PHDS’s awards dinner planned for June 17


The Providence Hebrew Day School’s 71st annual awards dinner will be held on Sunday, June 17, in the Victor and Gussie Baxt Social Hall at the Alliance’s Dwares Jewish Community Center, in Providence. 

David London is this year’s Amudim Award honoree.

London met his wife, Toby, at Brown University in 1961. They settled in Attleboro and joined Congregation Agudas Achim, which London’s grandparents helped establish in 1913 and where he served a term as president.

London started his career in his family’s retail business, and went on to work as a trade association executive, lobbyist and property developer, while Toby became a partner in a Providence benefits consulting firm.

In 1998, the Londons joined the Jewish Federation’s 50th Anniversary of Israel Mission, which changed the direction of their lives.  Both served terms as federation officers.  Toby London served as editorial chair of The Jewish Voice and treasurer of the Sandra Bornstein Holocaust Education Center, in Providence. David London was a trustee and treasurer of the Brown RISD Hillel. 

In 2007, the couple moved to Providence.  They are active at Temple Emanu-El and in Brown alumni leadership.

In 2013, London’s fellow Hillel trustees asked him to take on the difficult task of building an extension of the Providence eruv around the Brown and Rhode Island School of Design campuses to help attract more Orthodox students to the schools.    

On April 4, 2017, the completed extension was dedicated at a ceremony that celebrated the collaboration of local and national rabbis, Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza, Councilman Samuel Zurier, local utility companies and the Providence Eruv Corporation.

The Providence Hebrew Day School salutes David and Toby London as  true “Amudim” (pillars) of the Jewish community.

Rafi and Anita Minkin are this year’s recipients of the Generation to Generation Award.

The Minkins came to Providence from Portland, Maine, 24 years ago.

Rafi Minkin has held positions in sales and marketing and is currently self-employed as a property owner and manager. Anita’s background is in social work and gerontology. For the past 10 years, she has been in a private practice, specializing in geriatric mental health.

Rafi Minkin’s family was actively involved in the establishment of Jewish organizations in Portland, Maine, and he was in the first graduating class at the Portland Hebrew Day School.  The Minkins’ four children, Merav, Yishai, Nadav and Tali, followed in their father’s footsteps at the Portland day school.  Tali attended the New England Academy of Torah, in Providence, graduating in 1997. 

Continuing the tradition of Jewish education, the Minkins’ grandchildren attend the Providence Hebrew Day School, as well as yeshivot in New York, New Jersey and Ohio.

Three generations of Minkins are often seen at daily synagogue services.  When volunteers are needed, Minkins of all ages are at the forefront, performing acts of charity and community service. 

Rafi and Anita Minkin are beloved members of the PHDS community who embody the principle of transmitting Jewish tradition l’dor v’dor  – from generation to generation.

The Alumnus Award for 2018 will be presented to Rabbi Yisroel Weiner, who graduated from the Providence Hebrew Day School in 1998.  Weiner had many wonderful role models, both at th e PHDS and at home, and community service was ingrained in him at a young age.

Weiner studied at Ner Israel Rabbinical College, in Baltimore, and at the Mir Yeshiva, in Jerusalem.  He received rabbinic ordination under the tutelage of one of the foremost American rabbinic authorities, the late Rabbi Efraim Greenblatt.  He holds a graduate degree in education administration and supervision from Loyola University Chicago.

Weiner, a passionate teacher, and his wife Suri, an occupational therapist, live in Phoenix, where Rabbi Weiner is principal of the Phoenix Hebrew Academy. 

The Weiners are known for their willingness to serve and for the warm and welcoming hospitality in their home.  The six Weiner children attend Jewish day school.

The Weiners are famous for their cross-country car trips, and the PHDS family is proud to welcome them back when they visit Rhode Island.

The Providence Hebrew Day School will also pay a special tribute to Beverly Hall, a dedicated member of the elementary school teaching staff.  After many years of teaching PHDS children how to read, Hall is retiring from the classroom. She will work at the school as a specialist one day a week, providing instruction in art. 

The 71st annual awards dinner is open to the public. For details, to attend, or to make a contribution in honor of the event, call the school at 401-331-5327, ext. 21.

RUCHAMA SZENDRO is a member of the Amudim committee.

Amudim, PHDS