VIVA Women’s Voices – Women Empowered
WRJ Pacific District Convention 2016
Rio Hotel and Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada
Nov. 3-6, 2016
At the 53rd WRJ Pacific District Convention we once again proved women are Stronger Together and that it takes a village of dedicated, hard-working ladies to reach our goals. Over 90 volunteers participated and gave countless hours of their time during the last 18 months and the results were nothing short of spectacular. Thank you, thank you, thank y'all very much!
From kick off on Thursday through the Bountiful YES Fund Brunch and Closing Ceremony Sunday, we were warmly welcomed by the Sisterhoods of Congregation Ner Tamid and Temple Sinai of Las Vegas. We thank the Sisterhood of Congregation Ner Tamid, Rabbi Sanford Akselrad and Cantor Jessica Hutchings for Friday Shabbat Services and a delicious dinner. A special thank you is extended to Sisterhood President and Local Arrangements Chair, Michelle Blank.
Scholar-In-Residence Rabbi Joe Black of Temple Emanuel Denver, CO also led us in song and Torah study and treated us to a special concert Saturday afternoon. It was wonderful having his lovely wife, Sue, join us as she participated in the workshop "Changing Role of the Clergy's Significant Other".
Special gratitude is extended to WRJ President Blair C. Marks for joining us for the entire weekend. Blair led an Area Director's training, delivered a powerful D'var Torah, updated us regarding WRJ's influence in the Progressive movement and the most recent positions on social justice, encouraged us to share, network, get involved, and utilize the resources that WRJ offers via Yammer, social media and the website and the list goes on. We were truly blessed to have her in our presence to learn from and be motivated and inspired by such a remarkable woman.
We wished every woman in our district could have joined us in Las Vegas. However, contrary to the popular expression, "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas", we hope all of our attendees will share the wealth of information and ideas with their sisterhoods, congregations and others at your local area days.
Judie Shor Ning, WRJ PD President and Dana Adler, WRJ PD 1st Vice-President
2016 Pacific District Convention Highlights
Download The Why, 2016 Pacific District Convention Opening Prayer by Erika Barnathan, Temple Ahavat Shalom Sisterhood, Northridge, CA here.
Rabbi Joe Black: Scholar & Musician-in-Residence
We are delighted to announce that Rabbi Joe Black will be our Scholar & Musician-in-Residence at the WRJ Pacific District Convention in Las Vegas! So mark your calendars for Thursday , November 3, 2016, 7pm - Sunday, November 6, 2016, 1 pm - you won't want to miss this special weekend!
Rabbi Black's rabbinate is characterized by his passion for creating and celebrating sacred community. He strives to help others find God’s presence, not only in prayer and study, but in every interaction of daily life. Rabbi Black is considered a rising star in our Movement for his spiritual approach and is a nationally recognized musician and author.
WRJ President Blair Marks: WRJ Guest
Blair Marks was elected WRJ President in December 2013. She previously served as WRJ Vice President, WRJ Treasurer, the first WRJ Audit Committee Chair, and WRJ Budget Committee Chair. She has developed and delivered specialized YES Fund training for the WRJ board and “WRJ 101” training for WRJ District leaders.
Blair became involved with sisterhood in the early 1990s while at member of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim in Charleston, SC. Currently she is active in the Temple Kol Emeth Sisterhood in Marietta, GA where she is a Board Trustee. She is a Ramblin’ Reck from Georgia Tech (yes, she’s an engineer!) and holds master’s degrees from the University of Michigan and Georgia State University.