principals introduced their recipients and spoke beautifully of the exemplary community work the students had performed. The scholarships will be used to further their Jewish education.

This is my favorite event of the year. At the ceremony, I spoke about my Bubby (grandmother)- how much she did for the community and how the lessons she taught us are what drives our work as a Foundation. I noted that the recipients were selected by their schools for exhibiting the qualities my grandmother possessed throughout her life:

– understanding the importance of family,
– showing kindness,
– showing respect towards others,
– reliability and dependability (both in and out of the classroom),
– a strong desire to go above and beyond to help other people, and
– a commitment to improve their school and community.

To the winners I say yasher koach– a job well done. You are models for what we should all believe in and stand for: that character and helping others are just as, if not more, important than academic achievement.

Sharon Shapiro is a Trustee of the Ruderman Family Foundation. She has been an active member of the Greater Boston Jewish philanthropic community for many years. Her current projects reflect her family’s deep commitment to promote disability inclusion in the Jewish community.

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