ADL to honor Pava family of West Hartford and Springfield, Mass.
By Cynthia Mindell
WEST HARTFORD, Conn. – The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) will honor the Pava family at the 2012 Greater Hartford Torch of Liberty Award Reception on Wednesday, Oct. 3, at The Emanuel Synagogue in West Hartford. The Torch of Liberty Award celebrates families who carry on a tradition of community service.
“The commitment to philanthropy and public service demonstrated by the Pava family in greater Hartford, Western Massachusetts, and Israel epitomizes the Anti-Defamation League’s values and the ideals represented by the Torch of Liberty Award,” says ADL regional director Gary Jones.
The honorees include Sam and Beverly Pava of Springfield, Mass. and their three sons and daughters-in-law: Ann and Jeremy Pava of West Hartford, Dr. Moses Pava and Vivian Newman of Springfield, Mass., and Daniel and Bat Sheva Vegh Pava.
“One of the tenets of our religion is to help your brothers,” said Sam Pava, when asked about his family’s commitment to community service. “We are proud of all three of our boys and blessed with three wonderful daughters-in-law.”
“We tried to bring up our sons so that they were community-minded, and what makes us proud is that not only in their choice of occupations but also in their daily life, they have become very much part of their community, wherever they live,” Beverly Pava said.
Beverly and Sam Pava are household names to those familiar with Congregation B’nai Torah (formerly Kodimoh Synagogue) in Longmeadow, Mass. Beverly taught Sunday school there for 25 years and served several terms as president of the Kodimoh Sisterhood. She is a life member of the B’nai Torah Sisterhood, Amit Women, and Hadassah. She taught in the Longmeadow and Wilbraham, Mass. public-school systems for 25 years before becoming the Harold Grinspoon Foundation’s first program director in 1995.
Sam Pava has served as his congregation’s gabbai (volunteer who assists with Torah readings) for more than 50 years and was the first recipient of the Kodimoh Brotherhood Award. He is active with Jewish War Veterans, the Springfield JCC, HHNE, Israel Bonds, and several other organizations. He is the president of the Vaad Hakashruth of Springfield and writes the Kosher Korner column for the Western Massachusetts Jewish Ledger.
Jeremy Pava is a partner with and CFO of Aspen Square Management, a real-estate investment and management company. He is a founding trustee of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports Jewish culture, philanthropy, education, and entrepreneurship, and is a past campaign chairman of the young men’s division of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts.
On a national level, Ann Baidack Pava is the vice chair for education and leadership development for the National Women’s Philanthropy Board of Jewish Federations of North America. Locally, she is currently chair of women’s philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford and serves on the boards of the Bess and Paul Sigel Hebrew Academy in Bloomfield, Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Hartford, and JOFA (Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance). A former resident of Springfield, Mass., she is also a past president of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts. Jeremy and Ann Pava are the parents of three children.
In 1996, Ann and Jeremy were among the founders of Hebrew High School of New England (HHNE). Located in West Hartford, it is the first co-ed Jewish day school serving 9th- through 12th grade students in greater Hartford, greater New Haven, and Western Massachusetts. Ann served as the school’s first president; Jeremy is its current president.
“Ann and Jeremy’s beneficence knows no bounds,” says Rabbi Daniel Loew HHNE head of school. “They continually find new ways to give to HHNE of their time, their effort, their money and their wisdom. They had the vision to establish HHNE, and the commitment to stay involved over the last 16 years ensuring its success.”
Dr. Moses Pava is the dean of Yeshiva University’s (YU) Sy Syms School of Business and has been a teacher and administrator at YU for 25 years. He has authored or edited 16 books, including “Jewish Ethics in a Post-Madoff World” and “Jewish Ethics as Dialogue.” He serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Business Ethics and is the treasurer of the Society of Jewish Ethics.
His wife, Vivian Newman works as an educational consultant for the PJ Library, a program of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation that distributes more than 100,000 Jewish children’s books each month to families across North America, and another 190,000 each month in Israel. The mother of three children, Newman is author of two children’s books, “Ella’s Trip to Israel” and “Tikkun Olam Ted.”
Daniel Pava is an international lawyer who maintains a private law practice in Springfield, Mass. and Israel. He and his wife, Bat Sheva Vegh Pava, have achieved their lifelong dream: having all six of their children live in Israel. Daniel and Bat Sheva have been active in helping to build the Beit Knesset Ramat Modiin, the Beit Shulamit Mikva and the Bnei Akiva Yeshiva, Nir Talmid, all in Israel.
“I am astonished and grateful to the Pava family for their extensive involvement in so many areas of Jewish communal life,” said Rabbi Max Davis of Congregation B’nai Torah. “However, at least as impressive as the scale of their work is the passion and care that the Pavas bring to whatever projects they take on. It is clear that the Pavas care deeply about their good works and so inspire others around them.”
In addition to the Pava family, the ADL Torch of Liberty Award will also be presented to Curtis and Sheila Robinson of Hartford. The Robinsons are founders of the Curtis D. Robinson Men’s Health Institute at Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center in Hartford. The owner of C&R Development Company, a large construction company based in East Granby, Curtis Robinson is a board member of Saint Francis Hospital; a member of the University of Hartford board of regents; a board member of Carson Scholars Fund, an education nonprofit for grade-school students; and an overseer at Hartford’s Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts. Sheila Robinson is the 2011-12 Honorary Campaign Chair for the United Way of Southington.
The Torch of Liberty, one of ADL’s premier annual events, attracts more than 400 of greater Hartford’s leading citizens and corporations every year. For information on the Oct. 3 reception contact Victor Levitt, firstname.lastname@example.org / (203) 288-6500, ext. 304.
Stacey Dresner contributed to this story.