Sikh designer Nima Oberoi's take on the Hanukkah menorah
Sikh designer Nima Oberoi's take on the Hanukkah menorah

Sikh artist offers menorah as response to Pittsburgh

Indian-born designer Nima Oberoi wasn’t planning to make a donation to a Jewish organization. “I’ve never taken a stand on something to do with religion,” Oberoi said.

But now the S.F.-based homewares designer is donating the proceeds from 150 menorahs to the S.F.-based Jewish Community Relations Council. The menorahs, from the Nima Oberoi-Lunares collection, are priced at $99.

Nima Oberoi
Nima Oberoi

The idea, Oberoi said, is based on her antipathy to the kind of intolerance that would lead to the shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh.

“I was horrified with what happened in Pittsburgh,” the San Francisco resident said.

So she called up Debbie Findling, a friend and a philanthropic advisor, and told her that she wanted to do something to support the Jewish community.

“I had 150 pieces in stock and I said, ‘How can I make a difference?’” said Oberoi, who is Sikh.

Oberoi designs home décor in sleek metals and vibrant colors through her wholesale company, Lunares. Her wares sell in high-end department and homeware stores. The gold “O” menorah is available online in the Lunares Judaica collection.

The decision to make the donation was impulsive, according to Oberoi, although she does other philanthropic giving through a foundation, and she wants the money to go to JCRC’s democracy and interfaith work. Findling, for one, is appreciative. “You’re such a mensch,” she told Oberoi.

Said Oberoi with a laugh: “I didn’t know the meaning!”