Thursday, August 30, 2012 | return to: columns, faces



by suzan berns

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Challah and China

Linda Frank
Linda Frank
Challahs will grace each of the 40 tables when Linda Frank of San Francisco is honored by the Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation for “bridging communities, Jewish and Asian (but mainly Chinese),” she reports. The breads will be part of the Shabbat ritual at AIISF’s Immigrant Heritage Awards on Friday, Sept. 28. “I wouldn’t have accepted a Friday night honor as a representative of the Jewish community without it,” Frank writes.

Among other involvements, Frank was instrumental in presenting the American Jewish Committee–sponsored “The Jews in Modern China” exhibit in the Presidio in 2010, and worked closely with the Israeli Consulate on its recent Israel China Cultural Festival. Frank has a number of personal connections with China, as well. Her son is a New York Times journalist stationed there who also runs two restaurants in Beijing with his Chinese wife. And Frank’s latest novel, “The Lost Torah of Shanghai,” is set in China. (The book will be released late this year or early next, she says.) For information about the Immigrant Heritage Awards, visit


All in the family

David Klein of Oakland continues a three-generation family tradition as he joins the board of Hebrew Free Loan. His grandfather Art Becker was president from 1981 to 1983, and at 100 years old is still a member of HFLA’s advisory council. Steve Becker, Klein’s uncle (and brother of his mom, Susan Klein) was president from 2004 to 2007. Other new board members are Lisa Spiegel and Howard Steierman, both of San Francisco. P.S. An HFLA/Hollywood connection from the agency’s Jordan Gill: Klein works for the Internet company IAC, which is owned by media mogul Barry Diller, whose grandfather Bernard Diller was a former HFLA president.


Welcome to Wine Country

Rabbi Mordecai Miller
Rabbi Mordecai Miller
Santa Rosa Congregation Beth Ami will install its new spiritual leader, Rabbi Mordecai Miller, on Sept. 9 — just in time for the High Holy Days. The son of a rabbi, he grew up in South Africa after his father (Rabbi Meyer Miller) accepted a post there. He joins Santa Rosa’s Conservative congregation after 21 years in St. Louis at Brith Sholom Kneseth Israel. Prior posts include synagogues in Canton, Ohio and St. Paul, Minn. “We love the opportunity to experience a cosmopolitan community in the Wine Country,” Miller wrote in a message to his new congregation.



Short shorts

Barbara Rosenberg of San Francisco has a follow-up item about the nomination of her grandson Jacob Reuben Rosenberg for the San Jose Stage Company’s 2012 Bay Area High School Musical Theatre State Awards, known as the Jimmies. “He won!” she writes. His very appropriate prize: an acting scholarship … Bette Levin of  San Francisco reports that her daughter Lauren Hyman of Berkeley is one of four people nationwide to be honored with a 2012 award from the Association of Oncology Social Work. She received the Dennis Roth Neuro-Oncology Award for her professionalism, integrity and commitment to excellence in patient care … Lorri Holzberg of Menlo Park, a registered dietitian and diabetes educator, received the Dolores Nyhus Memorial Award from the California Dietetic Association … Carolyn Bell Steinberg has been named American Friends of Tel Aviv University’s Northern California director. She joins AFTAU from Hadassah, where she served as major gifts officer for the Central Pacific Coast region.

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