CT News

UConn Hillel 85th anniversary gala to honor community leaders, students

WEST HARTFORD – The University of Connecticut Hillel will honor six Jewish leaders at its 85th Anniversary event to be held Nov. 18 at the Hartford Club in Hartford. Community leaders Lauri and David Miller, and former UConn Hillel executive director Gary Wolff, will be honored along with UConn students: Eidan Avner, Dan Epstein, Nathan Schachter and Noa Silvestein.

“As part of Hillel’s 85th anniversary, we are rededicating ourselves to fulfilling our potential by helping others to reach theirs.” says UConn Hillel Executive Director Scott Selig. “We plan to continue our legacy of creating strong individuals and an even stronger community. Hillel takes pride in celebrating Jewish learning and living, pursuing social justice, and enriching the lives of Jewish students so that they may enrich the Jewish people and the world.”

Lauri and David Miller have served on the boards of various Jewish organizations. Lauri is past president of the UConn Hillel Board and has served as president of the Greater Hartford Section of National Council of Jewish Women, and as a Board member of the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford. She currently serves on the Board of Visitors of the Maurice Greenberg Center for Judaic Studies. David has served on the Board of Congregation Beth Israel and the Jewish Federation of Greater Harford. He was past Chair of the Jewish Community Foundation and currently chairs numerous committees in these organizations.

Gary Wolff is chief of staff and operations at Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas. He previously served as executive director of UConn Hillel and in myriad professional capacities at Hillel in Florida. Named a Connecticut Jewish Ledger“Mover and Shaker” just one year after he joined the UConn Hillel staff, during his tenure at UConn Hillel, Wolff was instrumental in developing Jewish leadership, learning and engagement, and Israel education and advocacy programs. He also increased active membership from 50 to 850 students, and significantly improved philanthropic donations.  Gary is being honored for leaving a legacy of transforming UConn Hillel, building bridges and cultivating important relationships across the UConn campus, with supporters and with the entire Jewish community.

Eidan Avner (’18) has served as the CFO and the vice president of the Hillel Student Board, as well as the Community Outreach vhair for Huskies for Israel, the pro-Israel group on campus.

Dan Epstein (’19), is a leader in Hillel’s Reform Jewish community and was a Nachshon Fellow. He has led reform services at Hillel and is involved in Challah Homies and Huskies for Israel. He traveled to Israel as part of a birthright heritage trip with UConn Hillel.

Nathan Schachter (’19), is involved in the Greater West Hartford Jewish community and served as a Nachshon Fellow, as well as on Hillel International’s Student Cabinet. He also served on the Hillel Student Board.

Noa Silverstein (’19) is active in the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Active in UConn Hillel since she first arrived on campus, Silverstein served on the Hillel Student Board as vce president of JIGL (Jews in Greek Life) and was a First-Year Student of Hillel mentor.

For more information on the Hillel 85th anniversary celebration, visit UConnhillel.org.

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