BNC-Phoenix Chapter COVID-19 Protocol for All In-Person Events and Study Groups

Until further notice, the BNC Phoenix Chapter COVID-19 protocol
for in-person study groups and events is summarized as follows:

  • All participants must provide proof of vaccination prior to attending any in-person chapter study groups or events.
  • Masks must be worn indoors, except when actively speaking, eating or drinking. Masks are not required outdoors.
  • To provide proof of vaccination:
  • Take a picture of your vaccination card with your phone and email it to:
  • Include your name and preferred phone number in your email.
  • Deadline: Proof of vaccination must be submitted 3 days prior to your attending an in-person study group meeting or event, in order for the facilitators or event coordinators to receive accurate lists.
  • Vaccination proof must be received whether the group is meeting indoors or outdoors, in public or private venues.
  • Proof of vaccination cannot be accepted at the door.
  • In the absence of proof of vaccination, the assumption will be that registrants are not vaccinated, and will not be permitted to participate.

Presidents' Message
Dear Fellow Brandeis Phoenix Chapter Members,

November brings a fall breeze and autumn leaves. Thanksgiving is later this month and we all have so much to be thankful for:
With much gratitude, we thank our fabulous Study Group VPs, their committee and all of our facilitators for the vast selection of study groups that began in October and will continue throughout the study group year. Thank you, as well, to our chapter members who registered and are enjoying their groups!

After twenty months of meeting solely online, we are finally able to meet in person. The new chapter COVID protocols that we have put in place allow us all to feel safer when gathering. Thank you to all who have sent in proof of vaccination in order to attend in-person events. If you haven’t done so already, please email a picture of your vaccination card to Thank you to Marcia Langer and Sara Leopold for creating and maintaining our COVID vaccination records.

Kudos to our Book & Author Volunteers Co-Chairs, Hillary Kaminsky, Terriann Kleiner, Stephanie Klopper and Carol Kadet, for a successful volunteer meeting on October 25th at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge. Our authors and moderator were revealed and attendees were able to sign up for a myriad of volunteer activities to support our March 18, 2022 Book & Author event to be held at the same location. Thanks to our 2022 Book & Author Co-Chairs, Nancy Sacks Goldberg and Iris Wigal for their leadership and planning! We are grateful for all of our volunteers, without whom we couldn’t offer our many chapter events!

Our fall event fundraiser, Phoenix Adventure A to Z, held on October 30th and 31st, was a successful and fun walking tour of downtown Phoenix. Twenty-two teams participated over the two-day period. Thanks to our Fundraising Programs VPs, Patti Grossman and Terriann Kleiner and our terrific event Co-Chairs, Lyn Walter and Susan Sacks for planning and orchestrating such a special activity! It was creative and so much fun for all!

We are looking forward to the first in-person new member coffee of our Presidency, scheduled for November 5th. We can’t wait to meet and welcome new members!

We are grateful for the opportunity, in the last five months of our Presidency, to meet many of you in person for the first time! We have missed the intimacy and connection that meeting in person provides. Now that we will have more events offline, you will have the opportunity to get more involved in our chapter. We do amazing things, all because of volunteers who step up to lead or support the chapter in a variety of ways. We welcome you and your ideas and are always looking for new faces to support our mission. We are a fundraising organization connected to Brandeis University through activities that reflect the values on which the University was founded: academic excellence, social justice, non-sectarianism, and service to the community. Help us put the FUN in FUNdraising! 

We look forward to seeing you soon. May we all enjoy our Fall!
Stay healthy, happy and safe.
With much gratitude,
Jan & Linda
Book & Author Bios
32nd Annual Book & Author Event
Jerad Alexander
Jerad W. Alexander has written for Esquire, Rolling Stone, The Nation, Narratively and elsewhere. He holds an MFA in Literary Reportage from the New York University Arthur L. Carter School of Journalism. From 1998 to 2006, he served as a U.S. Marine, deploying to the Mediterranean, East Africa and Iraq. He grew up on military bases, from the east coast of the United States to Japan. He currently lives in New York City, but calls Atlanta home. Volunteers: Growing Up In the Forever War, a “beautiful, dark chronicle of an American life and lineage shaped by empire” has been called “riveting and morally complex” and “an absolute triumph.”

Photo: Denise R. Rosenhaft
Lan Samantha Chang
Lan Samantha Chang is the author of a collection of short stories, Hunger; and two novels, Inheritance and All Is Forgotten, Nothing Is Lost. Her work has been translated into nine languages and has been selected twice for The Best American Short Stories. She has received creative writing fellowships from Stanford, Princeton, Harvard, the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Her fiction has earned the Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award (1998); the PEN/Open Book Award (2005); and the Berlin Prize (2021). Chang is the director of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her newest novel, The Family Chao (2022), has been described as “a gorgeous, gripping literary work…that explores betrayal, passion, race, culture, and the American dream.”

Photo: Ife Oluwa Nihinlola
Thomas Perry
Thomas Perry was born in Tonawanda, NY. He received a B.A. from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Rochester. He has worked as a park maintenance man, factory laborer, commercial fisherman, university administrator and teacher, and a writer and producer of prime-time network television shows. 
Perry is the bestselling author of thirty novels, including The Butcher's Boy, which won the Edgar Award, The Old Man, which will air as a television series starring Jeff Bridges in 2022, the Jane Whitefield series and many standalones. Pursuit was the first recipient of the Gumshoe Award for Best Novel. The Independent Mystery Booksellers’ Association included Vanishing Act in its “100 Favorite Mysteries of the 20th Century,” and Metzger’s Dog was voted one of NPR’s 100 Killer Thrillers - Best Thrillers Ever. Of Thomas Perry, Stephen King observed, “The fact is there are probably only half a dozen suspense writers now alive who can be depended on to deliver high voltage shocks, vivid, sympathetic characters, and compelling narratives each time they publish. Thomas Perry is one of them.” Robert Parker said, “Thomas Perry is, quite simply, brilliant.” And The Boston Globe said, “Perry is the best suspense writer in the business.”

Photo: Sam Dobbins, AccessOne Photography
Read about the other two authors and our moderator in the December Bulletin.
Study Groups
Study Group Registration Continues!
PARTICIPANTS: If you registered for study groups after September 10, and have not heard from your facilitator(s), please contact them and make sure you are on their group list.

FACILITATORS: If a participant informs you that they registered for your group after the group lists were sent, please verify with the Study Group VPs.
This season of Brandeis Phoenix study groups is in full swing as more and more groups have had their first meetings! There are still many study groups that have space available for more participants. For details and to sign up for available study groups, see the Guide and Registration links below and on our website.

Even a group that has reached its maximum participation may have openings from time to time - if you are interested in a particular group, contact the facilitator(s) to see if space is available. Very often there is! Look in the calendar linked below for group details, which include contact information for the facilitators. A $5 guest fee will apply.

*This Link is for your initial registration only. For additional registrations, use the link to "edit your registration information" from your previous confirmation email.
Monday, November 29*
*Date Change
12:30 - 2:00 pm
12701 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale

Our November meeting for Arizona Authors will be on Monday, November 29, from 12:30- 2:00 pm.
The author/speaker will be Kerrie Droban.
Kerrie Droban is an award-winning author of fiction, poetry, true crime and memoir. She is also a criminal defense attorney with decades of experience in capital litigation and post-conviction investigation. Kerrie has written five best-selling true crime memoirs, one of which, Vagos, Mongols & Outlaws: My Infiltrations into America’s Deadliest Biker Gangs, was made into a television series called Gangland Undercover. 

Running with the Devil: The True Story of the ATF’s Infiltration of the Hells Angels, won the USA News National Book Award for best True Crime. Prodigal Father, Pagan Son: My Life Born Into Madness is a two-time winner of the USA News National Book Award for Best True Crime and Best Memoir. Her bookA Socialite Scorned: The Murder of Gary Triano, was featured on American Greed, Dateline and Investigation ID, among other national television shows.
Guests are welcome with a $5.00 fee at the door.
RSVPs are required to:
Merrill Kalman at
Wednesday, November 10
10:30 am

On November 10, Men for Brandeis Activities (MBA) will visit the Arizona Military Museum on McDowell Rd in Phoenix. The Museum is on the Papago Park Military Reservation, just west of the Papago Buttes.

The Museum is sponsored by the Arizona National Guard Historical Society, and is dedicated to educating the public about the military history of Arizona, the militia and National Guard of Arizona. Museum exhibits, narratives, library and archives relate to uniforms, arms, weapons, photos, maps and other artifacts beginning with the Conquistadors up to and including Vietnam.

An outdoor lunch will follow the museum visit, at RnR Gastropub in Old Town Scottsdale.

Group participants will be sent more details by email.
For additional information, contact the facilitator:
Leith Baletin 480-874-9434
Study Groups - Out & About Again!
Get Out of the Valley “Light” Hiking Group:
October 24th was our first hike; the weather was just right, 3,600' elevation at a Camp Creek FH#1058 trailhead. We traveled up to the Maricopa trail and after a while, turned around and returned to our parking location at the Sears Kay Ranch gate. From there, we drove about a mile to the Sears Kay ruins site, and most of us went up the trail to the ruins, returning for a picnic lunch.
Pictured from left to right: Simon Burrow, Louis Lantz (with Gracie the dog), Joyce Steinberg, Bob Kirschenbaum, Sharon Mittelman, Jytte Methmann, Rick Markson. Not pictured: Martha Patrick and Ileen Herberg.
2021-2022 Study Group Vice Presidents
Stephanie Klopper, Joyce Steinberg and Barbara Stern
BNC Phoenix Chapter Vaccination Protocol applies to all study groups and events - attendees must submit proof of vaccination in advance to Masks are required indoors.
Fundraising Programs
The Face of Ballroom Dance: A Multimedia Presentation
Chapter Annual Meeting and Program
This year, the annual meeting program will focus on the transformative aspects of ballroom dance. Competitions, costumes, team dancing and show dancing will be covered.
There is no charge to attend this event.

Wednesday, February 16, 2022 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
The New Shul • 7825 E Paradise Lane • Scottsdale
Stay tuned for more details.
Please Join Us to Plan Events!
There’s always room for more members of the Fundraising Programs committee! If you would like to help plan and implement fabulous programs and events for our BNC Phoenix Chapter, we meet on the 4th Wednesday of the month. Please join us on Wednesday, December 22 (note: no November meeting) at 10:00 am for our next Zoom meeting. Just email or call to let us know you’ll attend and we will send you the meeting link. We look forward to hearing from you!
Fundraising Programs Vice Presidents
Patti Grossman 602-885-0158 (phone or text) and Terriann Kleiner 314-761-3132 (phone or text)
Save the Date
In-Person Events Planned for this Season:

New and Prospective Members Social
Friday, November 5, 10:00 am
University on Wheels (a virtual event)
Winter 2022

The Chapter Annual Meeting
The Face of Ballroom Dance: A Multimedia Presentation
Wednesday, February 16, 2022
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
The New Shul • 7825 E Paradise Lane • Scottsdale
32nd Annual Book & Author Event
JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa
Friday, March 18, 2022

Bookmark Donors Cocktail Reception
Thursday, March 17, 2022

Dinner with the Authors
Following the Cocktail Reception
Spring Event and Installation of the 2022-2023 Board
Spring 2022
Membership News
Membership Milestones
  • Congratulations to Hillary and Harry Kaminsky on the engagement of their son, Michael, to Hannah Tehrani.
  • Congratulations to Jill Sandler on the arrival of her grandson, Arbor Jacob Sandler. Proud parents are Zoë and Austin Sandler.
  • Best wishes to Nancy Moffitt for a speedy recovery.
  • Best wishes to Robert Ullman for a speedy recovery.
  • Our sincere condolences to Barbara and Terry Schwartz, on the passing of Terry's mother, Phyllis Schwartz.
We Welcome Our New Members
Dan Braver, Cathy Cohan, Barbara Feldman, Michael Feldman, Judy Green, Norm Levy, Jeff Lipsman, Harv Weisblat

New and Prospective Members Social - Join us!
Friday, November 5 from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Email the VPs at for more information or to RSVP.
To report life-cycle events, please contact:
Susan Sacks at 480-860-5256 or

To report a change in email address, phone number or mailing address, please contact:
Ms. Bruce Galin,
She is our Data Manager and will ensure you receive Chapter mailings and information.
Name Tags
Would you prefer not to wear the stick-on name tags used at Chapter functions?
Here is an alternative.
We are offering personalized, magnetic BNC name tags for $13.00, including shipping. You can get your name tag by filling out the order form and mailing it to the listed address.
Note: Replacement magnetic backs for existing name tags are available; contact the Chapter office.
Membership Vice Presidents
Carol Kadet and Gale Gradus
Community Outreach
Charitable Organizations Need Our Help!
This month, we’re collecting toiletries for transitioning youth through Jewish Family and Children's Services

You can donate items such as:

hand and bath soap, washcloths, deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, hand and body lotion, toothpaste and toothbrushes, hair combs and brushes, loofahs, hair accessories, shaving razors and shaving cream, sanitary products and anything else you can think of!

Please remember that we’re helping both young men and young women. 

Donations may be dropped off at Ellen’s or Wendy’s house.

Stay safe and stay well!
Ellen Kirschenbaum and Wendy Cohen

Knit A Mitzvah

Do you Knit?
Do you Crochet?
Help us make Scarves,
Newborn Baby Caps and
Lap Blankets

We donate newborn baby caps and lap
blankets to Honor Health Medical
Center, scarves and adult lap blankets
to JFCS and chemo caps to Virginia G.
Piper Cancer Center.

For more information, please contact:

Ronee Siegel 917-273-0393

Joan Davis 602–499-8357
Mitzvah Mavens

Participants in this study group volunteer at a variety of Valley non-profit organizations. They meet at the specific locations of the organizations on various dates when possible. This year, they plan to begin in January, but if there are activities that can be done at home, participants will be notified.
Mitzvah Mavens Facilitators:
Patti Grossman
Ellen Kirschenbaum

Ileen Herberg
Nan Waldman
For more information, contact the Community Outreach Chairs:
Wendy Cohen ~ Ellen Kirschenbaum
Volunteer Opportunities
A wonderful way to get involved with our local BNC Chapter is to share your expertise with us. It’s a win-win! You get to meet some of the other members, maintain your skills and learn new ones, and the Chapter benefits from your experience.
The current skill sets needed are:
Website, Marketing, Publicity, Technology, Study Group Facilitator

If you would like to volunteer in these or any other areas,
please contact Ruth Lerner
Brandeis National Committee's Honoring Our History campaign supports the digitization of select archives and special collections in the Brandeis Library that highlight social justice.
For more information about the campaign, or to make a donation, see the BNC website.
Brandeis University Happenings
A sense of place on Brandeis' campus
At Brandeis, there's somewhere for everyone to feel at home.

Maddy DuLong '23
Oct. 7, 2021
Just like the wide array of clubs, activities, and courses here at Brandeis, there are so many hidden gems on this campus to explore and enjoy as study spots, hangout spots, or simply places to go when you need to chill and be alone. The class of '23 had the chance to explore this campus for a year before COVID hit, and discovered some of those hidden gems. Some of my classmates shared their favorite places on campus so that I could share them with you.
Solvai Lewenberg '23:
"To be quite frank, I don’t know the name of this mural/painting (above), but it is the one next to the [The Women’s Studies Research Center] building. My best memory there would be the first time I saw the painting. I was walking home with a group of new friends from a cafe in Waltham and we cut through the cemetery and through the gender studies building to get back to campus. It was a really great day because I was new to campus and was just starting to make new friends. My friend Lauren pointed out this painting and how beautiful she thought it was, and it stuck with me. I don’t really visit this painting much because it’s really out of the way- but I love to point it out now when I do pass it because I feel like it is slightly hidden and unknown."

Brandeis University Admissions by the Numbers - Fun Facts you didn't know - check it out!
Did you miss one of Brandeis' virtual events and would like to access a recording of it?
Visit the on-demand Virtual Event Library.
General Chapter Information
Chapter Board Meetings
Board meetings are conducted virtually, via Zoom.
Chapter members are welcome to attend all meetings,
which are generally held on the 3rd Wednesdays of the month at 10:00 am.

Our next meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 17 from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm.

RSVP: Email Corresponding Secretary Joyce Grant
at in order to receive the Zoom link.

Chapter Presidents: Jan Lebovitz and Linda Ullman
Mission Statement
Brandeis National Committee is dedicated to providing philanthropic support to Brandeis University, a distinguished liberal arts and research university founded by the American Jewish community. Its membership is connected to the University through fundraising and through activities that reflect the values on which the University was founded: academic excellence, social justice, nonsectarianism and service to the community.

Presidents: Jan Lebovitz and Linda Ullman

Editors: Kathleen Witkin and Sara Leopold ~ Assistant Editor: Ronee Siegel