The Essex County Board of County Commissioners held its Jewish Heritage Month celebration via Zoom teleconference on May 19. The meeting celebrated the accomplishments of Jewish men and women everywhere, and honored members of Essex County’s Jewish community for their contributions to the county and to society as a whole.
Commissioner Vice President Carlos M. Pomares shared reflections of the past year and the progress the country and local community made during the pandemic. He said: “Today our ability to have this celebration virtually is an example of resilience and we are proud to move forward with our mission and goal.” He noted many of the board’s events were cancelled last year due to Governor Murphy’s Executive Order for gathering restrictions.
Commissioner-at-Large Patricia Sebold of Livingston is the board’s only Jewish board member. “I am proud to be a Jewish American and delighted to be the catalyst for the board’s celebration.” she said.
This year, the board honored three residents for their community service: Rabbi David Z. Vaisberg of Temple B’nai Abraham in Livingston; Arthur Lutzke, treasurer of the Weequahic High School Alumni Association in Newark; and Frederic Pressman, z’l, the former vice president of religious living at Temple Ner Tamid in Bloomfield. Ronnie Pressman represented her late husband.
The program also included opening and closing prayers from Temple B’nai Abraham’s assistant rabbi, Max Edwards, and musical selections from the synagogue’s Cantor Jessica F. Epstein.